Hello and welcome to Pro Tips with Capt. Jonathan Moss. It is August and soon fall will be here as well as cooler temperatures and I, for one, am ready for a break from the heat.
Additionally, we are quickly approaching the one-year mark of the closure of redfish on the Space Coast; a closure I believe was much needed. Clean/clear water is crucial for our estuary and the bounce back of our much needed sea grass. Increased grass growth plus the closure of redfish theoretically meant a return of habitat for bait such as shrimp, crab and pinfish which ultimately means more fish. Hurricane Ian quickly halted that plan. Heavy winds, lots of rainwater and runoff created the perfect storm to stir and contaminate the water, causing it to turn brown and killing all of our new grass growth. Almost a year later, I am happy to report that the grass is growing.
Here are some simple steps we can take to protect our lagoons:
- Refrain from fertilizing your yard. It has been a fairly wet summer. Fertilizer is just overkill, unneeded and, frankly, a waste of money. Rainwater flushes added nutrients from fertilizer into our lagoons and feeds the algal blooms. This is something we can avoid by not fertilizing.
- Pole or Troll. In areas of new grass growth, it is paramount that we allow that grass to continue to grow. Using your outboard in these areas destroys the new growth and can create prop scars. To avoid this, pole your skiff until you reach deeper water, or lift your trolling motor as high as possible to create space between the prop and grass. Of course this will add time to your fishing trip, so keep that in mind when you want to move spots. The extra time and being patient will be worth it!
- Join the movement! I am happy to report that I am a member of the Lagoon Watermen Alliance. In July, we met with lagoon stakeholders to gain public opinion on the issues that our lagoons are facing. Join us by visiting lagoonwatermen.org, as we are passionately fighting for our special estuary.
Let all come together to ensure the future of our water!
Capt. Jonathan Moss
Go Castaway Fishing Charters