That is the question? Where are the Mahi? Hopefully by the time this article is out they will have appeared. Usually when they have not arrived by mid-April they will be here until Father’s Day. If they fail to show up then switch to plan B.
Plan B is bottom fishing. May first is the opening of Grouper season and the best time to catch a large Gag Grouper. If Large Gags are your target then bigger is better. 80# class Tackle and large live baits are the way to go. If you have time catch bait before you go, nothing beats a pin fish or spot. I suggest 100# leader at a minimum. If Scamp Grouper are your target live cigar minnows or a small grunt is the bait of choice. Look for post spawn aggregations in 150 to 160 ft. In addition to Grouper Red Porgy, Triggerfish and Vermillion Snapper will be plentiful. If you are looking for a work out Amberjack AKA reef donkeys will be aggregated along the shelf edge. They will eat live baits but will also hammer a jig worked vertically through the water column.
If the Mahi fail to show up it is still worth going for some of the best fishing of the year.
“Let’s Go Fishing”
Captain Robert Johnson