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Florida Sportsman

Florida Sportsman February 2020

Florida Sportsman is the complete fishing magazine for Florida and the Tropics. Devoted to fishing, boating, and outdoor activities in the Sunshine State, Florida Sportsman is the authoritative source for Florida's most active fishermen.

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País:
United States
Idioma:
English
Editor:
KSE Sportsman Media, Inc.
Periodicidad:
Monthly
SUSCRIBIRSE
USD 26.95
12 Números

en este número

3 min.
record seatrout? in your dreams

The age has sort of drifted by when fishermen ached to see their names in the record books. But there’s one mark I dearly want yet: Spotted seatrout, all-tackle. On some days, mainly in spring and early summer, my mind’s eye conjures out of the Indian River Lagoon a silver monster with fantastic canines. The big ones (you’ve seen ’em, yes?) seem to shake off their spots as they age. Maybe they don’t need the camo to hide any longer. They are predators eating predators, to me resembling not alligators but vampire salmon. I’ve weighed fish like this—including a near-13-pounder caught by my friend Ed Zyak, a Jensen Beach guide. I’ve caught a few yardsticks myself, too. The elusive all-tackle record? Swimming in my imagination, an obsession. I was a junior editor at…

2 min.
ochopee

To the untrained eye it’s a hodge-podge of pine and scrub palm, fronted by bankside mangroves that compete for space with cattails backed by intermittently flooded prairies. But Ochopee is fishy for sure, a waypoint to a dedicated contingent of light tackle anglers. Southwest Florida’s marshes, where the salt content varies according to rainfall and tide, play a vital role in maintaining the health of the greater Everglades. Just ask the wading birds—or Katy Hendee. Katy, a Ft. Lauderdale realtor and inveterate outdoorswoman, fishes out this way a good bit, where an abundance of small baitfish and matrix of creeks attracts both fresh and saltwater gamefish. Included are snook, tarpon, jacks and redfish: species referred to as “euryhaline.” These can make the transition from salt to fresh. Largemouth bass, bluegills and…

1 min.
if you go

TACKLE: Spinning tackle with light braided line, light fluorocarbon leader, white or yellow-crappie jigs or small Rapalas. Flies are excellent here, too: tan craft-fur streamers tied on No. 2 or 4 hooks. AIRBOATS, SWAMP BUGGIES: Get up-close and personal with gators and other Everglades critters at Wooten’s Everglades, 32330 Tamiami Trail East, www. wootenseverglades.com, (239) 695-2781. FOOD: I’m typically content to ingest freshly made sandwiches from the Subway. The one in question sits on the southwest corner of the intersection of Highway 29 and the Trail. For a tempting menu of authentic Glades fare, try Joanie’s Blue Crab Cafe, 39395 Tamiami Trail East. SKEETERS: Yes and no. Mainly a summer concern. Back when I guided, I’d take a light-blue shirt (some say bugs avoid this color), spray it with Avon “Skin So Soft”…

2 min.
best boat

SHEAFFER S240 The result of 20 years of evolution of the original “flat back” style Gulf Coast guide boat is complete. Sheaffer Marine has been refining the present edition of this platform for many years, and the S240 is an incredibly solid, beautifully constructed, and finely finished version of a timeless classic. Highly sought after for its capabilities as an inshore guide boat by Florida anglers, this version of that past favorite includes hull design tweaks which make her more stable underway while not significantly affecting her draft. The addition of yacht-grade finish work and modern mechanical equipment along with beautiful pipework, results in a nearshore fishing machine that the guides of yesteryear could only dream of. Length is 24 feet; beam, 8 feet, 6 inches; draft, 13 inches. Fuel capacity…

3 min.
wake up the sailfish

Captain Roland Beamish of Beamish Custom Tackle and I share a love of dead bait sailfish trolling. Over the last 20 years, it has gone from an exclusive South Florida wintertime fishery, to a 12 month a year, entire east coast of Florida fishery. Every kind of boat from bay boats to 80-footers are pulling ballyhoo once the summer’s supply of live bait has dwindled. Roland captains several different sportfishermen when he’s not running his Saint Augustine shop. “The evolution of sailfish tackle has been tremendous over the last few years,” says Roland. Building natural dredges—the three-dimensional teaser arrays crews use to lure sailfish out of the water column—is used to be a nightmare. Now, every bluewater shop has heavy wire pin rigs, that can rig either precut mullet or ballyhoo…

3 min.
spring tarpon

Captain Carl Ball (www. awolfishingguide.com ) is what most of us call an inshore expert. His mainstay? Bonefish, permit and, when conditions are right, tarpon. Whenever he’s fishing Florida Bay, or nearby coastal rivers, he starts searching for silver as soon as winter temperatures rise. “In Everglades National Park, that’s when they head inshore,” Carl tells me. “And then start rolling in basins, as well as heading up rivers.” What do his customers feed them? “Either Shimano’s Waxwing—a hard bait, DOA’s Bait Buster (a soft plastic minnow) or Egret Bait’s Vu-Du Plastic Shrimp. These fish, being hungry, aren’t selective.” “During the spring, when tarpon are in the bays and rivers, I fish known areas,” he continues. Consequently, he advises anglers to “look for rolling, busting or free-jumping fish,” before adding: “Then position…