Triggers, Snappers, Groupers!

Triggerfish opened up March first and were excited to have a weather window coming up this week starting Tuesday March 10th to go get some of these great eating fish out in deeper waters offshore. They are most common past around 150 foot of water but around 200ft is where you see big numbers of monster triggerfish on those ledges, potholes and hard bottom areas. These guys like hard bottom structures specifically and they love a chunk of squid on a smaller hook.

Mangrove snapper action is good offshore right now and will only get better in the coming weeks. Looking forward to getting back out there this coming week to get a pile of these guys around 120-180 foot of water.

Red grouper are tougher right now due to the deep water closure, but were able to find a few right inside the closure line. When fishing outside of it though any grouper species including scamp and strawberries must be released. Whenever releasing a fish out deep make sure to use a venting tool properly or an easy to use descender device.

Make sure to NEVER release a fish offshore and let it float away. We always ensure to vent or descend fish if they need it to avoid them floating off to die. Typically, when we get started on a spot the first fish, we release will let us know if we need to vent or descend at that fishing spot. If the first fish caught and release swims down quickly and healthy no need to vent or descend fish at that fishing spot. However, if the first fish released floats off and can’t get to bottom, we will net him up and vent or descend it and every subsequent fish after. If you don’t know how to use a venting tool or descender device, YOU SHOULD NOT BE OFFSHORE FISHING!! However, its easy to learn how check out this helpful link and click what state you want more info about and there’s tons of helpful videos and info on how to vent or descend fish to ensure your released fish will survive another day for you to catch in the future when they are larger or their season is open -> http://gulfcouncil.org/fishing-for-our-future/

Kingfish are biting well out there in the deeper waters, they are around most of the year out deep where the water temperatures stay in the right range most of the year. Right now, we have seen a big uptick in their numbers however. Looking forward to our 39-hour March 10th because we should see big numbers of these guys on the flat lines and knocker rig set ups through the nighttime period. During the day some more action will be around, but it will be on flat lines and trollers primarily during the day. Love trolling a rapala xrap magnum 30 or 40 for kingfish offshore.
Tuna are biting well out deep as well with the kingfish. They are right before sunrise or around sunset on flat lines or vertical jigs. Unlike kingfish, we don’t use a wire stinger rig for tuna most of the time were flat lining with fluorocarbon and a tail hooked pinfish for these tuna. The tough part is that if the kings are around they are liable to bite too and cut your flat line tackle so light wire can be a good idea still giving you a shot at tuna but also enabling you to land a kingfish if he bites your flat line.

Plus, Sailfish occasionally grace our area this time of year and they like tuna prefer a flat line without wire, but we have caught a few on a kingfish stinger rig over the years. However, its important to have a pitch rod rigged and ready if you happen to spot one of these guys cruise past your boat while your bottom fishing this spring!

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