Home Business Treasure Coast fishing: Spanish mackerel are migrating; Trout season closed until Dec. 31

Treasure Coast fishing: Spanish mackerel are migrating; Trout season closed until Dec. 31

Treasure Coast fishing: Spanish mackerel are migrating; Trout season closed until Dec. 31

Temperatures in the mid-80s. Sunny skies. Who cares if we have to change the clocks back tis weekend? The snook are still biting like it’s the middle of the summer. The only difference is, now we can keep them.

Spanish mackerel and bluefish are biting at the Sebastian Inlet jetties and Peck’s Lake. Pompano are running in the surf zone. Tarpon can be caught in the rivers and lagoon. Dolphin are being caught on the rips.

 All in all, it’s been a good first month of the fall fishing scene.

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Capt. Cherlyn Arnold of Vero Beach of @ateamfishingcharters on IG caught and released this 40-inch snook

Closures & regulations changes in effect: Anglers are reminded about these fishery harvest closures currently underway and ones about to begin and end.

  • Flounder: Harvest closed from Oct. 15 through Nov. 30. Harvest re-opens Dec. 1.
  • Hogfish: Harvest closed from Nov. 1 to April 30, 2023. Harvest re-opens May 1, 2023.
  • Spotted seatrout:  Harvest closed from Nov. 1 through Dec. 31 in Volusia, Brevard, Indian River, St. Lucie, Martin & Palm Beach counties. Harvest re-opens Jan. 1, 2023.
  • Snook: Harvest closed from Dec. 15 through Jan. 31, 2023. Harvest re-opens Feb. 1, 2023.
  • Grouper: Harvest closed from Jan. 1, 2023 through April 30, 2023. Harvest re-opens May 1, 2023. Includes gag grouper, red grouper, scamp and six other lesser species.
  • Redfish: Harvest of redfish is banned in the Indian River Lagoon and Mosquito Lagoon beginning Sept. 1.
  • Alligator: Hunt season open Aug. 15-Nov. 1. Permits required.
  • Lobster: Regular season opened Aug. 6.
  • Dolphin: New fishing regulations began May 1 for state waters. Bag limit is now 5 fish per day per angler; Vessel limit is now 30 fish per day. Captain & crew may not be included in limit.
  • Tilefish: A commercial fishing closure is in place beginning July 6 until Dec. 31, 2022.
  • Bass: Bass at Headwaters Lake will soon become all catch and release.

For complete fishing regulations in Florida go to MyFWC.com.

Indian River County

Offshore: Mangrove snapper and triggerfish are the staple catches on the reefs in 70 to 90 feet of water out of Sebastian Inlet. Red grouper and kingfish can be caught in the same depths. One has to go out to 120 to 160 feet to find gag grouper and greater amberjack.

Inshore: Cherlyn Arnold of Vero Beach, owner of A Team fishing charters found on Instagram, has been on the snook bite using No Live Bait Needed (NLBN) artificial jerk baits. Snook have been up in the mangrove roots in the trees south of town. At Sebastian Inlet, there has been a good Spanish mackerel bite. Catch them using Gotcha plugs or diamond jigs and reel fast.  

Freshwater: Anglers have been enjoying better fishing at Headwaters Lake using lipless crank baits and topwater frogs with the cooler water temperatures. Use 1/32 or 1.16 ounce crappie jigs for the specks at Blue Cypress Lake.

St. Lucie County

Offshore: Mutton snapper fishing is still pretty good in 80 feet of water on the Offshore Bar and at Bethel Shoal. Use long leaders as much as 24 feet and fluorocarbon so the snapper can’t see the line. 

Inshore: Fish the points of spoil islands and mangroves to catch snook, spotted seatrout and redfish. Use topwater plugs, jerk baits with 1/8-ounce or 1/4-ounce jig heads or live greenies or mullet. 

Surf: Pompano and whiting can be caught in the trough between the shorebreak and the sand bar running parallel to the beach. Try fishing at Blue Heron, Dollman or Middle Cove to see if the water is right. Use Fishbites or Fish Gu on the incoming tide. Other catches include permit, snook, jacks and sharks. 

Martin County

Offshore: Dolphin are starting to show up as they head south to the Keys and Mexico for the winter. Some boats are finding a few 10 to 20-pounders along the rips while trolling ballyhoo. There are also blackfin tuna in the 10-15 pound range with them. 

Inshore: Snook fishing is on fire on every dock and point in the river system it seems. Fish the docks of Hutchinson Island, Rocky Point, Sailfish Point and Sewall’s Point to find common snook. Fat snook are around the docks at Port Sewall (Hell’s Gate). More snook are biting at the Evans Crary Bridge and Roosevelt Bridge. Use live mullet to get bites. 

Lake Okeechobee

The level of Lake Okeechobee is at 15.89 feet above sea level as of Thursday. It means bass are feeding in their usual fall spots in 2-3 feet of water along Observation Shoal, around King’s Bar in Pearce Canal around lily pads and bulrushes. Use topwater frogs or lipless crank baits for best results.


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