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Aug 3, 99
To update you on the live fish capturing from last Thursday. We did very
well, returning to the dock with twelve live Mutton snapper. While we
experienced some difficulty (mostly heat related) with the fish after they were
placed in the live wells onboard, news is that all the fish have made it to
their new home in South Carolina and are doing well. We ( the wife and I ) will
be offline till the end of next week. The job of taking care of the two boats
and all the gear that keep anglers on board the "Looney Tunes" catching fish
does require a lot of attention. So we will not be posting new report till late
next week Aug. 14, 99. Sorry for any convenience. Thanks for
stopping by: The Capt. Carl Rees Book a charter, quick form for bookings
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Current Weather Conditions at sand Key Light
Aug. 18, 99
We have a light wind (5-10kts.) today at Oceanside Marina with about a thirty
percent chance of rain. Let's face it, fishing this time of the year can be very
trying. The number one reason is the weather. The month of August and September
have the most T-storms we will see all year long. While the biggest majority of
these storms are of little threat to most boaters (if you get out of their way),
they do present an ongoing effect on fishing. The effects disrupt the fishing by
where and when you can fish, thus affecting what you will catch.
Obliviously you do not want to run into a storm and fish there, so you
pick the open areas that storms are not present, so there goes the where
and you are not going to take off in the morning in the middle of a storm that's
over the marina, thus the when is affected. As an example , I will post
another report tomorrow to let you know how the weather affected our day. Now
to what is being caught. Offshore, the Dolphin activity has slowed,
but there is still a pick going on with a few Wahoo's mixed in. No reports of
Sailfish at all, water is to warm for them. On the reef and deep water wrecks
and structures, strong east bound tides have again taken control of conditions
and nearly shutting down the deep but improving the reef catches greatly. Fair
to good catches of snapper from the reef, mixed with the ever present
Barracuda action is the main game on the south side. Thanks for stopping by: The
Capt. Carl ReesBook a charter, quick form for bookings
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Current Weather Conditions at sand Key Light
Aug 20, 99
Where and when? That was the situation for yesterdays trip as the day
started with sufficient thunder storms, that I decided to cancel the charter.
Now that makes the previous fishing report on where and when
effects a little clearer. If you have rain and lighting when you are
about to go fishing then the where you are going is, nowhere. Lobsters,
that would have to be the hottest fishing going on. Everyone who is spending
their day looking for the tasty crustaceans are having good results. This
lobster season is turning out to be a excellent season. Offshore continues to be
sporadic, with some boats having fair catches of Dolphin mixed with a few Wahoo,
while the reef is producing for those carrying sufficient chum to have plenty of
activity on snapper and predators. Key West harbor activity for Tarpon and
Permit is unknown as I have received no reports. Best bet, go "bug"
hunting or check your favorite reef spots. Thanks for stopping by: The Capt. Carl ReesBook a charter, quick form for bookings
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Current Weather Conditions at sand Key Light
Aug. 27, 99
Friday brings yet another light wind day to Key West. Over the past week winds have remained quiet for anyone venturing out onto Keys water. Though most captains and anglers report fishing slow in the activity department, this is normal for this time of year. As we reach the end of spawning for many of the species of fish that live on our reefs and migrate through our waters (such as Dolphin), there is always a depression in fish activity after these natural cycles. While I do not have scientific information to explain the slow up of fishing after these breeding cycles, I can assure you that each August and September it does occur. This is not to imply you should not go fishing, instead consider the type of fish/fishes you are targeting and will it be active during your Key West stay. Bone fish for instance are considered by many Key West captains to be at their peak during September through October, while grouper (Blacks, Gags and Reds) can still be caught during this time. I would not want to tell you to expect a great day grouper fishing , in fact you may not catch one for your days efforts. In conclusion it is important that you be aware of what can be reasonably expected to be caught during the time of year that you visit Key West and very important is that you feel comfortable that you and your selected Captain are on course for your best fishing opportunity for your trip onto Key West waters. Best bet, for the fun of it, stalking the Flats for Bones, Permit and sharks or diving for "bugs" / lobsters. Thanks for stopping by; Capt. Carl Rees
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Current Weather Conditions at sand Key Light
Sept. 5, 99
Calm winds and high temperatures have added up to many anglers looking for
ways to stay cool. The best way obviously is to get in the water, but this
is often not productive to fishing, unless you are spear fishing or
chasing lobster, in which case both of those activities have been very good
lately and you will like the coolness of that different "fishing". For those of
you who have stuck strictly with a rod and reel for your fishing trips, I am
sure you have noticed fishing a bit slow . Well good news for you, while it will
remain hot, you can look for reef action and deep water wrecks and structures to
become very active this month and next. We will be on the reef all this coming
week and updating the fishing report mid week. Thanks for stopping by: The Capt. Carl ReesBook a charter, quick form for bookings or
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Current Weather Conditions at sand Key Light
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Sept. 8, 99
If sharks are your fishing desire, then the deep water wrecks have all you need. Most are Black tip spinners and are not truly "Movie Jaws size" but they do range 5 to 7 foot in length and are very frisky. If you have never encountered these types of sharks before you will find that once they feel the point of the hook, they immediately go skyward while spinning their body. This action does not occur with every Blacktip but better than half your hookups will result in a high flying act by these speedy sharks. Twenty pound tackle is OK, but you will make three to five trips around the boat over a thirty to fifty minute period before bringing your catch to gaff. Thirty to fifty pound stand up gear would be more appropriate and cut the fight time down, but keep in mind your going to break a sweat quickly, these guys don't give up easily and can be a real handful when up close to the boat. While the deep is dominated by sharks, the reef is producing fair to good catches of Yellowtail snapper with plenty of Barracuda action. Offshore continues spotty with Dolphin catches adding up to mostly schollies (3-7 pound fish) and very few fish in the teens and up, this is not unusual for this time of year and while you will have the occasional great catch of Dolphin offshore expect September to wind down the steady Dolphin action. Best bet, the reef for snapper and a deep wreck for "Jaws". Thanks for stopping by: Capt. Carl Rees
Sept. 17, 99
I have had a few calls about the Key West area and Hurricane Floyd. We had very little wind but is was enough to give us a clear green water condition over most of the reef. The result, with the current now running in a westerly direction and the greenish water, snapper on the reef have become very active. Nice size fish ranging from 1.5 to 4 lbs. Along with the snapper is the usual amount of Barracuda and shark activity with the occasional grouper and small king thrown in. The deep wrecks and structure action has slowed with the increased current to the west, but that is to be expected due to the depth. Offshore has had a few spurts of action on Dolphin but most of the trolling boats are staying close to the reef looking for Little tunny, Kings and Barracuda. Some of the trolling boats have reported they are also picking up large Yellowtail snapper while along the reef trolling. The Harbor remains quiet and I have no reports from there and like wise on reports from the gulf wrecks. A little note about accomplishments anglers have had aboard the "Looney Tunes" this year. Thus far, anglers have been guided to five new IGFA world records. Those records were set on 4 lb. test line 6lb. two on 8 lb. and one on 12 lb. In addition, anglers also enjoyed 5 Met tournament division winners in spin and line class, one new Key West tournament record and most Permit releases in the Key West Kick off tournament. Best bet this coming week, look to the reef for your best action. Thanks for stopping by: Capt. Carl Rees
Sept. 26, 99
Conditions along the reef and deep structures remain good. Mostly a west water movement with green to greenish white water color. Those conditions have given anglers aboard the " Looney Tunes" good action on snapper along with mixed action on Kingfish, Sharks and Almacojacks. Offshore of the reef, the trolling action remains slow for Dolphin and other blue water species. Though the water conditions are poor for most trolling scenarios, you can still have fair to good success if you will concentrate your efforts over the shallower reefs. Slow trolled ballyhoos, threadfins or small blue runners should keep you busy with Barracudas, Barjacks, grouper and some small Kingfish. Some news for anglers fishing aboard the "Looney Tunes" boats. As a sponsored guide of Berkely, Fenwick and Abu Garcia also known as Outdoor Technologies Group, we will be using only FireLine this coming season. Best bet this coming week, continue with pursuing the reef and deep water structures. Thanks for stopping by: Capt. Carl Rees
Oct. 3, 99
A constant pattern of rainy weather has hindered getting out fishing the past couple of days. With tropical moisture flowing off a low pressure to our southwest we can expect rain to continue in our fishing trips through mid week. Those anglers ignoring the rain are finding continued good action for Yellowtail snapper and excellent Barracuda activity over the reef. Trolling the depths outside the reef from 300 to 700 has given anglers hookups on Skipjacks, Barracudas and an increasing number of Sailfish catches. Anglers aboard the "Looney Tunes" who willingly donned rain gear were rewarded with their limits of Yellowtail snapper along with plenty of action from Barracudas, Horse Eye Jacks and very large Bull sharks. The sharks are the result of chumming heavily for the snapper along the reef. Blocks of frozen ground fish known as chum placed in a mesh bag hung over the stern of boat will attract fast action for anglers on a variety fish species. A mixture of Yellow Chubs, Blue runners, Bar Jacks, Horse Eye Jacks, Ballyhoo's, Kingfish, Yellowtail snapper, and of course sharks give the waters behind the chum bag a look somewhat like a private aquarium for you to fish. Best bet this coming week, continued pursuit of the reef and deep. Thanks for stopping by: Capt. Carl Rees
Oct. 10, 99
Winds pushed up to 20 knots today with seas running 3 to 5 feet with the occasional 6 footer. In spite of the winds we did make way to the reef for half a day of snapper fishing. Water conditions along the reef continue to be very good for catching Yellowtail snapper. A dusty colored green water and a west bound current on the reef have allowed us to catch all the snapper we want. Competition for the snapper from Barracudas and large Bull sharks have continually haunted us this past week. With each fish hooked up, usually quick reeling is necessary to avoid losing the yellowtail snapper that the sharks in particular find as tasty as do the anglers aboard the "Looney Tunes". Just outside of the reef in depths running from 150 to 300 hundred feet most of the trolling boats are reporting increased Wahoo and Sailfish activity. Trolling the edge of the color change from eastern dry rocks to near the "end of the bar" has proven to be the best area for action. Best bet this coming week, try some slow trolling (live bait preferred) along the color change for the Sails and Wahoo. I recommend you also bring the necessities for some reef fishing in case you find the bite while trolling unproductive or to slow for your liking. Thanks for stopping by: Capt. Carl Rees
Oct. 17, 99
Anglers visiting Key West this past week were given little chance at getting out on the water. Tourist and anglers alike were given a mandatory evacuation notice and though some did stay, most followed local officials request to leave Key West for safer grounds. As hurricane Irene blew in, she did cause a few problems with power outages, street flooding and downed tThe Capt. Carl Rees. Those problems were minor though when compared to the arrival of hurricane George last year.
As to how this will effect our fishing over the next week. Having fished the after effects of many tropical storms that have passed through or near the Keys over the years, I can assure you that excellent fishing for snapper and grouper is what you can expect after one of these storms churn the waters of the Keys.
Water color after a good blow from a tropical storm or hurricane can verge on being total white. Given this condition for enough days over the reef and deeper wrecks, the fish literally start to starve for lack of natural food. Though unfortunate for the fish, it does provide anglers a rare opportunity to catch some the largest Yellowtail snapper and groupers they will ever see.
Best bet this week will be to target your favorite snapper spot and as the water starts to clear, expect increased activity for Sailfish, Blackfin tunas and Wahoo along the color changes as they move closer to the reef line in search of food. Thanks for stopping by: Capt. Carl Rees
Oct. 24, 99
Water color over the reef and out to a depth of 500 ft. remains white green with a tide direction of west. This water condition produced as hurricane Irene moved through is generating excellent catches of snapper and grouper. Extra large Yellowtail snappers weighing 3-5 lbs., Muttons averaging 8-12 lbs. and Black and Gag groupers in the 10-20 lb. range have given anglers plenty of action this past week.
A few boats ventured further offshore in search of blue water since the green water nearer shore has hampered trolling action. For their efforts, a fair number of Sailfish were seen tailing along the color change and several Blue Marlin hooked in the blue water near the "Wall". With some dolphin activity that was also reported, the blue water is moderately active and should improve as it moves closer to the reef line.
Best bet this coming week. Wind directions are predicted to become a bit breezy from the east. This should help clear the water color and bring the color change closer to the reef. As the change moves in, expect sail fishing and Blackfin tunas to start popping up and for them to be much hungrier than this past week. Reef action will continue to produce good results on snapper and shark activity. Thanks for stopping by: Capt. Carl Rees
Sailfish and Wahoo in water depths of 120 to 250 foot just off the reef and snapper over the reef was the dominate action for anglers willing to brave the high winds ( 20-25 kts.) this past week. Regardless of the winds having put the fishing on hold for many anglers visiting the Keys, the first annual Cuban Heritage Bill fish tournament attracted 21 boats willing to bob and dip in the high seas in pursuit of Sailfish, Wahoo and Tuna.
The winning boat, The Linda D III caught and released two sailfish to take home top prize. Second and third place went to the boats Lucky Too and the Cowboy also with two releases. Though not in the money, Charles Argento fishing aboard the "Looney Tunes" saw, caught and released his first Sailfish. Congratulations Charles on a job well done.
Best bet this coming week, winds are high but if your adventurous, the reef is very active for Yellowtail snapper and Spanish Mackerel. Slow trolling live baits for Sailfish and Wahoo will continue to improve thru this month along with increasing action on Blackfin tunas and Kingfish. Thanks for stopping by: Capt. Carl Rees
Sunday Nov. 14, 99
Good news for Key West visitors and local anglers. Windy conditions that have persisted the past two weeks will diminish to 10-15 knots by late today.
The steady 20 to 25 knot winds covering the Key West area has certainly slowed the number of boats getting out to the reef and deep water wrecks and structures. But some fishermen were determined to brave the winds and seas. Rewards for these brave have been good to excellent catches of Yellowtail snapper, the occasional Cobia sliding into the chum slick and a veritable unlimited supply of shark battles for the angler looking for "Jaws" .
Windy conditions have once again caused water color on the reef and waters out to a depth of 250 to become powder blue to greenish white. While this water condition can enhance reef fishing for snappers, it usually impacts trolling for Sailfish, Tunas and Wahoo with slow results, which was the case this past week as action slowed for those most sought after fish species.
Best bet this coming week. With slower winds, expect increased action on Blackfin tunas as the boats using live baits anchor over the deep wrecks and structures. Though water color will slowly clear, anchoring for the tunas will produce better results than trolling for them while the color is poor. Tide conditions should favor fishing deep this week and I recommend seeking out your favorite deep spot for both top water and bottom action. Thanks for stopping by; Capt Carl Rees
Nov. 25, 99
Happy Thanksgiving and welcome to this weeks fishing report. Including the normal fishing action for the week, I will offer up some of my thoughts on how our fishing should shape up for Key West this millennium winter season.
The last seven days have offered anglers good action on Blackfin tunas, Little tunny, Sailfish, Mutton snappers, the occasional Wahoo and fair action on Black grouper and Amberjack s. Combine these fish along with the light northeast winds we have had the past few days and anglers may be seeing a glimmer of what will be be an excellent winter fishing season in Key West.
Early signs of what will be for this winter are making themselves more obvious as we enter our Key West winter. The most obvious is that the water temperature is down from last year at this time. Bait schools that we target by cast net and hook and line are in better than norm quantities. A unusual sign has been the large schools of small Spanish sardines that are showing up near the deep reef line pursued by schools of Blackfin tunas, Sailfish, Little tunny and Mackerels. Large and early schools of Spanish and Cero mackerel are already being sighted by lobster and stone crab trappers on the north side of Key West.
Each year I look for mother natures indicators of how our fishing season will go and this winter seasons signs look very good for making several predictions. First, expect an earlier and longer run of Kingfish, with the schools moving over the reef lines in much greater numbers than last year. Second, though we are heading into our Blackfin and Sailfish season, expect their numbers to be above normal. Last is for an exceptional Cero and Spanish mackerel run both on the south and north side of Key West.
Best bet this holiday week, with water movement on the reef and deep water being almost nonexistent take advantage of this excellent opportunity to anchor over your favorite deep water structure or wreck for Grouper, Amberjack , Barracudas and Mutton snapper. If you can carry live Pilchards or some small live Blue runners expect to have action on Blackfin tunas, Sailfish or both, Thanks for stopping by and HAPPY THANKSGIVING !! Capt. Carl Rees
Sunday Nov. 28, 99
Blackfin tunas, Wahoo, Cero and Spanish mackerel have kept anglers visiting Key West very busy the past few days. Increasing numbers of Blackfins along the reef and over the deep wrecks will continue to produce plenty of action for Keys fishermen over the next few months as they migrate into our area.
Catches of Kingfish and Cero mackerel have continued to make improved appearances at the docks. Most of the mackerel action has been over the reef line on the south side but some boats have ventured into the Gulf and were rewarded with excellent catches of Cero and Spanish mixed with a few Kingfish.
Reef action for snapper slowed distinctly this week as current conditions (water movement) was almost nonexistent. Water movement is of utmost importance when snapper fishing the reef. Look for this to improve as we enter the last quarter of the moon.
Best bet this coming week, continued catching of live bait for Blackfins and
Mackerels. Thanks for stopping by:
Capt. Carl Rees
This past weeks fishing action was concentrated over the deep water wrecks for Blackfin tunas. With fair to excellent activity on the surface for the Blackfins and Little Tunny, various bottom and mid water fish, such as Amberjack s, Mutton snapper and Black Grouper filled in while the tunas took the occasional break from chasing the handfuls of live pilchards thrown for them to feed upon.
Trolling action just off the reef line has anglers catching Sailfish, Kingfish, Blackfin Tuna, Barracudas and the occasional Wahoo. Though the Blackfin tuna action was not as "Hot" as with the boats anchored over the deep wrecks, the trolling has anglers enjoying consistent action.
Reef action for snapper improved somewhat as water movement did pick up slightly toward the west and fair landings of Yellowtail snapper have been making anglers very happy with their tasty catches. Sharks continue to hang with the Yellowtails and are providing ample "Jaws" action for the angler ready to tough it out with these brutes.
Best Bet this coming week, continued pursuit of the Blackfins. Combine the Blackfin tuna action with either slow trolling for Sailfish or hitting the reef for snapper and you should have a very full day of Keys fishing action. Thanks for stopping by: Capt. Carl Rees
Sunday Dec. 12, 99
Blackfin Tuna action remains the hot fishing this past week. Along with the tuna action a fair mix of Kingfish, Wahoos, Little Tunny, Barracudas and Saifish are also being caught. Live pilchards has been the bait of choice for the tunas but trolled ballyhoos have also been enjoying good results.
Snapper fishing along the reef and over the deep water wrecks has slowed due mostly to the clearer water conditions and rather strong currents.
Best bet this coming week, continued pursuit of the Blackfin tunas over the deep wrecks. Thanks for stopping by; Capt. Carl Rees
Sunday Dec. 20, 99
Wahoo's provided anglers superb action this past week in Key West. These speedsters that can bust to over fifty miles per hour on their first run were tempted by trolling rigged ballyhoos and slow trolling live baits. From western dry rocks to "the end of bar" numerous single and multiple hook ups of Wahoo's starting in the early teen weights to well over 50 pounds were caught and landed.
The east bound water movement we have had for much of the week has ended by turning back toward the west. While this did cause a slow down in Wahoo action, Blackfin tuna continue to provide plenty of fishy action. Anchoring over the deep water wrecks and tossing live pilchards remains the best method for the tuna action, though some tunas are being hook up on trolled ballyhoos.
Kingfish activity continues to be slow on the south side (Atlantic) with only a few being caught. On the north side (Gulf) the King action is improving. Most of the grouper bar area is holding a fair number of Kings ranging from "snake" size to fish up to thirty pounds. Anchoring and live baiting is producing the best results.
Best bet this coming week. As we head into the holiday week I expect Tunas, Wahoo's and some kingfish will be the most likely gift from mother nature. However if you have made a list of fish you want for Christmas then make sure to tell Santa (your captain) what you want and maybe between him and mother nature you will have your holiday fish wish. Have a safe and Merry Christmas !! Thanks for stopping by; Capt. Carl Rees
Sunday Dec. 26, 99 Special Note for SKA Tournament fishermen coming to Key West. We are now accepting orders for live blue runners as bait for the tournament. Once again we have a limit as to the amount of bait that we can hold and we hope we can be of service to all of you. Call us at 906-984-4079to reserve your baits. Thanks in advance, The Capt. Carl Reesand wife Katie, Capt Logan and brother Carter
Let me start with a warm congratulations to Cheryl Lynne Littleton. Cheryl
received her certificate this past week for a world angling record from the
International Game Fish Association - IGFA. While fishing earlier this year with
her son Kyle, husband Terry and myself as captain, Cheryl caught a Mutton
snapper on 8 lb. class line that weighed in at 17 lb. 4 oz. setting a new
women's world record. Congratulations Cheryl on a fine catch!!
This past weeks fishing was superb for both Kingfish and Blackfin tuna. Kingfish ranging from late teen weights to over forty pounds were being caught in excellent numbers on the gulf side. While Blackfin tuna on the south side were in good supply over most of the deep water wrecks. Though most of the tuna fishing is being done anchored up over the wrecks and tossing generous quantities of live pilchards, there are some of the trolling boats that are enjoying good success trolling for them. Mixed into either the anchoring or trolling method for the tuna, anglers are also enjoying a fair number of hook ups with Wahoo, Mackerel and Kings.
Best bet this coming week. As the past week ended with winds coming up rather strong form the north, water clarity has been diminished to a whitish green along the reef line. Look for trolling action to slow under these conditions and that you should look to concentrating your efforts by anchoring the reef for snapper and mackerel action until water conditions improve in clarity. Deep water wreck activity will also slow for tuna action for the same reason, however you may see improved bottom action for grouper, Amberjack s and Mutton snapper over the wrecks. The gulf side action for Kingfish will be inaccessible until winds and seas subside, but these strong north winds are what is needed to push the Kingfish on through to the south side. Thanks for stopping by; Capt. Carl Rees
Sunday Jan. 2, 2000
Happy New Year and welcome to the millennium !!
Blackfin tuna and Kingfish action remained solid this past week as wind and sea conditions were light and variable. Tunas from the early teen weights to the mid twenties and Kingfish from single digits to over forty pounds gave resident and visiting Key West anglers ample action. Both trolled baits and and live baits worked well for catching either the tunas or Kings with the live bait performance pushing slightly ahead in overall hook ups.
Water color along the reef and deeper wrecks has cleared dramatically to a deep blue this week. The effect has been that the bottom fishing for muttons grouper has slowed while we are seeing an increase in Sailfish and Amberjack activity in the deep. On the reef, mackerel (Ceros and Spanish) and Yellowtail snapper have been a bit finicky with the clearer water conditions. Best catches over the reef are resulting from patience and a good number of blocks of chum. Use of fluorocarbon as a leader in the 15 or 20 line class is a definite help for your snapper bite. That and a light but strong hook style, such as Mustads 92672 size 4 will give you a slight advantage over the fish in the very clear water.
Best bet as we start the New Year week will to be a bit brave as winds are predicted to be up into the 15-20 knot range for the most part of the week. Though a bit rougher, this week, you may want to think of it as a more advanced class of aerobic exercise or what I refer to as "Boat aerobics". While a rough day can be an advanced class in "Boat aerobics" you can still look at getting out fishing, but you just may want to consider a half a day fishing instead of a full day. Look for the Kingfish action to continue along with the Blackfins and slight increase in Sailfish activity this week. Thanks for stopping by; Capt. Carl Rees
Sunday Jan. 16, 2000
The dominate offshore action for anglers this past week in Key West was excellent activity for Kingfish in the Gulf, while on the Atlantic side of Key West anglers had generous Blackfin tuna action with a smattering of Sailfish, Kingfish, snapper and grouper catching.
Kingfish will be the center of attention as we have two very large Kingfish tournaments coming over the next two weekends and I would like to take a moment to offer some information on each of these fine fishing events.
First will be Oceanside Marinas Kingfish extravaganza. This will take place this coming weekend (21-23) Contact: Roger Green for Info: (305) 294-4676 ext. tackle shop. This is the first tournament of 2000 with a guaranteed $5,000.00 First prize and will pay anglers to ten places based on number of boats entered. Note: This is a boat tournament with divisions for women and children and the guys. Largest fish from each day for a two day total or aggregate. Entry fee is 400.00 with the charity being the Lions Club eye research.
Second will be the SKA (Southern Kingfish Association) open division Kingfish Tournament January 27-28-29-30 2000 A very large tournament that enticed over 240 boats last year and is expected to grow again this year. This tournament though large has not to my knowledge found a charity that befits from their activities. If anyone has info. to the contrary please let me know so I can get that corrected. Tournament info. can be found by dialing 1-904-827-1400 Mon. through Friday 8:am to 4:00 pm.
Best bet this coming week. Yesterday (Sat.) and today (Sun.) were small craft advisories and few captains and anglers got out to their desired fishing locations. Improving winds by mid week should have everyone looking to taking advantage of what should be a good push of Kings on to the south side. Normally this time of year Kingfish will move into the western dry rocks and "End of the Bar" area and provide anglers close and fast fishing action using trolled rigged Ballyhoos or Live baits. Though live baits are not absolutely necessary, they will certainly increase your action. If you find it difficult to get your well full of the favored bait, Blue runners, small Lane snappers and Yellowtail snappers can often work as well or better, especially if water conditions are very dirty. The slower trolling speed necessary for snapper allows more opportunity for a King in dirty water to "zero in" on the live snapper baits struggling and thus you can present the live snapper longer in a given area were you believe the big smoker is lurking. Thanks for stopping by: Capt. Carl Rees
Monday Jan. 24, 2000
This past weeks fishing efforts by most captains and anglers were centered around finding where Kingfish could be caught. With what is turning out to be a "Red tide" out break in the Gulf waters north of Key West, Kingfish that were there in good numbers and size just a little over a week ago have now taken off to cleaner waters.
Obviously the question is "where did they go for the cleaner water?" With shallower water to the east of where the Kings were, the most likely move would be toward the west and through Rebecca channel to the south side and into "Tail End Buoy" area. Or they can move further west and cross into four different, but well known areas. First would be what is known as the "little banks" located just northeast of the Dry Tortugas banks. This area has many large rock plies and is the first area west of the fort they reach that has plenty of food for them. Second area is slightly further south and is the Dry Tortugas Banks, the banks is a large area and knowing where to go for some of what I call "resident Kings" you would find it will require a fair bit of time there to locate the better spots. The Kings being highly migratory fish usually only linger on the banks a short time before moving onto the last two areas that they will spend a fair amount of time. First being Riley's Hump. This area is the furthest westward I have ever caught Kings and while at different times of the year it can be great fishing for a variety species, the Kings are usually to scattered out to pick a spot they will hang regularly. With an initial run of 75 nm. it's a very iffy place to fish for big Kings unless you are very familiar with that area. Last is an area that has a variety of locally named spots but is essentially the south side of the Dry Tortugas. Here again knowledge of this area could take many trips before you are comfortable making this run of roughly 62 nm. looking for a large Kingfish or any of the many other species that you will find in this area.
One thing is certain as we begin this weeks fishing. Many anglers and captains from the southeast will be heading for Key West in pursuit of "Big Kingfish". As the Southern Kingfish Associations annual tournament takes place this coming weekend I have had many inquires as to how did anglers fair in the Willet Marine Kingfish extravaganza tournament (results are listed below) that took place yesterday (Sunday) and the day before (Saturday).
Unfortunately for most everyone that ventured into the Gulf north of Key
West, King fishing was poor and that is certainly related to the algae outbreak
mentioned above. Most successful anglers found their action on the south side
and west of Key West. Ranging from western dry rocks all the way to "Tail End
Buoy". Many boats reported back in with no fish the first day and this again I
believe is related to the algae outbreak in the gulf and that the fish are in
between the south reef line and north side grounds. I predict that with today's
very gusty winds from the northwest those fish hanging in between will be pushed
on to the reef line and that King fishing this coming week will be very
productive. Thanks for stopping by; The Capt. Carl ReesKey West Oceanside Marina
WILLET MARINE KINGFISH EXTRAVAGANZA
FORMAT - Two Day Aggregate, Biggest Fish Each Day
1. BLUE RUNNER 88.80
2. SPEAR ONE 80.35
3. PRIMAL BOND 75.15
4. MISS PRINT 73.35
5. FOOLISHNESS 68.95
6. OUT OF CONTROL 65.95
7. MARSH HARBOR MARINA 63.15
8. SUPER GROUPER I 56.95
9. BAIT STEALER
10. SECOND GENERATION 41.90
11. JOE GREEN ??
12. KEY LIMEY ??
13. LOONEY TUNES
BIGGEST FISH - Niki Thomas, "Out of Control" 49.20 lbs.
TOP LADY ANGLER - Mid Thomas, "Out of Control" 49.20 lbs.
Monday Jan. 31, 2000
Conclusion of the annual Key West Southern Kingfish tournament that took place this past Friday, Saturday and Sunday proved to be an interesting challenge to both local and visiting anglers in pursuit of big Kings. With a Red tide out break in the Gulf that caused the Kings to take different routes than would be the norm, anglers found themselves having to hunt more and make longer runs to find the bigger fish. Coupled with windy and rough seas that persisted through Sunday morning, most team captains and anglers admitted that it had been a very tough tournament on equipment and themselves. Reports of damage, both minor and somewhat serious, left many tournament competitors realizing Key West waters can be as challenging as any of the other SKA tournament destinations.
As with many tournaments, catching the "BIGGEST" fish is the object of the game. Though a bit slower than previous SKA tournaments held in Key West, good numbers of Kingfish ranging from late twenty pound weights to over fifty pounds were found, fought and brought to the scales. A list of those anglers and boats that finished in the top ten can be seen by clicking here.
With so many local captains and anglers participating in the SKA tournament, reports of other fishing action is somewhat limited. Action for Blackfin tuna and Sailfish has been slow, but we should see improving action for them this week as we near the new moon. Fishing action over the deep water wrecks and structures is producing good results for Black and Red grouper, Mutton snapper and improving action for large Amberjack s. Reef line activity for Yellowtails and grouper has been fair for the better prepared boats but remains a test of skill as the water is clear and water movement on the reef has been slow, while both of the conditions are very important factors for fishing and catching on the reef.
Best bet this coming week. Work those deep spots while the water movement is slow and as the currents increase in the deep and over the reef, as I believe they will this week, be ready for some great action for Kings and snapper on the reef line. Thanks for stopping by; Capt. Carl Rees
FINAL RESULTS--2000 HOG'S BREATH KING MACKEREL TOURNAMENT
KEY WEST, FL
Boat Name, Captain's Name, Home Port, Single Big Fish Weight
l. Predator, Danny Roberson, Panama City FL. 53.4
2. Hannon's Cannon, Kevin Hannon, Seminole FL. 52.8
3. Spear One, Steven Rodger, Key West FL. 52.4
4. Marsh Harbor Marina, David Van Lent, Belleair Beach FL. 51.3
5. Cool Water, Chris Garcia, Key West FL. 48.0
6. Hog Heaven, DuWayne Crofton, Tampa FL. 46.6
7. Wahoo, Richard McRae, Rockingham NC. 44.3
8. Angling Pursuits, Joe Bruce, Fernandina Beach FL. 41.1
9. Smokin' Deal, Chuck Butler, Kennesaw GA. 40.6
10. Out of Control, Jimmy Garrett 40.4
Top Lady Angler, Barbera Woithe, The Reel Won, Placida FL. 38.5
Top Junior Angler, Trey Young, Reel Young, Myrtle Beach SC. 32.2
Class of 23 and Under--Boats 23 Feet in Length or Less
Sunday Feb. 6, 2000
With the "red tide" out break becoming just a memory as we head into this coming weeks fishing, it remains possible that it was responsible for this past weeks seesaw of fishing activity for Key West anglers. Though the out break started on the north side of Key West, winds blowing from the north through the week did push this fish killing algae bloom through the lakes area and parts of the Marquesas Islands, which lay west of Key West. As it moved through, reports of numerous dead and floating fish were reported by a variety of boaters in those areas.
With everyone staying clear of Key West's north side, anglers and Captains concentrated their efforts toward the south side reefs, wrecks and deep water structures. Results were mixed from day to day as the early part of the week had anglers enjoying good catches of Red and Black grouper with fair to good action on Mutton snapper and Amberjack s in the deep, unfortunately the deep water action dwindled toward weeks end. Joining this to Yellowtail snapper and Kingfish action along the reef line through the week ranging from excellent to nonexistent, it does look as though the algae bloom had a definite effect on this past weeks fishing. Many Captains referred to the weeks fishing as though someone was flipping a switch on and off from one day to the next.
Best bet this coming week. There was an excellent bite on the Kingfish at eastern dry rocks this past Friday, though it never developed on Saturday or today. With schools of Kings still moving into our area, be advised to keep an eye out for groups of boats trolling that are working closely together, they may have a good Kingfish bite going on and you may want to join them. White Jigs of the 1 oz. size in an Upperman or Bean head style with about 16 inches of number seven wire attached should work well for you. Dropping the jig to near waters bottom and then "Jigging" the jig in a rapid up and down motion with your rod while retrieving line on the down motion will draw the kings to strike. The action is much like the movement performed when pumping or fighting a fish. Rigged ballyhoos trolled will also bring strikes from the kings but the jigging, especially on light tackle is "in my opinion", more exciting angling. Thanks for stopping; Capt. Carl Rees
Monday Feb. 14, 2000
First and most important about last weeks fishing was just how tough the fishing and catching really was. Spurts of Blackfin tuna and Kingfish was the main action with the highlight being good catches of African Pompano found over most of the deep wrecks. While this sounds like pretty fair fishing, few captains were able to find good supplies of bites for anglers and those that did, still said it had been tough. Lack of water movement, cool water temperatures and with the lack of Kingfish that we usually have in good numbers on the south side at this time of year contributed to a generally slow week of fishing for Key West anglers.
As this week begins, I believe you will see improved fishing. Saturday ended the slow water movement as water is now moving quickly to the east. Though this has not improved the fishing initially, we should start to see fish concentrating in the areas along the reef that an east bound tide will allow an upwelling of natural food for fish, areas such as "Eye Glass Bar", the "End of the Bar" and the west side of all the deep water wrecks. Thanks for stopping by; Capt. Carl Rees
Sunday Feb. 26, 2000
This past week was dominated by windy conditions and imposed some restriction on what Key West anglers were choosing for their fishing action. Anglers looking for calmer sea conditions found Key West harbor provided good protection along with fair to good action for Tarpon and Cobia along with a mixture of Snappers, Sharks, and Barracudas. Though still early for our "Tarpon Season", a fair amount of Tarpon remain as residents in Key West waters year around. When the month of April rolls around, water temperatures will have increased to a point that good numbers of Permit and Tarpon will be found in and on the numerous channels and flats throughout the Key's.
For the more adventurous anglers that didn't mind a bit of spray and somewhat heavier seas, results were mixed as water movement (current) varied widely over different parts of the reef line and deep water structures. Beginning in the Eastern Dry rocks area, water was moving quickly towards the west and provided good catches of Yellowtail snapper ranging from 1-1/2 lbs. to 3 1/2 lbs. with a mix of action for Grouper, Barracuda, and Sharks. Further on to the west, the Western Dry rocks area provided bag limit catches of Kingfish averaging in the 12 to 15 lb. range with action very good during the morning hours and slowing by mid day. Still further towards the west and to the "End of the Bar", water movement was slight to none and offered good action over the deep wrecks and structures for Mutton snapper, Amberjack s, Grouper, Bonita and Barracudas.
Best bet for this coming week. As winds diminish this week, visiting your
favorite snapper spots along the reef should prove to be productive as long as
water movement continues towards the west. To be on the safe side, make sure
your are prepared to move to deeper water spots should you find unfavorable tide
conditions along the reef. The spurt of Kingfish action along Western Dry rocks
may indicate we will experience improved Kingfish action this coming week and it
would be a good idea to include a few rods rigged for "jigging" the Kings or
rigged for live baiting them. Click on the following link for more info. on
rigging for King fish jigging CLICK HERE
Thanks for stopping by; Capt. Carl Rees.
Sunday Mar. 5, 2000
Key West anglers enjoyed outstanding weather and fishing this past week as winds became light and fishing blossomed into a variety of action for Kingfish, Sailfish, Cobia, Snapper, Tarpon and a touch of other Key West fish mixed into the action.
At weeks beginning, good Sailfish activity could be found along most of "Western Dry Rocks". Large numbers of Ballyhoo were being pursued by single and multiple Sail's in as shallow as 20 foot of water in both the morning and afternoon. Anglers and Captains enjoyed a bit of "run and gun" as the most productive method of hooking the sails was to watch for the "bait showers" and then run to where the shower was still taking place or had been. While running down the bait shower, one or more live baits would be prepared to be cast to an eager Sailfish. Though this action only lasted through midweek, it may be a good indicator that we will have a great spring run of Sailfish.
Kingfish was definitely the dominate action through the week as anglers experienced the best King activity thus far this year. Kings from 20 to 50 pounds were reported by captains using live baits for their anglers, while numerous anglers found their arms very tired at days end as "Jigging the Kings" was extremely productive. Though the jigged Kings were a smaller size and ranged from 5 to 20 pounds, no one could have asked for more from Key West Kingfishing.
Cobias in good numbers made a mid week showing over most of the gulf wrecks. Fish over fifty pounds provided heavy action for anglers venturing to the gulf wrecks while a variety of snapper and grouper helped to mix the action for anglers when not hook up with a Cobia.
Key West anglers working the south side of Key west found the deep water action very good as Mutton snapper up to 20 pounds made for great action. The deep action included a mix of groupers, Amberjack s, Almaco Jacks, Barracudas and Kingfish.
Best bet this coming week. Look for continued Kingfish action, but look to the south side of Key West as winds will be increasing form the north during the week. Deep water action will continue to be active as long as water movement remains light. Tarpon in Key West harbor has been active and will be a good alternative to fishing the reef and deep, should winds and seas become more than you would like to fish in. Thanks for stopping by; Capt. Carl Rees
Monday Mar. 13, 2000
Cobia, Kingfish, Tarpon, Permit and Mutton snapper were all very active for Key West anglers this past week. With windy conditions at weeks beginning, mother nature provided excellent Tarpon and Permit action in Key West harbor. Though the "hot" bite lasted for only a few days before diminishing to a much cooler one, it did offer anglers visiting Key West a calm sea alternative to the rougher offshore sea. conditions
As mid week came, lighter winds allowed anglers to venture out to gulf wrecks where Cobias were in good supply, along with excellent Kingfish action. Cobia up to 70 lbs. were taken along with Kingfish that ranged from late teen weights to over forty pounds. Southside action had anglers bringing to the dock Mutton snappers up to 19 pounds with a mix of smaller Kings and Amberjack s. Further offshore and into the blue water there was a short lived but exciting spurt of Dolphin (Mahi-Mahi) activity as the winds swung into a southeasterly direction late in the week. Dolphin to forty pounds were caught and landed, but you should look to late April becoming steady fishing action for Dolphin offshore.
Best bet this coming week. Winds are predicted to be from the northeast and a bit brisk. Those conditions will dominate the first part of the week. With those northeast winds and the strong east bound current that was developing along the reef, we can expect to see improved Blackfin tuna activity over the deep water wrecks and improving Sailfish action along the color change, that yesterday (Sunday) was forming in depths ranging from 150 ft. to over 200 ft. As that becomes sharper we will most likely see Sailfish moving along that edge in search prey. Live bait slow trolled (Ballyhoo and Threadfin herring) will be the method of choice, but rigged dead ballyhoo should perform well. Thanks for stopping by; Capt. Carl Rees
Sunday Mar. 19, 2000
SPRING TIME !!
As Daylight savings time approaches (on April 2), our fishing is starting to reflect the benefit of those added minutes of sun light that many of us find as inconvenient fiddling with our watches and clocks. As longer days begin to warming waters in Key West, many species of fish recognize those subtle changes in the water temperature and amount of sunlight. The resulting changes signal the biological breeding clocks for these affected fish to begin and anglers visiting the Keys enjoy a bonanza of fishing action offered only during spring time.
Spring time spawning of a variety of snapper and pelagic fish offer visiting and resident anglers fishing that is varied and exciting. Offshore and along the reef, Dolphin (Mahi Mahi) and Amberjack gather in plentiful numbers. While over the deep and shallow water structures, wrecks and reefs you will find a mix of Yellowtail, Mutton, Mangrove, Permit, Cobia, mixed with Barracudas and various sharks. When you add those to the spring time influx of Tarpon and Bone fish found in and around the flats and channels of the Key's, fishermen can expect to find "spring time" in the Key's some the best fishing they will ever experience in US waters.
While the above sounds a bit like a sales pitch, the fishing in fact this past week had good action on most of the above species and will get even better as April arrives. Good catches of Cobia, Kingfish and snapper from gulf wrecks have been providing calmer fishing conditions from the brisk southeast wind. Those venturing to the south side found Sailfish, some Dolphin and good to fair catches of snapper over the reef, though there was some complaints about the quick tide to the east that is still continuing at this time but should slow after the full moon.
Best bet this coming week. Right after the full moon that will take place on Monday and when the quick tide to the east slows down, action over the deep wrecks and structures will be very good for Amberjack s, snapper and grouper. Thanks for stopping by; Capt. Carl Rees
As for fishing this past week in the waters of Key West, very active would be the best description. Tarpon action in the harbor has been very much "happening", as hook ups of as many as forty Tarpon by some boats have been reported. Action for Cobia and Kingfish has slowed some what but continues to produce good action for anglers venturing into the Gulf. On the south side, anglers are enjoying excellent catches of Yellowtail snapper, Black grouper and good to fair action for Sailfish.
Something else new for your information this week. The following link WEIGHT STANDINGS will take you to the current list of weight standings for the Met (Metropolitan South Florida Fishing Tournament) Each line begins with the line class, followed by fish species, weight, angler name, town, state and captain's name. The list is a good source of information for seeing "who" is catching "what" in south Florida waters.
Best bet this coming week. Believe it or not the current on the south side is still moving strongly to the east and is keeping most action in the deep limited to trolling for Sailfish or fishing the reef for snapper and grouper. Both of which have been very good and I would recommend buying some block chum, catching some live threadfin herring and anchoring up on your favorite Yellowtail fishing hole. The live threadfin herring will give you excellent results for grouper action on the bottom while fishing for yellowtail snapper in your chum line. Those same live baits slow trolled or drifted along the color change or in depths from 120 ft. out to 250 ft. will also produce your best chance at catching a Sailfish. Thanks for stopping by; Capt. Carl Rees
Sunday April 9, 2000
This past weeks fishing action was hindered by two cold fronts that passed into the Keys causing unsettled seas for visiting Key West anglers. With winds shifting directions as each front approached, most captains and anglers concentrated their efforts in Key West harbor. Action for Tarpon, sharks and snapper in the harbor has been fair to excellent with most anglers experiencing multiply Tarpon hookups and plenty of shark and snapper action.
For the few days during the week that winds allowed offshore fishing to the south and north of Key West, anglers enjoyed excellent action for Sailfish and snapper along the reef line from eastern Sambos to Western Dry rocks in depths of 120 ft. to 250 ft. Bottom action remains slight as Gulf stream current still remains very close to the reefs edge, leaving anglers poor conditions for fishing the deep wrecks and structures. To the north of Key West, gulf wrecks and reefs remain inactive for Kingfish with moderate activity for Cobia, Permit and snapper. Good quantities of Bonitos and some Blackfin tuna are popping up behind the anchored shrimp boats and that action will continue to improve through the rest of this month.
Best bet this coming week. As winds are predicted to remain brisk from the east to south east through weeks end, Tarpon in the harbor will be your best fishing action opportunity. Fishing action to look forward too; Dolphin ( Mahi-Mahi) and Permit catching will steadily improve as this month continues. Thanks for stopping by: Capt. Carl Rees
Monday May 14, 2000
I apologize for the fishing report being off line for so long. With Ma Bell taking her sweet time at installing the phone lines at our new location at Sunset Marina, we simply have not been able to make updates on the web and handle e-mail in a timely fashion. All phone calls have been directed to our cellular phones and we encourage you to contact us through our 800 number for fishing charters and information until the permanent phones are installed. That we hope, will be very soon!!
The past few weeks of fishing in Key West waters has been great. Catching of Permit over the reef and gulf wrecks has been very good. The annually migration of Permit to the Western dry rocks area for spawning activities (which last for about three weeks) was excellent. Though at times the number of boats fishing them proved to be a bit to much, hooking Permit on Fly rod, spin tackle, bait casting tackle and traditional use of crabs had numerous visiting anglers enjoying Permit action second to no where else in the world of fishing destinations. Permit action over the gulf wrecks continues to be very active while the reef areas have slowed.
Over the reef and deep water wrecks and structures, catching of Amberjack s, Mutton snapper, Yellowtail snapper and Grouper (Red, Black and Gag Grouper) has been excellent with the exception of a few days that the gulf stream current did push in over the reef, creating conditions that proved to be somewhat unfishable, especially over the deep wrecks.
Offshore or Blue water fishing is in full swing as Dolphin (Mahi-Mahi) fishing is currently very good, with plenty of schoolie size fish (5 to 8 pounds) and a reasonable numbers of gaffers (10 to 30 pounds) mixed in with the schoolie fish. Typically our Dolphin (Mahi-Mahi) fishing will remain active through late July and this season is looking very good. Thanks for stopping by; Capt. Carl Rees
Monday May 22, 2000
Excellent Dolphin action this past week will hopefully continue for everyone visiting the Keys over the upcoming Memorial day weekend. Dolphin (Mahi Mahi) ranging from schoolie size (5-8 pound) to fish in the forty pound range are consistently being brought to the docks throughout the Keys. With the weather predicted to remain in the 15 knot range from the southeast through Friday, likelihood for continued strong Dolphin activity through this coming weekend is very good.
One reason for the great offshore action has been the heavy and close to shore flow of the gulf stream. On the down side of having the stream so very close in, is it has shut down fishing action over the deep wrecks and structures. In fact, water flow has been so strong that fishing for snapper (Yellowtails and Muttons) over the reef from "Eastern Sambos" to the "End of the Bar" has slowed considerably with the 2 knot plus water flow. Better snapper action can be found farther west around the Cosgrove light area where lighter water flow and cloudier water conditions have remained for the past few weeks.
Back to the plus side of the gulf stream being so close in has been the very sharp color change that has formed from depths of sixty feet out to over 300 feet. Sailfish, Bonitos, Dolphin and a few Blackfin tuna have been cruising westward on the color change offering Key West anglers close in fishing action and variety. Live baits have been offering the best shots at the Sailfish, but trolled ballyhoos have also been performing well.
Best bet this coming week. The Dolphin action will be the most attractive bet for fishing action. With chances very good that the gulf stream will remain close, keeping the fish in close. I recommend you shop early for your preferred Dolphin baits. It will be a busy weekend in the Keys and you may find both natural and artificial bait will disappear quickly from your favorite tackle store. Thanks for stopping by; Capt. Carl Rees
Monday May 29, 2000
Great weather for the holiday weekend gave anglers light sea conditions to venture out on the waters of Key West. Anyone with a desire to capture Dolphin, Tarpon, Permit, Snappers Groupers or possibly a Billfish found light winds from the southeast perfect for pursuit of Key West fishing action.
Dolphin action continues to be best from reefs edge to depths of 850 feet, with most of the larger fish (teen weights to over forty pounds) being found from 550ft. to 750ft. and schoolie Dolphin being found throughout the depth range. Weed lines where most productive, but a fair number of boats reported catching fish out away from the lines in what is often referred to as "catching out of the blue".
A hint to increase your Dolphin fishing action next time your offshore in the blue would be to carry along a bag of Majua, also referred to as glass minnows. When reeling in your hooked up Dolphin and you see more Dolphin coming toward the boat, it becomes easy to keep their attention around your boat by throwing small handfuls of the minnows as freebies. This can make keeping the hooked fish in the water unnecessary, thus allowing a bit less panic that the fish will leave you before you capture all the fish you want for the day. Bags of glass minnows can be found in most of the "better" tackle stores in quantities of 5 to 10 pounds. Commonly used for snapper fishing, you will find that if someone onboard is given the task of "keeping the Dolphins attention" by throwing small quantities of glass minnows to the dolphin an easy way to make your Dolphin fishing more fun and productive.
Best bet this coming week. Look for continued Dolphin action and as the week progresses we will likely see the Gulf stream's very fast current move away from the reef's edge. Should that occur, expect super action over the deep wrecks for snapper, grouper, and Amberjack s. Thanks for stopping by; Capt. Carl Rees
Tuesday June, 6 2000
Light winds and warm temperatures have made great offshore Dolphin action. From reef's edge to depths of over 1000 foot anglers are enjoying catching Dolphin (Mahi-Mahi) with weights ranging from 4 to 8 pound schoolies, to fish weighing over fifty pounds. Limiting out on Dolphin (ten per person) are common and many boat captains report they are running away from the schools of smaller fish in pursuit of the bit more elusive bigger fish.
On other fishing fronts, Gulf action for Blackfin tuna has slowed, but Permit activity over the Gulf wrecks remains very active. Tarpon in Key West harbor have been constant for those desiring to tangle with the Silver King, but with the calm offshore seas a large number of anglers are opting for the Blue water action. Reef action for Yellowtail has been very good with most anglers limiting out on fish weighing from 1-1/2 to 2-1/2 pounds, while deep water wrecks and structures continue to be kept almost unfishable as Gulf Stream waters remain close to the reefs edge, though the quickness of the current has slowed some.
Best bet this coming week. Look for continued offshore action for Dolphin as we approach the peak of our season for them. Junes full moon will bring the best action we will have on the reef for catching Mutton snapper during the year. Best activity will take place on a weekend, so get in on the action. Thanks for stopping by: Capt. Carl Rees
Monday June 26, 2000
It has been very busy these past two weeks. With Tournament fishing, live fish harvesting and the day to day charter fishing, little time has been available to me for write a fishing report. Thanks to every one for their tolerance in waiting for my fishing report update.
Dolphin fishing has remained consistent with schoolies ranging from 4 to 8 pound and a fair number of larger fish weighing from early teens to over fifty pounds. Hunting down the bird activity has produced the best results, with finding floating debris such as boards and other objects producing a close second on Dolphin action.
Reef and wreck fishing has been sporadic with inconsistent tide and current movement and very clear water conditions. Those who have pursued the snapper and grouper over the wrecks and reef have had their best results by using more than the usual two or three blocks of frozen chum. As much as a case (ten blocks) of chum used two to three blocks at a time have produce good action for Yellowtail snapper, Mutton snapper along with a variety of other fish including grouper, sharks, Bonitos and Barracudas.
Two congratulations are to be given this week. The first goes to Nick Dutch of Miami for catching a 35.9 pound Dolphin aboard the "Looney Tunes". Nick's Dolphin earned him third place in the Gator Dolphin tournament winning him a variety of both cash and prizes. Second is to the guys at Keys Aquatics. Having harvested live Mutton snapper for them this past week, I was informed that the females spawned in excess of five million eggs and that the moms, dads and kids are doing fine. Congratulations Guys !!
Best bet this coming week. Dolphin activity will continue with a slow down in smaller fish and an increase in larger fish as they start to make their final push into and through our area. Reef action should improve as we experience increasing water temperatures causing a bloom of nematodes and other microscopic organisms resulting in a greening of the water color and improved fishing action. Tarpon action in the harbor will continue to be productive though smaller fish (30 to 80 pounds) will dominate the action. Gulf wrecks are still holding good action on Permit and should continue through the end of the coming month. Thanks for stopping by; Capt. Carl Rees
Tuesday July 4, 2000
Happy Independence Day !! Light winds and calm seas have dominated the weather pattern the past few days allowing Key West anglers easy fishing conditions.
The east bound water movement that has persisted over the deep water structures and wrecks has finally abated. Though still trickling eastward the slow down has anglers enjoying hot fishing action for Amberjack s, Mutton snapper, Barracudas and excessive amount of Bonitos in the 7 to 15 pound range.
Reef action for Yellowtail snapper and Mangrove snapper has also improved as some cloudier water conditions are being found over parts of the reef westward of the "end of the Bar". While most reef pursuers report increasing shark activity along with their snapper action, this is quit normal for this time of year and will continue through September at most areas considered popular snapper spots. Bull sharks and Black tips will be the most often encountered with the occasional Lemon shark showing up to join into the feeding. All of these sharks have one thing in mind, eating the fish that you hook. Careful use of chum to bring the snapper as close to your boat as possible and quick reeling of a fish when hooked will eliminate most of the opportunities the sharks have to eat your fish. If you find that you can't get a fish to the boat because each one is eaten, consider increasing the amount chum in your chum bag and reducing the distance that your baited hook for the snapper is allowed to drift back in the chum slick. If you still find yourself unable to get a fish to the boat, then moving to another fishing spot is your best option.
Offshore action for Dolphin (Mahi-Mahi) continues to be consistent for schoolies, with a fair amount of larger fish in the 10 to 30 pound range are being caught and landed. With the lighter winds and calmer seas this time of year comes the increasingly hotter temperatures we experience while out on the waters of the Keys. Chasing after birds, weed lines and floating debris while looking for Dolphin action is a great way to provide cooling relief from our summer days.
Best bet this coming week. The reef and deep should continue productive for snappers along with continued offshore Dolphin action. Tarpon action in the harbor also continues to be steady, but I do recommend you consider early morning or late afternoon to try and beat the mid day heat. Thanks for stopping by: Capt. Carl Rees
Saturday July 8, 2000
Good news and bad news. That is the best way to describe the events that will take place over the next month or two. First the bad news. For those of you who enjoy reading my Key West reports I will not be able to report on the local fishing action as I will be leaving to visit Panama for fishing and recreation. At this time tentative plans are to continue on to the Galapagos Islands, but that could be a problem do to their weather patterns, it is the rougher time of the year there.
The good news is, that I will continue to receive your e-mail and phone inquires about Key West fishing charters aboard my boats. Those requests will be taken care of promptly. I will be back to personally captain the Looney Tunes boats after my return. That return is to be no later than Sept. 9, 2000. All those requesting fishing trips before those dates will be given my recommendations as to other captains who can fill your fishing needs. Thanks for stopping by: Capt Carl
p.s. Thanks for your patience as the Captain does a bit of exploring. If possible, I will make updates to the fishing report as to just what we have been catching at our destinations.
Sunday July 30, 2000
Yes I'm back in Key West. Though having returned early due to a mechanical problem with the Tibona ( a 73 foot motor yacht ) I did enjoy the break from the normal hubbub of Key West. Fishing was not the main objective of this trip, but to simply get away and sightsee. Sightseeing and enjoying the hospitality of locals as we visited the Island of Providencia, Colon Panama, San Blas Islands and then through the Panama canal to Panama City. Reaching the Pacific we took harborage in a marina located in Panama City, Panama where I flew home to Key West. I have included a bit more about the trip on another page that you can get to by clicking here. NOW FOR THE KEY WEST FISHING REPORT.
The report is a collection of information from charter captain friends that I contacted when I returned home. Their reports are that Dolphin fishing has slowed considerably and they recommend the reef areas over being offshore. Good catches of Yellowtail snapper on the reef line along with ample shark activity while fishing for the snapper is keeping anglers very busy.
Deep water wrecks and structures are active, but shark activity is taking place there and preventing most anglers from landing their fish due to the sharks eating the hooked fish on the way up from the bottom. This shark upheaval is very normal for this time of year and I highly recommend fishing for them, as they will only relent from bothering you if you take the time to catch them. Most are Bull sharks and they readily eat a properly made shark rig with Barracuda as bait. I often refer to this type of fishing as "predator control" and it is at times necessary. Especially after you have hooked a nice grouper or mutton snapper only to have the head of your fish, all that is left on your hook.
Shallow water wrecks around the Marquesas are producing good action for Permit, while Gulf wrecks are allowing anglers good action on Jew Fish and a few Permit. Harbor action for Tarpon continues, but afternoon thunder storms are proving to be a problem for anglers there. As we head into August, thunderstorms/lighting storms are frequent around the Key West area and any good captain will recommend staying clear of them this time of year.
Best bet this coming week. The reef is certainly the most active along with tarpon action coming in a close second. If you do decide to venture offshore, be prepared to do some running and looking. With calm seas predicted for most of the week, higher speeds of looking for birds, debris and activity will be your most productive method for finding and catching Dolphin. Another consideration for the week is that Lobster season opens next Sunday at 12:01 a.m. Getting in the water during the week and locating your best spots for Lobstering is a good alternative to the fishing. Thanks for stopping by; The Capt. Carl ReesP.S. All the fishing photos that have not been put up on the site will be coming this coming week. Thanks for everyone's patience.
Sunday Aug. 6, 2000
Reasonable Dolphin action offshore along with excellent snapper and shark action on the reef. Mix this with Tarpon catching in the harbor and the beginning of Lobster season and you'll find Key West water's are offering up great summer action.
Trolling offshore for Dolphin has slowed somewhat and will continue through the month of August. Catches though thinner in numbers, still have anglers enjoying their day with the benefit of much larger fish in the15-20 up range for their offshore efforts. Along with trolling for Dolphin offshore, the occasional Blue Marlin hookup is being reported, giving a few anglers an extreme offshore fishing day.
The reefs and deep water structures have been the areas concentrated on by most captains and anglers. Snapper, Barracudas, Sharks and some Kingfish are generating the best catching and fishing action. Good size Yellowtail snapper (1-1/4 to 3 pounds) mixed with the occasional Mutton snapper and a horde of shark activity has anglers very pleased with fishing action. Deeper water reefs are experiencing good action as well, but the sharks are larger and eating more of the hooked fish before they can be boated.
Sunday marked the beginning of the Key's lobster season. Trap buoys dot the water everywhere along with boats, divers and dive flags. Most of the divers report getting their limit of the spiny crustaceans, while others report struggling to get theirs. Those struggling were mostly first timers at the art of what is often called "diving for bugs". If you have never done "bugging" before, you will have a better time if your hire or ask someone to help you with the sport of lobster hunting.
Best bet this coming week. The reef and offshore will continue to be the best fishing action. This time of year, the days can get very hot, so consider fishing early or late in the day to beat the heat and be sure to bring plenty to drink in addition to sunscreen, a hat and sunglasses. Another consideration is If you like getting in the water for snorkeling or diving, this is the prime time to do so, water conditions are usually clearer than winter and water temperatures hover around 84 degThe Capt. Carl Rees. Thanks for stopping by; Capt. Carl Rees