Inshore/nearshore report Jacksonville FL salt water report
Summer is in full swing now that July has settled in. The kingfish tournaments are cranking up,and the kingfish are arriving in the nick of time. Later in the month the Greater Jacksonville Kingfish Tournament will take place with hundreds of boats vying for the many prizes. It's the largest kingfish tournament in the world! It's worth trolling a pogie spread every couple of days to keep track of their location.
Similarly, the tarpon have arrived just recently. I have seen them at the jetties, and in the pogie pods along the beach. They are exciting quarry to pursue with many weighing over 100lbs, and the occasional giant pushing 200lbs! Another large exciting fish available relatively close to shore are the black tip and spinner sharks. These sharks run from 20 to 150 lbs and leap and spin after being hooked like their larger cousins the mako sharks. We fish for these sharks behind the shrimp boats, which is also a great place to see dolphins frolicking in their natural habitat.
Closer to shore there are redfish hanging around the Jacksonville jetties, hiding in the deep river, and cruising the edges of the Intracoastal Waterway and its feeder creeks. These fish run from a couple of pounds to 40lb bruisers. Flounder are distributed throughout the saltwater environment and are one of our best eating fishes.
Speckled trout are a popular and beautiful fish to pursue. Artificial lures account for the largest trout but live shrimp fished under a sliding cork is very effective. Jack crevalle, ladyfish, bluefish, and spanish mackerel can appear anytime in our inshore/nearshore waters. Any of these fish will willingly take a fly or artificial lure if presented properly.
If you need a break from land based recreation and its attendant stifling heat, give our beautiful salt waters a try. You may be glad you did!