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Discussion Starter #1
Bob, I was going to bmail, but figured exposing this in a forum might help others.

Downloaded MapSource Map on Laptop and have been studying Hawk Channel. I see it runs from Miami to KW. Looks about 8 miles South of 7 Mile Bridge. Has alot of Protected Areas in it, wondering why.

Also wondering about fishing in and around. Looks like a nice drop off. Any reccomendations ?
 

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Echo,
Hawks channel is the channel that runs along the oceanside of the keys, it starts about 1 mile off the beach and ends at the beginning of the outer reef which is about 5 to 7 miles off. The protected areas are the nicer parts of the reef they are trying to protect, and preserve for divers.
There's not much of a dropoff on the edged of Hawks channel, nothing like the dropoff along the outer edge of the main reef. The patch reefs within Hawks channel are good fishing for snapper and grouper, sometimes spanish macs, especially when it's too rough to get out to the main reef and offshore. A good way to scout the area is to troll the same stuff you'd troll for stripers, manns stretch, weighted mojo's, etc, might get a grouper, if so mark the spot to explore further.
 

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a patch reef is a clump or bump of corral, rock etc surrounded by cleaner bottom...lots of fish gather on these depending on size and bait availability in the area...one can be empty of fish and another 50 ft away could be loaded up...but thats fishing...there are also plenty of cuts etc. that run off the channel that hold Tarpon and Snook and other species

just watch your bottom machine...I've watched people run past thousands of fish to get to a place someone "told" them they should fish
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Bob that makes sense, just wanted to be sure. I think I'm good to go if I can only get my hand held ready. Sooo technical.. Have map on Laptop can't get over to hand held. Sooo frustrating.

Any word on Yellow tail bite ?
 

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yellowtail

we are inmarathon and have caught some yellowtail just south of 48 about 2 miles in 35 ft of water--limits of small 13-14in fish and a lot of throwbacks--larger come later and behind the smaller. one day we caught some amberjack--have seen nurse sharks on live bait,what i think was a bonnethead shark, barracudas, cero mackeral and other different reef fish. You never know what you will see--maybe some new pointers would be nice on how to catch different species tks capt glenn Less Stress charters ches bay:fishing2:
 

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Where are you in MArathon ??

Go see Dave Navarro at The World Class Angler...he has Seminars every Thurs Eve and charters he will help a lot with the info...

If you are on a canal, you should be able to get Tarpon and good size Mangrove (grey) Snapper just before sunset...Time out....Pet Clark's on PBS...:clap: ...OK I'm back, darn she's still good lookin'

try around the pilings of the 7 mile bridge near the channel, big ...there are big ... make that BIG sharks and possible Goliath Grouper...live line some pinfish under a float and on the bottom for Tarpon as well, check out this site as well for some info www.boatlessfisherman.com find the Monroe county forum, the two bridges they fish most often are just up the road

Dave will tell you if you are ina school of small Yellowtail...try another spot closeby, there are bigger fish around, what are you chumming with??

also use a bigger piece of bait to discourage the smaller ones, a good size Yellowtail has no problem with a good size bait
 

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fishing report from Keynoter News paper

looking for another report
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Bob whats your deifinition of a " Good size Yellowtail "? I have number two hooks I plain on flatlining back 20 feet, witha piece of cut Hoo, and a chum slick. I also bought 40lbs of rice, ( didn't think I'd ever in my life buy 40lbs of rice) and two gallons of mendhadden oil. I'll make a special batchof Blakesdad rice and oil.. You still throwing balls of wet sand in the water ?
 

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TWO GALLONS???? of Menhaden Oil??? you planning on using it for suntan lotion

fill a 5 gal bucket 1/2 way with rice cover with cold water (about 2-3 in above the rice) at least overnight, let rice absorb the water then mix in 3-4 OZ OUNCES of oil (thats plenty) use a dollar store plastic ladel to mix and dribble over the side, point, when you run out of chum, break out the book the fishing will get slow...

The only people using chumballs are the ones with ugly wives or girlfriends or no friends at all...if you use chumballs plan on being VERY ALONE>>>

pesky fish....HMMMMM...Sharks, Barracudas, King Mack, Cero Mack's, Spanish Mack's,
Good size Grouper will often hang way back from the schools of Yellowtails in the chum a good size live bait back and down could get a grouper or live lined under a ballon a good size King Mack.

Good size get close to 18 in, the fillets off one that size make a hefty meal...I saw a guy come in from the reef with a limit of fish all in the 18-20 in range day before yesterday...used a jig tipped with a silverside minnow( see below)

cut hoo works but there is a hook with hair on it and a special jig that will out catch a bare bait 20-30 to 1 ( no one knows why...they from all past knowledge say the Yellowtail should run from it) they have them at The World Class Angler in Marathon, tip that with fresh hoo bits or a piece of fresh shrimp or a small minnow


I cut and pasted the pertinent part of the weeks fishing report on the other post...
 

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Current Report

The yellowtail is really turned on out there

By Dave Navarro
Posted-Wednesday, February 28, 2007 9:06 AM EST Email this story
Print this story

But first, find out how to safely make the trip out

Two months into the new year, it's already been an interesting year for fishing.

We've had a few cool spells but overall, it has been quite warm. There have been the windy days, as well, but on average, we have been quite blessed with more calm, or relatively calm, days than normal so far.

The fish have been around in their usual areas in good numbers, with the occasional move that stumped us from day to day. Bait has been, on average, plentiful enough.

Now is the time to hit them heavy, as March is known for windy days, when you cannot get out for long spells at a time.

What's been good all year and is continuing is the yellowtail fishing all along the reef line. It will vary from time to time as to the best depth, but it has been by far the hottest fishery.

The average size of fish brought in has been larger than normal for this time of year. It has actually made yellowtail fishing, normally one of the most frustrating and aggravating types of fishing, very enjoyable.

What has been quite unusual has been the large numbers and size of fish that have been in relatively shallow waters, from 35 to 50 feet. This has given many anglers that are not that good at the art of yellowtail fishing an advantage, which you gain when you don't have to work them in deep waters.

There are many types of attractants used in addition to chum to raise the fish from the bottom into your chum line. The best has to be glass minnows.

These tiny fish are not that good for bait, as they are so tiny; and once frozen, they are usually too soft to keep on a hook. However, those with patience, not to mention a tiny hook, can thread several of them on for a good bite. They are usually used in addition to chum to raise the fish and incite a feeding frenzy the likes of which turn the waters behind your boat yellow with fish.

A better bait that looks similar is a silverside, which is actually a fresh water minnow that is 2 to 3 inches in size. It's much easier to put on a hook and will attract a larger fish to attack it.

Very near the yellowtail activity, which is usually concentrated along the edge, which is the drop-off section of the reef line where it falls from 35 feet of water downward to more than 120 feet deep, is another area that has been very good.

The patch reefs have been alive with a variety of fish from yellowtail to mangrove and mutton snappers, a variety of grouper species, hogfish and many more. These areas have also been covered time to time by a blanket of other species that stay in the water column between the bottom and the surface.

These include mackerels, jacks and others. These patch reefs that are usually in depths of 18 to 35 feet do not normally hold the big numbers of fish, but have been known to provide a bounty on occasion.

The patch reefs have been more than adequate for finding at least one keeper grouper, enough of a variety of snappers to provide a very nice dinner and enough action to keep everyone happy.

I don't recommend you plan to spend the entire day on one patch reef, but rather hit a good number of them to average out a good catch. Like anywhere else, the patch reefs are not all loaded with what you are after, but you may find that they have more to offer than you had imagined.

With the depths you will be fishing and the fact that you can use your eyes, a fairly accurate fish finder, to find the coral patch reefs, you will find it is an efficient way to fish.

The most consistent venue the past weeks has been the bay. It's usually one-third to a quarter as rough as the ocean on windy days in the open bay and if you get in the vicinity of the numerous flats, banks and islands, you will be sitting in less than a few-inch chop while in 20-knot winds.

It is these numerous banks, flats and islands that just scare the hell out of most boaters that are not used to transgressing the area.

What you can catch, how to catch it and most importantly how to make a round trip without incident will be the main topic of this week's free fishing seminar this Thursday in our outdoor amphitheater at our Marine Educational Center at mile marker 50 bayside. It starts at 6 p.m. sharp and is open to everyone.

The bay can provide the fairest of fair-weather sailors with a comfortable day of fishing along with a wide variety of species that not only challenge the angler but also provides them with a good box full of fish to feast on.

One tip about working around in the bay I can give is very similar to when you first started driving a car on your own. Remember when you said, "OK, let's see what this baby can do!"

Well, having that attitude in a boat in the bay will almost surely require you to take along a bonefish rod so you won't look so silly while your boat is 100 feet up on a flat sitting on its side. You can always say with your light rod in hand that you meant to do that.

Capt. Dave Navarro owns the World Class Angler in Marathon and captains the charter boat 'Dave's Dream.'
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Okay NOw your talking.. Thanks Bob...

In regards to pesky fish, there about the same size as YT, kinda look like blue runners but there not.
 

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just caught a portion of a fishing report on the tv, a rod repair shop ( I have to find out which one) reported a customer coming in with a limit of Yellowtail up to 28 inches...the bigger ones are here just gotta locate them
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Okay if I'm being difficult, please tell me to shut up.

Whats the limit and size on YT

And maybe I was wrong about 2 gallons. It was two half gallons which . according to you should last 10 days, so I;m good.
 

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Go to WWW.MYFWC.COM

and you can print out a current updated page with sizes and limits

Yellow Tail Snapper 2 fish per day slot fish must be between 2.0568 inches and 3.00234 inches
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10 per day as part of aggregate limit 12 inches min...check regs some of the other Snappers have much different sizes and limits and are NOT part of the aggregate snapper limit
 

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Echo, When are you going on your trip, where will you staying, what size boat will you be fishing in? I might have a few ideas for you.
 

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just confirmed it was Daniels Rod and Reel Repair in Marathon that reported the 28 " yellowtail

and the Mangrove Snappers have been getting larger around the Bridges and other structure ( that's what ate my 6 in Pinfish on a 9/0 hook) gave a good fight too...
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Waterboy, I;m leaving Tuesday morning at 0300, staying on Little Torch Key and boat is a 24' Key Largo.

Bob a 28 " YT, oh my damn.. Thats a BIG YT. I'd be happy with 18". Hell I'd be happy with 15".

Last year we caught a load of smaller ones, and I remember being allowed 10 fish per person. I think I had YT four nights in a row. Forgot the restaurant's (2) that cooked it up
for me, but when I pass it, I'll remember. I can;t wait to have dinner at MM 88 restaurant Wednesday evening.

I tied my first shock leader last night, 50 lb to 40lb PP, ummm, not a real handsome knot. That 50 lb is some difficult stuff to tie. Guess I'll be the first one to see if it holds.. LOL I can see it now, I'll catch a 28" YT and lose it at the boat thanks to a bad knot..

Capt Skip was kind enought to walk me though my Garmin set up, I was missing" one thing" and now it seems so obvious. I marked three exposed wrecks which seem to be a good place to start, do you agree ?
 

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I've used the double surgeons knot to put a mono leader on Power Pro for as long as PP has been around and have never had the knot fail on any fish I put the hook into

It's not as Pretty a knot as some people like to tie, but its been a 100% success for me and it passes thru the guides well also, I used it to plug for stripers at the CBBT and thats hundereds of casts per trip...

I've also used the albright as well but you have to tie an overhand inthe power pro to act as a stopper and that prevents it from slipping, at home I also put a drop of super glue on some knots and that makes them 100%
 
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