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Flats fun

Last week on one of our exploring days found a new flat. A long way from home but the more miles from the mainland the less fishing pressure. Perfect flat just big enough the right amount of grass and open areas rock and roll. Water temp to low after a couple of cold windy nights the sea temp was down to 68 to cold for bonefish who drop off into warmer deeper water. However one of my pet sayings is you can only catch whats there and after a few casts with shrimp we found good keeper size trout.

The spotted seatrout is a scrappy free taking fish and is top table fare and does not mind cold water. It is also a prime example of Florida fish management. It has closed seasons for spawning which differ state wide and a slot size limit. You can only take fish between 15 in and 20 in but you can keep one over 20 in in a total bag of 4 per person per day. Makes sense and after years of checking fish numbers seems to work. Talking of table fare I do love eating fish and Brian caught a top eating fish the other day a sheepshead. This fish has a nearly exclusive diet of shellfish which gives it one of the best food values here.

Brian who has been coming on fishing holidays here for many years is still blow away catching different species evey time he comes. We at Fish the Dream are now over 100 species and the base record is 55 different ones in just 6 days fishing. Back to the day on the new flat after we had enough trout and saying we will be back for the bones and permit we noticed feeding birds not far away. Feeding birds in the Florida Keys always means fish and these were no excepetion. First cast bang a reef shark, not big at 20lb but on light tackle they pull your string big time. Once they are in a feeding mood like this they will take anything. To see a shark hunt down a top water lure just amazing.

Yesterday a lady angler nailed a shark a lot bigger than herself and I mean a LOT bigger next post.