I know there are many days, weeks, and months within a year and although I love fishing the waters of the Nature Coast year round there are times when I truly feel blessed to call the Crystal River and Homosassa home. Over the last few weeks the areas surrounding our local waters have been engulfed within the fall season. Now this isn’t like your typical fall where our leaves change colors (although they do, from green to brown), our fall season is highlighted with migratory birds hovering over our bright blue skies, and fish swimming and feeding in the crystal clear waters scattered along our flats. This truly is a special time of year where what’s going on above is sometimes just as exciting as what’s going on below.
Now as amazing as watching a flock of White Pelicans soar in from the north or watching a bald eagle snatch up an unexpected mullet can be, the sight of finding a tailing Redfish on a skinny flat or the sound of a Snook inhaling a needlefish off the surface has been the true highlight this month. With cooler temperatures ushering in a new wave of fishing patterns now starts the time to expect the unexpected. The months of December-February are hands down the best months for targeting fish in the skinniest of skinny waters along the Nature Coast. Redfish, Speckled Trout, Snook, Sheepshead, and Black Drum will all be the top targets over the next few months and with most of these species feeding along the same flats and feeding on the same prey opportunities to catch all of these species with in a single area could occur on any giving day.
With winter tides upon us here along the Nature Coast many anglers can expect lower than normal tides. I for one enjoy the challenge of targeting fish on extremely shallow water due to the fact that we basically stalk these fish before presenting a bait or fly to these wary fish. The most sought after fish this time of year will be the Redfish and considering that these fish thrive in cooler weather and feed in the shallowest of waters this will make for a very challenging yet rewarding opportunity for many anglers.
Although Redfish will be the species that will get a majority of the great publicity over the next few months, the exotics like the Snook, Black Drum, and Sheepshead will be the ones putting smiles on a lot of angler’s faces over the coming months. Cooler weather typically means slower retrieves which will allow many anglers to come in contact with the tasty Sheepshead and Black Drum more often.. And although these fish are looked down upon in the North, the Southern variety is very tasty and a welcome sight when targeting other species. The ironic part when fishing for Sheepshead and Black Drum are that these fish are typically little nibblers and it often shocks anglers when they pull back on a little nibble only to find a nice Sheepshead or Black Drum on the end of their line.
So with all of this great action going on along the Nature Coast, why not add a fishing adventure with Reel Florida Fishing Charters to your next vacation game plan!!!!!