In spite of the off and on rain Monday, it didn’t slow down fishermen as they continued the hunt for red snapper and more.
Red snapper in federal waters, which are from nine-nautical miles out to 200 miles, opened on June 1 and will remain open until July 20. And anglers and boat captains alike are taking advantage of the 49-day season, no matter the weather.
“It was picking up this afternoon,” said Capt. Mike Graef of the charter boat Huntress, noting they had a little rain in the morning.
But it didn’t slow the group from Mississippi, Alabama and Indiana down as they pulled in their limit of red snapper, which is two per person, along with grouper, amberine, 10 king mackerel and a monster bonito.
“That bonito had me in a bind,” said an angler as he described the bonito that pulled line across the boat.
The Phoenix with Capt. Scott Robson came in early from an eight-hour trip with 16 king mackerel and 16 red snapper, which was the limit on both.
Local anglers aboard the Finest Kind with Capt. Jason Mikel hauled in some huge red snapper, nine mingo, three king mackerel and a Jack Crevalle. The largest snapper, which weighed almost 30 pounds, was reeled in by Bart Pullum of Navarre.
“It’s by far the biggest I’ve ever caught,” Pullum said.
The huge snapper was one of the last fish of the day.
“It hit right off the bat … and the tip of the pole went in the water,” Pullum said. “It was just fighting from then on, it never let up.”
Capt. Jim Green on the New Florida Girl’s American Spirit and his group of anglers came in with several stringers full of red snapper and mingo.
Tennessee and Illinois anglers aboard the Screamn Drag with Capt. Brian Kelly filled the nails on the rack with red snapper, mingo, white snapper and lane snapper. Capt. Kelly said they ran into some rain and rough weather but made it through.
Not long after, the Just B Cause with Capt. Ken Bolden and his group from Memphis, Tennessee, backed in with a king mackerel, scamp and a limit of red snapper.
“It was nice going out, but then it got rough,” Bolden said. However he said it calmed back down. “The bite was a little slow. But I think that was more because of the rough weather.”
Capt. Billy Teems on the Fish N Teem said he and his anglers from West Virginia and South Carolina ran into about an hour-and-a-half of rain.
“We would have had more fish it hadn’t been for the storm,” Teems said.
Nevertheless, he and his group loaded up on red snapper, mingo, white snapper and one king mackerel caught on a fly line.
About 15 minutes later, Capt. B.J. Teems on the Makira came in with a good mix of red snapper, red grouper, scamp, grouper, white snapper and mingo.
“It was rough out today,” B.J. said, noting they ran in to rain as well. But it wasn’t an all day thing and they pulled in fish.
So don’t let a little rain slow you down, stay in the hunt.
See you at the docks.