JUNE 2020 Fishing Report and JULY Forecast
It’s been a month of scallops and snapper. Scallop season is now going full bore, and scallop limits have been easy to find. Areas of grass and sand, especially with manatee grass (the thin strands) have been productive in 3 to 6 feet of water in areas both north and south of the river. Look for the crowds, but please remember to be safe. You must have a dive flag prominently displayed, it must be 24×24 inches (you can buy them at the Sea Hag Ship’s Store), you must have a fishing license, and if you are driving your boat, if you get within 300 feet of a dive flag, you must be at idle speed, which means if you’re a diver, don’t lose track of where you are and stay close to your boat. Let’s keep everyone safe in the water. Meanwhile, offshore the short red snapper season took off like a rocket. The cleaning tables were full of large red snapper, and plenty of sizable gag grouper as well. Here are some pictures from this month at the Sea Hag Marina.
JULY Fishing Forecast
With continued dry weather, the scalloping should be great. As always, you can head for the flotilla (frequently just north or south of Big Grass Island to the north), or search on your own in shallow water if you want to avoid crowds. If you don’t find any after a quick survey, don’t waste time and keep moving. One thing to remember: the bag limit changes July 1. Until then, the limit is 1 gallon of scallops in shells per person (after July 1 it will go up to 2 gallons), and 5 gallons per vessel (cannot go over individual limit). Inshore, trout are in somewhat deeper water, from 6 to 8 feet over grass flats that are also holding some Spanish mackerel. Fish jigs with Gulp baits bounced on the bottom; the deeper fish are schooling, so when you get more than one fish stop your drift or mark the spot on your GPS so you can come back to redo the drift. Fish very early mornings before the sun heats things up in close to shore for redfish and larger solitary trout. If floating grass isn’t too bad, try topwaters or slow-sinking subsurface lures. Offshore, the red snapper and grouper bite in 60 feet or so has been on fire, drifting over hard bottom with dead squid. Putting out a live bait behind your drift might pick up a cobia or more likely a kingfish.
The Logun Fishing Tournament is scheduled for July 25. You can find out about it at this link.
And you can also register for the annual CCA STAR tournament, a season-long tournament with many winners. For more information, click on this link.
It should be a great month to be on the water. Be safe, play by the rules, and have a great time. And remember…you can get everything you need for scalloping and fishing, including our excellent rental boats, at the Sea Hag Marina. Make your reservations now.