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Indian River Lagoon Coast
By Capt. Tom Van Horn
Indian River Lagoon - 08-01-2007
Indian River Lagoon Coast Fishing Forecast, August 2007

Complements of Mosquito Creek Outdoors, Apopka, Florida

As the mid-summer doldrums settle in on the Indian River Lagoon Coast of Florida, summer weather patterns dominate and angling success requires a shift in tactics to beat the heat and afternoon thunderstorm. An early morning predawn start allows anglers to enjoy cooler conditions and magnificent sunrises, and have the boat trailered and home in time for a snooze in the Lazy-Boy while the afternoon storms brew outside. Once the storms have past, the window of opportunity reopens for some excellent angling conditions as the sun settles below the horizon, and after dark.

Angling on the in-shore lagoons will continue to show improvement, with fishing in the predawn and late evening hours being most productive. Look for schools of redfish in the skinny water holding in the vicinity of bait concentration, and target them utilizing smaller top-water plugs. Once the sun starts to grow hot and the top-water bite will shut down, bait becomes your better option. For larger trout, fish live pigfish close to docks and other structures adjacent to deeper water. In deeper water, look for large schools of ladyfish, small trout, and tarpon pushing schools of glass minnows near the surface. These schools are easy to locate by watching for concentrations of birds, terns and cormorants, joining in on the frenzy, and they are perfect for fly anglers who are interested in the continuous fast and furious action provided by these speedsters. Look for pompano schools to become more prevalent in the shadows of the causeway bridges and on the flats. Fish small pink jigs tipped with shrimp or sand fleas (mole crabs) along the deeper edges and drop-offs and in areas of skipping fish. Lagoon water levels are typically low, so please use caution when accessing skinny water.

Offshore, the Labrador currents have pushed in on queue, cooling down bottom temperatures and the bottom fishing a bit, which is normal this time of year. If bottom water temperature drops into the sixties, finding warmer water is the key to locating fish. Look for the blue water bite to improve along the inshore reefs and wrecks of Chris Benson, 8A Reef, and Pelican Flats, with kingfish, dolphin, black fin tuna, and cobia serving as the primary species, along with an occasional wahoo or sailfish. This is also the time of year when cooler waters sometimes push the giant manta rays in close to the shoals off the Bite of the Cape, bringing us a mid-summer cobia run. Further off shore, the Gulf Stream typically moves in closer making tuna a possibility for smaller boats, and as long as the summer squalls stay away, running to the other side of the stream isn?t out of the question.

Along the beach, look for the silver kings (tarpon), smoker kings, blacktip sharks, jumbo jack crevalle, and redfish to be shadowing pods of Atlantic menhaden (pogies), threadfin herring (greenies), Spanish sardines, and bay anchovy (glass minnows) in close to the beach. Also look for snook fishing in the surf to improve, as we get closer to the commencement of the fall bait run. Remember snook are out of season, so if you target them, handle and release them with care. In and around the inlets, look for Spanish mackerel, tarpon, jack cervalle, and bonita to be working schools of glass minnows on the outside, and snook, redfish, mangrove snapper, and flounder in the area of jetties and other structures. If snook are of interest, Sebastian Inlet is the place to be.

Last but not least, I would like to inform all of the ladies about the Mosquito Creek Outdoor Ladies Social Angler Seminar and Wine Tasting scheduled for September 29th from 10am to 3pm. This free event is designed to teach the ladies the basic fundaments needed to enjoy fishing with their family and friends. Mosquito Creek Outdoors, Woman in The Outdoors, and Coastal Angler Magazine sponsors the event and it features speakers like Robin (Fish Girl) Folsom and Captain Rodney Smith of Coastal Angler Magazine, Captain Chris Myers D.O.A. Pro Staff, and Captain Tom Van Horn RipTide Pro Staff. For more details contact me or go to

As always, if you have questions or need information, please contact me.

Good luck and good fishing,

Captain Tom Van Horn
Mosquito Coast Fishing Charters
407-366-8085 landline
407-416-1187 on the water
866-790-8081 toll free

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