Surf fishing near Sebastian Inlet continues to provide exciting diversity on the beach! There’s really no telling what’s about to grab your surf fishing rig. Live bait, dead bait, and Fish Bites have been a go-to combination for recent catches. Live sand fleas along with schools of mullet have been readily available to anglers prepared with a sand flea rake and cast net. With the primo baits so accessible, it’s been a wide open opportunity for surf fishing anglers. Everything from snook, tarpon, sharks and even permit, are frequenting our Space Coast beaches.
Pompano continues to impress for the early season run with water temperatures staying in the low 80’s. The major schools haven’t arrived in mass, but tons of pompano are being caught that are, unfortunately, just under the legal limit. Following a similar trend from last week, it takes catching a handful of pompano to get a legal one. Our surf fishing charters targeting pompano have resulted in a couple keepers per trip with the majority being between 9-11inches. Make sure to have a measuring tool readily available to get an accurate measurement and quick release. This helps ensure these silver delicacies aren’t devoured when entering the surf wounded and handicapped.
Pompano may be one of the intended target species, but that hasn’t deterred multi-catch days on a plethora of other species. Everything’s biting from giant spanish mackerel, whiting, jack crevalle, blue runners, ladyfish and bluefish. At certain points during the bite, it’s almost impossible to keep a pompano rig out long enough for your desired species. Live sand fleas seem to be working for all the above species, everything from the toothy predators like mackerel and bluefish as well as snook and permit. If you want a one size fits all, I would absolutely recommend sticking with live sand sand fleas along with the Fish Bites strips.
Shark fishing Cocoa Beach, Melbourne Beach, and Sebastian Inlet has been nothing short of phenomenal. The enormous influx of bait and predators eating that bait have enticed the sharks right into the inner surf zone. Shark fishing with standard surf fishing equipment improvised with heavy braided line, steel leader and non-offset hooks with the barbs filed down with fresh dead bait remain successful. At the moment with so much bait and life along the shore, it’s unnecessary to paddle out baits and use offshore open face reels to participate in this fishery.
Ever dream of catching a trophy permit off the beach? Well if you had any interest in doing so now is an opportune time. Multiple permits were reported near Sebastian Inlet north to Indiatlantic. The above photo is Jack Maessner with a 39”, 25lb permit caught on a standard pompano rig with live sand fleas. Seasonal fisheries vary with water temps and species, but I would highly recommend hitting the beach for the surprise catches that continue to excite surf fishing anglers!