Went ray chasin’ on Saturday… Manta Rays that is.
The Manta Rays are on their yearly northern migration up the Florida Atlantic coast and I decided I’d go chase ’em on Saturday.
I had to make sure the weather was going to be good enough to take the gheenoe out in the ocean, according to the weather, I’d have till about noon or 1 before the winds picked up.
My bait was limited, all I had was dead and live shrimp; I struck out gathering bait where I normally do. On the way out of Port Canaveral I stopped by the north jetty to try to cast-net or catch bait before heading out. I couldn’t cast net anything but did manage a couple of small bait fish.
Now onto fishing, I head down the coast a few miles and about a mile out. The weather was great, little wind and bright skies. While waiting on the Rays to show up I have a lines in the water, one has a live shrimp, one a dead shrimp, and one with the bait fish I just caught.
After moving a few times, I did get a shark on the live shrimp. Not a man eating shark, but if you were a pinky toe; think that would get ate.
A little while later I saw my first Manta Ray. Whoa! The wingspan on that thing was bigger than the boat. At first I thought it was a school of fish, I kept seeping fins coming out of the water. It wasn’t until it got closer to the boat that I realized those weren’t fishes dorsal fins I was seeing, they were the tips of the rays wings!
It had, what I assume, three big cobias on it. Of course, I fumble the cast and get the shrimp no where near it as it dives under my boat.
Another cool thing I saw was a pilot doing acrobatic maneuvers in his plane. He was doing flips, barrel rolls, dives, all kinds of moves.
As the weather predicted, the winds started picking up just past noon and I got out of there while the getting was good.
Anyway, here’s a pic of the day.