Captain Greg's Fishing Report for April 2019
Port Canaveral, Cape Canaveral, Cocoa Beach, and Orlando
Last Month's Action
Just like February I am very happy to have March 2019 in the books. We had very few highlights and I can honestly say I have never seen fishing this miserable for 2 months straight. Every single time conditions get right we have another front and huge ground sea come in and wreck everything. Light tackle fishing near shore for spanish mackerel, pompano and sheepshead was the highlight of the month.
We actually had and still do have one of the better Spring time cobia runs that I have seen in years. Not that it is impressive cobia fishing but if you put in your time you will most likely get a shot at 1 or 2 and we have seen some quality fish.
We do know the king mackerel are not far because the 2 days we had clean water on the reef they instantly showed up. We also ended the month on the first signs of our dolphin run so that gives us some options going into April.
April Near Shore Fishing Forecast
We will continue to have fantastic action in the surf and along the jetties for sheepshead, flounder, drum and whiting. The pompano have to eventually leave but they are still here in strong numbers so maybe we will get a few more days of that great fishing.
We have not seen the small cobias yet so that leads me to believe we still have some time before they move North of us or settle into the offshore wrecks and reefs. The cold water is holding them here so expect another couple weeks of sight fishing for cobia to be a good option. I try to emphasize when explaining to my customers what a good afternoon of cobia fishing is in this day and age. If you see one that is a good afternoon of cobia fishing!
The shark fishing should make a dramatic improvement over the next few days and toward the end of the month we should see some goliath grouper, red drum and even a few tarpon. All we really need is 2 or 3 warm days without a giant swell and our fishing will bust wide open.
April Offshore Fishing Forecast
The extended forecast looks good for the first part of April and as soon as we get a few consecutive days of calm seas our fishing will let loose. I said the same thing last month and boy oh boy did it make me pay.
The 3rd day in a row that we have calm seas we will see our king fish show up on the 90 ft reefs. Dead minnows skirted with small mylar lures will do the trick until our live bait shows up. We will have some very large kings around also. These big fish tend to separate from the smaller ones. They might be on the same reef just a few miles down but as soon as clean warm water invades you will find these bigger fish moving into shallower structure.
The conditions for great mahi fishing are set and all the indicators show the time is now. With cold dirty water pushing up against clean warm gulf stream water we have a perfect highway that will narrow the path of these fish giving us a very good chance of intercepting them on any given day. With any luck as the waters clean and warm up it will broaden the search area and spread the fish out. This is actually a good thing if we have good numbers of fish. I know we have a ton of flying fish out there right now. As the clean water spreads the bait and mahi out, it gives everyone a better chance at a decent day because boats won’t have to be stacked right on top of each other to catch them. Yes it is ideal to fish a hard edge or a smaller more concentrated strike zone if you are the only boat fishing. However when the fishing pressure is high during the first signs of mahi, it is much better when these fish spread out.
The action on the bottom will be good like always. Red snapper are thick but we do manage a nice mangrove or lane snapper now and then. The ratio is probably catch 25 red snapper to 1 lane or mangrove snapper. The amberjack spawn is happening and they are stacked up thick but unfortunately it is a waste of the fish to try to catch them. Just about every single amberjack you hook gets ate by a sandbar shark. Most of us here just about refuse to fish for them this time of year anymore because it truly is so wasteful to feed everyone of them to a shark. We have to just wait until they spread out.
I for one am looking forward to some great fishing in April because if we have another month like February and March we just might have to make a career change 😉
About Captain Greg's Reports and Forecast
Captain Greg has been fishing the waters of Port Canaveral and the Atlantic for over 30 years. He has the largest and most highly rated private charter business in Port Canaveral, Sea Leveler Sport Fishing Charters. Greg and his team of full time captains fish well over 200 days each per year. We have kept detailed catch history for every trip ran since 2010. You can access this history at www.sealeveler.com/reports. His engineer wife, Amber, has analyzed the catch history along with other historical data such as water temperature and weather patterns. Greg uses his fishing experience and knowledge along with his wife’s statistical analysis to bring you the best fishing report available for Port Canaveral. Greg will give you the honest truth on how the fishing has been along with his best prediction of what to expect by using all of this information.