Captain Greg's Fishing Report for December 2018
Port Canaveral, Cape Canaveral, Cocoa Beach, and Orlando
Last Month's Action
November was absolutely as good as it gets! The near shore action was beyond steady most days with big red drum and different species of sharks. The snook, flounder and pompano fishing was on point for those using smaller tackle. Offshore was everything you could ask for. King mackerel, cobia, mahi, sail fish and the best black fin tuna bite we have seen in years. The bottom fishing for mangrove and mutton snapper was fantastic and a few groupers and amberjacks were to be had for the very few that chose to bottom fish over troll.
December Near Shore Fishing Forecast
The stage is set for all the action you could ever want. The Sea Leveler challenge – try to catch them all on your next near shore adventure because all of it is going to be good. Instead of a report this month I am going to lay out the perfect game plan for the angling over achiever ;). Phase 1. Start your day by purchasing 3 dozen shrimp per person and rigging a 15lb test rod with a pompano rig and a 30 pout test rod with a knocker rig. Pick a spot on the beach that you think looks fishy and pitch your shrimp (don’t buy handpicks) to the surf. Box your pompano, whiting, black drum, sheepshead and spanish mackerel for the dinner table. Save a few bluefish, croakers and spots for phase 2 & 3. Phase 2. Bump to just outside the surf zone, shipping channel, edge of the shoal or pogy pods then anchor and bomb the place with cut blue fish and spanish mackerel with your 30lb knocker rig to catch big red drum and sharks. Phase 3. Take your same knocker rig and a live croaker or spot that you caught in the morning and toss it at the jetties, boat ramp pilings, or terminal walls and end your day with hopefully a slot size snook if it’s before December 16th. Tag us in a picture when this all comes together because that will be a awesome day and we want to hear about it. For those that are gold star angling over achievers they can take a additional detour to work the buoy line for triple tail and flounder because those two species will also be available in good numbers.
December Offshore Fishing Forecast
The way it all seems to be lining up is we can expect the first part of Decembers sea conditions to be touch and go. The good news is that you have more options than any other time of year. The slow trolling will be phenomenal when the water is clean. Water clarity will change day to day as cold fronts move through and just because we have a few rough days it does not mean we will have dirty water. If the water is clean on the 60 to 100ft reefs then you should have one stop shopping. King mackerel as usual will be dominant but if November is any indicator you can expect to catch cobia, sail fish, black fin tuna, mahi and wahoo also. The way it all looks as of right now temperature wise and how scattered the sailfish seem to be from reports down South. I am going to say that for someone that has a sailfish on their Christmas List and you are willing to put in the time your odds are better than ever to catch one out of Port Canaveral this month. Scattered sail fish is a very good thing for us so lets capitalize on it. Bottom fishing will also be very good so don’t miss your last opportunity until May to get a keeper grouper. The best bet will be to fish big live baits in 140 to 220 ft depth range. This will require some time spent on the beach picking away at croakers and spots for bait but like anything those that put in the work reap the rewards. You will also find your fair share of big amberjack to battle with and monster red snapper. Also a lot of people talk about mangrove fishing in the summer. Well that use to be true but I personally am no longer on that band wagon. Right now is as good as time as any for mangrove fishing. That being said they are one of the most difficult fish to catch out of Canaveral. Here they are big , smart mangrove snapper and you need to put in a lot of time to become good at it. I wish everyone a Merry Christmas and Tight Lines. December is going to be good!
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.