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Orlando Area and Mosquito Lagoon Fishing Report, January 15, 2018

Honored to have served as a volunteer Captain in the Teen Sports Fishing Association Tournament on Sunday in Lake Butler.  The TSA is in need of more Captains in the  Orlando area to provide and skipper boats in upcoming tournaments, so contact me if you can help and let’s not leave these kids standing at the dock.

This Week’s Cold Weather Report:

While our nation has been locked into a deep freeze, we too have been feeling the affects of a cooler than normal winter.  Although we can still go fishing, we have been facing cold and windy conditions in Central Florida since the beginning of the new year.

In the Mosquito Lagoon, water temperatures dropped into the 50’s killing some larger snook.  This is not an unnatural phenomenon as snook are a tropical species and we are in their northern range.  We just haven’t experienced this type of winter conditions in the past ten years. On a positive note, I’ve only been seeing larger snook, meaning the smaller ones have survived so far and no other species have been affected. Hopefully as winter progresses surviving fish will become acclimated to the cold-water temperatures and more resilient to cold shook.   The colder weather has also killed of most of the algae creating very clear water allowing for some great sight fishing conditions.  On the flats, look for both black drum and redfish up in the shallow water once the sun get overhead and temperatures warm up and look for sea trout holding in the deeper potholes.

These colder conditions will also make nearshore fishing better with good numbers of sheepshead and drum holding around the jetties, docks and other structure within Port Canaveral.  We just have to wait for the wind and seas to settle down.

Water levels on the St Johns River are still above normal and the American shad run has not materialized in the Lake Harney to Puzzle Lake stretch.  I have received better reports of shad coming from the old Marina Isle to Lake Harney stretch of the river.  With water temperatures still in the 50’s the shad may be holding up in deeper water. 

Today, we will be warm and cozy with temperatures in the low 70’s, but another cold front arrives tomorrow. The better fishing conditions will not be here until the end of the week, so be prepared to take a day off work and set aside those honey-do’s and go fishing when conditions are right.

Good luck and good fishing,

Captain Tom Van Horn