Islamorada and the upper Keys Fishing Report January 16th

Saturday’s offshore action was outstanding!  Whether you were working the shallow patch reefs in a bay boat, enjoying a day of family fun fishing with your kids or off on the deep edge of the reef searching for Sailfish, Saturday was great.

Reef fishing this time of the year is a great way to get in on some of the fastest action around the island chain.  All it takes is a bait well full of live shrimp, a chum bag and a 8-10 lb spinning outfit.  The chum slick will bring in the whole food chain behind your boat.  Snappers, Groupers, Hogfish, Spanish Mackerel and Porgies will smack anything that you offer them.

After you have worn out your welcome on the reef, in other words, you have caught your fill of fish.  It time to get to the deep edge of the reef and if you had caught a dozen or so live Ballyhoo, you can slow troll these lively baits on a 20 lb spin outfit and in do time you will find yourself hooked up to a Blackfin Tuna, King Mackerel, Wahoo, Mahi-Mahi and the big prize a Sailfish.  the offshore boys released upwards of 12 Sails a boat yesterday South of Alligator reef.

As a bonus, the ride home across Hawk’s Channel was rewarded with a fight with Cobia.  Several boats reported finding big Cobia to 25 pounds swimming on the sandy bottom following Southern Stingrays.  These fish will follow the Rays all day long picking off baitfish that the Rays scare out of the sand.  It is a wild sight seeing the Cobia following Rays like puppies.  20 – 30 pound spin gear baited with a Grunt on a 4 oz jig or a white bucktail jig will do the trick.

For more info on Fishing Islamorada and the Florida Keys go to