The month of December always feels like I’m taking clients out for “therapy fishing.” Guys, you all know what I’m talking about. We’ve all got the Christmas madness syndrom about mid way through this month. Whether it’s the kids getting out for winter break, the In-laws planning their visit, or worring if my significant other got my mom something for Christmas; we’ve all got that stress on our minds that just make us want to get out on the water for a little therapy.
Fishing in the South Florida area of Marathon in the month of December is very similar to November. The only difference is the water temperatures normally are about 2-4 degrees cooler average for the month. This slight difference is probably caused to the increased number of days the wind blows and also the obvious fact that it’s not 90 degrees anymore. Our air temperatures this month have been fluctuating from 55-82 degrees which for a Floridian like myself the morning run always consists of a jacket until next Spring. Yes, you Canadian’s reading this can laugh, I’m use to it. Either way, the more important number related to the fishing would be the water temperature. The average water temp in Florida Bay near Flamingo has been about 74 Degrees. This is a very nice temp for Snook, Redfish, and low but still doable for Tarpon.
Seasoned fisherman will carry a water temperature guage on board to really pay attention to changes in different spots. For example, if I’m fishing near Miami inside Biscayne Bay targeting Bonefish and I see a drop overnight in water temperatures of more than 5 degrees more than likely I won’t be up on the Crown (Shallowest Part) of the flat. I will probably have better luck finding Bonefish on the edges of the flat in 3-6 feet of water. This is because the water temp in the skinny water will be too cold and may not warm up till the afternoon or possibly not at all that day depending on how strong the wind is that day. A very common winter time Bonefish occurance is seeing large schools hanging out in this deeper water “Mudding.” (Sturring up the bottom searching for Crustaceans)
*TIP- When looking for these mudding Bonefish also pay attention to Sting Rays and other life on the flats. If you see Mudding Rays get ready because often times Bonefish will sit right on the backs of these Rays looking for an easy meal.
The month of December can be great for pretty much everything. Again, just like last month the weather will dictate what we are able to do. The most consistent fishing all winter will be Snook and Redfish. But, if it’s not too cold the Tarpon bite can be good to epic. The Bonefish and a few Permit can be found all over Biscayne Bay and the Florida Keys however, the wind will be the biggest factor when targeting them. When booking a day with us flexibility on where to launch and trusting your guide’s instincts on what to target is always the best bet.