The year 2010 has so far proved to be the toughest year for fishing for me as a guide here is South Florida. We started the year off with a terrible cold snap that left thousands of Snook, Tarpon, Bonefish, Grouper and numerous other species floating dead throughout the state. The hardest hit seemed to be the Snook population and the proof was in the pictures coming in from around the state from other fellow fisherman. I can still remember getting on the water down in Flamingo the morning after the freeze and traveling up to one of my favorite fishing holes deep in the backcountry to find all of my Snook buddies had perished from the harsh days before. For months, we traveled to Flamingo, not knowing if I would even being able to catch a fish. It was a situation that I had never before had to face. Flamingo has always been this magical place that even on the worst day I would be able to catch a few Snook, Grouper, and as many Jacks, Ladyfish, and Snapper that I wanted. It was a time of uncertainty that I will surely never forget. The month of March proved to be a positive sign from old Mother Nature. After a conversation with fellow fisherman and friend Flip Pallot I received some information on some juvenile Snook that he found in one of our holes deep in the backcountry. I decided to take a trip back to the Glades to investigate and to my amazement little Snooklings galore. It was one of the wildest days I can remember. We fished a clump of branches that usually holds schools of 10-20 Snook that are between 15”-“30.” But on this day there must have been nearly 100 Snook that were only 3”-6.”
They were so uneducated we were able to take the trolling motor right up to them and stare at them with amazement for several minutes. It was like staring at a bunch of juvenile snapper but these were no snapper, these were the future line-siders of the Everglades. But how could this be? How could these juvenile fish survive the frigid temperatures that their bigger brothers and sisters did not? These are all questions that I really don’t think anyone knows or as Flip says, “I don’t think we are even supposed to know.” But the fact is they are there and they are coming back.
Miami Fishing Charter Captain Rich Smith
(786) 299 – 4813