Fishing Reports

Islamorada Fishing is world class. There are not many spots on this planet that can offer the diverse fishing available in Islamorada. Offshore, Patch Reef, Gulf and Bay, Back County, Everglades, the Flamingo, and Bridges are all active destinations for the largest fishing fleet in the world. The species are endless. Some favorites include tarpon, permit, bonefish, redfish, snook, shark, sailfish, mahi, wahoo, backfin tuna, hogfish and many species of snapper. Epic does not even do justice to describing the fishing in Islamorada. Islamorada Times provides the most current and accurate fishing reports in all the Florida Keys.

Fishing Report 10/21/2019

Islamorada Times staffers Bryan and Victoria got a chance to test the fishing for themselves. They jumped aboard a 4 hour loop with Captain Tony Horsley of Bowed up Fishing Charters and the action was endless. They both landed several good size Snook and got 3 smaller Tarpon(30-40lbs) to the boat. Sprinkle in same hard fighting Jacks and they surely got their monies worth. Give Captain Tony the opportunity to get you out on the water, you wont be disappointed.


Another exciting week here in Islamorada, as the fishing has been excellent with some pretty good weather too! The sword ledge this week has yielded a few nice ones, and its fair share of small ones. The offshore scene is still holding some money. Looking forward to see how we end up after this full moon comes through. The offshore scene is still holding some mahi, very spread out, but still some fish around. The tuna bite on the offshore humps remains solid, with some real nice fish if you can get the live bait.


The reef and wrecks continue to heat up as the fish are moving around with even the slight changes in water temperatures that we have seen. The current has been good, so most of the reef and wreck stuff has been decent. Sailfish are starting to show up too, as when it slicked off on Thursday the ballyhoo showers were the dead giveaway. Setting up nicely as we enter fall, so get ready because I think it’s gonna be a fun one!

Gulf and Bay:

The fishing on the Gulf is starting to fire up and it’s only going to get better as the fall and winter patterns settle in. Stone Crab season has open and that means lots of trap buoys for Tripletail to lie next to so keep your eyes open when running towards your favorite gulf fishing grounds. Look for more Spanish Mackerel to continue to show up in our area with more Cobia showing up as well. Overall great action can be expected while fishing out in the Gulf.

Flats, Backcountry and Flamingo:

The fall weather patterns will be starting to take effect soon in the Islamorada backcountry. The water temperature will start to drop a bit and with less humidity in the air it makes for some very comfortable conditions. The Redfish and Snook bite has been on fire throughout the park. Work the mainland shorelines with both live baits and scented soft plastics for a great bite. The shallow bites east of Flamingo are a good place to be for some great sight fishing action. Look for Mullet muds on the deeper bays and basins for some nice Trout mixed in with other rod benders. Drifting through these muds while popping a cork and Berkley Gulp shrimp combination is a guaranty for finding the fish. Sharks and the occasional Tarpon can be found lurking around the deeper Chanel’s in the Flamingo area. Redfish and Snook can be found while working the runoffs and Island moats in the Flamingo area as well. Pilchards have been easily available and a live well full of them will be deadly while fishing the backcountry. Out towards the Cape area look for a great Snook and Redfish bite. Keep your eyes open for some floating Tripletail as well. Back around town look for the great Bone fishing to continue. Anglers working the shallow flats and banks both bayside and Oceanside have been reporting multiple shots at schools of Bonefish. They have been casting Fly’s and live shrimp with great success. Most Anglers have been reporting some amazing Permit fishing on the deeper edges of flats and banks both bayside and Oceanside. Captain Randy Stalling of Key Largo reported having multiple shots at Permit last weekend while fishing the Islamorada area. A small crab casted perfectly in their path will get you a hook up.

Around the Bridges:

The live bait fishing around the local bridge channels continues to be excellent with lots of Groupers, Snappers, Tarpon and Snook as well. There is a lot of bait around and the big Jacks are swarming around the bridges and channels, great fishery meant for screaming drags and sore arms. Pretty exciting time of the year to be fishing in the Florida Keys so get out on the water and take advantage of it!

Fishing Report provided by: Captain Juan Garcia 305-297-0438, and Captain James Chappell 305-803-1321

*Please email or call/text 484-919-2133 for referrals and recommendations for the best Captains and Guides in Islamorada and the surrounding Florida Keys.