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Fish Inshore Or The Ocean Using Live Bait

Tuesday April 24, 2018

Want to know how to catch more saltwater fish by using live bait? Captain Richard's favorite live bait methods for inshore and offshore fishing are as varied as the bait he uses.

Current, winds and water conditions help me determine what kinds of live bait I will be using for each application and species I target. The method(s) and rigs I use are also going to be influenced by the same variety of environmental conditions and species. Let me explain in more detail by separating inshore & offshore fishing techniques.

Inshore Live Baiting

Shrimp and crabs can be used in a number of ways and are often used along pilings, rock piles and plinked down while sipping a beer from the shoreline. I prefer to use a live shrimp when sight fishing with minimal or no weight to make the presentation more subtle. Gin clear water and calm days often make an artificial seem obtrusive or threatening to fish and often get denied as they can scare the fish rather than draw the strike. Sight fishing is not the definitive shrimp technique and often shrimp are thrown up-current and allowed to drift through and area with current. An example of this might be mangroves or a simple pier or jetty that has an incoming or outgoing tide. Weighting the crustacean to make it look natural will depend on how strong the current is.

Fin-fish like mullet, pinfish, croakers and pilchards all can be used to catch a large variety of inshore fish from snook to redfish and even sea trout. Methods for using live fin-fish also depend on the conditions and species sought after. Windy days can be used to launch live baits into areas and keep them in the zones that fish lurk and feed. Captain Richard often uses pilchards and live mullet to catch large trout and red fish in the shallow water flats of the Indian River and Mosquito Lagoons.

Offshore Live Baiting

Free-lining a live bait out behind the boat in can produced massive strikes from quality fish on an offshore wreck or reef. Depending on what species you are after, most offshore fishing is done with wire leader and strong sharp hooks.

Bottom fishing can be very productive when using an egg sinker and a mono-filament leader with a sturdy hook. Large grouper, red snapper and benthic dwellers all love a good live croaker when it's put in their realm. A good rule of thumb for bottom fishing is one ounce for every ten feet of depth, of course each day presents a variety of conditions and weight should be adjusted as necessary.

Each area or zones of fishing need be addressed according to the structure, currents and conditions. Remember that live baits generally don't need a retrieve or action applied to entice a fish into biting, they support themselves and adding action can often make a game fish suspicious so rig your baits to keep them acting and swimming naturally and uninhibited by the hook and line if possible.


Use the lightest terminal tackle for each use to get the fish to bite and still have the ability to bring the fish boat side. - Captain Richard

Of coarse if you're really interested in learning about live bait fishing or any other methods and types of saltwater fishing while visiting the Orlando, Florida area look us up and book a fishing trip at Lagooner Fishing Guides.

Orlando Live Bait Fishing Trips

Reviewed by Captain Richard Bradley on Last modified: January 23 2017 16:07:32.

Published by: Captain of Lagooner Fishing Guides©

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Fishing Reports

April - 2018 Fishing Report

Fishing Forecast

April - 2018 Fishing Forecast

April of 2018 should be a great spring for fishing in both inshore and offshore coastal waters of Central Florida. Look to the Mosquito Lagoon and Banana Rivers to produce redfish and sea trout consistently and then look toward the ocean and depending on the water temps, clear skies and wind the cobia will be on their way north and migrating past Canaveral towards their northern grounds on the mid-Atlantic seaboard. Central Florida's weather during the spring is usually no less than spectacular as the college spring breakers are winding up the end of their vacation and heading back to campus to finish up before summer break. Daytona Beach host several spring events from NASCAR Races, Bike Week and Spring Break activities while Cocoa Beach and it's Space Coast offer a much less crowded alternative for vacationers to seek a more secluded and restful Holiday. The temperatures are rising and the fishing should be heating up too in East Central Florida's Cocoa Beach.

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Inshore and Offshore Charter Fishing near Orlando and Cocoa Beach, Florida. Catch redfish, sea trout, tarpon, snook and many other saltwater gamefish aboard the world famous Lagooner flats fishing boat with renowned Captain Richard Bradley.

Lagooner Fishing Guides - I have had the fortune to have fished with Captain Richard on a number of occasions. While I consider myself to be a pretty good recreational fisherman, each time I fished with him I left with a wealth of new information about not only fishing, but the entire intercoastal ecosystem. Speaking with and learning from Captain Bradley is worth the trip by itself, but he never failed to put us on fish. While on Lagooner trips, we have landed our personal best snook, redfish, kingfish, tarpon and he even put us on a sailfish. I am also impressed with the amount a care Captain Richard puts on the safety of his Guests. This is very evident in how well he maintains his boats and motors. He also carries this over with his other equipment as well. His gear is always top-notch and in pristine condition. I value his opinion so much that I reached out to him when I was looking to buy my own fishing boat. He spent a lot of time giving me the pros and cons of different flats boats. He certainly did not have to spend time doing this since he was not "on the clock," but I know he did this out of his passion for fishing and his commitment to his customers. I took his advice and bought an Action Craft since he swore by it. There might be a problem with my boat though, it does not catch as many fish as Captain Richard's boat!
about Lagooner Fishing Charters on January 31, 2017

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