Variety is what makes April a great month to fish in the Sebastian Area. The inshore and near-shore waters of the Sebastian Area are a hot bed of fish activity as water temperatures and day lengths increase. From the headwaters of the Sebastian River to the Gulf Stream, anglers will find fish species eager to entertain them. I am happy to report that I have seen the first signs of sea-grass recovery on some of the flats in the Sebastian area. It took a year longer than I had hoped, but there are sparse fringes and small patches of rooted sea-grasses taking hold on some of the historically grass covered areas from Vero to Grant. Although the beginnings of sea-grass re-colonization is the most positive thing I have reported about the lagoon in two years, it’s benefit to the ecosystem and fishery will not be felt immediately. However, April’s warmer waters and expanded species list will bring better fishing than we have had in recent months, so take advantage of it. I’ll describe some of the fun and productive options I pursue with my charters in the Sebastian Area in April, and maybe I’ll see you out there before months end.
Sebastian River – A sportsman’s paradise. This is where you come to soak in nature’s beauty and have the opportunity to hook into some of the largest gamefish Sebastian has to offer. Snook, Tarpon and big bull sharks are the quarry and artificial lures and bait will both do the job, sometimes. The fish of the Sebastian River can be fickle and at times down right stubborn, but if you are patient and put forth a good effort the rewards of fishing in this beautiful place can be extraordinary. D.O.A. shrimp, Mirro-Lures and live mullet are a step in the right direction. Throw to rolling tarpon in both forks of the river and pound the shoreline cover for snook.
Indian River Lagoon – Variety is the spice of life. The lagoon is why I can advertise “Guaranteed Catch”. April’s list of available species is the most extensive of the year. The techniques used to catch just about all the species can be as simple as bait and a float or bouncing a D.O.A. jig. These techniques are so universal that you never know what’s on the end of the line until it’s at the boat. April is family vacation time and the fishing in the Indian River Lagoon is tailored perfectly to anglers of all ages and skill levels. April is also the most likely month for seasoned anglers to catch a Sebastian Slam, trout, redfish, snook and tarpon.
Sebastian Inlet – During the day I target the schools of sizable Jack Crevalle that station themselves in the inlet’s swift current looking for a meal to float by. Live pinfish are the best bait most days. I also have consistent success with big D.O.A. Terror-eyz and baitbusters rigged with heavy jig heads. At night things get serious as snook and redfish get active. Anglers in boats prefer drifting live baits, while shore-bound fishermen throw bucktail jigs, soft plastics and diving plugs. Sebastian Inlet is no kiddy pool; it deserves its reputation as one of Florida’s most dangerous inlets. “Local knowledge necessary to safely navigate this inlet” just like the sign on the bridge says.
Near-shore Atlantic – The weather will dictate when to poke out the inlet. If you can get out, anything can be feeding along the beaches. Light tackle or heavy there can be something for everyone.
The waters within a couple miles of the beach can boil with schools of Spanish mackerel, and bluefish making their way north for the summer. Big Tarpon, cobia, king mackerel and sharks and Bonita are often close by. Jigs and spoons catch the Spanish and blues, while live baits, plugs and swim-baits get the attention of the larger predators.
For more Sebastian Area fishing info check out the frequently updated videos on my website homepage at www.sebastianfishingguides.com
Capt. Gus Brugger