Inshore fishing in October in the Fort Myers and Sanibel Island area can most often be very productive. Nice sized bait fish have been plentiful before the sunrise but start to become more scarce once the sun comes out.
This past week I've been catching smaller snook, slot sized reds and snapper. I've been focusing most of my attention on inshore grouper. During the day the Snook bite has been a little slow, so I've been taking my clients to a grouper that always seems to produce fish. The technique for fishing this way is a little more advanced, but even if my client misses it, at least he got to feel the rod bend and the line scream. I use lady fish for bait with 80 lb. braided line and 100 lb. leader with 6/0 circle hooks.
We had a blast. It took about three break offs but we finally landed one. We then gently released the grouper right after a quick picture.
Goliath grouper, formally called Jewfish, are protected from harvest in Florida waters. It is illegal to boat, gaff or harm a Goliath Grouper. All care during handling and releasing must be diligently done as quickly as possible.