St. Augustine Sandman with a Redfish

As a seasoned angler navigating the current fishing conditions, it’s clear that the influx of fresh, Tanic water has posed challenges in our recent fishing endeavors. The lingering effects of this water have certainly made the fishing experience more demanding than usual. I anticipate that we may need to wait for another week or more of tidal cycles to effectively flush out this excess water and restore better fishing conditions.

With the water temperature in the Matanzas River fluctuating within the low to mid 70s range and the First Quarter moon phase approaching on the 21st, we’ve been keeping a close eye on the developments in the angling scene. Flounder season officially closed on the 15th, so there isn’t much to report in that regard. However, the Redfish population remains active, particularly in the inlet, the resident creeks, and even the presence of the shorter under slot reds. Although they’ve been known to bite on a variety of baits, the prevailing challenge has been locating them in the murky waters.


Capt. Adam Morley with an under slot Red caught with a Fishbites “Dirty Boxer” on a Tiny rod.

With the arrival of cooler weather, the sheepshead have begun to show increased activity around rocks, docks, and bridges. Anglers have found success using live fiddler crabs and sand fleas on a bottom sweeper jig or a light knocker rig. Additionally, the arrival of bluefish has contributed to the fishing excitement. Employing cut mullet strips just beneath the surface or casting spoons has proven effective in enticing these spirited fish.

Moving to the surf, reports indicate a robust presence of pompano and whiting, with many of these catches attributed to the use of pompano/float rigs paired with shrimp and Fishbites. For those looking to delve deeper into the local fishing scene, I encourage you to explore the resources offered by the Flagler Sportfishing Club and check out my YouTube channel, “Take a Bow with Captain Adam Morley.” Stay tuned for more updates as we navigate the evolving fishing landscape.

Also, as a passionate angler and advocate for our precious water resources, I am asking you to join me in supporting the Florida’s Right to Clean Water initiative. Our state’s natural beauty and thriving aquatic ecosystems are the lifeblood of our fishing community, and it’s up to us to ensure their protection and preservation.

The recent challenges posed by the influx of rainwater causing a 10,000 gallon raw sewage spill in Palm Coast and other water quality issues have highlighted the critical need for proactive measures to safeguard our waterways. The ongoing struggles with water quality have underscored the necessity of policies and initiatives that prioritize the health and sustainability of our aquatic environments.

By actively participating in and signing the petition for Florida’s Right to Clean Water, we can collectively amplify our voices and push for meaningful legislative actions that will safeguard our waters for generations to come. This is our opportunity to advocate for the proper management of our water resources, prevent devastating spills, and ensure the long-term vitality of our beloved fishing grounds.

I implore you to lend your support to this vital cause. Let’s come together as a unified front, driven by our shared passion for fishing and our deep appreciation for the beauty of Florida’s diverse aquatic ecosystems. Together, we can make a lasting impact and secure a cleaner and healthier future for our beloved waterways.

Tight lines and clear waters,

Capt. Adam Morley

Chris from Skinny Water Lures mentioned the weather is cooling off, but the fish bite is still on fire. With the full moon phase coming in a week. Look for the bite to really pick up several days before and after this phase. The bait fish are still plentiful in the flats.

Large schools of Jack Crevalle were found this week in the Bings Landing area feeding on the abundance of bait fish. Throw any topwater, twitch bait or paddle tail into these schools and you will be fish on!!

Flood tides continue this week in the High Bridge and long creek areas due to the abundance of rain fall the week prior. These flood tides have made the bite slightly tough due to the fish being able to adventure and push into new areas. The snook bite continues to get better with great topwater action at first light. Focus working the topwater parallel to the banks with structure or rock piles. The continuous cool mornings have turned the trout bite on. Fish the areas with moving water or drop offs with a bright colored paddle tail or twitch bait. This week we found the redfish to be hanging around areas of flooded grass. Due to the higher tides these redfish are pushing into these grass flats to feed on crustaceans, bugs and baitfish. During these times of flooded tides the baitfish, crustaceans and bugs will push into the grass flats to use these areas for protection from predatory fish.

We want to also remind everyone from now until January 13th take advantage of the 50% off Florida Gold Sportsman’s license and get your fish on!!