South bound- Pelagic Migration

Water temperatures starting to cool will spark the annual migration south for many pelagic fish. You may see an increase as early as August or September depending on location. Mackerel are fun fish to catch and with increased bag limits in many places, worth the trouble to target these fish. Many fishermen are aware of the spring migration north and ignore the return trip to warmer waters south. All of the tournaments are spring related garnering most of the attention, meanwhile ignoring the smaller migration in the fall.

The good news is these fish have spawned and are very hungry, so they will eat a variety of baits. Trolling or chumming seems to work well for these fish. You only need to watch for bait schools or diving birds to locate these fish. Always keep a live bait in the water for the larger king mackerel as these cousins travel much the same patterns. All mackerel are excellent table fare and easy to clean with the right set up. Spanish mackerel are more abundant and easier to catch, the smaller size is the reason most anglers prefer the king mackerel. With the rapid repopulation of Spanish mackerel, the bag limit has remained stable for these fish and that means you can keep enough for a good fish fry!

You don’t even need a boat as these fish travel close to shore. The local pier or beech may be loaded with these fish for those who love fishing but don’t have access to a boat.

Some steel leader and a shiny spoon or jig is all you really need for these fish, so get out there and have fun while providing an excellent meal for friends and family. As always, check local regulations, stay safe and carry your license. While your here check these specials.

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