Early Run For Cobia Expected

By  //  March 23, 2013

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offshore fishing

BREVARD COUNTY • PORT CANAVERAL, FLORIDA – With the warm winter the South Atlantic has experienced this season, anglers can expect a possible early run for Cobia in Central Florida.

Historically, these brown predators make their way from the South in late February to late March as the water begins to warm to the North.

CAPT. JOE PALERMO of the Sea Wrangler out of Port Canaveral pulled in this 70-pound Cobia in 60 feet just east of Port Canaveral. You can contact Capt. Joe at
321-863-6026 or visit Sea-Wrangler.com

Recent water temperatures of 72-76 degrees off of Port Canaveral are significantly higher than the historic average temperatures, opening the flood gates for these fish to start their journey back up the coast.

During their run, anglers can expect to catch these fish anywhere from the beach to 75 feet of water while site fishing. Most catches this time of year are caught free swimming or just cruising the surface. However, weed lines, scum lines and Manta Rays are also havens that will produce good numbers. Although fishing structures such as wrecks, buoys or natural reef are good bets most of the year, these fish are on the move during the migration season and will most likely not yield high numbers.

The baits of choice to entice these tasty creatures are live pinfish, croakers, jumbo shrimp, or eel (if available at local bait shops). However, most anglers will rely on lead head jigs tipped with strip bait or squid.

Cobia are one of few species that have different specific state and federal limits. Here in East Central Florida, the state limit (out to 3 miles) is one per person or six per boat, whichever is less. The federal limit (outside of 3 miles) is two per person with no boat limit. For both limits, the minimum length is 33 inches to the fork.

You can contact Capt. Joe Palermo at 321-863-6026 or visit Sea-Wrangler.com