Fishing Report Vero Beach

Fishing Report
Fishing charters Vero Beach
Fishing charters Vero Beach
Fishing charters Vero Beach

Been catching snook in shallower water lately with shrimp, mullet, or artificial versions of those. They will probably move to deeper water pretty soon as it gets hotter out. Have caught a few reds and trout on the flats here and there but tough to actually target them. Some decent by-catches lately with a nice grouper and bonnet head

Author: Capt Shane Pichard

Fishing Report

Vero Inshore – There isn’t much to report from the busy Memorial Day weekend that just passed. The most consistent reports have been of snapper being caught along the channel edges and near structures. Some fish measuring up to 17 inches have been caught, which is respectable for the river. For the bigger fish, it’s recommended to use live bait such as live shrimp or small baitfish. Over the past week, there has been a good number of baitfish in the river, so it’s a good idea to bring your cast net. Although snook season has officially closed, fish are still being caught in the river. Live bait like mullet or pilchards has been key to enticing these fish to feed. Snook can be found near docks, mangrove shorelines, and current rips between spoil islands. Keep an eye on the channel markers for tripletail, as this time of year they can be spotted sunning next to them.  Especially late in the afternoon after the thunderstorms have passed. The trout and redfish bite has been slow on the flats, but some fish are being caught. Your best chance of success is to go out early or right after the afternoon thunderstorm.

Vero Beach – The presence of sargassum seagrass has made the beach largely unfishable throughout the week. However, there have been reports of schools of tarpon and jacks cruising just outside the surf zone.

Fort Pierce Inlet Area – The sargassum grass has also affected the Fort Pierce inlet area. There are still some pompano being caught off the spur jetty, with the fish biting goofy jigs with green teasers. However, the bite has slowed down, so this could be the last pompano we see for a while. The snook fishing was good right before the close of the season, with land-based anglers catching fish on feathers and boat anglers having success with live bait. Although snook can still be caught out of season, remember to handle them gently and keep them in the water if possible. The flats fishing to the north of the inlet area has been decent for those who venture out early. Use topwater lures during the first hour of sunlight and then switch to subsurface baits for the best results. If you choose to fish during the middle of the day, live bait under a popping cork will be your best bet. Don’t underestimate fishing dock lights at night during this time of year. It’s advisable to start with lures in the area to scout which docks are holding fish, give them a break, and then return with live bait to target the bigger fish.

Sebastian Inlet Area – The sargassum grass has made it challenging to fish off both jetties over the past week, although the south jetty has been more fishable than the north jetty. A few slot snook were caught before the close of the season at the inlet, with live bait like croakers or mojarra being key. Bait is starting to become more abundant in the area, and there have been some big jacks and Spanish mackerel cruising the tides. Flats fishing around the inlet area has been hit or miss. Anglers who go out early or after the afternoon thunderstorm has passed have had the best luck. Start with lures and then switch to live bait under a popping cork for optimal results. If the flats fishing isn’t productive, try snapper fishing along the channel edges and submerged structures. This can be a fun activity for kids and can yield quality fish for dinner. To make the fish more active, put out a chum bag for 10-15 minutes before you start fishing. Then, drift small pieces of cut bait back into the chum slick and hold on. If the fish are mostly small, consider using live shrimp or small live bait to target the larger fish.

Good luck and tight lines! If you have any questions, feel free to stop by the shop, and we’ll be happy to assist you.

Author: Stuart Shroeder


Fishing Report 5/26/2023-6/1/2023

Vero Inshore – Fishing has been inconsistent for most anglers over the past week. Snapper,
black drum, sheepshead, and goliath grouper are all being caught off the channel edges and
submerged structures. Live bait such as shrimp or small pilchards is most effective, and using a
chum bag with a block of chum can make finicky fish active. Trout, snook, and occasional
redfish are being found on the flats. Start with lures in the early morning and switch to live bait
as the sun rises. Dock lights are productive at night, attracting various predator species. This is
the last week of snook season, so take the opportunity to catch one or three before it ends.

Vero Beach – Seaweed has made the surf mostly unfishable, limiting the surf report this week.
However, there are still plenty of fish in the surf zone, including pompano, whiting, croaker,
drum, margate, permit, and snook feeding on crabs within the sargassum seaweed. If you can
find fishable water, these species are still accessible.

Fort Pierce Inlet Area – Fishing has been decent around the inlet and surrounding flats.
Pompano have been caught on pompano jigs near the spur, feeding on crabs in the sargassum
grass on the beaches. Anglers fishing inside the inlet have caught nice snapper between the
fish cleaning table and the Square Grouper restaurant. Snook fishing has been good at night
with lures and live bait, and dock lights have also produced catches. The flats around the inlet
are holding fish, with live bait being effective. The surf has limited activity due to the sargassum
grass. There's only about a week left of snook season, so expect increased angler activity in
pursuit of a few more for the freezer.

Sebastian Inlet Area – Fishing has been hit or miss in the Sebastian area, with many anglers
fishing for snook with the season closing in about a week. Live baits like mojarras, croakers, and
large shrimp have been successful for anglers targeting snook. Despite the challenges posed by
sargassum seaweed, there are still fish cruising the surf. Pompano, whiting, permit, and
Spanish mackerel are all still present in the surf. Snapper fishing has been decent in the inlet
and surrounding channel edges. Again, live bait is key, and a chum block can get skittish fish
feeding. There have been some decent snook, trout, and a few redfish caught on the flats
surrounding the inlet. Live bait has been key to getting the fish to feed in the heat. If it’s too hot
during the day try going out at night. The dock lights attract the snook, trout, redfish with a wild
card mixed in. If that doesn’t work, snapper bite better at night in the river as well.

Best of luck and tight lines!

Author: Stuart Shroeder

Fishing Report 5/19/23-5/25/23

Vero Inshore: Fishing in the Indian River Lagoon slowed down over the past week, but dedicated anglers
are still having success. Snappers have been the most active species, commonly found along channel
edges, submerged structures, and bridge pilings. For larger fish, live bait like shrimp or small live baits
are the best choice. If the fishing starts off slow, using a chum bag can help attract more bites. While
there have been snook under the docks, they haven’t been feeding as expected. However, some snook
are still taking live baits such as pilchards, mullet, and large shrimp. Anglers targeting the docks on the
Moorings flats have also reported catching trout and redfish, with snook mixed in. With the snook
season ending in less than two weeks, it's a great opportunity to catch one more for the freezer.

Vero Beach: Fishing in the surf was sluggish throughout the week, and the presence of weeds further
hampered the activity. Strong east winds caused an abundance of weeds in the surf zone. Despite these
conditions, a few pompano were caught, along with whiting, croaker, catfish, and jacks. When the water
cleared up, snooks were spotted in the trough area. There were also reports of blacktip and spinner
sharks feeding on snook in the same vicinity. Currently, there are decent reports of 40-70lb sharks
cruising the surf, taking advantage of the spring northern fish migration. While targeting these sharks
can be exciting, it's crucial to adhere to fishing laws and show respect for the well-being of the fish.

Fort Pierce Inlet Area: Anglers have had success catching snapper on the inlet side of the south jetty.
Mangrove snapper, mutton snapper, cubera snapper, and lane snapper have all been caught in decent
numbers. Snook and tarpon have been observed swimming around, with the best action occurring at
night. Live bait has been the most effective for enticing bites lately. The flats fishing has been slow over
the past week, but there have been reports of trout, redfish, and snook being caught. Recommended
areas to fish include the docks down Indian River Drive, the flats around Round Island and Harbor
Branch, as well as the area around Bears Point. Many anglers will be out until the end of the month,
trying to catch a couple more snook before the season closes.

Sebastian Inlet Area: Fishing was sluggish last week around the Sebastian Inlet and the surrounding
flats. However, some snook were caught off both jetties at the inlet park, with most falling within the
slot limit. Along with snook, anglers also encountered pompano, drum, snapper, and catfish. Trout,
redfish, and snook were also caught off the flats around the inlet. For success in these areas, try fishing
the docks, points, current rips in the cuts between islands, and entrances to canals. During the first two
hours and last two hours of sunlight, lures work well, but switching to live bait afterwards is
recommended. With less than two weeks remaining in the snook season, it’s a great opportunity to
catch one or two more before it closes.

Author: Stuart Shroeder

Fishing Report 5/12/23-5/18/23:

Vero Inshore – Fishing was decent over the last week and should remain good over the weekend. Trout,
snook, jacks, ladyfish, and the occasional redfish have been caught in the Indian River Lagoon. They are
being caught on both artificial lures and live bait, with lures working best in the morning and switching
to live bait as the day heats up. The fish should be targeted around mangrove shorelines, docks, points,
and current rips between spoil islands. Mangrove snapper fishing has been the most consistent action in
the river coming off the full moon. Legal fish are being caught off channel edges and submerged
objects/sunken boats. Live bait is key, and don't forget your chum blocks. The snook fishing has been
decent at night under the dock lights with a few keepers around for the tail end of the season. You can
target these fish with large live shrimp, mullet, pinfish/pigfish, and a variety of artificial lures.

Vero Beach – Beach fishing has been good when the weather has allowed fishermen to get out on the
beach. There are still good amounts of pompano being caught with other fish mixed in. These fish can
range from drum, whiting, palometa, catfish, sandperch, bluefish, and Spanish mackerel. Fish are being
caught both North and South on the county beaches, with outgoing tides being a little better than
incoming. Sandfleas, fresh dead shrimp, clams, and fish bites are the best baits. We should start seeing
more snook move onto the beach with the summer weather patterns. Lures are the best way to target
these fish, casting at an angle down the trough. These fish will be sitting closer to the beach than you
think; they use the trough as an ambush point for the baitfish in the surf.

Fort Pier Inlet Area – Fishing has been good when the weather cooperates with anglers. Snook and
tarpon are being caught at night at the south jetty on both artificial lures and live bait. People fishing the
dock lights at night in the inlet have seen good snook fishing as well. Again, artificial lures and live bait
have been catching these fish under the inlet dock lights. Mangrove snapper fishing has been good on
the channel edges around Harbor Branch, with live bait being key. There have also been some trout
caught along the flats down Midway Drive. On the flats, you can also expect to catch snook, redfish,
ladyfish, and jacks.

Sebastian Inlet Area — Last week, fishing was best on the beach when the weather allowed it. The snook
bite was ok in the inlet, and some jacks and bluefish were caught. The outgoing tide at the tip produced
common fish but not in usual numbers due to dirty water. The T-Dock area had better fishing, with some
nice snook caught on live bait during incoming and very first part of outgoing tide. Mixed in were
snapper and Spanish mackerel. On the beach, pompano and whiting were caught using sand fleas and
cut shrimp when the weather was on the fishermen's side. Mixed in were a few Spanish mackerel,
bluefish, drum, sandperch, and catfish. On the channel edges, you can expect to catch limits of snappers
in the river right now. Live shrimp or small live baits are the best bait, and chum always gets the fish
excited. On the flats, expect to see snook, trout, redfish, jacks, and ladyfish. Lures work great first thing

Author: Stuart Schroeder

Fishing Report 5/5/23-5/11/23

Vero Inshore – We have seen some decent snapper fishing in the river with the build up to the
weekend’s full moon. These fish have been caught around channel edges, submerged
structures, and dock/bridge pilings. Live shrimp has been the bait of choice and smaller live
baits work well also for the bigger fish. You can expect to catch other species while targeting
these fish. They can range from a black & red drum, sheepshead, or a Goliath grouper. There
were a few spanish mackerel reported in the lagoon over the last couple days. Mixed in with
the Spanish maceral are jacks and ladyfish. The snook fishing has been decent with a flush of
some mullet into the river. The best action was at night under the dock lights, but fish were
caught during the day. The daytime fish have been caught around docks, points, mangrove
shoreline, current rips between the spoil island, and inlet mouths. There is less than a month
left of snook season, and the fishing usually ends pretty good and leaves anglers wanting more.

Vero Beach – We have seen a change in wind direction the last couple of days that has changed
the conditions for the better. The west winds have blown the weeds out of the surf zone and
improved the water clarity. Pompano are still being caught by anglers putting the time in on
the beach. We are getting reports of fish from Round Island Park all the way north to Sebastian
Inlet. The best results have been coming off fresh dead shrimp, sand fleas, and clams. With the
west winds we have been getting we should see some more snook move onto the beach. There
has also been reports of schools of mullet move up/down the beach and they will attract snook,
tarpon, jacks, spanish mackerel, and sharks. These fish can be targeted early in the morning
with topwater lures, big poppers, shallow diving plugs, and larger soft plastic lures.

Fort Pierce Inlet Area – There was a good variety of action over the last week at the inlet with
the building full moon. There were a good number of tarpon cruising the inlet, both during the
day and the night. The fish were mostly in the 40-60 pound range with a few bigger fish mixed
in. Live bait works best for these fish, but they were chasing lures like Hogy soft plastic and
Bomber style lures too. Snook fishing has been good at night on both live bait and lures with
most of the fish being caught at night. There also has been a decent number of good-sized
spanish mackerels cruising around the inlet on the incoming tide. There are snappers and a few
sheepsheads still being caught off the South Bridge catwalk with live Shrimp being the bait of
choice. The flats fishing has been decent on the flats around the inlet as well. Fish ranging
from trout, snook, redfish, ladyfish, and jacks. Start with topwater plugs for the first hour of
light when the water is calmest then switch to soft plastic or live bait after that.

Sebastian Inlet Area – There has been some decent fishing with the change in the weather we
have seen over the last couple of days at the Inlet. There have been decent reports of both
snook and tarpon at night cruising the inlet. With good numbers of fish being hooked with both
lures and live bait. There have been good reports of pompano caught from both the beaches
and the jetties. When the water clears up the fish move in and are being caught off sand fleas,
fresh dead shrimp, and clams. The flats fishing around the inlet has also been decent with
trout, snook, redfish, and jacks taking lures and live bait. The snapper fishing has been good
around the channel edges and submerged structure. Live shrimp works well for these fish, and
I always put out a chum bag to get them fired up. If you can get smaller live baits this usually
equals the bigger fish.

Author: Stuart Schroeder

Fishing Report 4/28/23-5/4/23

Vero Inshore — There has been a lot of stormy weather this week, and it has affected
the fishing. Snook fishing has been decent, with more fish being caught at night. Live
bait has been the key to getting the fish to bite. The bait of choice would be a baitfish
like pilchard, pinfish/pigfish, mullet, or even a large/medium shrimp. At night, most of the
fish are going to be caught off dock lights and even the shadow edges around the
Barber and 17th Street Bridge. We’re still hearing reports of snappers being caught on
structure and channel edges. These fish are great for kids and are tasty if you’re lucky
enough to catch dinner. The catwalk under the Barber Bridge has seen a decent
snapper bite early in the morning or right at sunset. You also have the chance to catch
black drum, redfish, sheepshead, pufferfish, and jacks. There are some trout being
caught on the flats, mangrove shorelines, and cuts. There could be other fish mixed in,
like jacks, ladyfish, and redfish. Don’t forget to keep your eyes open for tripletail while
cruising the Indian River Lagoon. These fish will lay on the surface around channel
markers and crab pot buoys and rarely turn down a live shrimp.

Vero Beach — Once again, the weather we had all week has made the surf a little more
difficult than usual, but there are still quality fish being caught by anglers braving the
weather. The pompano fishing remains strong when the weather cooperates, and there
is whiting, drum, margate, and snappers mixed in as well. There has been an increase
in weeds with all the east wind we have had, but fortunately, it is still fishable. I don’t let
the weeds get me down because I feel that it can actually get the fish going feeding on
all the crabs and baitfish that live in the weeds. Obviously, if the weeds are so bad that
they are weighing your rig down and take 10 minutes to clean the rig, go do something
else. We should start seeing more snook activity in the surf also. These fish can be
targeted early in the morning or late in the afternoon with lures or with live bait during
the day.

Fort Pierce Inlet Area – Snook has been the main attraction with only about a month left
in the season. The nighttime fishing has been decent at both the inlet and the area
bridges. Snook are being caught on both lures and live bait, with a few tarpon mixed in
to test your tackle. Snapper fishing has been good. The key is finding the structure, and
you will find the fish. This structure can be channel edges, bridge pilings, mangrove
edges, and submerged boats/rocks. The channel edges around Harbor Branch are
always a good area to start. There have been a few trout around, and these can be
caught on the flats with artificial lures or a popping cork with a shrimp under it. Also,
keep your eyes open for tripletail sunning themselves around crab pot buoys and
channel markers. There are still some schools of large jacks cruising the beachs right
now and they are always looking for a fight.

Sebastian Inlet Area – Similar to the Fort Pierce area, snook has been the main catch in
the Sebastian Inlet area. Fish can be caught on both sides of the inlet, with the North
Jetty being a slightly better spot. Anglers are still catching fish at night by drifting the
inlet with live bait or trolling the inlet with deep diving plugs. There are also some
snapper and sheepshead being caught off the T dock and the catwalks. For those fishing
the flats around the inlet, there are opportunities to catch trout, ladyfish, snook, redfish,
and jacks. These fish can be caught using a variety of artificial lures or live bait, and the
best times to fish are at either sunrise or sunset. Snapper fishing has remained steady,
with legal fish being caught off channel edges and underwater structures.

Author: Stuart Schroeder

Inshore Fishing

Vero Inshore – fishing is good for some and slower for others. Right now, the river has many
different species making anglers' fishing rods bend. Sheepshead are getting caught around
structure, with Mangrove snapper and Black drum mixed in with them. There are schools of
ladyfish cruising the Indian River that are good for kids to catch. Snook are still being caught,
mostly at night under the dock lights, but there are still some nice fish being caught during
daylight hours for people fishing docks, cuts, and mangrove shorelines. There are a few Trout
around as well, but without the seagrass beds, look for other places like points, holes, docks,
and drop-offs next to flats. We have heard a variety of fish getting caught off the catwalk this last
week. There have been a lot of smaller snappers caught during the day with puffer fish and
stingrays caught too. There were a couple of small redfish caught over the week, and that's
always a welcome sight. Snook fishing remains good at night under the shadow lines. This
is a good time of year to start fishing the dock lights at night. As the temperatures heat up, the
fish get lazy during the day and feed more at night. These fish can be targeted with either live
baits like shrimp or pilchards, or a variety of lures such as a Mirrolure Topdog or a DOA Shrimp, or TerrorEyz.


Beach Fishing

Vero Beach – We are seeing this year’s spring Pompano run in full swing; this would be the run
back north. We should see fish for the next moon cycle, with it tapering off after the next full
moon. These fish will be bigger than the fish we saw in the winter, with fish in the 3-5 pound
range not uncommon. I have heard of more fish being caught this year off fresh dead shrimp
than sand fleas, with the scarcity of sand fleas in our area. The guys who are doing the best are
using Fish Bites and tipping whatever bait they choose with that. Last year, the hot color was
Green or Chartreuse Crab; let’s see what it is this year. This time of year, we always
recommend bringing a plug rod with you when surf fishing. If the Pompano or Whiting aren’t
hitting that day, you can walk the beach and target different species to bend a rod. For those
who want to target something larger from the beach, shark fishing has been very good with the
push of springtime Pompano in the area. There are smaller species like Black Tip and Spinner
Sharks running with the Pompano schools. These fish can range from 50 pounds and up and
can be targeted with large dead baits and shark rigs. We recommend using a kayak to paddle
the bait out. Nothing gets the blood flowing like walking out a shark bait right when the sun is
going down – fun! Please be very respectful when targeting these apex predators and make
sure to follow all local/state/federal rules when shark fishing. We should start seeing some more
Snook move onto the beach, and these fish can be caught either with live bait or a variety of
lures. If you need any suggestions, stop by the shop, and we can get you pointed in the right
direction. But, you can’t go wrong with Yo-Zuri 3D Inshore Fingerling lures.

Sebastian Inlet – The area has seen a big improvement from the nasty weather we had a week ago, but the
fishing is hit or miss for most. Those getting out early see the best results with catches of Snook
and some Redfish with a mixture of other fish with them. These could range from Spanish
Mackerel, Bluefish, Jacks, or even a Tarpon if you’re lucky. The surf fishing has picked back up
with the spring run of Pompano passing through on their migration back north. This week
everyone has been catching fish, with lucky anglers limiting out. There are other bonus fish
mixed in as well. These could range from a tasty Whiting to a rod-busting Jack. This is a really
good time of year to bring a plug rod with you to the beach when surf fishing. If the Pompano
and Whiting aren’t cooperating with you, then switch over to casting silver spoons or lures like a
Rapala X-Rap or Yo-Zuri 3D Inshore Fingerling. This could catch anything from a Snook,
Spanish Mackerel, Bluefish, Jack, or even a Ladyfish.

Fort Pierce Inlet Area – The inlet has seen some decent Snook fishing at night with some
Tarpon mixed in. These fish can be targeted either with live bait or lures like Flair Hawks. There
is a dredging operation going on, so that could force you to different areas to fish on the jetty.
Don’t be scared to try between The Square Grouper and The Manatee Island Grill. The
Pompano fishing has been pretty good the last week, with fish being caught from Round Island
on North Beach all the way down to the County Line Road beach. There are fish being caught
both in the morning and the afternoon. The morning has been a little calmer than the afternoon
lately, but there are still fish being caught during both times. There have been reports of big
schools of Jacks cruising the beach. Those fish are always willing to take a topwater plug and
are always down for a fight. Snapper fishing is decent and will only get better as we get into
summer. The channel edges around Harbor Branch are good areas to start with. These fish love
to eat live shrimp, but if you can get some smaller live baits, you can usually pick off some
larger fish. If you’re trying to get some fishing action for kids, I would recommend the mangroves
between Stan Blum boat ramp and the Fort Pierce Inlet. The key here is to put out a chum bag.
This will draw in all the snapper out of the mangroves and get them going for the kids. Then just
free line small bits of fresh dead shrimp or halved silver sides with a split shot and let the fun
begin. There are plenty of cuts to get out of the main channel because it does get busy on the
weekends with boat traffic. This time of year, it’s always fun to fish the dock lights from a boat at
night down Indian River Drive, especially as the temperatures heat up. The lights draw in
Snook, Redfish, and Trout, and you can target them with topwater, soft baits, or live baits.

Author: Stuart Schroeder