Best Bait For Mutton Snapper Fishing
Fresh bait and presentation are essential for Mutton Snapper fishing! Frozen bait is not as effective. Fresh bait is the key to monster muttons. The presentation and freshness of the bait are much more important than the type of bait. Live bait indeed works well, but not always. You will see many times where Muttons are more interested in a, well presented, fresh bait than a live one. The best baits for Mutton Snapper are: Speedos malpica, Ballyhoo escribano, Mullet lisa, squid calamar, mackerel macarela, Herring machuelo, blue crabs haivas, Bonito and Pinfish chopa. Try a few different baits on your first drops. Once you find their preference that day keep sending down the same baits.
Mutton Snapper Rigging & Presentation
Muttons respond the best when the bait flows naturally with the current. It is critical that your fresh dead baits do not spiral in the current. A butterflied ballyhoo takes advantage of the current for an excellent, natural presentation. In shallower water don't use a sinker, or use very light one at most. Use the lightest weight possible to keep your bait on the bottom. The stronger the current and rocking of the boat in rough seas, the more weight you need. It is critical that your sinker does not bounce and lays motionless on the bottom. For best results hold your rod and follow the rocking of the boat. If you prefer keeping it in the rod holder lift your weight a few cranks off the bottom. So the bait runs the with the current and chum flow. Yellowtail fishermen are often surprised by Muttons in shallower depths. In water deeper than 100 feet, the size of your sinker depends on the current. Pay close attention to changes in the current. If the speed of the current increases, use a heavier sinker and increase the length of your leader. In slow to mild currents start with 6-10 foot leader. In stronger currents use a 15-50 feet leader. Always try to use fluorocarbon leaders. Using braid as your main line is recommended for increased sensitivity and line capacity.
Fish The Whole Water ColumnDon't pass up the opportunity to hook up to a nice Spanish Mackerel or Kingfish while bottom fishing. Put a live Ballyhoo on a short wire leader 4-12 inches. Some anglers swear by stinger treble hooks hanging or sunk in the bait. Regardless of how you rig it, put one out you will be surprised by a screaming drag.
Mutton Snapper Season
Miami Mutton snapper season begins in late April, early May and lasts until the end of July. In November, there is another run. Very early in the morning or at dusk, around the days of full moon and the new moon is when the bite the hottest.