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Good dolphin fishing has finally arrived off the Miami area. There are large numbers of fish in the schools and they can be found through a wide range of depths and distances offshore. The fish range in size from schoolies to fish into the 20 pound range. If you come across a school of smaller fish, remember that there is a 20 inch minimum from the lower jaw to the fork of the tail (LJFT) and a 10 fish per person limit. Keep a few and then move on to find some larger fish. With the large number of fish, catching your limit can be very easy. It is also very easy to get so caught up in the feeding frenzy that you go over your limit. Someone needs to keep track of how many you've caught so that if you get stopped and inspected, a good day won't be ruined by getting fined.

There are still plenty of sailfish and kingfish being caught in the 90 - 200 foot range.

Move inshore and the tarpon bite is still going off most every evening with the fish in the 90 - 150 pound range. If you've ever had a dream of catching a tarpon that weighs 100 pounds or more, now is the time to make that dream become a reality. Don't be put off by the afternoon rain storms as they have usually passed through and the skies clear up by 6 - 6:30 in the evening.

Dennis and Don Cataldo along with Dale Cochrane and Peter Holehouse tangled with a large mean nasty tarpon that didn't want to give up. The battle started on the south side of the jetties at Government Cut. The fish played it very lazy to begin with and did little to no jumping. Without expending much energy, the tarpon had twice as much stamina as they usually have. The fish made its way into the main channel and with the tide going out, we followed it as it went offshore staying in the deep water. The fish finally came up and gave us a few jumps and then went right back down. It was a see saw battle back and forth for a very long time. Neither the fish nor the angler wanted to give in and we continued to move out the channel. By the time we made it out to where the channel dog legs to the left, the tarpon was finally wearing down, but not enough to pose for a good boat side picture. With two cameras going, enough pictures were finally taken and the fish was released. The battle lasted for well over an hour.

Ben and Jenny Skinner along with their son Charlie got into to some hot and heavy dolphin action. We started the morning off with catching herring and pilchards in the Haulover area. We worked our way offshore checking each and every slick and scattered weedline we came across. At 10.5 miles out we found a large weed patch along with a heavy scattered line. As we slow trolled our baits down the line, we saw dolphin swimming along side of the boat and it was time for the dolphin frenzy to begin. Ben was hooking fish on Kaplan jigs, Jenny and Charlie were hooking up with the live bait. Charlie had never seen anything like this back home in Virginia and this was his first time catching dolphin. By the time the fish moved on, the boat needed a good hosing down and everyone needed some liquid refreshment. We regrouped and moved back to the weedline and within minutes, we were back in the fish again. All of the fish were schoolie size with the exception of a few throw backs. Between catching fish, Jenny was busy taking pictures of Charlie fighting his fish. Ben was busy with hooking fish and handing the rod off to either Charlie or Jenny. After the second blitz of fish, we hosed the boat down again and counted our catch as we were getting close to limiting out. We had room for a few more fish, so we moved back to the line. By this time we were joined by two other boats who were busy catching fish also. Once again we got into the fish and I counted down as we approached our limit. Ben and Jenny decided that we had enough and we called the trip at the half day mark and ran back to TNT Marine Center where Ben and I cleaned all the fish that they want to take back home with them. While we were cleaning the fish, they all got treated to the sight of the barracuda, jack crevalle, and large tarpon that were getting their fair share of the action by eating the skins and rib sections. Once again a family spent good quality time together catching fish, having fun, and making memories that will last for years to come.

It's time to book your dolphin charter. Tarpon fishing will remain strong through the end of June before it begins to rapidly wind down for another season, so don't delay on getting in on that action either. And finally, think about an afternoon evening trip where you can catch dolphin offshore and finish the evening off with tarpon. It's the best of both worlds.

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Thanks for the report. I look forward to seeing some pictures of those Tarpon!

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