Local Sports

Best fishing in late afternoon

The Florida freshwater fishing forecast for the second half of the second week of August favors the afternoon anglers as the full moon phase starts to wane toward the last-quarter moon phase that will occur this Sunday.

For the next three days the majority of fish will feed daily during the mid-afternoon and middle of the night. The moonset period will occur during the midmorning hours which will be supported by an atmospheric pressure increase which has been occurring daily over the past week during the early to midmorning hours. If this pressure increase continues to follow this trend, the major feeding migration of the day will happen during this morning period, otherwise it will occur six to seven hours later.

The major feeding migration of the day occurs during the ‘moon underfoot’ period which is from 3 to 6 p.m. with the peak period centered on 4:11 p.m. today. Tomorrow this feeding period moves later by one hour, as it will each day this week. A feed intensity rating of 5-6 will occur today and decline daily by a half number until this weekend when it bottoms-out at a 4-rating from 6 to 9 p.m.

The minor fishing migration of the day occurs during the moonset period which occurs at 10 a.m. today and one hour later per day for the remainder of this week. This feeding migration will start an hour before the moonset and last for about an hour after. A rating of 5 on the one-in-ten scale, ten being best.

But as previously stated, I believe the possibility of an atmospheric pressure increase will take place as this lunar period takes place. If it does I expect it to be the best time of day to fish. And additionally, the plants will be producing plenty of dissolved oxygen by midmorning hours while the water temps are still in the low 80 degree range — best summer daily fish forage conditions in the month of August.

By this weekend anglers will be enjoying great fishing during the sunrise and sunset periods of the day. The sunrise will have the moon overhead occurring at the same time as well as the sunset will have the moon underfoot improving that feeding migration.

It should be noted that the sunrise feeding period will have very low dissolved oxygen rates in the mid-eighties water temperatures and this will slow down the feeding activity in many areas of each lake. And conversely, the sunset period will have the highest oxygen rating of the day but anglers will have to dodge the stormy weather and threats of lightning.

Bass Fishing Fact: When dissolved oxygen rates drop below 5 parts per million bass, especially the bass over five pounds, will migrate deeper to the windy side of the deeper sections of the lake. By moving to a six to eight foot depth, bass can access dissolved oxygen rates of 6 parts per million or greater which is ideal for eating and digesting foods because there is greater oxygen rates in 80 to 82 degree water temperatures.

For the summer months July and August I am offering a half-day bass fishing trip for one to three people that include bait, tackle, and gas for $225. Launch time is at 6 a.m. and the trip ends at noon. Or I can fish from your boat and guide you to my fishing holes for $125 per day. Book your trip on my boat or yours today.

Lake Istokpoga’s level is at 38.44 feet above sea level with three S68 spillway gates open at 1.70 feet and one gate open at 1.50 feet totaling a flow of 1700 cubic feet per second. You can access this information and much more at Istokpoga.info.

Need a lake contour map of the lake you are fishing? Visit FloridaLakesMaps.com where I’ve published every Florida lake map and lake-map website links, I could find.

Fish and Wildlife Commission News (FWC): Proposed Rule Change to Daily Bass Bag Limit; ‘Five bass with only one over 16 inches’. Currently, the FWC biologist have not made a determination about whether or not to use this new proposed rule change on Lake Istokpoga. Help influence the decision by taking the survey online at http://myfwc.com/fishing/freshwater/black-bass/bass-regulations/

Dave Douglass is a bass fishing guide and conservationist in Central Florida. The full article can be accessed at BassFishingForecast.com and FloridaBassFishingForecast.com. Main website: HighlandsBassAngler.com Phone: 863-381-8474. Email: davidpdouglass@hotmail.com