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Captain's Corner

What's hot: Divers are finding areas of good offshore spearfishing, from just off the coastline out to about 130 feet of water.

By BILL HARDMAN
Published May 5, 2007


What's hot: Divers are finding areas of good offshore spearfishing, from just off the coastline out to about 130 feet of water. These areas are the only places where there is enough visibility for divers to safely hunt fish. In the depths from 100 feet to 130 feet, grouper and red snapper are more prevalent. The rest of the offshore spots are experiencing an extremely rare phenomenon of dark water. In areas that usually have good visibility accompanied by good fish concentrations, such as the Florida Middle Grounds and the springs and wrecks out to 160 feet, the visibility has hit bottom. A strange and dark layer of water has permeated most of the popular springtime dive locations. The Middle Grounds usually has more than 80 feet of visibility this time of year, but this past week, the best visibility in the Middle Grounds was down to 10 feet. On some dives, the visibility was so bad that our divers could not even see their fins.

Inshore diving: Many divers are having success finding and spearing cobia in the bay and inland waters. Free diving has been more successful than scuba diving for these fish. Make sure you have a reel or float line when attempting to spear these powerful fish. And always have a knife or Z-blade within easy reach to cut your line in case of entanglement.

Next tournament: The Spearboard Open is just around the corner. The tournament is scheduled for May 19-20. To find out how to participate, go to www.spearboard.com.