The fishing forecast for this week starts out with the full moon and the orbit perigee both occurring today. This combined lunar affect will cause fish to feed during the midday hours. The rainy season weather will be out of the east southeast for the first part of the week and out of the south southeast for the second half of the week.
Water temperatures are at the very peak of the ideal feeding temperature with highs for the day settling in the lower eighties. However at 6 a.m. the low for the day drops to 79 degrees.
The barometric pressure will drop slightly this week and perhaps fall below 30 In Hg which will drive fish slightly deeper than they have been over the past week. You should expect to see the majority of the fish between five and ten feet of depth. As the week continues fish will suspend primarily at the eight foot depth. The pressure and temperature will be ideal for large bass and other species.
The major feeding migration of the day occurs from 10:30 p.m. to 2 a.m. and should reach an eight on the one-in-ten scale rating. The peak period I expect to start around 10:30 pm and last for three hours , especially if the moon is shining bright.
The minor feeding migration of the day occurs from 8:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. with a peak period occurring from 9:30 and lasting until 11:30. A rating of seven or eight is to be expected today through Wednesday but after that a steady decline of one point per day until it levels out on Friday at four.
The weekend looks to have a greater chance of rain during the day as barometric pressure drops a few ticks. Fish will naturally migrate to the eight to twelve foot depth to adjust. Winds will shift to strictly out of the south and gain a little strength. A sixty percent chance of rain is predicted throughout central Florida.
The wind speeds will be mild or non-existent and out of the east southeast, which ignite the fish feeding migration on the west northwest sides of the lakes. Since the wind pattern will remain steady over the next five days, anglers will be able to find large concentrations of fish along the deeper sections of the lakes on the west shorelines.
This is the time of year when large swim-baits and seven to ten inch worms work best. Any artificial bait that could resembles a bluegill, needlefish or shiner should work best. Spoons and spinner-baits also are triggering several strikes when pulled through grass, pencil reeds and hydrilla and or lily pads. When ever there is two or three different grasses in the same area of deeper shoreline waters, there is sure to be plenty of hungry fish.
The sunrise and sunset feeding bites will suffer this week slightly, however the early morning feeding migration should provide plenty of action due to the bright sunshine forecasted for the early mornings this week.
A rating of five is reasonable to expect however during the sunset storms will drop the feed rating into the four-range.
Lake Istokpoga's level is at 38.38 feet above sea level. Lake Okeechobee's level is at 13.92 feet above sea level.
Dave Douglass is a bass fishing guide and conservationist since 2006 in Highlands County. Website: HighlandsBassAngler.com Phone:863-381-8474. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org.