(As seen in The Drake, Fall 2011 issue.)
Butterfly peacock bass are native to South America, but the State of Florida introduced them to Miami’s canal systems in 1984 in order to combat invasive species. In the decades since, the peacock bass have thrived, creating an exotic and exciting fishery right in the heart of South Florida’s suburbs.
When is the peacock bass fishing good? Whenever the water and air temperatures are above 70 degrees. When it’s warm the bite is typically hot. These fish aggressively chase flies and artificial lures. Capt. Mark will guide you through the canals of Miami, working his trolling motor to silently glide his skiff to the best peacock spots in the area.
Sometimes peacock bass travel in large schools and will blast past one another in an effort to get to your fly first. Sometimes they hide in shoreline structure and sometimes they cruise the shallows, offering technical sight fishing opportunities.
When the peacocks aren’t biting, the canals are filled with native largemouth as well as other exotic species that chase flies, such as Mayan cichlids, oscar fish and jaguar guapotes. In the springtime, when the ficus trees shed berries into the canals, anglers can sight fish for grass carp.
Capt. Mark has been fishing these canals since childhood and knows when and where to find something willing to bite.