Welcome to my website!

Hello and thanks for dropping by my website!  My name is Capt. Rick Stanczyk and I’m a fishing guide in Islamorada, Florida.  I fish out of the world famous Bud n’ Mary’s Fishing Marina located at MM 79.8 in Islamorada.  You can find out more about me here, though for a quick synopsis… I was born in 1982, grew up fishing here, and have lived in the Keys for almost my entire life.  I mostly fish in the backcountry which consists of Florida Bay, the Gulf of Mexico, and Everglades National Park… though I do also on occasion fish out on the ocean side in the shallow parts of the Atlantic Ocean.  You can find out more details about my fishing charters here.  I run a small center console style boat capable of taking up to 3 persons out on 4, 6, or 8 hour trips.  I’ve done this for a living, full time since 2008, though being raised here I’ve been fishing in the Keys much longer than that. My specialty is tarpon fishing, however certain times of the year we aren’t catching those very often so I focus on other types of fishing.  On this website you will find my daily updated fishing reports during ‘off’ tarpon season, which is usually November – February.  I will still try to update on a regular basis during tarpon season, and day reports when we are fishing for other things, though you can also check out my other website Islamorada Tarpon Fishing for daily updated reports during that time.  If you are interested in booking a fishing trip please contact me!  If I am unavailable, or you need multiple boats for your group party,  I work with plenty of other well qualified captains that do both inshore and offshore fishing here in the local area.

Thanks,

Capt. Rick Stanczyk
Instagram: @richardstanczyk
Facebook: Islamorada Tarpon Fishing

P.S. For daily updated tarpon fishing reports, look at http://www.islamoradatarpon.com

BOOKING SPECIAL – For the next few weeks I’m offering discounted fishing trips.  I rarely do this but due to Hurricane Irma business is down a bit and I’m itchin’ to get out!  So if you are interested in coming down in the next few weeks, any time before 12/23/17, mention this offer in your email to me and let’s go fishing!

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12/15/17 Mid December Backcountry Fishing in the Florida Keys

Day 2 for Pam and Lars.  We headed out early with live shrimp in tow, it was still chilly but not quite as cold as the last few days.  Flat calm too it was a gorgeous day all around.  We hit the same area we did yesterday and got two nice jumbo snook in the first 20 minutes!  After that it was a solid trout bite for about 45 minutes, nothing else…  I was about to call it quits but then we started getting some snook and redfish again.  Not quite as good as yesterday but a solid pick, with a few nice size redfish and medium sized snook.  After we caught our share we tried some other stuff.  Not much luck with that, a few shallow spots I tried on the higher incoming tide and the fish just weren’t there, maybe still too chilly for them?  We tried other stuff in the canal where it was deeper, but the current was now ripping and it was fairly muddy.  You just know sometimes when it doesn’t look right.  We ended up going right back where we had left earlier, and luckily nobody was there.  We got another big jumbo snook right away, and missed another nice one.  I think this was the biggest of the two days for Lars, close to 12 lbs or so!  Then we caught several more medium sizers, and quite a few black drum and trout.  Lars also got a tarpon to top off his backcountry SLAM, unfortunately no pictures for us though he broke off on the leader before I could net him.  We headed in after that and appreciated the gorgeous day and great fishing on the ride home.  Lars and Pam won’t soon forget their trip to Islamorada, they made sure to take my cards for their next visit!  Well I don’t have much coming up this week, think I have the next 7 days open!  May go fun fishing with dad tomorrow since it’ll be the last day of the colder water temperatures until we get another front.  But if you want to go any time coming up give me a shout, i’m still offering my IRMA discounted rates until 12/23/17 so take advantage!

Capt. Rick Stanczyk
Instagram: @richardstanczyk
Facebook: Islamorada Tarpon Fishing

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12/13/17 + 12/14/17 Patch Reef Fishing in December Islamorada and Backcountry

12/13/17 – Got out for an afternoon half day with my mother-in-law Ginger and her boat captain Tyson.  Ginger brought her boat down from Hollywood to enjoy some days in the Florida Keys.  They wanted some eating fish and it was very rough early in the AM so we postponed until the afternoon.  By noon things had laid off to 15 mph and continued to drop, we headed out about 1:00.  Fishing was a little tough as far as finding legal edible fish went.  We caught some bar jacks and kept a few of them, and got a nice big sheepshead which is not common on the patch reefs but do get a few once in a while.  We also got a cero mackerel.  After that it turned mostly to blue runners so we moved.  Tried some areas further south but the water was cold coming out of the bay and muddy, so we didn’t even stop to fish.  I turned back around and we tried some deeper patches out in 20-30 feet as it was much calmer now.  First stop was random fish but nothing edible… some small snappers, grunts, more jacks.  The next stop though we got some porgies, and then the hogfish started biting!  We caught probably 15 hogfish which was cool, but unfortunately you have to throw them back now as the rules have changed.  The hogfish in islamorada had been beat up the last few years so hopefully they will come back stronger now with protection.  We did manage a few keeper snapper here too, so we ended up with a good bag of fish for the restaurant for dinner.

12/14/17 – Today I had Pam and Lars down from Arkansas.  They are also fishing with me tomorrow.  We got out early and headed into the backcountry.  It was still pretty cold but the winds stayed low.  We caught the start of the incoming tide and were loaded with good live shrimp.  We started catching right away… a lot of nice size snook!  The big girls came out to play in the cold for sure.  Also a mix of black drum and some nice size redfish!  Then Pam and Lars both caught small tarpon of 15 and 25 lbs!  Just unbelievable fishing and they each got a backcountry SLAM!  We continued to catch more fish and even a few trout which we kept for dinner.  Don’t like to kill the reds or drums if I don’t have to.  We had a banner day and ended up with probably 2 dozen snook, maybe 15 red and black drum, 2 tarpon, and 3 trout.  We tried another spot at the other part of the canal but not much there, tide wasn’t right and water didn’t look good.  But on the way home we found some tripletails and caught several of them including one keeper for dinner too.  Fishing doesn’t get better then this, really the type of day you dream about all year long.  It may be that way again the next couple mornings too before things warm back up.  But the december backcountry fishing in the everglades is on fire right now that is for sure!

Capt. Rick Stanczyk
Instagram: @richardstanczyk
Facebook: Islamorada Tarpon Fishing

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12/12/17 December black drum fishing in Islamorada

Got out with Alec and Zack today for a full day in the islamorada backcountry.  With the cold weather the black drum in islamorada have been active.  We had a nice day though it was chilly but the winds laid out.  We found the drums this morning it wasn’t as red hot as yesterday but a solid pick.  We bagged a few sheepshead too and one snook while doing so.  Yesterday we had a lot more snook action today though not so much.  But the tides were a little weird it was incoming and stayed high for the whole time we were back there.  Later on we found a good handful of redfish in another area, and got a couple more snook there too.  An area I haven’t fished much lately but good to see them there.  We also hit one more pocket that had some nice sea trout in it.  Always good to see trout they are a sign of healthy water.  On the way home we ran the gulf side trap lines looking for triple tail.  I didn’t see much further up where we were but once we got into the right zone we found a lot of them!  Not many large ones but enough to throw at and have fun, the boys each caught one and we called it a day and headed home.  Great day on the water looks like another reinforcing front is coming in though and it’ll be a little windy tonight and tomorrow, but late tomorrow it’s gonna be calm again and thursday and friday look very nice!  Should be great fishing.  I’m booked those days but come this weekend and next week I have openings, give me a shout if you are looking to go!

Capt. Rick Stanczyk
Instagram: @richardstanczyk
Facebook: Islamorada Tarpon Fishing

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12/11/17 December backcountry fishing in islamorada cold weather

Brrrrr it was a chilly one today with the coldest day of the year here!  It dropped down into the 50s and the water temperatures plummeted down finally today.  Yesterday they didn’t get quite as cold as I thought but today it was in the high 50s as well in the backcountry while the air there was in the 40s first thing this morning.  It was a bone chilling ride over but not too bad the wind did die out some from yesterday and got nice in the afternoon.  We bundled up and it was OK.  I had my dad and Stephen Byrd, marina manager, out for some fun fishing today.  We got on a good bite of black drum early, and once it warmed up a little later the snook started to show up too!  We also picked a few sheepshead which was nice I haven’t caught many of them lately.  Everything was very lethargic and the fish were all freezing cold to the touch!  Working shrimp on the bottom with a jig head did the trick… very slow movement just twitching it up and down.  We slammed ’em good and I think caught over 30 fish in just one spot.  After that we tried another area without much luck, we tried drifting and casting and working a large ground to scout it out but only had a couple bites we missed.  After that we ran further and found a good number of boats on a lot of spots.  We squeezed in though and got on another good snook bite, this time some larger fish!  Also got a nice redfish here.  After that we tried some other stuff on the way home, in an area where I hadn’t had much luck since IRMA.  I’ve been in there quite a few times and it’s normally very good fishing in the fall/winter, but just hadn’t been lately.  Today though we did find some fish in there so that was great to see.  Mostly black drum, though did get one more snook and a few trout too, and that was out of two different spots.  It stayed cold all day and still needed 3 layers for the ride home!  Looks to stay chilly for a few more days though it should be nice as the winds let up.  The weekend it is finally suppose to get back into the upper 70s, but the water will likely stay fairly chilly so it’ll feel colder on the boat.  I’m fishing through Friday so check back for more reports, and if you want to get out this weekend or next week I’m open hit me up!

Capt. Rick Stanczyk
Instagram: @richardstanczyk
Facebook: Islamorada Tarpon Fishing

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12/10/17 December fishing in Islamorada cold front

Well Pat called me yesterday wanting to get out fishing today.  He’d been following my islamorada fishing reports for some time and had the chance to go.  I told him no problem.  A severe cold front made its way in last night and to be honest it can make the fishing incredible, or it can make it very tough.  It really depends how hard it blows, how much sediment gets stirred up in the water, how cold it gets, and how the tide plays into all of that.  You honestly don’t really know unless you go.  Anyways we went for it I had a good feeling.  We were loaded with live shrimp for bait and headed back into the everglades.  The ride was a little sport with 30 mph winds, but really not too bad just in a few spots did we get a little wet when we had to go side to the waves, but the majority of the ride was smooth sailing against the shallow banks.  We got on the backcountry keys fish right away with a nice red and then jumped a good snook off.  We proceeded to catch a vartiety of fish including black drum, snook, one other redfish, and Pat got a nice juvenile tarpon!   The fish came in flurries, and patience was key we had to leave the baits sit and just twitch them once in a while.  No fast movement.  I think we caught close to 3 dozen fish it was pretty darn good!  As the tide fell the water muddied up more and the bite seemed to slow down.  So we tried some other areas and didn’t have a whole lot of luck back there, I think we caught one more black drum and that was it.  We made our way home and that ride was much nicer as the winds had laid down to 15-20, and it was north still so it was behind us more.  We had a nice chat with an everglades park ranger who stopped us on the way back, of course all my safety gear was in order!  A great day in the backcountry and was a pleasure to get out fishing.  Hopefully they bite for us tomorrow I’m taking my dad and then another trip on Tuesday.  But I have openings this upcoming weekend if anyone wants to go!

Capt. Rick Stanczyk
Instagram: @richardstanczyk
Facebook: Islamorada Tarpon Fishing

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