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Lake O’s crime can be undone

September 27, 2013
By Capt. GEORGE TUNISON ( , Cape Coral Daily Breeze

This past week's rains equals more bad news for the Caloosahatchee, our marine environment, Cape Coral and the surrounding communities.

Gov. Scott has sent a plea to Wash-ington for relief, but money probably will remain scarce for this project. Not too many years ago Florida was to buy large parcels of land and construct a flow south which would spare the two river systems that are being sacrificed to keep the "big sugar" industry happy. Land is available again. Let's see what happens this time around.

Make no mistake this is the root cause (sugar) of the ongoing destruction. The sugar industry needs to keep water levels in the Everglades Agriculture Area at certain levels to be able to grow cane. Florida Sportsman Magazine says, "The lowering of the South Florida water table ranks as an environmental crime of the past century, and yet it is a crime that can be undone."

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Capt. George Tunison

FSM also referenced the Plan 6 Concept Proposal which can be accessed at This will explain the proposed flow way south giving relief to our communities and environment.

Two things for sure; a politician's dream is an uninformed person that doesn't care to get informed or involved. Anymore, it seems that's about 60 percent or more of the country. Squeaking wheels get the grease. It takes but a few minutes to fire off an email or to pick up your Obama Phone and call and make your voice heard. Doing nothing got us here, doing nothing will keep us here.

The rain has been tough on many folks' fishing plans, but I'm taking full advantage of the time off and the high water to get back to one of my favorite fishing adventures - high flying baby tarpon on ultra light rods. Burnt Store Road was filled with anglers this past week trying to cash in on the sometimes surprising fishing available at the mini-dams separating the fresh from the saltwater of the Spreader Canal.

Too crowded during the day? Dress appropriately, bring your bug juice and try them at night. For the past couple of weeks I've had the opportunity to experiment with lures and flies and have found some winners that consistently stick these sometimes extremely finicky baby poons. The common thread is that the lure must be very small, the fluorocarbon leader long (at least 36 inches) and the lure action not too erratic.

Remember when they jump to bow to these mini kings just like you bow to the big guys. That is, shove the rod as far forward toward the leaping fish as you can, creating slack line. When the tarpon shakes his head from side to side many times a taunt line will cause a broken leader or the hook to pop free. These fighters get big air on wild and powerful leaps into space and sometimes even off into the mangroves. We fish a light 6-foot rod with 10-pound braid uni-knotted to a 36-inch, 20-pound test good quality fluorocarbon leader.

Most babies you will encounter are in the three- to 10-pound class. Full sized specimens and adult snook frequent these same waters so if you look down to see the line on your spool going, going, gone, you know what happened.

Gag grouper are in close and trolling with deep diving plugs like a Mann's 25 will trip their triggers on a near shore rock pile or secret GPS number this weekend.

Redfish anglers will be out in droves along with early morning trout specialists looking for a wall hanger on a big surface plug or twitch bait.

Always use a loop knot for these twitch (MirrOdine's, Rapala's) baits. These lures are to be fished rather slowly with subtle rod tip movements. Don't hurry these lures. Slow down and make them dart and flash like an injured or dying baitfish and hang on.

Capt. George Tunison is a Cape Coral resident fishing guide. Contact him at 239-282-9434 or, or



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