Fishing Report: Florida Everglades Peacock Bass Explosion

December 20, 2021 fishing report.

In what is probably the last fishing trip of this year, yesterday’s Everglades backcountry trip for peacock bass ended 2021 on an incredibly high note!

Fishing with guide Scott Rose of Miami Peacock Adventures we landed high double digits, low triple digits of our target species: Peacock bass, which are native to the Amazon River basin. Outside of their native habitat, Peacock bass are only found in South Florida.  

Peacock bass are as aggressive and hard fighting as they are beautiful and can be caught on live bait, artificial lures, or on the fly. For this trip they were smashing live shiners, but we couldn’t buy a bite on fly or artificial, so we stuck with live bait.

peacock bass in Evergaldes

Ready for Love: Getting ready to spawn

The fish were fattening up ahead of their anticipated spawning season as well as an incoming cold front. The sexually ripe male is normally identified by a pronounced forehead “hump” of fatty tissue that is stimulated by sexual maturity.

Target: Peacock Bass

The peacocks were cruising along the edges of the canals where the sheets of water from the open Everglades and sawgrass feeds into them. This swift movement of water around the openings, which are covered with trees and a lot of underwater structure, creates a moveable feast or buffet line of baitfish ready for an eager Peacock to ambush and smash.

Using these tactics we were able to catch a fish on practically every cast. Life expectancy of the live bait was measured in seconds once they hit the water!

Peacock Bass Honey Hole

here is an amazing patch of open water off a canal cut that shows the majesty, size and beauty of the Florida Everglades. Also this little opening held a ton of fish!

All Peacocks were catch and release.

Conditions were perfect for an epic day of fishing. It was certainly an epic ending to a 2021 fishing year.

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