Man, it’s been hot out on the water this August! Fortunately, the fishing has been just as hot! There are so many options available to anglers right now. I’ve still been catching some tarpon when conditions have allowed. There is tarpon available for almost any angling style. We’ve caught tarpon on the beaches, passes and in Charlotte Harbor as well. For anglers fishing the Tampa Bay area it’s hard to beat the nighttime bite at the bay area bridges. The main bridge is of course the Sunshine Skyway but don’t be afraid to try your luck at the upper bay bridges as well. Tarpon like to cruise the shadow line looking for easy meals flowing through with the tide. The snook fishing continues to do well on the flats and beaches. I like fishing beaches near a pass. The snook will be in the sawsh channel created by the crashing waves. Favorite baits include live pinfish, grunts or white buck tail jigs. Scalloping in the Homosassa and Crystal River area is still going strong. Good reports have been coming from the 6-8 ft depth range. Snorkelers that are willing to explore off the beaten path are getting better results. The featured target this past month for many anglers has been mangrove snapper. The mangrove snapper both inshore and offshore are schooled up super thick for their summer time spawn. They have been biting really well on small whitebait, cut bait and shrimp. The trick is get them chummed up and balled up behind the boat and to use as light of tackle as possible. Most anglers prefer a really long 15-20 lb fluorocarbon leader in approximately 10-15 feet length. The attached picture is of my good friend Capt. Justin Santillo, Linesided Charters with one of many really nice stud Mangrove Snapper caught on a recent offshore trip. Looking forward to September I’m expecting more redfish to begin to show on the flats as well the snook to begin to transition from the beaches back towards their fall haunts.
Capt. Bobby Woodard