Flats to Nearshore Report By: Capt. Gary Burch

June Fishing Forecast

The fishing was off the charts the first week of May and has not stopped since.

The water cleaned up and settled into its normal temperature range above 80 degrees.  Also the weather became stable and very seasonal, just what the fish and the fishermen were looking for.

The inshore waters of Clearwater Harbor and Saint Joseph’s Sound will continue to shine as June arrives. All of our local species will be tearing up the waters from the beaches to the back waters.

Get out early for tarpon, I mean early, way before first light. Look for the tarpon to be along the beaches, rolling and moving with the tides.

Popular locations to start are Clearwater Pass Bridge in the shadow lines and along north Clearwater Beach all the way to north Honeymoon Island.  Idle along the beach from 100 yards to a quarter mile out. The best baits will be large live white baits, silver dollar size crabs and cut baits like half a ladyfish on the bottom.

Look for snook to be in their spawning locations, in passes, along the swash channels near the passes and out on the beaches. I will be using medium sized white baits and grunts to catch these linesiders.

Cast these free lined baits out and let them drift into the strike zone. A float can be used around rocks and jetties to keep the baits from getting hung up.

The big schools of redfish have scattered and taken up residence all around the mangrove and oyster bar areas. It may take some time locating them, but keep looking and remember that they can move daily.

When you find the reds, a little bit of chumming with cut white bait should help with the bite.  Toss out small to medium white baits or live large shrimp on a float and give it some time, if nothing happens move on.

Trout will be found in the passes and around grassy areas inside the passes where there is moving water. Small to medium white baits and small pinfish will be the ticket. Also setting up on a grass flat can be productive.

If all of this is not enough to keep you happy, try fishing along the beaches for mackerel, king fish, cobia, sharks, jacks and ladyfish.  Everything is chewing so get out there and get some.

Capt. Gary Burch owns and operates All Catch Charters and specializes in live baits and artificials. He guides inshore, flats and backcountry from Clearwater to Tarpon Springs. To reach Capt. Gary for a charter, please call 727 458-6335 or visit his website, www.allcatchcharters.com


Capt. Gary