Fly Fishing Report By: Gabe Littlefield

Now that November is here, my focus shifts to redfish. I had the opportunity to get out and fish with Capt. Casey Males of Backwater Fish and Paddle and we had an awesome time catching reds. While reds can be caught year-round, as the temperature drops the bite heats up. This is probably the best time of year to introduce someone to inshore fly fishing.

Now that winter is approaching, our waters begin to clear and cool, changing the habits and stomping grounds of redfish. The first major change is the schooling of these fish all around the Bay area. Some of these schools can be hundreds of redfish thick! When fly fishing for schooling redfish, long casts and stealthy approaches may be necessary. Soft and subtle flies, such as Kwans or Merkins, are perfect for these situations. Begin targeting fish on the outside of the school, so as not to spook them all. Stay focused and patient and it can pay off in the form of a multiple fish day!

The alternative to fishing schools (better suited for boat anglers) is targeting single cruisers or small pods in the back creeks found all over Tampa Bay. These fish are perfect for kayaks, canoes and wading anglers, because of the shallow water. The latter is my preferred approach to attack redfish in shallow water. Even though I am exclusively a kayak angler, I typically tether my kayak and creep up on these fish on foot. Flies imitating crabs, shrimp, or backwater baitfish excel in these conditions.

I hope your month is full of redfish and turkey and your line stays tight!

Capt. Casey Males is the owner and guide at Backwater Fish and Paddle in Crystal River. Specializing in artificial and fly fishing via Live2Fish Paddleboards, Casey has a vast knowledge of the area. For more info or trip bookings, visit www.backwaterfishandpaddle.com.

Gabe Littlefield is a kayak fishing guide at Pure Florida Watersports in Wesley Chapel. Specializing in inshore fly fishing by kayak, Gabe is very comfortable and passionate about sharing his love for fly fishing. To book a charter with Gabe, contact Pure Florida Watersports at (813)-602-8824.

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