South Shore Tampa Bay Report By: Capt. Christopher Taylor

Florida’s heat wave is still in full effect, and many anglers are looking to cast their lines at fish willing to eat. Mangrove snapper have made their way into Tampa Bay in great numbers. They are well known for their dominant presence during the late Summer months, and historically peak in numbers August through September.

They can be found at any of the bridges, docks, seawalls, jetties, canals and channel ledges. I always head to my favorite rock piles this time of year to find them. Where there is one, there are a bunch. Mangrove snapper can put on a great show and taste amazing. These hungry predators can almost always be found stacked up anywhere that has a drop-in depth.

Baits I use for mangrove snapper are scaled sardines and live shrimp. Both baits are presented on a size 1/0 circle hook with just enough weight to get baits down. I like to bring a chum block with me to entice the bite a little sooner.

Decent numbers of gag and red grouper have been caught on recent trips inside Tampa Bay as well. Call ahead to book your fishing charter soon while the bite is still good.