The water is still in the upper 80s all the way through the water column. Some locations have a thermocline at about 40 feet down with a temp drop of about 5 degrees. It’s time to go out and find all the other fish we have been skipping to get the endangered red snapper.
You can find black snapper under most wrecks and hard bottom ledges. If you stay quiet and stealthy they may even come out into the open. Do this by controlling your breathing, slowing down, and don’t look directly at the fish you want to shoot, especially barracuda, grouper and black snapper. I’ve notice that with all the rain we’ve been getting the water clarity is better on the west side of the Panama City pass with vis being about 30 – 50 feet and the east side is about 15 – 20 feet. Most of the fish near shore are still on the smaller side so be careful on what you shot; you don’t want to kill something you can’t keep due to size limits. Hopefully you have some private places that have not been fished out so you can get the big ones close in; if not you may need to go out to deeper waters.
Safety tip…”Deep Dives”: With all the talk of having to go deeper for the bigger fish you still need to dive with-in your certification. If you find yourself needing to dive deeper and deeper to get what you want, then go get the deep dive training; don’t man up and dive it anyway. You don’t want to hurt yourself for a fish. Any of the dive shops in town would be happy to teach you this next level of diving.
Always PLAN YOUR DIVE AND DIVE YOUR PLAN.
Thanks for reading.
CAPT. JAMES TEW
Kitchen Pass Dive & Fishing Charters