St. Pete Report By: Capt. Anthony Corcella

American Red Snapper Season Is Here

First, you need to know where to find the red snapper. Here on the west coast, you need to be in at least 150 feet of water to get into decent size keepers. For the truly big scaley dogs, you need to push out to 200 feet or more. Almost any hard bottom at those depths will hold snapper.  Also, the pipe line is a good place to start looking, once you hit 150 feet of water.

A bonus you can add to the mix of red snapper is big gags, scamp and red grouper.  Gags opened up June 1st. All of the above will hit pinfish, frozen sardines, cut bait and a variety of jigs.  We like Hookup bait jigs.

For tackle, you need to gear up for the size of fish you’re targeting.  The minimum would be a 5000-size spinner with 20-pound braid on a 7-foot rod with a slow tip. For bigger fish, a 4/0 with 50-pound braid will work. And, for the monsters out past 200 feet, a 6/0 loaded with 80-pound braid is needed to land the beast at those depths.

If you’re at the right depth but not getting any action, look around with your bottom machine until you see the cloud of snapper. They are out there.

Good luck and tight lines.