What's hot: Increasing water temperature has begun to bring many species of gamefish to the bay area, with the fishing action heating up every day.
Offshore: Amberjack are closed to commercial harvest, giving recreational anglers a great opportunity to tangle with some big jacks. Look for the biggest in water more than 100 feet. Freedive trips to 125 feet this week revealed huge schools of amberjack from 15 to 80 pounds or more. Herds followed us Monday at several deep water spots off St. Petersburg. With the water still a bit chilly, we were surprised to find several permit over wrecks as deep as 125 feet off John's Pass. Permit, generally considered a warmer-water fish, are starting to show up. Mangrove snapper, red snapper, and even a few yellowtail snapper also rose into the chum line to feed.
Inshore: Scaled sardines are appearing on local flats. In the late afternoon these can be exchanged for snook in many areas. Small to medium snook are showing up outside residential canals and backwater creeks. Target them during the warmest parts of the day. Cool night temperatures will slow the morning bite, but late afternoon action has been pretty good.
Ed Walker charters out of Tarpon Springs and can be reached at [email protected] or (727) 944-3474.