The weather has stabilized and so has the fishing. Inshore waters had become very dirty with strong winds, but they've started to clear. The trout bite has gotten better this week. Many anglers have been drifting grass flats in Dunedin and Clearwater, focusing on waters 3-6 feet deep. White and chartreuse paddle-tail jigs on a one-eighth to quarter-ounce jighead just above the bottom have gotten several smaller trout. Root beer colors are working in less-clear waters. Bigger trout are inhabiting shallow flats between docks and in potholes of the long, expansive flats from Clearwater to Tarpon Springs. The islands have also held good numbers of the larger fish. Lay out live shrimp on the bottom around the rocks. Redfishing has been productive as well. Docks are holding plenty of fish as well as oyster bars and mangrove shorelines. Sheepshead are in the same areas, eating small pieces of shrimp threaded onto a small No. 1 hook.
Brian Caudill fishes from Clearwater to Tarpon Springs. He can be reached at (727) 365-7560 and captbrian.com.