Sunday, February 25, 2018
Outdoors

Captains corner: Bait arrival awakens inshore options

What's hot: Inshore and nearshore fishing improved after last week's cold front, a result of the arrival of the first bait stocks of the season. Pilchards and threadfin herring are available along bridge shadow lines at night, and while small bait may not be usable on a hook, the fish are keying on them, so fish areas with flocks of dipping terns.

Tips: Negative low tides have been good times to target redfish before they get onto the primary flat. Baitfish school on the edges during low water, giving anglers a visual on where the game fish might be sitting. Shallow suspending twitchbaits work great in this scenario.

Trout: High afternoon outgoing tides have been the right time to target gator trout in our northern areas. To locate fish, target spoil island drop-offs with a live pilchard free-lined with the tide. You should know whether they are there within a few casts. The fish have been ranging from 18 to 24 inches, so the majority of fish need to be released. Use a dehooker in order to avoid touching the fish and damaging its slime coating or vital organs.

Tyson Wallerstein runs Inshore Fishing Charters in the Clearwater/St. Petersburg area and can be reached at (727) 692-5868 and via email at [email protected]

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