With recent cold fronts and more to come, fall fishing is in full swing. Large schools of redfish are showing up on the shallow flats from Tarpon Springs to Bayport. The snook are also stacking up in the mouths of rivers and creeks. The fall run of Spanish mackerel will begin as the water temperature starts to fall.
Spanish mackerel: Spanish mackerel can be located just about anywhere from local reefs to shallow flats. One of the most popular places to catch the Spanish in the fall is near marker 10, about 10 miles northwest of Hudson. A shallow grass flat about 7 to 8 feet deep, which starts about 2 miles east of marker 10, is a great area to look for mackerel.
How to: There are several ways to catch Spanish mackerel, including live bait such as white bait, shrimp and pinfish, and lures such as spoons, jigs and plugs. One of the best ways is to locate some fish, anchor up and put out a chum bag.
Tackle and rigs: You will need a light-spinning rod and reel with 10- to 12-pound test line. You also need some type of leader, such as No. 2 wire or 40-pound test fluorocarbon leader. If you use the fluorocarbon you will need a long shank hook to help keep you from being cut off.
Mike Manning runs Action Fishing Adventures out of Tarpon Springs. Call him toll-free at 1-800-644-5940.