What's hot: Big amberjack are what most divers are pursuing. The underwater visibility has been improving over the past three weeks. But to find good enough visibility to hunt safely and ethically, divers have had to go past 100 feet and as deep as 120 feet. The recreational grouper season opens Thursday, and that should entice more anglers and divers to go offshore. It also should take some of the fishing attention off amberjack. If NOAA Fisheries Service determines recreational fishermen exceed their quota of 1.368 million pounds of amberjack for the Gulf of Mexico, the season will close early.
Scuba divers and Olympic athletes: The 2010 Scuba Olympics are today at the Long Center pool in Clearwater. Garrett Weber-Gale, who won two swimming gold medals at the 2008 Olympics, and Matt Lowe, who competed in those Olympics, will be on hand. All proceeds benefit Special Olympic swimmers. The event starts at 10 a.m. and includes events such as underwater bicycle racing, underwater balloon blowing and lifting and buddy races. Admission is free.
First 2010 tournament: The Tampa Bay Spearfishing Club's Winter Invitational is April 9-11. For information on participating or attending the weigh-in, go to tampabayspearfishingclub.org.
Bill Hardman teaches scuba, spearfishing and free diving through Aquatic Obsessions Scuba in St. Petersburg and can be reached at (727) 344-3483 or firstname.lastname@example.org.