Make us your home page

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Captain's Corner

Captain's Corner: Follow the mullet and lighten up

What's hot: With slower tides in the morning this week, fish have a tendency to spread out across the flats. On quarter-moon phases, many game fish use dropoffs and deeper sand pockets to trap bait to feed on. Work the many mullet schools that are holding away from the shorelines using a weedless single-hook copper or silver spoon. As mullet push across a flat, redfish and snook hunt the crabs and baitfish that scatter in the stirred-up mud.

With the water temperature climbing into the lower 80s, many tarpon have shown up on the beaches at first light, cruising the shorelines in as shallow as 2 feet, where the sand bars fall off to deeper water. Most of the fish have been singles and doubles. Toss a free-lined crab ahead of a cruising tarpon. Fish that don't roll often are feeling pressure and swim faster.

Pro's tips: In the early spring run of tarpon, the water is still pretty clear so tackle is key. Downsizing for beach fish increases the hookup ratio. Use a lighter leader such as 50 pounds and smaller hooks in the 4/0 range. The drags need to be a little looser to prevent breakoffs.

Jim Huddleston charters out of Tampa, Palm Harbor and Clearwater and can be reached at or (727) 439-9017.

Captain's Corner: Follow the mullet and lighten up 05/11/08 [Last modified: Thursday, October 28, 2010 1:55pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Ever since the Bucs made Gerald McCoy the third overall pick in the 2010 NFL draft, he has struggled to overcome the shadow cast by Pro Bowl defensive tackle Warren Sapp.
  2. HomeTeam 100: Players 41-50


    Bulldog QB Charles Harrison III, (12) during the fourth quarter of the Zephyrhills at Nature Coast High School football game on Friday, 11/11/16.
  3. Lake Tarpon bass tournament still going strong after nearly 40 years (w/video)


    Matt Smith, left, and Gary Muchler, work to bring a large mouth bass into Smith's bass boat with only minutes to spare while fishing off Dolly Bay in Lake Tarpon during the Lake Tarpon Tuesday Night Bass Fishing Tournament on Tuesday (7/18/17). The fish sealed second place for the duo.
  4. Rays series preview: Who are the Orioles?


    After the Rangers swept them over the weekend, the Rays won't have much time to rest, with 14 games scheduled for the next 14 days. The second half of their homestand begins tonight against the Orioles. Here's the information you need to know about Baltimore before the action kicks off.

    Starter Wade Miley has melted down after a hot start.
  5. Sergio Romo celebrates striking out Miguel Cabrera of the Detroit Tigers to win Game Four of the Major League Baseball World Series at Comerica Park in 2012.