Now that Debby is gone, things have settled down in Tampa Bay and the fishing has returned to seasonal norms.
What's hot: After the storm passed, the gag grouper bite was stellar. Areas around the Port Manatee channel to the Skyway Bridge have been holding cooperative fish.
Tactics: Live bait, fished on structure, artificial reefs or shipping channels can be effective on the highly coveted grouper. Trolling gear works as well, but it can be a hassle when it gets tangled.
Tip: Concentrations of grouper can be found in shallow water areas such as Tampa Bay. A little research and some time on the water can really pay off when looking for these fish. Immediate reaction from the angler is essential to keep hooked fish from returning to their rocky homes. Grouper are fierce fighters so the proper equipment and stout gear.
Kids stuff: Something else to remember, most kids really do not care what they catch as long as it is "something." Downsizing and catching more abundant species can help make a kid on summer break an angler for life.
Dave Walker charters out of Tampa. Call (813) 310-6531, email [email protected] or visit snookfish.com.