Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Captain's Corner: Good variety of fish gathering near the shore

Nearshore action is reaching a feverish pitch. Easterly winds and clean water have the bait pushed in tight to the beach, and the Spanish mackerel, bonita, jack crevalle and ladyfish are having a field day. Larger fish such as kingfish, tarpon, bull redfish and a variety of sharks are taking notice. Having a variety of bait can make a big difference; fresh cut bait on the bottom will draw attention from sharks, redfish and tarpon. Meanwhile, ballooning a shad, legal mackerel, ladyfish or blue runner could entice an early season kingfish bite. Mix in a free-lined pinfish and you should keep busy. Keeping out a fresh, tournament-grade chum block will send out a long slick, attracting fish from a great distance. New moon tides this past week provided some good redfishing. This is the time of year when we start to encounter schools of redfish with regularity. These redfish are likely moving in from the gulf and staging up on grass flats near the passes. Look for the usual signs, such as clean water and the presence of mullet, but also keep an eye on any suspicious mud clouds along the outer edge of the flat, indicating the presence of a school of fish. Fall redfish will often stage on the outside edge of the flat and never move up with the tide. This is probably due to all the fry bait in deeper water.

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


Captainís Corner: Grouper moving in as water temperatures rise

Red grouper have made their move inshore this past week as waters closer to shore have warmed up a bit. Concentrate your efforts on hard bottom areas in depths of 100-120 feet for the rest of the month, and remember that all shallow water grouper are...
Published: 03/18/18
Updated: 03/20/18

Captainís Corner: Spring fishing is fast approaching

Spring is trying to move in, with just a few cold fronts mixed in. The up-and-down air temperatures will slightly affect the water temperature and also affect the fishing. Fishing has been mostly incredible in North Pinellas. All of the species we ex...
Published: 03/18/18
Updated: 03/19/18

Captainís Corner: Cold causes spiny lobsters to go into hiding

The cold front that ended Wednesday drove the offshore bottom temperatures back down into the low 60s. On dives Friday, my dive computer read 62 degrees at the bottom in 54 feet of water. On the next dive it read 60 in 62 feet. We were looking for ho...
Published: 03/18/18

Captainís Corner: Snook are the hot bite

Surface water temperatures have dipped into the low 60s, but the fish donít seem to mind. The longer days get the temperature up and helps keep it from getting into the danger zone at night. Snook have been the hot bite this past week and, believe it...
Published: 03/16/18
Updated: 03/17/18

It has been a crazy month regarding all the drastic weather changes. We experienced a record-breaking warming trend in February, followed by an endless amount of cold weather this month. The arrival times for many spring migrations of fish has been i...
Published: 03/16/18

Captainís Corner: Big trout moving out of the shallows

February seemed like March with record-breaking heat, but now March seems like February with below-average temperatures. This is a good thing. Spring fishing has started way too early in the past few years. The cold-water temperature we have now will...
Published: 03/14/18
Updated: 03/15/18

Captainís Corner: Temperature changes affect fly fishing

Having a fantastic river trip one day where we caught a lot of snook in shallow water on a fly and going back to the same location three days later and not finding any cooperative fish can be very puzzling. What happened? Recent warm weather was repl...
Published: 03/11/18
Updated: 03/14/18

Captainís Corner: Warming trend increasing activity over grass flats

Water temperatures have finally started to climb into the low 70s on the flats. The temperatures have been fluctuating with the past few cold fronts moving through. Large schools of reds should start showing up on the flats in the Pinellas Point area...
Published: 03/11/18
Updated: 03/13/18
Captainís Corner: Favorable water temperatures approaching

Captainís Corner: Favorable water temperatures approaching

We traditionally look at two holidays to signal the start of trolling season for kingfish and Spanish mackerel along with their attendant migratory companions, blackfin tuna, cobia and barracuda. These are St. Patrickís Day (March 17) and Columbus Da...
Published: 03/11/18
Updated: 03/12/18

Captainís Corner: Spring fishing is getting close

When the weather settles down in the bay area, spring fishing should shift quickly into high gear. Just before the recent heavy winds arrived and churned the nearshore gulf into a muddy mess, seasonal migratory fish were showing up all over town. For...
Published: 03/10/18
Updated: 03/11/18