Tailing redfish provide one of the most rewarding catches of all flats species. It takes patience, time and more patience to wait out these wary feeders. The tail of the redfish comes out of the water because it has its head buried in the sand or mud digging for crabs and shrimp. The tide has to be low enough so you can see the tail out of the water. I've seen "tailers" this past week on the outgoing tide as the water level gets lower on the flats. The water has become extremely clear on the flats around the Fort De Soto area. With clear water and water so shallow the tails stick out, reds become wary of what's happening around them. Take extreme care when approaching reds. Wading is likely the easiest and least-invasive way to get close enough for an accurate cast. Take your time, pick a spot and walk slowly onto a flat and wait for the fish to come to you. The less noise, the better. I like to use a tail-hooked shrimp, so I bite off the last section of the tail. This provides longer casts and scent to come off the shrimp. A shrimp also lands softer on the water.
Rob Gorta charters out of St. Petersburg. Call him at (727) 647-7606 or visit captainrobgorta.com.