Monday, February 19, 2018
Outdoors

Captains corner: Heat affects fishing in many ways

Conditions: Summertime fishing can be tricky. When large amounts of freshwater flow into the bay after storms, this changes certain dynamics, increasing the difficulty for consistent catches. There are other obstacles to regular catches as well, such as spawning baitfish and hot tub-like water temperatures. Baitfish that were easily netted a few weeks ago are scarce on the flats. The sardines that are there are a bit puny and require a much smaller hook than normal to be effective.

What's hot: Spanish mackerel are still here but moving farther south as there is so much freshwater here. Spanish mackerel typically like clear salty water. Patient anglers can still catch them around range markers or deep grass flats with good water flow.

Tip: Since the baitfish are small, use a small-diameter mesh cast net to prevent these little baits from getting "gilled." An old dip net that only has the wire frame left is useful in this situation. Simply hold the ring of your cast net and swish the wire loop in a downward motion over "gilled" fish. They will tumble out of the net and can be used for bait and/or chum. Fish areas where the tide moves well.

Notable catch: A bonefish was caught near Weedon Island last week, falling for a live shrimp. The versatility of Tampa Bay is amazing.

Dave Walker charters out of Tampa. Call (813) 310-6531, email [email protected] or visit snookfish.com.

Comments

Captainís Corner: Flats coming to life in north Pinellas County

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Updated: 10 hours ago

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Published: 02/16/18
Updated: 02/17/18

Captainís Corner: Springtime fishing patterns moving in

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Published: 02/14/18
Updated: 02/15/18

Captainís Corner: Get an early start when chasing redfish

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Published: 02/13/18

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Published: 02/14/18
Updated: 02/16/18

Captainís Corner: Action picking up as temperature rises

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Published: 02/11/18
Updated: 02/12/18

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Published: 02/10/18
Updated: 02/11/18

Captainís Corner: Sardines make a great bait

Bait has made its way into the bay and the fish have been eating sardines with violent strikes. Look deep for bait, most of it has been in 20-plus feet of water. A little knowledge of how to read a bottom machine will help you secure the prized sardi...
Published: 02/08/18
Updated: 02/10/18

Captainís Corner: Fishing conditions have started to improve

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Published: 02/08/18
Captainís Corner: Snook among species starting to flourish as water warms

Captainís Corner: Snook among species starting to flourish as water warms

This has been a cold year thus far as fronts have blasted the Tampa Bay area. Now things are beginning to warm up, and the transition from winter to spring begins. Every warm day takes us one step closer to some awesome fishing. As water temperatures...
Published: 02/06/18
Updated: 02/09/18