What's hot: With stronger high tides this week, the flats will see a resurgence of redfish around mangroves and oyster bars. These predators tend to eat on the bottom, and often surface lures will go unnoticed. Many schools of fish have shown up throughout north Pinellas County and have actively fed among mullet schools as the tide floods in. As the tide begins to peak, throw weedless spoons with bucktail trailers or darker colored jerkbaits to entice a redfish. Working the lure quickly will trigger a bite that is often aggressive. For redfish in deeper potholes, use shrimp under an adjustable cork. Some of the largest speckled trout of the year will be caught in the next few weeks. This is their primary time to spawn. Use darker plastics that blend in with the surroundings.
Releasing trout: With trophy trout, be aware that the slime coating forms their protection. Wet your hands before grabbing the fish to ensure a safe release.
Jim Huddleston charters out of Tampa, Palm Harbor and Clearwater and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or (727) 439-9017.