Make us your home page

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Captain's Corner

Captain's Corner: It's a good time for snook, mackerel, trout

What's hot: With the summer spawn of sardines along the beaches, many gamefish take advantage of the feeding opportunity from these large schools of fry bait. Find these dense bait schools by looking for diving birds of all sizes crashing the waters seeking a meal. Often, smaller white bucktails work well as anglers are "matching the hatch" to catch various fish. Along the beaches, mackerel and snook will work the bait that holds along the swash channels. Watch for the fry bait to spray up as the predators charge under and through the school to capture the prey. Most snook will be smaller males, with an occasional 15-pounder. Good numbers are being caught from Clearwater Beach to Anclote Island on incoming tides. Rock structures near the passes are covered with mackerel early in the morning. On grass flats inside passes, look for larger trout up to 22 inches to work the smaller sardine schools. Freeline a medium belly-hooked bait among the clouds of minnows for the next couple of weeks.

Shark month: On the grass flats inside Honeymoon and Three Rooker Bar, small black tip sharks are everywhere as the tide floods. Use 30-pound leader with a silver long shank hook. Place a chum bag over the side to attract these 2- to 3-footers.

Jim Huddleston charters out of Tampa, Palm Harbor and Clearwater and can be reached at (727) 439-9017 and at

Captain's Corner: It's a good time for snook, mackerel, trout 07/17/12 [Last modified: Tuesday, July 17, 2012 5:57pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Yellow cards stall Rowdies offense in tie with St. Louis


    ST. PETERSBURG — It's not the result they wanted, but it certainly could have been worse. Neill Collins' 87th-minute header off a corner kick was the reward the Rowdies settled for Saturday night during a 1-1 draw with St. Louis before an announced 6,068 at Al Lang Stadium.

  2. Calvary Christian routs Pensacola Catholic to win state baseball title


    FORT MYERS — Calvary Christian left no doubt as to which baseball team in Class 4A was the best in Florida this season. The Warriors defeated Pensacola Catholic 11-1 in six innings Saturday night at Hammond Stadium to claim the school's first state championship in any team sport. It also solidified a 30-0 season. …

    Matheu Nelson celebrates after scoring on a wild pitch during the first inning, when Calvary Christian took a 6-0 lead.
  3. Numerous lapses add up to frustrating Rays loss to Twins

    The Heater

    MINNEAPOLIS — While the Rays made some good defensive plays, threw a couple of big pitches when they needed to and got a few, and just a few, key hits, there were some obvious things they did wrong that led to them losing Saturday's game to the Twins 5-3:

    Rays reliever Tommy Hunter says the Twins’ tiebreaking homer came on a pitch that was “close to where I wanted it.”
  4. Rays journal: Steven Souza Jr. laughing right along after comical dive

    The Heater

    MINNEAPOLIS — Souza being Souza.

    That seemed to be the best way to describe the entertaining — and comically bad — dive Rays RF Steven Souza Jr. attempted in Friday's game, and the good humor he showed in handling the fallout, including a standing ovation his next at-bat from the …

  5. Marc Topkin's takeaways from Saturday's Rays-Twins game

    The Heater

    RHP Jake Odorizzi had to battle without his best stuff again, which is becoming a more common occurrence, leading to long at-bats — including 13 pitches to Kennys Vargas in the fifth — and running up his pitch count to 118 without finishing the sixth.