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Captain's Corner

Captain's Corner: Redfish running rampant

What's hot: Rising water temperatures after a cold December have redfish leaving sheltered areas and feeding with a vengeance. On the lower, rising tides, tails will tip off the location of redfish, creating great sight-fishing opportunities.

Tackle and techniques: Light to medium-light spinning outfits translate to longer casts, getting lures to fish that are not aware of a human presence. Based on what redfish are eating and water temperature, retrieve speed is crucial. Without pinfish, pilchards or other minnow-type fish, redfish are feeding on crabs and shrimp. Presentations that are too fast will not be chased. Putting a jerkbait-style tail on a weedless jighead allows anglers to creep or drag the lure past these fish. When you feel the thump of a strike, set the hook harder with lures that are weedless. Another option is a topwater lure, which mimics a mullet and can be walked at a speed conducive to cold-water redfish hookups. Redfish will often not be hooked on initial strikes of a topwater lure. Allow them to set the hook themselves by striking the plug.

Bonus catch: Anglers targeting shallow-water redfish might connect with large speckled trout.

Neil Taylor charters kayak fishing trips in the Tampa Bay area and can be reached at (727) 692-6345 or

Captain's Corner: Redfish running rampant 01/07/11 [Last modified: Friday, January 14, 2011 5:29pm]
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