What's hot: Stable weather is usually necessary for consistent success. This certainly has not been the case lately. During summer, higher tides are the norm and redfish and snook are in areas that are high and dry other times of the year. A good example is flooded mangroves and other structure, creating a place for fish to find food and feel well-protected from overhead predators and bright sun.
Tactics: A bait angler will cast a live offering close to structure and unsuspecting baitfish will swim under the structure into the waiting mouth of a predator. With a fly rod, a cast must be made within inches of flooded mangroves and structure or back into narrow openings where fish can see or hear it. Use larger flies that cause a disturbance to draw fish to the edge of cover. A good choice is poppers in white, yellow or black that float and have a flat surface in front. A slight pull on a tight line creates a "pop," often bringing your intended quarry out of hiding to attack his dinner.
Tip: Cast with the rod held vertically for pinpoint accuracy, but move the rod horizontally to cast close to the water to get under structure. If floating grass is abundant and drapes your hook, select flies with a weed guard.
Fly fisherman Pat Damico runs charters in lower Tampa Bay and can be reached at captpat.com and (727) 504-8649.