Sunday, February 25, 2018
Outdoors

Captain's Corner: Seasonal migratory gamefish return

Spring fishing has returned to the bay area. Preferable water temperatures have brought seasonal migratory gamefish into our region after a long winter absence. While kingfish, mackerel, cobia, and tarpon get most of the spotlight, permit have also reappeared around many wrecks. Most offshore anglers overlook this great sport fish, mostly because permit are very particular in their diet and seldom strike baits commonly used by offshore anglers. Until November just about any wreck outside 45 feet of water will likely have at least a few permit. You may see 100 or more big ones milling around in a circle, and they can bring great action or great frustration depending on bait. They will not eat a minnow-type bait, or any small fish, live or dead. Few lures are effective. To catch them you need a crustacean. The best is a small live swimming crab such as a blue or pass crab. Live shrimp are a distant second choice. If you use braided line add a fluorocarbon leader that is 15 or 20 feet in length. If the fish see the braid near the bait they often turn away. A small hook such as a 2/0 or 3/0 completes the rig, no swivels or sinkers added.

Ed Walker charters out of Tarpon Springs. He can be contacted at [email protected] or at (727) 944-3474.

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Captainís Corner: Spring-like conditions lead to improved bite

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Published: 02/23/18
Updated: 02/24/18

Captainís Corner: Cobia moving into bay ahead of schedule

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Published: 02/23/18

Captainís Corner: Rising temperatures fire up the bite

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Published: 02/22/18

Captainís Corner: Warming waters, better visibility are good signs

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Published: 02/18/18
Updated: 02/19/18

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Published: 02/18/18

Captainís Corner: Bait a challenge, but effort will pay off

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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

Redfish schools have started to invade the flats around Pinellas Point. On low tide in the morning, I look for a school on an outer sandbar. These fish are staged on the edge waiting for the tide to come in. Once the water level rises, the fish will ...
Published: 02/13/18

Captainís Corner: Baitfish in the shallows improves fly fishing

Seeing large groups of pelicans diving and catching baitfish in warmer, shallow water is a sure sign spring conditions are approaching. The appearance of quality baitfish will spark a feeding frenzy that should steadily improve flats fishing for fly ...
Published: 02/14/18
Updated: 02/16/18

Captainís Corner: Action picking up as temperature rises

The wind finally stopped blowing so hard that we couldnít go offshore. Water temperatures were still in the low 50s offshore at the beginning of the week, and this affected fish behavior. Because the water was calm, we ventured out to the 80- to 90-f...
Published: 02/11/18
Updated: 02/12/18