Monday, December 11, 2017
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.

Comments

Captainís Corner: Sheepshead action lively in cooler weather

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Updated: 11 hours ago

Captainís Corner: Fishing will return to normal, but when?

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Published: 12/08/17
Captainís Corner: Planning around fronts can lead to productive days

Captainís Corner: Planning around fronts can lead to productive days

I canít believe we are in the last month of the year. And while this is one of my favorite months to fish, it will be controlled by weather. As cold fronts become more frequent and harsh, planning your trips around them will make the biggest differen...
Published: 12/06/17
Updated: 12/09/17

Captainís Corner: Strong results for redfish, speckled trout

This is a great time for variety. Combined trips for speckled trout and redfish are achieving excellent results. With the correct approach, great catches of both species are a reality now. The best anglers use the lightest tackle. Light rods and reel...
Published: 12/05/17
Updated: 12/07/17

Captainís Corner: Take advantage of abundant gag grouper before season ends

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Published: 12/05/17

Captainís Corner: Bait schools near shore drawing kings, mackerel, bonito

Nearshore fishing is still going strong in north Pinellas. Bait schools are roaming just a couple of miles offshore, attracting kingfish, Spanish mackerel and bonito. The beaches are still holding sardines for cast netting at sunrise. I like to have ...
Published: 12/03/17
Updated: 12/05/17

Captainís Corner: This is the month to target gag grouper

With our current regulations in the Gulf, this is the best month to target gag grouper. Although the gag grouper season opens in June they are hard to come by for most months unless anglers travel to depths of 240 feet or more. With each passing cold...
Published: 12/03/17
Updated: 12/04/17

Captainís Corner: Speckled sea trout can be easily caught on artificial lures

Speckled sea trout are one of the most reliable targets this time of year. Grass flats are usually empty because of extreme low tides. That causes higher concentrations of fish on the edges and in the deeper grass flats. No live bait is needed. A red...
Published: 12/01/17

Captainís Corner: Cooler weather lures decent gag grouper

Mild temperatures have allowed anglers to get out and explore many areas. Cooler weather has lured decent gag grouper. We expected them to arrive in the past month, and they havenít disappointed. Numerous rocks in 20- to 120-foot depths seem to be ho...
Published: 11/30/17

Captainís Corner: Donít have to go far offshore for grouper

When most anglers think of bottom fishing for grouper, they usually think that means taking a long run offshore. During late November and early December, grouper migrate close to shore, so a long run might not be necessary. There are times we target ...
Published: 11/28/17
Updated: 11/29/17