Wednesday, February 21, 2018
Outdoors

Captain's Corner: Spanish mackerel, redfish highlight boom period

What's hot: Fall is in full effect. Many species are pleasing eager anglers throughout the bay area. Plentiful catches of Spanish mackerel, redfish and just about anything else that swims are being reported, especially the past few days. Redfish in the shallows are really turning it on. Many say this is one of the best pushes of reds in a long time.

Tactics: For shallow-water reds, look for the biggest concentration of mullet. They usually are found together. Incoming tides seem to be best. The food is flowing around, and the spot tails cash in on the easy offerings.

Big catches: Giant breeder reds were caught recently in open water off the St. Petersburg Pier in the shipping channel. It is unusual for them to work their way this far up Tampa Bay. We are talking about the big, nasty, huge ones, up to 35 pounds, spotted under a big gathering of birds. These fish require stout equipment to get them to the boat for a photograph and prompt release. Meanwhile, mind-blowing action is happening with the large migratory schools of mackerel and their cousins of piscatorial royalty, the kingfish. Decent kings and jumbo macks are going ballistic, from the beaches to well inside Tampa Bay.

Dave Walker charters out of Tampa. Call (813) 310-6531, email [email protected] or visit snookfish.com.

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