Friday, April 20, 2018
Outdoors

Captain's Corner: Tactics for fly-fishing the tides

A strong outgoing tide before daylight is perfect for fishing lighted docks and bridges. Snook, trout, redfish and baby tarpon feed actively on baitfish attracted to the lights by plankton, their favorite food. Match the baitfish size exactly using white fly patterns. Use a shock tippet of 30-pound fluorocarbon for snook and small tarpon. Low and negative tides are perfect for tailing redfish on very shallow flats. Either wade or pole the boat into casting distance, but remove your previous fly and shock tippet. A long 15-pound tippet with a size 4 crab pattern that matches the bottom will produce. As the tide comes in, trout and snook will join the redfish, so change to your dock light setup with a size 1 chartreuse over white Clouser minnow. It lets you cover more water; the hook pointed up avoids weeds and grass.

Fly fisherman Pat Damico runs charters in lower Tampa Bay and can be reached at captpat.com and (727) 504-8649.

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