Friday, April 20, 2018
Outdoors

Captain's Corner: Target redfish on flats

Redfish schools have invaded the flats around Pinellas Point. I can target three to four schools on different flats. On a morning low tide, I look for a school on an outer sandbar. Those fish are staged on the edge waiting for the tide to come in. Once the water level rises, the fish move onto the flat. I follow the school to the point where it settles down closer to shore with the higher tide level. I start early in the morning by throwing my 12-foot cast. I pick the brightest light on a bridge and throw on the downcurrent side. The net sinks quickly away from the pilings and won't get caught on the bridge. Scaled sardines, threadfins, pinfish and Spanish sardines have been caught in the net. Using a large cast net fills the live well quickly. I use a 2/0 circle hook when targeting reds. Redfish have thick skin around their mouth; this allows the circle hook to grab the corner once the line is tightened. Do not set the hook. Let the fish pull tight and start to reel. The hook sets itself. If you set the hook, you will pull the hook out of the fish's mouth because of the bend on the point.

Rob Gorta charters out of St. Petersburg. Call him at (727) 647-7606 or visit captainrobgorta.com.

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