Make us your home page

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Captain's Corner

Captain's Corner: Tarpon easier to spot in calmer waters

What's hot: With the weather finally beginning to settle down after multiple storms, water clarity has improved. This stability has brought many larger tarpon into the waters along Pinellas County beaches. Schools of these migrating fish are easily spotted at good distances. Appearing as large, dark masses in 10 feet or more, the midday sun can assist in finding less pressured fish. The deeper water can also help in disguising the bait presentation. Longer fluorocarbon leaders are necessary, and downsizing hooks to possibly 4/0 can be key factors in hooking up to a silver king. Pinfish, threadfins and smaller silver mullet are top choices for a day of tarpon fishing. On calmer days, boat noise can shut down any chance of getting close. Trolling motors, run at low speeds, can help to position a vessel in the path of rolling fish. To not scare these already finicky fish, always lead the bait way out in front of the school.

Bait tips: When catching threadfins or big sardines to present to tarpon, quality counts more than quantity. Instead of using a cast net, it is best to use a sabiki rig to hook fresh baits. These whitebaits will look cleaner with fewer scales missing and last twice as long in the well. The multiple-hooked rig that works best comes in size 8 with white and green feathers.

Jim Huddleston charters out of Tampa, Palm Harbor and Clearwater and can be reached at or (727) 439-9017.

Captain's Corner: Tarpon easier to spot in calmer waters 06/16/09 [Last modified: Tuesday, June 16, 2009 6:54pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Illinois is recruiting a 10-year-old. Where will Lovie Smith be by the time the kid can sign?


    Today in ridiculous recruiting news, Lovie Smith's Illinois football team offered a scholarship to a 10-year-old.

  2. Rays series preview: Who are the Orioles?


    After an off day Thursday, the Rays remain at Tropicana Field for a three-game series against the AL East rival Orioles. Here's the information you need to know about Baltimore before the action kicks off.

    Baltimore Orioles starting pitcher Chris Tillman, left, has posted the highest ERA of his career this season, while catcher Welington Castillo, center, has slumped recently.
  3. Harmeling first woman to receive lifetime honor at Sneaker Soiree in Tampa

    Human Interest

    TAMPA — For the last quarter-century, she has combined passion and meticulousness to keep the Gasparilla Distance Classic humming and evolving. Indefatigable and detailed, Susan Harmeling braces for every race-weekend contingency.

    Susan Harmeling gives a speech after accepting an award  during the annual Sneaker Soiree, at TPepin's Hospitality Centre, Thursday, June 22, 2017.
  4. Morning after off day: Rays ready for slumping O's


    The Rays will attempt tonight to do what so far has been impossible this season: climb four games above .500.

    The Rays expect Evan Longoria to be back in the lineup for tonight's game.
  5. Rowdies shut out at Pittsburgh


    PITTSBURGH — The Rowdies lost their first USL game in nearly a month, 1-0 to Pittsburgh on Thursday night.