What's hot: We may not be seeing the big bunches of tarpon from a month ago, but an awful lot of good fishing will continue through August. Singles, pairs and considerably smaller batches of silverkings make up much of what we're seeing now along the beaches.
Tactics: Fish that show once or twice are difficult to get. Drift fishing that area can prove worthy. Suspending a crab, pinfish or greenback beneath corks at varying depths will keep baits off the bottom. Though a bit more difficult to track, fly-lined live baits swimming freely will also attract a tarpon's attention. As we get deeper into the season, my favorite technique is "edge" or "blind" fishing. Anchor just outside the drop-off from the swash channel parallel to the beach and let them find us (often in less than 15 feet). There is no substitute for anchoring where you see rolling fish; however, they don't necessarily have to show. We have caught and released many tarpon and some days may not see any roll.
Tips: We have been using dead shad on the bottom. Checking and changing baits often has been necessary. Pinfish and crabs have been ravenous.
Jay Mastry charters Jaybird out of St. Petersburg and can be reached at (727) 321-2142.