What's hot: Tarpon have rolled into the bay area with many already caught and released from Egmont Key to Anclote Key. For the next couple of months, large schools of migrating tarpon can be found along our gulf beaches. The stronger tides will have tarpon congregating around the mouth of Tampa Bay as well as most deepwater passes along the coast. The strong afternoon outgoing tide will flush out crabs, shrimp, mullet and other baitfish, and the tarpon will be there to take advantage of this buffet.
Tactics: Look for schooling fish beneath the water as well as rolling on the surface. When a pod is located, position your boat so you can present baits to them as they cruise by. Suspending crabs, pinfish or threadfin herring beneath corks at varying depths will keep your baits off the bottom and in the tarpon's line of sight. Try bridge fishing at night during strong outgoing tides around the full and new moon. Free-lining a live threadfin in the eddy behind the pilings is the most effective method. Casting shrimp or scaled sardines in the shadow line of the bridge also can be effective.
Seth Leto runs Pristine Fishing Charters out of Tarpon Springs. Call (727) 385-0382.