For spearfishermen, the game has been the weather. A group of dive buddies might collude on a plan that has a larger chance of failing than succeeding, but it they don't plan for good weather and aren't ready for it, they fail. Their plan means being ready to go on a moment's notice. They quietly gather in the dark while playing hooky on a weekday from work. Days with calmer seas and decent underwater visibility are hard to find. Recently, those using "sick days" have visited offshore areas on weekdays. Seems like there are a lot of anglers getting the flu on Tuesdays and Wednesdays. Then the miraculous recovery occurs as the seas pick back up and the anglers return to the grind. It's a good idea to have tasty fish fillets ready for the boss. If you get offshore and the visibility is good enough to hunt, you might run into small, copious schools of hogfish. Mangrove snapper are all over, too. They are on a major feeding pattern and sometimes totally ignore us divers as they focus solely on the bait in their face. Water is cold so dress for success.
Bill Hardman teaches scuba, spearfishing and free diving through Aquatic Obsessions Scuba in St. Petersburg and can be reached at (727) 344-3483 and [email protected]