Trolling for Spanish mackerel, catch-and-release bonita, barracuda and the occasional kingfish allows us to keep moving and provides heat relief. The shipping channel from markers 7 and 8 shoreward have been the go-to area for Spanish mackerel and various shark species that inhabit local waters in the summer. This year has proven dramatically different, with greater success being achieved by fishing from markers 5, 7 and 6 westward. The key is finding a set of markers holding large amounts of bait. This can often be done by visual surface observation, but much better is watching the sonar when going around a marker. If the bait is deep, catching their predators is a matter of presenting your offering at the depth the bait is seen. Trolling hardware may require a No. 2 or 3 planer.
Dave Zalewski charters the Lucky Too out of Madeira Beach. Call (727) 397-8815.