Looking ahead: Water temperatures have finally started to climb into the lower 70s on the flats, so look for large schools of reds to start showing up in their usual haunts. Threadfins and scaled sardines are starting to show up around the Skyway bridge and should start migrating onto the grass flats with the water temperatures rising.
Tactics: When trout fishing, arrange a drift in water 3 to 4 feet over grass flats and work the edge. The difference from the sand to the grass has been holding these smaller speckled trout, providing big numbers. Larger gator trout have been holding in deeper sand holes on shallower grass flats.
Be ready: On a couple of trips, big schools of large black drum have been roaming the flats around Pinellas Point. They have been following sandbars on the lower-tide levels. Several catches have weighed more than 40 pounds. Drum like crustaceans, so shrimp imitation jigs have drawn a few strikes.
Rob Gorta charters out of St. Petersburg and can be reached at captainrobgorta.com or (727) 647-7606