Friday, April 20, 2018
Outdoors

Outdoors news and notes

Making news

Some grouper can be caught starting Monday

After a two-month closure, the season for shallow-water grouper — which includes black, red, yellowfin, scamp and yellowmouth but not gag — reopens in the Gulf of Mexico on Monday.

Gag grouper remains closed until July 1 in most areas off our coast except for state waters off Franklin, Wakulla, Jefferson and Taylor counties. That includes all waters of the Steinhatchee River, Apalachicola Bay and Indian Pass. This area closes June 30.

The local gag season lasts until the recreational quota has been met. Federal fishery managers expect that to be between Nov. 11 and Dec. 3. State waters off Monroe County are included with the Atlantic seasons and are currently closed to harvest through April 30.

National Hospice Regatta to be held in St. Petersburg

The National Hospice Regatta Championship, hosted by the St. Petersburg Yacht Club, returns to Tampa Bay on April 12-14.

Seventeen teams from the United States and Canada will compete off the Pier in St. Petersburg in Sonars and Ideal 18s.

Fans also can check out the miniregatta April 12 when members of the Yacht Club's Salty Sisters take on the Junior Sailing Class. Each team features its top five sailors, who will square off in the Vinoy Basin.

The National Hospice Championship was founded in 1982 in Annapolis, Md., and sailed on the Chesapeake Bay for several years. In 2009, the competition moved to the Great Lakes off Rochester, N.Y., then moved to Tampa Bay in 2012.

Send news to Terry Tomalin at [email protected]ay.com or call (727) 893-8808.

Solunar chart

AM PM

Minor Major Minor Major

3/29 7:45 1:35 8:15 2:00

3/30 8:50 2:40 9:15 3:00

3/31 9:45 3:35 10:20 4:05

4/1 10:50 4:40 11:25 5:10

4/2 11:55 5:45 0 6:15

4/3 12:30 6:45 12:55 7:10

4/4 1:25 7:35 1:45 8:00

Comments

Captainís Corner: King mackerel the hot topic as gulf waters warm

King mackerel is always the hot topic this time of year, with tournaments every weekend for two months. Some believe that massive schools in the gulf migrate from their fall haunts in south Florida and the Keys to the north, with the larger females (...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Captainís Corner: Trout moving toward the beaches

Captainís Corner: Trout moving toward the beaches

After significant winds from a front last week, things are calming down and fish are turning on again. Bait has gotten predictable and easier to chum on the flats after moving to deeper water during the front. Iíve been targeting trout at first light...
Published: 04/18/18
Updated: 04/19/18

Captainís Corner: Rush of warmer water in gulf heats up fishing on offshore reefs, wrecks

The rush of warmer water on our offshore reefs and wrecks in the Gulf of Mexico has brought with it a cadre of pelagic fish. Divers and anglers have enjoyed the influx of cobia, kingfish and more. The benthic (bottom) fish are splurging on the balls ...
Published: 04/17/18
Updated: 04/18/18

Captainís Corner: Spring bite is solid despite wacky weather

Bipolar weather continues to confuse both fish and anglers. Fortunately the water temperature has gotten high enough that the effects donít last long and the spring bite continues to be solid. Snook are still the hot bite in many areas around the bay...
Published: 04/16/18
Updated: 04/17/18

Captainís Corner: Kingfish, sharks provide aerial displays

Fishing was good this past Saturday, ahead of the cold front. We fished close to shore about 2 miles. Our approach was simple. We anchored the boat, fished with live baits and chummed heavily. Kingfish action was nonstop for the entire morning. We ca...
Published: 04/16/18

Captainís Corner: Trolling or anchoring up, kingfish bite is hot

Are you looking for line-screaming action? Head offshore. The kingfish bite has been good, though high winds may require a wait for the water to clear. The best numbers have been about 5 miles out on the hard bottom. Trolling for kingfish works well;...
Published: 04/13/18
Updated: 04/15/18

Captainís Corner: Spring run is the most wonderful time of the year

The full spring run of all species in our area is in full swing. Whatever species you would like to target, inshore or offshore, is as good as it gets this time of year. Redfish schools have shown up in the flats around Pinellas Point, but they are i...
Published: 04/11/18
Updated: 04/13/18

Captainís Corner: Spanish mackerel, kingfish showing up in big numbers

They are here! Spanish mackerel and kingfish have shown up in the numbers expected of them at this time of year. All we have to hope for is weather that will allow us to get offshore. In most years the hot spots have been the artificial reefs, shipwr...
Published: 04/11/18
Updated: 04/12/18

Captainís Corner: Offshore fishing heats up in spring

Spring is here and things are heating up offshore. Kingfish have arrived from Tarpon Springs to Anna Maria. Spanish mackerel are around many of the bridges and piers, and cobia have appeared on the wrecks. Our most interesting discovery last week was...
Published: 04/10/18
Updated: 04/11/18

Captainís Corner: Trout, snook gathering around oyster bars

The recent full moon has finally sent the bait to the flats, although if you prefer the markers, theyíre still there, too. It seems we are finally in full-on spring mode. Trout have been sporadic at best, but when a group is located, they are coopera...
Published: 04/10/18