Monday, June 25, 2018

Outdoors news: Brandon swimmer wins bay marathon; grouper opens in Keys

Making news

Local wins Rugged swim

Brandon's Chelsea Nauta, 24, won last weekend's Tampa Bay Marathon Swim, covering the 24 miles between the Sunshine Skyway Bridge and the Courtney Campbell Causeway in Tampa in 10 hours, 7 minutes in what organizers said was one of the roughest races on record. Four minutes behind was Olympic gold medalist Brooke Bennett, 32. Six from the field of 18 completed the race. The men's champ was St. Petersburg's Chris Burke, 51, finishing in 12:16 and ahead of Clearwater's Mark Smitherman, 55 (12:33).

Grouper season to open in Keys

For those heading south to fish in the Florida Keys, remember grouper season reopens Wednesday in the Atlantic and waters off Monroe County. The species covered include gag, black, red, yellowmouth, yellowfin and tiger grouper; scamp; red hind; rock hind; coney; and graysby. The season runs to Jan. 1, 2014. Anglers may keep three a day, and within this three-fish limit anglers may possess only one gag or black grouper, not both.


Off for Mexico

The Regatta del Sol al Sol, an annual yacht race from Tampa Bay to Mexico, starts at 10 a.m. today. Spectators can see the start of this 456-mile journey to Isla Mujeres, an island off the coast of Cancun, from the Pier in downtown St. Petersburg. It will take the boats from two to four days to finish.

Solunar chart


Minor Major Minor Major

4/26 6:20 12:05 6:50 12:40

4/27 7:30 1:15 8:00 1:45

4/28 8:35 2:25 9:05 2:50

4/29 9:30 3:20 10:10 3:55

4/30 10:40 4:30 11:15 5:00

5/1 11:40 5:30 0 6:00

5/2 12:15 6:30 12:45 6:55


Captainís Corner: Cool off, bring home a tasty dinner with scalloping

Whatís the best way to cool off in July and August? Go scalloping. Itís like going on an underwater Easter egg hunt that results in a bag of tasty scallops to cook up. The most popular places to scallop are in Homosassa and Steinhatchee in 2 feet of ...
Published: 06/21/18
Updated: 06/22/18

Captainís Corner: Size of sea trout a welcome surprise in Pinellas grass beds

A nice surprise has been the quality size of the spotted sea trout on deeper grass beds in southern Pinellas. Typically, summertime trout tend to run smaller than the 16- to 20-inch trout weíve been finding. Fishing the deep grass with scattered sand...
Published: 06/21/18

Captainís Corner: Offshore fishing will be strong for awhile

June and July offer some of the yearís best offshore fishing. Targets such as red snapper, blackfin tuna, mahi≠mahi, wahoo and sailfish make their way through our area and make appearances on many trips to depths of 120 feet or more. Red snapper are ...
Published: 06/19/18
Updated: 06/20/18

Captainís Corner: Itís a good time to focus on snook

Snook have been a main focus on my most recent trips. This time of year, snook inhabit the beaches, gathering in the ditches and swashes along shore. Jetties or rock structures are also a favorite habitat for snook to lurk, looking to ambush bait fis...
Published: 06/18/18
Updated: 06/19/18

Captainís Corner: Tips on targeting American Red Snapper

American Red Snapper (ARS) season opened a few days ago and some types of bottom are holding bigger schools of ARS then other bottom types. The hard bottom areas that most fishermen prefer are holding large schools of ARS, but the fish have yet to m...
Published: 06/18/18

Captainís Corner: Trout bite at its best

The trout bite has been the best Iíve seen all year. Fish up to 26 inches have been common recently. Fish are sitting on the flatsí deeper edges, where the water is deeper and cooler, and moves a little more swiftly. Live sardines and hard plastic ba...
Published: 06/16/18
Updated: 06/17/18

Captainís Corner: Fishing this month is all about diversity

This is the month of diverse opportunity. The choice of species is unlimited, as long as you have the bait. You can target snook and tarpon in the morning, then fish for Spanish mackerel, bluefish, snapper, sharks and cobia in the afternoon. The tarp...
Published: 06/15/18

Captainís Corner: When itís tarpon time, itís also shark time

Tarpon get most of the attention when talking about exciting fly action for large fish in our area. Baitfish are more prolific, and large tarpon follow their forage and populate most of our local waters. Following them are fish that consider tarpon t...
Published: 06/12/18
Updated: 06/14/18

Captainís Corner: This is your best time for tarpon fishing

Now is the best time to target tarpon. Silver kings are cruising the beaches on their yearly migration up and down the stateís west coast. This weekís strong new moon tides and the strong full moon tides in two weeks provide some of the best action f...
Published: 06/12/18
Updated: 06/13/18

Captainís Corner: Turn attention to gag grouper and red snapper

Attention has turned to gag grouper and red snapper for many offshore fishermen. Red snapper can be best targeted in waters 105 feet and deeper, with some available in water as shallow as 60 feet. Although the snapper will be found on high profile st...
Published: 06/11/18
Updated: 06/12/18