What's hot: This week's major tide levels will provide great action for all inshore species. Redfish schools are congregating on top of oyster beds or can be found under mangroves. These schools are extremely sensitive to any kind of unfamiliar pressure so extra caution is needed when approaching. Push poling is best, or use a trolling motor on the lowest setting. Move the boat slowly and have an anchor ready. Arrange the boat with the wind at your back and stop as soon as the first fish is seen. There are usually more fish in the area. The first redfish caught will usually spook the school. Let them settle and start again.
Bait: The summer spawn has produced a hatch of threadfin herring, scaled sardines and Spanish sardines. These baits are extremely small and will get caught in the cast net. Be careful when netting bait around the Skyway piers as this area is loaded with the new spawn. Larger baits can be found in deeper water. Most of the time, one throw fills the well.
Tackle: Long casts are needed when redfish are spooky. I use 71/2-foot-long graphite rods with smaller 2000 series reels loaded with 10-pound braid. The light-braided line combined with a longer rod and the wind at your back will always produce longer casts. Twenty-pound camouflage leader with a 2/0 circle hook finishes the terminal tackle.
Rob Gorta charters out of St. Petersburg and can be reached a captainrobgorta.com or (727) 647-7606.