1. Outdoors

Captain's Corner: Plenty of redfish available

Rob Gorta
Rob Gorta
Published Apr. 13, 2014

What's hot: Redfish around Pinellas are in full swing. Pinellas Point, Tierre Verde, Fort De Soto and the surrounding islands are holding fish. I am targeting oyster bars along mangrove shorelines. I look for schools of mullet jumping away from a shoreline then start blind casting. If I do not catch a fish in a few minutes, I raise my shallow-water anchor, let the wind push me down the shoreline a few yards away and repeat the process.

Bait: The Skyway, Misner and all of the piers on Mullet Key are holding threadfin herring. It usually takes me only one throw of the cast net to fill the well. I try to empty the net quickly to keep from harming these tender baits. Once the scales fall off their body, they will not last long in the well. I also will not overstuff the well. Too many baits in one well, and they kill themselves. Theadfins are probably the easiest bait to find. They will dimple the surface and make it look like it's raining.

Pressure: I have noticed a ton of pressure on schools of redfish this spring. The weather has been unseasonably cool, which has kept them from being aggressive. When there are a lot of boats following reds, I leave the area and come back after everyone has left and try again at these wary fish.

Rob Gorta charters out of St. Petersburg. Call him at (727) 647-7606 or visit