Most fish that we pursue with a flyrod are structure oriented. Bridges are some of the best locations. The Skyway holds bait all year, so it's a magnet for larger fish. Canals, creeks, developments and rivers have bridges that provide baitfish, crabs, shrimp and shade at this hot time of year. Night fishing around bridges is always productive especially when adjacent lights attract plankton, which bring hordes of baitfish close to the surface. Predator fish breaking the surface are ideal for a flyrodder using floating lines and baitfish patterns. When fish spend most of their time in deeper water, a flyrod isn't always the tackle of choice. Flyline technology has come to the rescue and we now have many full sinking lines that are neutral density — they cast well and do not have a sag when fished deep, forming a straight line from the tip of the flyrod to the fly which is usually weighted. This makes feeling the strike easier and you can make a smooth pickup when making the next cast. Fishing close to the bottom in 20 or more feet of water is possible. When you cast, use a countdown method to determine optimal depth just as you would with conventional tackle.
Fly fisherman Pat Damico charters lower Tampa Bay and can be reached at captpat.com and (727)504-8649.