December Fishing Report
Capt. Matt Ercoli
December 9, 2011
Tampa Bay - Saltwater Fishing Report
A little cool out there this morning, not to fear though this cold front is short lived and it's going to be 75 Degrees tomorrow afternoon according to the weather report. Snook fishing will slow for maybe a few days, but the long term forecast is mid 70's for the next 10 days and Snook should heat back up after a few warm afternoons.
Redfish have been the bulk of the catch; we have been catching quite a few in the 17 to 25 inch range. Plenty of the Reds are nice keeper size and on the better days we have landed as many 25 per trip. The Snook fishing has also been good, catching 20 plus on the best days with the warm water. Like I said, the cold snap will slow them down for a few days but we should be able to make up the difference with Redfish. Winter time conditions are some of my favorite for Reds because it concentrates the fish.
There are tons of Trout out there including some real trophy size over 24 inches. They are out of season till January 1st, but they are still fun while targeting Redfish and Snook.
Mackerel are thick inshore and make for some nice action early in the mornings on fish from 16 to 26 inches. On the best days they have been literally biting as fast as you can reel them in, which is very typical for this time of year. You are either killing them or it's time to move.
Offshore there are still some Kingfish, some up to 30 pounds. Amberjack are still thick offshore. Gag grouper is closed but there are a lot of big ones in close. Red Grouper are in season and we have been catching a lot of shorts with a few keepers, but they are fun none the less. False Albacore have been a lot of fun mixed in with the Kingfish and Mackerel. They are undoubtedly the strongest fish around pound for pound. Even a 10 pounder will make the drag scream on Tarpon tackle. The larger ones have been around 15 pounds.
I have also been catching a few nice Cobias on the beach and offshore in the 20 to 30 pound class. Not monsters but great fighters and perfect eating size. I did have a monster 80 or 90 pounder in my chum slick the other day that I couldn't get to bite. Probably because the False Albacore and Kingfish where getting to the bait first. That may have been the largest Cobia I have ever seen. There were actually a few Tarpon mixed in my chum slick that day smacking baits right next to the Cobia, Mackerel, Kingfish and Tunny. I thought I even saw a glimpse of a few Permit. One nice thing about offshore is you just never know what's going to show up to the party.
Well I hope you enjoyed my Anna Maria fishing report. Look forward to the next 10 days of beautiful weather here in Florida.
Oh yes, I almost forgot, there is still time for gift certificates for a Christmas fishing charter. Until next time, enjoy yourselves.
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