Hot winter time Tampa Bay Snook and Trout action
Capt. Little Jim Fesperman
January 14, 2009
Tampa Bay - Saltwater Fishing Report
Well the tides are playing havoc with our Red's fishing last couple of weeks. Not only are they scattered across the flats on high tides in small two to ten fish schools but with the negative tides many of the traditional flats that some of the Red's tail on have no water at all. With no water on the flats they seek out the potholes and deeper cuts and channels. This makes targeting them difficult at best with out an air boat or wading which most of my customers aren't prepared for or want to get in the water. On three trips last week we were able to catch a couple of good slot Red's, Trout and Snook for a slam each day.
The Snook fishing on the other hand was outstanding and I mean outstanding. A couple of 30 plus Snook days, in the winter, go figure! Several factors caused this unusually great winter Snook fishing. First, was the weather. Over the holidays extra warm, mid and high 70's and low 80's, with very little rain brought the water temperature up to almost 70 degrees. Second, the hardest was obtaining the right bait. It required around two hours each day to find and catch the right size white bait and in large amounts because we needed lots of chum. Third, was location. The Snook are up all the rivers, creeks and residential canals this time of year. The Snook were never in the same exact location each day, but by moving short distances and chumming you would soon hear that familiar pop pop of Snook taking our chum. Will this Snook bonanza continue? Probably not but it would be great if it did last another week or two. In reality as the cold fronts of January and February start rolling through the Tampa Bay area these fish will seek out the warmest water in deep dark creeks and residential canals until spring warms the water.
If you have not been Trout fishing this year you are in for a surprise. The Trout have grown a ton over last year with many fish over the 20 inch mark. This is like Trout fishing of yesteryear. They are big and sassy and plentiful. However, please keep only those between 15 and 20 inches and let the big over 20 inch breeders go back and breed some more.
Look for waves of cold fronts to blow through the Tampa Bay area the next two months. Fishing will be very good between fronts. Trout will be come more predictable and plentiful up on the shallow grass flats. Don't over look the Redfish and the come back fish of the year Mr. Flounder.
Take a kid fishing.
Let's go fishing!
Captain Little Jim Fesperman
Tampa Bay Fishing Forecast:
Look for cold fronts to blow through Tampa Bay For the next couple of months.
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