Things are heating up
Capt. Clay Eavenson
June 9, 2008
Tarpon Springs - Saltwater Fishing Report
There's no hiding it anymore, summertime is here. I love the feeling of loading the boat at 5am while getting ready for a Tarpon Springs charter and it's 75 degrees already. Hitting the water when the sun is rising and seeing birds chasing the same baitfish that I'm after really gets me excited about the day. What's even better is watching trout and snook crash bait while I am catching bait for the day's trip. That's the kind of activity you only see during the early part of summer.
Bait has been pretty easy to gather for the most part so I've been getting my clients to go out to catch it with me. This helps us get on the fish earlier in the day. Instead of clients waiting for me to catch bait and then picking them up around 8:30am they're hopping on the boat with me around 6:30am and (if bait is easy) we are fishing by 7:15am. It's a pretty cool experience for most people that are interested in our local wildlife. We catch all kind of things in the cast net. This week, along with the baitfish we need for the charters, we've caught starfish, sand dollars, blowfish, seahorses. and numerous types of exotic fish.
Once the bait is secured we headed out to some of my favorite flats in St. Petersburg early last week. The redfish bite has been real hot out there for some time. 15-30 redfish days started the week off for us and that was topped off with a few snook up to 35". We also managed several really nice trout. The redfish were caught on cut greenbacks fished under a cork. Later in the week the redfish bite slowed down a little bit as the tides became less favorable. Still, trout cooperated and so did a few really nice snook. The last couple of days have been slow as we've had poor tides for the first part of each day.
This week we get back into some really good tide situations and I expect the bite to pick up like it was early last week. I can't stress enough how important the tides are to fishing here. Snook, redfish, and trout are ambush predators. What this means is that they don't actively swim around hunting food. They like to lay around structure, in potholes, or on points and wait for food to come to them. The method in which the food is delivered to them is by the tides moving the bait around. When the tide is dead (not moving) our target fish are not eating. At least not very well. They know when dinner time is and like well trained children, they will wait until the dinner bell has rung and then they will eat 'til their hearts content. But, until that bell rings (tide is moving fast) you can often be surrounded by fish that have lockjaw. Luckily, most days, there are only a few hours in the day where the tide isn't moving at all and there are only a few days where the tide won't move much during any part of the day. So as long as the trip is well planned, we can get you out there on days and during times when the fish will eat best.
Let's go fishing! The weather is warm and the bite is hot!
Snook and Redfish
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