Monday, July 16, 2018
Outdoors

Captain’s Corner: Buckle up, the tarpon are here

Tarpon season is here, and the fish are showing up in numbers along the beaches. While there have been tarpon in the bays and backwaters for awhile, there were very few schools cruising the coast until a few days ago. Then, seemingly overnight, big pods appeared moving both north and south. One school we encountered had at least 500 fish in it. But finding the fish doesnít get you the hook-ups. Theyíve been very difficult to coax into biting. Beach fishing has required extreme patience with lots of casting and just a few strikes. To improve your chances, avoid very clear water. We followed a school last week that refused to bite until it encountered murkier water flowing out of an inlet. As soon as it entered the dirtier water, we hooked three in a row. Changing to a lighter leader can help land a few more tarpon bites if the fish have lockjaw. We lower our leader size to 50-pound fluorocarbon in very clear water. The fish have a better chance of chewing through it during a long fight, but itís worth the risk to get more strikes. Mix up your bait. On a stretch of beach where numerous boats are casting crabs for bait, switching to a threadfin herring or sardine can provide an edge. Weíve had good luck drifting cigar minnows lately, which is not generally considered a top tarpon bait.

Ed Walker charters out of Tarpon Springs. He can be contacted at info@lighttacklecharters.com.

Comments

Captainís Corner: Fishing docks and bridges at night is good way to beat summertime heat

The summertime heat and humidity are in full swing. Get out early to avoid the heat and the afternoon thunderstorms. Water temperatures are anywhere from 88 to 93 degrees. With water temperatures that high, youíll be able to spend only the first few ...
Updated: 11 hours ago

Captainís Corner: Donít forget about the ponds for fishing

Saltwater gets all of our attention, but when driving to and from work or visiting a friend, keep an eye out for a pond that looks fishy. There are many productive ponds that have bass and panfish, some even have snook and baby tarpon, both of which ...
Published: 07/12/18
Updated: 07/14/18

Captainís Corner: Welcome to summertime kingfish season

We now have a summertime kingfish season. In the past weíve basically given up on kingfish at the end of May because the feeling was they had migrated to the northern gulf to spawn, not returning until mid-October. Weíve targeted kingfish this year i...
Published: 07/11/18
Updated: 07/12/18

Captainís Corner: Spanish mackerel push back into bay

Large Spanish mackerel have pushed into the bay as of the most recent full moon. Many of these pelagics are in the 6-pound range, and recent catches of 8-pound mackerel have not been uncommon. A medium action rod with a 4000 series reel spooled with ...
Published: 07/11/18

Captainís Corner: Pinellas south beaches strong for snook

Snook fishing along the south beaches of Pinellas County has been amazing. Large schools are hanging in the swash channels formed by wave motion right off the beach. The water clarity changes daily, depending on the wind direction. If the wind is out...
Published: 07/08/18
Updated: 07/13/18

Captainís Corner: Good tarpon action should last through August

For those who have not had their fill of tarpon fishing, thereís still plenty of it. A good flow of silverkings continues along our gulf beaches and in the bays and backwaters. Weíll be tugging on íem through next month. We battled tarpon last week j...
Published: 07/07/18
Updated: 07/08/18
Captainís Corner: Summer weather brings great bay fishing

Captainís Corner: Summer weather brings great bay fishing

We are right in the middle of the summer, which makes for some hot weather and rainy afternoons. With summer weather patterns come some great bay fishing. Sharks, cobia, snapper and grouper are plentiful inside Tampa Bay. Shark fishing is also a grea...
Published: 07/06/18
Updated: 07/09/18

Captainís Corner: Nowís the time for beach tarpon fishing

Beach tarpon fishing has been good. Tarpon have been showing up early in the morning and during the tide change occurring midmorning to early afternoon. Live pinfish fished 4-5 feet under a float has been the ticket. Most of the fish are heading nort...
Published: 07/06/18

Captainís Corner: For July fishing success, avoid the sun

This is the dead stretch of summer. Success in fishing has everything to do with the "when." A month ago it was at sunrise. With water temperatures at 90, you should think about being out on the water several hours before sunrise. Of late, the fishin...
Published: 07/05/18
Updated: 07/07/18

Captainís Corner: Get you American red snapper now since season nears its end

American red snapper and gag grouper remain the most searched fish for offshore and spearfishermen. The ARS season closes at midnight July 19, so if you want to get these tasty fish, plan your trip soon. When the season opened a few weeks ago, ARS we...
Published: 07/05/18