The holiday season brings pompano to area waters
With the Christmas season approaching, another season is doing the same. Yes, that’s right — it’s time to start stalking the shorelines for pompano.
The beaches of Anna Maria Island are a great place to start searching. Despite the beach renourishment totally changing our local shoreline, pompano fishers should be able to find a bite.
Some of the more popular pompano spots are now buried with sand so you may need to do your homework to find the fish. And by homework I mean cruising up and down the beach until the right conditions appear. Look for spots along the beach where the trough still exists. The trough is the stretch of water between the shoreline and the first sandbar. Pompano use this as a highway to hunt for sand fleas up and down the shore. If you can find the trough, you’re looking in the right place. You just have to hope the fish are there.
To catch pompano, fishers use a variety of baits and lures. Pompano like crustaceans, so using live shrimp, sand fleas and even small crabs will produce a bite. Small jigs also work well for pompano. There are a variety of sizes and shapes so it’s best to carry a few of each to see which one works. You can also have the best of both worlds by taking the jig you’re using and tip it with a small piece of shrimp. This way, you have the action of the jig combined with the smell of the shrimp — a deadly combination that can give you an edge when the pomps are finicky.
Remember, according to FWC, pompano have to be a minimum size of 11-inches to the fork of the tail. There is no maximum size. The bag limit for pompano is 6 per person per day.