Fishing Report March 26, 2017

Spring break might be over, but no break in hot fishing action


Fishing around Anna Maria Island is finally shaping up again after the last cold front we experienced a couple of weeks ago.

Water temps are on the rise and so is the fishing.

Respectable numbers of snook are taking up residence on local grass flats in anticipation of the arrival of large bait schools coming in from offshore. Spotted seatrout are following suit and are staging in areas where currents exist combined with deep grass flats adjacent to channels and troughs. Along the beaches, Spanish mackerel are free jumping through schools of glass minnows and just offshore, king mackerel are being spotted sky rocketing randomly in the emerald green waters.

On my own trips with Southernaire, I’m finding many snook around mangrove and spoil islands as well as around sand bars and oyster bars. Live, free-lined shiners are working well for the “less experienced fish” or the smaller ones. As for the slot-size snook, I’m getting lucky and getting a few to bite here and there.

Spotted seatrout are beginning to really turn on as the water temps rise. Many slot-size fish are finding their way into the boat as well as some fish over 20 inches. Sot of the 20-plus inch fish I’m catching are being found on shallow flats where the depth is less than 3 feet. As for the slot-size fish, deep grass flats where sandy potholes exist are prime areas.

Lastly, dock fishing for redfish is still proving effective. Live shrimp on a knocker rig are producing bites from reds 20-26 inches. Also around docks, I’m finding black drum, mangrove snapper and flounder.