Brave the heat to hook up inshore, nearshore and offshore
If you can deal with the heat, there is some great fishing in store around Anna Maria Island and it’s surrounding waters.
Venturing offshore is resulting in numerous snappers — yellowtail and mangrove. Keeper and red grouper are being caught with some consistency. And if you’re staying inshore or nearshore the list goes on. Spotted seatrout are in abundance around most deeper grass flats. Also inhabiting these areas are a variety of rod benders including bluefish, Spanish mackerel, ladyfish and jack crevalle. Fishing structure inshore, which includes rocks, docks and artificial reefs, is producing a good mangrove snapper bite as well as some flounder. Lastly, catch-and-release snook action along mangrove shorelines is proving to be at its best.
On my own adventures with Southernaire, I’m experiencing most of what was just mentioned. The mangrove snapper bite is proving to be a winner, especially for clients who would like to take a couple of fish home for dinner. An added bonus is an occasional flounder is also being reeled in. In the areas I’m catching the snapper and flounder, there are numerous Spanish mackerel to catch on surface baits, which adds a nice mix to the bite.
There are plenty of blacktip sharks in Tampa Bay, which is a great way to make use of the abundance of Spanish mackerel we’re catching. Palm-sized chunks of these oily fish cast amongst schooling black tips aren’t lasting more than a minute or two before they are sniffed out and devoured. Most sharks are ranging from 4-6 feet.
Finally, on the grass flats of Tampa Bay I’m finding ample amounts of spotted seatrout. Most catches are running just under slot but we’re still managing to catch a few keepers for those who wish to eat trout for dinner. Mixed in with these trout are jack crevalle, ladyfish, mackerel, mangrove snapper and juvenile grouper.