Anna Maria Island Fishing Report April 25, 2018

As weather continues to improve so does the fishing

With some of the best weather of the year upon us, Anna Maria Island fishing is following suit. The inshore bite is proving to be nothing less than excellent. That is, of course, if you’re lucky enough to be in the right spot, on the right tide, on the right day.

The waters of the Intracoastal Waterway south into Sarasota Bay are clear and in the mid 70s, which is the perfect recipe for some great flats fishing. With only a couple of weeks left of snook season, anglers are coming out of the woodwork — especially on the weekends — with hopes of getting their chance at a keeper linesider. Of course, there are plenty of 20-26 inchers out there to keep you busy until the “big one” hits. Mangrove shorelines, oyster bars, good tidal flow and clean water are what you should be looking for.

Spotted seatrout are also hot right now. Deeper grass flats around the passes are holding those big spawning trout. Hopefully you let those go. We need them to lay their eggs so we have more. Plus, there are plenty of slot-size trout around if you really want to eat one.

As for the redfish, I’m seeing some — but not many — which is a little alarming. Hopefully, things will soon change and they’ll start making a real showing on the flats.

On my own Just Reel fishing charters, I’m concentrating on snook and trout fishing. The bite is really good, so why not? Free-lined shiners are the perfect fish attractant and are producing plenty of action. This week I saw trout up to 24 inches, on the end of the line. Most trout catches were slot, although plenty were exceeding 20 inches.

As for the snook fishing, most of the action for my clients has been on those 20-26 inch fish. Catching 20 snook in a morning session is not unheard of. As for slot snook, I’ve had a few here and there.