Mangrove snapper filling coolers, other species keeping anglers busy

Summertime fishing around Anna Maria Island continues to provide good action and smiling anglers.
In Tampa Bay, fishing structure is proving to be good for a variety of fish. Bottom fishing with live shiners or pinfish is resulting in mangrove snapper and gag grouper. Free-lining live shiners over structure is enticing the snappers, although ravenous species such as Spanish mackerel and jack crevalle typically beat the snapper to the hook.
On the flats of Tampa Bay, catch-and-release snook fishing is still a good bet. Just make sure you have good tidal flow if you want to heighten the experience. The same applies for catch-and-release spotted seatrout. Good numbers of these popular buck-toothed fish are present on the deeper grass areas.
Those willing to make the voyage offshore are being rewarded with limits of American red snapper. Other snappers such as mangrove and yellowtail are being caught, too. Fishing wrecks offshore is leading to some excellent action on permit as well as sharks.
Lastly, hard bottom areas are a good place to look for some keeper gag and red grouper.
On my Southernaire charters, I’m collecting limits of mangrove snapper for the cooler. Fishing structure in Tampa Bay is providing good numbers of these guys. Mixed in are Spanish mackerel, jack crevalle, ladyfish and juvenile grouper.
Moving to the flats, the catch-and-release snook action has tapered off slightly but is still productive. Fish 20-30 inches are the norm.
Catch-and-release spotted seatrout action is productive over deep grass flats. Free-lining live shiners as bait is working well. Spanish mackerel and ladyfish are present in these areas as well as a mangrove snapper.

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