Warm weather persists, fog requires precautions for safety

With numerous days of warm weather, fishers are enjoying great fishing conditions while on the water. 

Although we’re in the middle of December, temperatures are reaching the high 70s to low 80s which is allowing a window of opportunity to achieve some good inshore fishing before the winter finally settles in. 

Using live shiners as bait is working well on the flats for snook and spotted seatrout. Water temperatures have remained in the high 60s, so these fish are responding to live shiner offerings as they try to pack on a little extra weight to make it through the cooler months to come. 

If you’re just burned out on snook and trout fishing, there are other options available. Pompano seem to be showing up in decent numbers and fishing along the beaches and in and the passes with jigs tipped with fresh cut shrimp is yielding near limit of these tasty fish. If you don’t find them in these areas, you can always drift the deeper grass flats. On certain flats you’ll find the pompano foraging on small shrimp and other crustaceans. While you’re on the flats you may stumble across other species such as spotted sea trout, jack crevalle, ladyfish and bluefish. Although these fish may not be the intended species, they do add a nice variety to the bite, which can be quite satisfying especially if the pompano are few and far between. 

If you’re carrying some shrimp in the boat, it’s always worth casting a few baits under some of your favorite residential docks. Redfish, sheepshead and black drum tend to frequent these areas during the winter months. And, if you’re lucky, you may also encounter flounder. 

Lastly, we have been experiencing some dense fog lately so if you’re on the boat make sure to take the proper safety precautions to avoid any unwanted mishaps. Make sure your compass is working properly, as you never know when your electronics such as your GPS could fail. Also, make sure to carry a couple sound devices such as a whistle and an airhorn. Both of these items can help in avoiding a collision. And finally, go slow out there if you can’t see where you’re going. Boats don’t have breaks.

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