he Summer Snook bite is in full swing here in Tampa Bay and Clearwater as well as other species and we’ll get to that. But first, let’s address the Algae Bloom and Red tide that has garnered national attention. Several of our customers have called us with concerns about the Algae Bloom that has caused fish kills along the Southwest coast and East coast of Florida. Clearwater and Tampa Bay are UNAFFECTED by the Algae Bloom. Our beaches are open, and the fishing is fantastic.
Here are some online resources that you can use to follow the progress of the Algae Bloom and whether it may affect your visit to Clearwater or Tampa Bay: http://myfwc.com/REDTIDESTATUS or https://www.visitbeaches.org/
We’d like to take a moment and let our fellow charter captains and fishing guides affected by this crisis know that Native Sportfishing stands with you in calling for a long-term solution to this issue. Something must be done and done soon!
The typical summer weather patterns are holding up as we’ve enjoyed calm seas and balmy Tampa Bay and Gulf of Mexico conditions during July. Our early morning trips have been producing excellent Snook catches, with most fish measuring between 22 and 30 inches. These fish have essentially finished the spawn and are ready to feed again. We’ve been catching the Snook on light tackle using live shrimp and live sardines on small circle hooks and light fluorocarbon leaders due the crystal-clear water. We. expect the Snook bite to continue through the month of August as well.
On the flats and near the mangroves the Redfish are starting to show up in advance of the fall bait push. We’ve been catching Redfish measuring between 30 and 38 inches with multiple hookups when we find the huge schools pushing water up on the oyster beds or grass flats on the falling tide. Like the Snook, we’re catching Redfish on live shrimp, live sardines and the occasional top water plug. The Redfish bite is only going to get better over the next 3 months.
Chasing Tarpon – our specialty -continues to produce both huge fish up to 150 pounds for those brave souls who want to lock horns with a massive Silver King. For our customers who prefer quantity over quality – especially our junior anglers and fly fishing clients – we’ve also dialed-in the schools of small tarpon (10 to 30-pound fish) that won’t send you to the chiropractor. The huge Tarpon have been eating crabs and pinfish. The smaller Tarpon have been eating live sardines, small crabs and crab or glass minnow fly patterns.
Snappers are a Snappin’:
For our clients that are looking for table fare, we’ve been catching our limits or Mangrove Snapper and Gag Grouper. Like the Snook, the Snapper and Grouper can’t resist live shrimp or live sardines on small hooks and light leaders.
The shark fishing continues to be as hot as the month of July. We’ve been catching a variety of Shark species and this fishery will continue to get better as we approach the fall months.
As we make our way into August and September, we should start see more bait show up on the oyster beds, flats and channels. This will only serve to attract Snook, Tarpon, Redfish, Mackerels and even Seatrout. Since kids will be going back to school in a few weeks, now is the perfect time to finish the summer break on a high note with a monster Tarpon or feisty Snook. Book a trip with Native Sportfishing now.