The Tampa Bay Times

Early morning starts to beat the heat has really helped in recent days. The water temperatures rise quickly after late morning and the fish move to deeper, cooler locations. At first light, bait becomes easier to find and feeding is strong especially combined with a good moving tide. Snook are still staging up at the points nearest the passes. Boats, kayaks, high sun, and anglers wadefishing along at the edge of the beaches will often push the groups of fish out to 7 – 10 feet of depth as the day progresses. Grunts, pinfish and large greenbacks placed uptide will get hit by snook once the tide sweeps them into the strike zone. Trout are eating good on the grass flats adjacent to the passes. Flats 6– 8 feet has produced smaller trout including a few ladyfish and mackerel. The jetties and rocks along the beaches are holding some of the larger trout, typical for summer. These big female trout are foraging in the same areas as snook, sometimes eating a grunt or large sardine. Higher tides have pushed a few redfish into the mangroves behind most of the barrier islands. Yet again, some reds are seeking a bit of cooler water and are making their way to the beaches. Several times this week my clients have caught snook reds and trout in the same location. Tarpon have thinned in the north Pinellas area off of the beach, although fly fishermen are still getting a few shots when the winds are out of the east, allowing for calm waters and easier sighting of fish.