the Tampa Bay Times

A few cold fronts have been pushing through, typical for this time of year on the west coast of Florida. The drop in temperature has stimulated a lot of fish to start eating. Bait is still very plentiful but won’t be here much longer if the cold temperatures dip further into the 50s, dropping the water temperature and driving the bait away. High pressure settles in after cold fronts, often leaving bluebird skies and sometimes calm and clear waters. That was the case earlier this week, and the fish were very shy. However, as the cloud cover took over, the fish turned on and the bite got much better. Many anglers often wish for very calm and clear days with a lot of sun. This can make the fish extremely cautious, noticing every change of movement on the flats, including trolling motors, waves slapping the hull, and even baits landing near them from a cast. This is when you will see most of us guides downsizing our tackle to smaller hooks, lighter leader such as 15 pound to 20 pound fluorocarbon, and making long-distance casts with the wind at our backs. And even then, you must remain patient. Schools of redfish can be pushed away with your arrival, but will usually return to the area slowly, especially when enticed by a few cut baits. Chunks of ladyfish have been working very well for the most targeted species, snook, trout, and redfish. They are easy to cast a long way and release a lot of scent that can permeate the water in a large diameter.