The Tampa Bay Times

Dave Zalewski 460-9893

Columbus Day ( October 11) usually signals the start of the fall kingfish run. This year may be a little different because of the lingering red tide which has kept the large concentrations of bait far offshore of the beaches. These schools of bait attract Spanish mackerel , blue runners and ladyfish which are all prime targets for the predatory kingfish. On several recent trips offshore in the twenty mile range we encountered large schools of Spanish mackerel feeding voraciously on schools of very small baitfish. Trolling very small spoons behind #1 planers was the key to putting several of these spotted speedsters in the box. The mackerel made a welcome addition to the Lane snapper, white grunts, and porgies that we had targeted because of the recent closure of red grouper and triggerfish. Lane snapper will be joining them as a closed species on October 18th. Gag grouper will remain open until the end of the year,
Find the bait and you will find the fish is an old adage and this will old true especially this year, We are going to start the hunt for kingfish on most days on the mid-water artificial reefs which include South County, Indian Shores , Rube Allyn and Veteran’s. The reason for this is that they are far enough offshore to have not been effected by the red tide

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