Staying positive in these difficult times has been challenging. Fishing has helped provide at least some temporary relief from the anxiety we are all having to deal with… and fishing has been good. Mangrove snapper, sheepshead, grouper and Key West grunts have continued to stack up along the edges of the ships channel inside Tampa Bay . Saturday we caught all we wanted on shrimp and cut pieces of frozen sardines during the last of the outgoing tide. Sunday we kingfished off St. Pete Beach. Several we caught on hand sized blue runners we were able to giggle up on gold hooked rigs as we fished. Others ate the mullet and greenbacks we slow trolled around the bait pods that had settled in near the beach. While others are being caught in varied depths offshore, each of ours were inside 20 ft. There were reportedly a few bigger ones caught around us, most of ours were in the twenty pound class. Though there’s some here now, weather permitting – it’s going to get even better. Schools of kings will migrate through our area into May and will hold up where the largest concentrations of bait are. Aware of social distancing concerns, like all gatherings – most of the big money kingfish tournaments have been cancelled or postponed this spring. Some scheduled later are in the hopeful but wait-and-see mode while waiting to return to normalcy. Soaking up some sun, fresh air and a screaming drag can be quite therapeutic.
Captain Jay Mastry