The Tampa Bay Times

With closures and the virus panic, the fish have had a little break from humans but people are probably fishing more than they are other things and with the start of April, opportunities abound.    Very active out there every trip, we have been doing combination trips:   Trout, flounder and pompano.    Pompano are still hit or miss but they should settle into spring patterns soon.   Flounder arrived early and should get in here in a lot bigger numbers as the baitfish gets thicker.    Trout, they never leave.   Closed to harvest for another year and a half, trout spawn year round and are probably at a 40 year high, population wise.    Over the course of a morning, we can target all three.    Pompano and flounder can be caught all the way up to midday.   Trout are a little better earlier.    Picking the right spot, all three species could be within 100 yards of each other.   Trout:   Over grass.   Pompano:  Over deeper sand.    Flounder, also deeper sand but where you find pompano in nine feet of water, flounder will be in four to six feet depths.     I use all lures, all the time.    Trout:   A long jerkbait style tail.    They will also get really active hitting topwater lures soon.   Pompano:   A pompano jig with a pink teaser.   I use a yellow jig and always a pink teaser.    Flounder, use the same type lure you are throwing to trout.   Both species will eat nearly anything they see.   But a five to six inch tail on a 1/8-ounce jighead will get the job done.    Trout, closed, must be released.   Pompano and flounder are open to harvest.    Pompano must be 11 inches long and each angler can keep six.    Flounder are a 12 inch minimum and the bag limit is ten per person    If fish for dinner is something you like, put pompano and flounder into your fishing plan.    Pompano fight really well.    Flounder and trout are less exciting but the larger they are, the better the fight.  

Neil charters kayak fishing trips out of Clearwater and can be reached at 727-692-6345.

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