The heat of the late summer days can determine how best to catch certain species and where they will likely be located. On a recent trip, the first two baits in the water were rewarded with two snook. It was early, low light and cooler waters. The fish were willing to aggressively chase and eat the bait. I target the early morning hours for snook as mid day has been tough, unless they are along the beach near a deeper cut where the water will be cooler. As the tides rise through the morning, I switch to redfish. The high tides allow them to seek cover under the mangrove overhang or docks. Sardines are plentiful in north Pinellas, and the small hatch has grown, easily falling out of the castnet. Snook, reds and trout respond to these frisky live offerings. Redfish can be chummed to the edges of the mangroves making easier targets. Recent high tides have allowed them to travel into the trees, often unreachable. A little chumming can draw them to your area. Floating baits under a cork or pinning them to the bottom with a split shot will get results. Smaller trout have invaded most grass flats near passes with moving water. Outgoing tides are best. Plenty of action on trout, Spanish mackerel and ladyfish, too.
Brian Caudill fishes from Clearwater to Tarpon Springs. He can be reached at (727) 365-7560 and captbrian.com.