Anclote Bait and Tackle, (727) 945-1808: Capt. Griff reports the wind and rain of the weekend made the big fishing days a bust for the most part, but that doesn’t mean the fish are uncooperative. Anglers tucking out of the weather fished around U.S. 19 on the Anclote River and scored jumbo jacks to 10 pounds. Backwaters, creeks and rivers have been turning up snook and reds. Offshore fishing was curtailed, but a couple of hardy souls braved conditions, with one boat reporting a limit on gag grouper in 26 feet of water. Anglers are finding kings in the same depths and shallower, with chumming the way to draw the fish in. Schools of mackerel are working offshore, as well.
Tarpon Fishing Outfitters, (727) 942-8944: Dave says the weather wasn’t great over the last week, but those working the mouths and inside the Cotee and Anclote rivers have been scoring some reds and snook. Trout are on the shallow grass flats, and reds have been working the outside flats. It’s a good time for a variety of species, and many anglers are bagging five or more types of fish right now. There is plenty of bait around on the flats, including off Howard Park, in Tarpon Springs. Offshore, the weather slowed the action, but a few got out and found keeper grouper in as little as 20 feet of water. The odd cobia is being landed, and anglers are finding some kingfish.
One Stop Bait and Tackle, (727) 842-5610: Joe says the weekend was slow because of the bad weather, but the trout are still on the shallow grass flats and taking jigs, plugs and shrimp. Those working inside the Cotee and Anclote rivers have been finding reds and snook, as well as sheepshead, which also are stacking up in residential canals. Some of the sheepshead reported have been huge. Offshore, winds have been a problem, but those battling conditions report keeper grouper in 35 feet of water, along with plenty of mackerel.
Pier 60, (727) 462-6466: The mackerel action remains hot and heavy. Lots of fish are being landed on shrimp and spoons. Some sea bass are coming over the railings and pompano have started to show up in catches. The night trout bite is good under the lights with live shrimp. A 37-inch snook was caught and released. Silver trout have arrived, though no whiting have been caught.
The Long Pier, (727) 391-9398: Tom says the wind and rain have cut into the fishing, and the water was just starting to clean up some Monday. Trout fishing has been on, with the better bite at night. Some drum have been landed, along with a few pompano. Silver trout have been taking shrimp off the bottom, and a couple of kings around 36 inches were taken on live bait off the end of the pier. Flounder fishing has been good over the sandy bottom.
Nick Stubbs is founder and webmaster of Bitetracker.com, an interactive fishing website.