Capt. Howard | Warm water pushes fish out into deeper water

August 2, 2013 

Fishing this past week out of Island Discount Tackle on beautiful Anna Maria Island has produced a mixed bag of fish landed for the dinner table as well as some exciting tackle-busting action. With the heat of the summer upon us, I have had to change my game plan up to be successful. The high water temperatures of 85-plus degrees on the flats have forced the fish out of the skinny water and into their deeper water haunts. Speckled trout are feeding in 3-8 feet of water and will chew a variety of baits presented. I like to fish the deep grass areas of Tampa Bay and the Intracoastal Waterway. Locate the schools of slot fish and you should have no trouble getting your limit. Redfish will start forming into big schools and feed aggressively on the moving current. I have been finding reds on the fastest part of the moving tide. Using pinfish for bait has produced some nice slot sized fish. Sharks are very thick in the bay right now .They are varying in sizes from 3-5 ft blacktips to 8- to 10-foot bull sharks. Fish around Egmont Key or the Skyway with a big chunk of oily fish and put out a chum block, and the bulls should be feeding in no time. Upsize your tackle as some have been in the 300-lb. range and have made short work of my Tarpon poles. Breaking out the broom sticks and the 275-lb. cable will do the trick. Use caution as they are the apex predators of Tampa Bay. Looking forward, the bait hatch we had back in June is finally starting to get some size to them. Look for the shiner situation to only improve as the summer progresses. Keep an eye out for the afternoon thunderstorms and remember to keep the slack out of your line and feel the thump of the fish inhaling your bait. Capt. Mark Howard SumoTime Fishing Charters 941-704-6763 cell

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