More than 100 snook.
A limit of gag grouper trolling in Tampa Bay.
Blackfin tuna at 10 miles.
Cobia on the beach.
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Juvenile tarpon all over near the I-75 bridge.
Kingfish eating everything thrown at them.
These are real fishing reports from Friday.
Another week of strong northeast wind briefly gave way to calm conditions Friday morning ahead of a dry cold front. This slight change to a monthlong pattern sent fish into a feeding frenzy no matter where anglers were fishing. The result was a day anglers dream of inshore, nearshore or offshore.
A change of weather is good for fishing. We haven’t had a strong cold front yet, but the northeast wind may have ended the threat of red tide. Close to shore, pelagic species like kingfish, cobia, sharks and mackerel have been gorging on bait schools with the cooler temperatures. The shallow reefs and wrecks that have been holding bait remain one of the best places for the constant action that anglers love.
Inshore, redfish seem to have thinned out, but snook have taken over the flats as they transition to their winter time homes. With less than a month of snook season left, catches have been fantastic for anglers targeting linesiders. There is plenty of whitebait around, which snook have been willing to eat when the tide is moving.
Filling up your livewell early in the morning should be a necessity for many different species right now. No matter where you are going, a whitebait is probably going to be eaten. Chumming with extra baits will help keep the bite going when it slows down.
Looking ahead, there should be more opportunities for fantastic bites like Friday. It appears another front will approach next Saturday. If the forecast holds, Thursday and Friday should be calmer, allowing anglers to get to their favorite spots.
Remember, fall is the fastest changing weather we have all year. Changing weather puts fish on the move, and fish on the move like to eat before and after weather changes on warmer days. Ahead of a front, there should be calm weather and hungry fish.
If the warm weather we’ve experienced to date carries further into December, the fishing could be absolutely fantastic as long as bait stays around and water temperatures stay up. Last December, water temperatures hovered in the low 80’s and the fishing remained good on the flats as a result.
Now get out there and catch some fish, or book your favorite local captain now while the weather is good!
Source: U.S. Naval Observatory data