Fishing Articles and Tactics

Shallow Water Grouper Fishing

Tampa Fishing Guide Displays Beautiful Nearshore GrouperIn a typical year, the first cold fronts of significance arrive in October.  After several of these have pushed local water temperatures down below seventy degrees, Tampa fishing guides start thinking shallow water grouper.  During late fall, large schools of threadfin herring will gather relatively close to the beaches. Initially, this activity draws in the Spanish mackerel, kingfish, bonita, blacktip and spinner sharks.  As the water continues to cool, keeper sized gag grouper may become part of the mix, showing up just a few miles off the sand. There may be another phenomenon that is even more important in bringing these grouper closer to shore

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Finding the Precious Whitebait

Tampa Bay Charter Chum MixtureCustomers have an expectation that each and every Tampa fishing charter will start with a bait well full of pilchards, also known more generically as "whitebait". These baits are present locally from around March through November, depending on the year.  Therefore, Tampa fishing guides must have the ability to secure this bait every day during the warmer months. Although this bait can be seen and netted around certain structures such as bridge pilings and channel markers, and sometimes right out on an open flat, chumming is usually required to bring this bait within netting distance.


Pilchards (latin name - harengula jaguana) frequent shallow grass flats...depths of three to four feet... where there tends to be good water flow so grass flats that are adjacent to passes or

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Catching the Dependable Redfish


phillip monster redTampa Fishing for redfish is best from early March through the end of October, although fish are available year round.  

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Fall Means Near Shore Reef Action


bigsnapperaAs fall approaches, water temperatures begin to cool, however Tampa fishing on the near shore reefs can be red hot. The real beauty of this fishing is that most of it is within five miles of the Major Hotels on Clearwater Beach, so lines are in the water a half hour after leaving the dock. Mangrove snapper are the targeted species at this time of year due to both their abundance and their excellent food value.  It is not uncommon to start chumming over one of these reefs and have 50 snapper rise up behind your boat ready to eat.

Read more: Fall Means Near Shore Reef Action

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