Tarpon Springs Fishing Guide Capt. Rich Knox reports with the flats water temperatures hovering at 89º F and higher, the fish have been found in deeper waters, the beach, and any kind of structure out there, like downed trees or rock piles and jetties! At the same time, you can scan the horizon for some Tarpon returning from the full-moon spawn. The Tarpon returning will eat pilchards when placed in the strike zone. Early morning or late evening are when the fish are most active, and they usually won't chase a fresh caught bait fish for long. Cut the tail partially off the pilchards if you find some decent size ones.
Pinfish, pigfish or grunts also work well over the sand for Snook, Redfish, and just maybe a Trout. There are plenty of Black-Tip Sharks and other varieties around that like cut bait of almost any kind. I like to sight-fish them on the sand bars with a live finger silver mullet. Just cast out in front of the Shark, he'll find it quickly. Use a small piece of #9-12 wire tied to a 4-5 foot piece of 50-60 lb. fluorocarbon using the blood knot.
Evening is also another good time to get out and do some fishing with long days we are experiencing!! Weather is important, so keep close eye on due conditions, due to our morning, afternoon, and evening thunderstorms.
Gag grouper fishing is now open to keep fish 22" and over; they will be found from 35' of water on out on your favorite GPS # or if you mark a good bottom on your sonar. While you’re out there, the kids can enjoy catching Gray Snapper or big Grunts two at a time!