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The Bite in TheBay: June 2011

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On: Tue, Jun 14, 2011 at 10:38AM | By: Captain Woody Gore

Let’s Start Off with the Bait Situation: Especially greenbacks—For some reason, which we’ve not figured out yet, greenbacks are eluding us around the bay. One day they’re on the flats, the next day they are gone. Also this year we’ve not seen the small fry yet; unless it’s going to be a late spawn.
The only consistent location seems to be the Skyway Bridge, and particularly the south fishing pier. However, the water is exceptionally clear and, unless you’re throwing a 12-foot net, the bait tends to run out from under smaller nets. You also have to contend with those strong tide days where it takes a 20-pounder to get down to the bait without collapsing with the current. Needless to say, it’s these days when shrimp and artificial lures look really good.

Spotted Sea Trout: We are catching some really beautiful Trout throughout the bay. Many are in the upper teens and some low twenties. Apparently they are eating well because they are fat and healthy with some weighing 3 to 4 lbs.

Greenbacks, when you can get them, shrimp, and artificial lures like the MirrOdine from MirrOlure are doing the trick for me on broken bottom grass flats. I’m either free lining them or fishing them under a popping cork. The artificials seemed to work best with a twitch-and-retrieve method, especially through and around pot holes on grass flats.

Spanish Mackerel & King Mackerel: Spanish Mackerel is still plentiful around the bay and near shore along the Gulf beaches. With plenty of threadfins schooling throughout the bay there is plenty of food and the Mackerel seem to be on an endless feeding frenzy. Sky-rocketing fish and diving birds are a sure indicator of where to fish. Threadfins, greenback, shrimp or any shiny artificial lure will catch plenty. Don’t forget the sharp teeth on these big bruisers, so, tackle up with at least 60 lb. Seaguar fluorocarbon and shiny longshank Daiichi hooks and it’s off to the races.

Redfish: We’re beginning to see some decent action using greenbacks, shrimp, and artificial lures, and never forget cut bait. As I said last week, using cut bait or the dead sticking method is not my favorite way to fish; there’s just not enough action for me, but it’s a method that definitely catches Redfish and Snook. It’s a matter fishing quietly, slowly, and, of course, being in the right spot. It often takes an intensive game plan that involves several moves before you find a productive area, and then it might be they’re just not eating when you get there. Sometimes you must have patience, which is surely one of my shortcomings.

Snook: (Season Closed Catch-&-Release Only) According to reports and my own experience the Snook are definitely making a showing around the bay area. I’m actually not targeting them as I’ve decided to give them a break during the hot summer water weather. We really need to get our population built back up.

Cobia, Mangrove Snapper, Flounder, and Sharks: The Cobia are showing on markers, flats, and buoy cans especially those holding bait. Mangrove Snapper fishing is picking up on the artificial reefs and should continue as the water stays warm. I’m anticipating a good Snapper bite all summer. We’re also catching some nice Southern Flounder on the same rocky bottom artificial reefs.

The shark bite been exceptional especially when Mackerel fishing. We’ve had several large Black Tips and two huge Bulls so far this summer.

Tarpon fishing has been doing well at the Skyway Bridge and along the beaches and passes. They are also starting to migrate up the bay; I already seen some showing up around the Gandy and Howard Franklin Bridge.

For more information or to book a trip, visit my website at:, you can also reach me on my cell at: 813-477-3814 or office at: 813-982-2034. My Email address is


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