Inshore fishing in Tampa Bay has been awesome!
Fishing on the South Shore of Tampa Bay has been nothing less than stellar. Just about every trip has produced multiple species, from flounder on the flats to big Redfish schooled in the backcountry. The fall really has not hit us as we set record high temperatures. This has kept most fish out of their normal spots and changed our normal approach. Its time to book a charter and fish Tampa Bay.
Water temperature is dropping and fishing is great
Typically this time of year water is dropping into the lower 70s and we start to fish around the river mouths as fish stage around these areas to get ready for winter. This has not been the case as we have recorded record high temperatures. This has kept most fish out on the flats and also has bait still plentiful on the flats. This is not a bad thing you just have to make the correct adjustments to catch fish. As a result of warmer temperatures all species seem to be very active when using whitebait.
Trout fishing in Tampa Florida is great!
Trout has to be the surprise as they have invaded the deeper canals. Looking at the temperatures on my sonar I would not expect to catch trout on any size but as of late we have been catching a ton of nice Trout. Both live bait and artificial will produce fish with the Miro lure Lil Jon being a top producer. Match this with a ¼ ounce Jig Head and you will be filling the cooler with nice fish. A great technique is a live Greenback tied to a Cajun Thunder float. Use the good ole Popping technique and you will have Trout at the end of your line before you know it.
Catching live bait is key to catching fish!
If you are a live bait guy you should still keep your Black Pearl ¼ inch cast net on the boat as bait is still running on the smaller side. Look for bait to move deeper as cold fronts come through but as for now it’s on just about every flat on the South Shore of Tampa Bay . Since bait is smaller I would stay with the #1 Daiichi circle for hook size. Water is clearing up so using the 25lb leader will work best when fishing on the flats. Live bait in Tampa Bay is come of the most productive ways to catch fish.
Redfish is on fire right now!
Redfish are still hanging around in Tampa Bay on the flats in good numbers. As mentioned above water is a bit cleaner than last month so using a quiet stealthy approach is a must. Fishing the high tides that fall mid day this month will be your best chance to produce good numbers on redfish. A free lined Shrimp will be a great option as they love crustaceans this time of year. The key is to adjust your fishing style based on what your water temperature is on your sonar. This will tell you what areas to fish and where to find fish. Eventually we will start seeing winter and this will move these fish to their normal winter homes. Until then get out on the flats and enjoy the Florida heat… Tight lines!!
How to book a charter
If you are looking to book a inshore fishing charter for the Tampa Bay area it really an easy process. Just got to our website right here and click the book online tab. It will take you to the bookings page. Pick the date of choice and you are ready for a great day on the water!
Tampa Bay Offers Endless Possibilities
Tampa Bay is one of the nation’s premier fishing destinations and for a good reason. We offer some of the best fishing mixed with some of the best places to visit. With all kinds of things to do and that great Florida weather it is a hot spot to visit. I’ve been fortunate to call this home my entire life and about 13 years ago I took it up a notch and now I call Tampa Bay work. I spend 275 days on the water as a full time guide and I can tell you that the possibilities of things to target seem endless. From Reds on the flats, Tarpon on the reefs, and awesome Grouper fishing inside the bay as well… It’s a place that is filled with different types of species.
Grouper fishing is something that is considered an offshore fishing but little do people know we have a ton of Gag Grouper in the bay. You can troll for them and have a good bit of success but I like to bottom fish or even free line baits back depending on the depths. As fishing offshore you will want a good bottom machine to find these little ledges that hold those big fish.. I love using the new Simrad 16inch with the all new 3D technology. This makes it a bit easier to find those secret Grouper holes.
Tarpon season has really been off due to rain and windy for May and June. This is kind of looking like a great late summer Tarpon run inside the bay. This is challenging but nothing is more rewarding than figuring out Tarpon in the bay… Gear for summer tarpon is pretty simple. I like the 60lb Fluorocarbon leader with 60 lb braided line matched with a 5/0 Daiichi circle hook. Match this with a extra heavy St Croix Avid Spinning rod and Daiwa Saltist reel and all you have to do fish hook the fish.
Reds in the summer are also a hot topic s schools still hang around the flats. Getting an early start is key when finding Reds this time of year as water temperatures climb quick from the heat of the day. Bait of choice for Reds would have to be cut bait on the bottom but don’t forget to have a Mirrolure Mirodine tied up for those fast moving school that will hit anything in site…
Mangrove Snapper is something I love to do this time of year. As the fry bait moves up onto the flats the Snapper stack into the bay. Using this smaller fry bait will chum the Snapper to the surface and make for some great fishing for both the kids and adults.. Snapper fishing in the bay is some of the best fishing you will do and is steady action throughout the day
Last but not least would have to be one of my favorite fish to target. That would have to be Snook. Snook fishing in Tampa Bay is some of the best around the entire state and in the summer months the big breeders stack up around the spoil Islands to spawn. This makes for some great inshore action that any bass fisherman from up north would LOVE to do. One of my favorite ways to target Snook is a frisky greenback matched with a Cajun Thunder float. It’s just as good as watching a bass blow up on a top water at first light. Anyone that has not targeted Snook is missing out on some of the best fishing anyone could experience. If you are looking to target one of the species above and want to get out on a good day in Tampa Bay give me a call on my cell 813-727-9890
Captain Jason Prieto is a full time captain and has been fishing the waters of Tampa Bay since he was a kid. He is a native Floridian and would love to share his knowledge and experience through his charters. If you are interested in booking a trip you can reach him at 813-727-9890 or www.steadyactionfishingcharters.com.
We are coming to an end for the summer of 2020. While this year has been full of surprises in the fishing world from Covid 19, we have stayed busy late summer and our fishing charters have been successful. Snook, Redfish, Grouper, Cobia, Tarpon, Trout and many others have been boat side this summer. Here is your Tampa fishing report for September.
Redfish are the highlight this month as big schools of breeder fish gather up in the Gulf of Mexico and Tampa Bay. Redfish have been very plentiful this year with fish schooling up in good numbers especially around the new and full moons. I really like fishing the lower tides and finding fish on the outer flats roaming around eating anything in front of them. Both live and artificial baits are good options. I like throwing something with good weight to add to the distance on your cast. One of my favorite baits when fishing in Tampa bay is the z man chatter bait. The chatter bait works well when targeting big schools of Reds. It has plenty of weight, has flash and makes noise. This checks off all the boxes when looking for a bait to fish schools of Redfish in Tampa Bay.
Snook this time of year on the Tampa Bay flats. It’s not uncommon to catch 30 Snook on a fishing charter as we approach fall fishing in Tampa Bay. Snook are some of our top sought after species for the month of September. Its just another species we target and make September fishing in Tampa so good.
Grouper and Snapper
Next on the list for the Tampa fishing report in September would have to be Mangrove Snapper and Gag Grouper. Both fish are considered nearshore or offshore fish but with the great Tampa fishing we have the pleasure of catching both species right inside the bay. This happens just a few minutes from the dock. Both Grouper and Snapper are plentiful and make for a great table fair. Sizes on Grouper for Tampa Bay are seasonal and have a minimum size of 24 inches and a bag limit of 2. For more information of the Grouper regulations https://myfwc.com/fishing/saltwater/recreational/groupers/
Snapper have a different size with a minimum size of 10 inches and 5 per person. They are also open year-round.
Looking forward to fishing with you!