a fisherman with a large tampa bay snook

Tampa Snook Fishing

Snook, aka Line-Siders, are an aggressive and popular fish to target in Tampa Bay. Lurking in the shadows of mangrove roots systems is the primary method that this ambush predator likes to utilize.

Snook sizes in the Tampa area vary greatly, but in the mix are everything from small juveniles to 40+ inch slobs. When these guys eat a bait, they attack it. They also have the backbone to peel lots of drag.

Snook are probably one of the most lost fish once hooked up as well. With razor-sharp gill plates, and the innate ability to head shake, “chewed through” leaders are a common occurrence. Prepare for a battle of wits.

Where and When to Catch Tampa Snook

Snook are a very popular species and considered a top gamefish for the entire state of Florida. Tampa offers some of the best Snook fishing in the state as the bay has miles of pristine flats and backcountry water for Snook to live. Snook are commonly referred to as the saltwater bass as they have a lot of common features as bass.

Snook sizes range from 15 to 45 inches in Tampa Bay with an average size of 22 inches being caught. You can expect a great fight with lots of jumps when catching a Snook in Tampa Bay.

Prime months for Snook range from February to December with prime months being spring and fall. Snook feed on all types of bait, Shrimp,Mullet,Threadfin Hearing, and Greenbacks just to name a few. Snook are a tropical fish and cannot survive in cold water. Because of this you typically wont find any Snook north of Tampa Bay.

Snook are a very protected species as they are very slow growing fish. Season for the west central area including Tampa Bay is March 1st through May 1st Open season and the Fall open season is from September 1st till December 1st. Snook typically Spawn anywhere from April through August.

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