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Vol. 15 No. 5 - November 26, 2014

Captains' reports

Find reds and snook on the flats









Anna Maria Island Sun News Story

Captain larry mcguire | submitted

Got gags offshore of Anna Maria Island

Virginia Hough, from Bradenton, with her largest gag grouper
of her lifetime she caught using a sardine in about 60 feet
offshore of Anna Maria Island. Virginia and party also caught
lots more grouper and some monster mangrove snapper
fishing with Capt Larry McGuire.

Captain Mark Howard

Fishing out of Island Discount tackle on beautiful Anna Maria Island has been excellent this past week with many species being landed on my 23-foot Hydrasport Bay Bolt.

Shiners and pinfish have been my bait of choice. My clients have been battling schools of redfish, snook and speckled trout this past week. We literally had the fish feeding at the back of the boat and were throwing baits at the predators as they cruised through the crystal clear water on the flats.

Redfish are on the flats feeding as the tide is on the move. Using a popping cork and making it gurgle will draw the fish to your bait offering. My clients are shocked to see the giant swirls of the predators gulping down their bait offering after they do the popping cork method. Using a piece of cut bait rigged with a splt shot will also draw strikes.

Snook have been mixed in with the redfish and feeding on the same baits. On a recent trip, we had some amazing snook action with some big fish coming to the party. Using big baits and making long throws away from the boat has enticed the wise ones to chew.

Looking forward to next week, the tides will be low in the morning with a strong incoming in the afternoon. The key to successful fishing will be take advantage of the moving water and be at your spot when the tide starts flowing . Until next week, keep the slack out of your line and learn to feel the thump of the predator inhaling the bait.

Captain Rick Grassett

An angler fishing with me on my Action Craft flats skiff the Snook Fin-Addict, out of CB's Saltwater Outfitters on Siesta Key, had great action catching and releasing snook at night in the ICW near Venice on flies during the past week.

Bill Todd, from Massachusetts, fished several trips with me. We fished the ICW near Venice on Wednesday evening and it was on fire! With the water temperature in the mid 60s that evening and a strong tide, snook went on a glass minnow binge. He had fast action catching and releasing snook to 25 inches on my Grassett Snook Minnow fly.

He also caught and released a few trout on an Ultra Hair Clouser fly fished on a sink tip fly line over deep grass in north Sarasota Bay. We hunted albies and tripletail in the coastal Gulf and reds in skinny water, but conditions were tough with clouds, wind and cold water. Water temperature plummeted to 57 degrees in the shallows by Friday morning, a drop of more than 10 degrees over a few days.

Capt. Ed Hurst and I were the instructors for an Orvis-Endorsed Fly Fishing School at CB’s Saltwater Outfitters on Saturday. We had a large, enthusiastic class of students eager to learn to fly fish, which makes it a lot of fun. In addition to fly casting, students learned leader construction, fly selection and saltwater fly fishing techniques. Contact CB’s Saltwater Outfitters at 941-349-4400 or to make reservations for future classes.

Night snook fishing in the ICW is a good option now. Fish peak tidal flows for the best action. Trout, blues, flounder and more should also be good options on deep grass flats of Sarasota Bay. Look for reds and big trout mixed with mullet schools on shallow flats.

Tripletail and false albacore in the coastal Gulf should also be a good option depending on conditions. Look for tripletail on crab trap buoys and search for bait schools, diving birds or breaking fish to find albies.

Let us know what you think, post a comment.

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