GO FISHING is a daily look at the area fishing scene through the eyes of local charter boat captains and fishing guides. Today: Rick Grassett.
Anglers fishing with me on the Snook Fin-Addict, out of CB's Saltwater Outfitters on Siesta Key, jumped and landed several tarpon recently off Siesta and Lido Keys with flies and live crabs.
Our best success when fly fishing has been in shallow water. Fly anglers landed a pair of tarpon, a 60-pounder on a black-and-red tarpon bunny fly and a 90-pound fish on a shrimp pattern.
Typically, dark fly patterns work the best, even in clear, shallow water, but dark flies have been spooking fish the past few days. After getting refusals on dark flies, we switched to a smaller tan shrimp pattern (1/0 hook) and the first tarpon we cast to pounced on the fly. It is usually a matter of the right presentation to the right fish.
An angler fishing with spinning tackle with me earlier in the week had a couple of bites and one hook-up with a live crab. Tarpon schools haven't been showing well on the surface so live baits drifted under a float have been working best for those fish.
Captain Jim Klopfer, of Adventure Charters, has been having good action in Little Sarasota Bay and Roberts Bay. He has been fishing between the Siesta Drive Bridge and Old Midnight Pass.
The best action has been around sand and oyster bars south of Stickney Point and around Skier's Island in Roberts Bay. His anglers scored on trout to 20 inches and bluefish with jerk worms on a jig head and live shrimp.
In addition, they've also had good action with mangrove snapper to 12 inches around the mouth of Philippi Creek and around docks on the north end of Siesta Key on live shrimp. Fly anglers have been experiencing great action with snook in the surf along Manasota Key.
Tarpon should thin out as they head offshore to spawn on the new moon. However, they should return by later in the week and resume their normal routines.