GO FISHING is a look at the area fishing scene through the eyes of local charter boat captains and fishing guides.
Mother Nature forced us to seek cover with winds in the 20-knot range all week. That had us hiding in area rivers and they did not disappoint.
We caught snook from 16 to 38 inches and bunches of them. Soft plastics worked best covering lots of water and working the baits very slowly.
The Strike King KVD Swim’n Caffine Shad in white and Strike King Rage Shrimp in white worked really well, as did the new MirrOLur Lil John XL in molting. We fished using quarter-ounce and three-eights-ounce jig heads, keeping the baits fairly close to the bottom.
The docks at the mouth of the Hillsborough River, especially those around Harbour Island, were fantastic. The jack crevalle can get a little annoying because they are so plentiful but make for great action.
Captain Scott Moore reports the same action around the Manatee River, and captain Jason Prieto reports the same in the Little Manatee. The trout bite has steadily picked up as well with dropping water temps, big schools of 14- to 19-inch fish are seemingly all over Fort De Soto, Anna Maria Island and Sarasota Bay.
Live bait will work on the trout, but for best results stick with jigs and cover as much water as possible to help you locate the bigger fish. If water temps continue to drop, look for the trout to pile into slightly deeper water on the edges of the flats and look for the big gator trout in shallow water as the afternoon sun slightly warms the flats.
Catch Billy Nobles and Mike Anderson on the “Reel Animals Fishing Show” on Saturdays from 6:30-7 a.m. on WFLA, Ch. 8, and from 6-9 a.m. on 970 AM, and on Sundays from 7-9 a.m. on 620 AM. To book a charter, call 1-866-GAMEFISH or visit www.reelanimalsfishingshow.com.