TBO.com: Tampa Bay Online.
Sunday, Apr 23, 2017
Go Fishing

Take it slowly when it’s cold

GO FISHING is a look at the area fishing scene through the eyes of local charter boat captains and fishing guides. Today: Mike Anderson, right, with “Reel Animals” partner Billy Nobles.

With Mother Nature still covering us in cold and rain, this week’s fishing remained challenging. Only the most cold-tolerant species seem to be playing along in areas that are not warmed by power-plant outflows.

Working the edges of the flats in Fort De Soto this week, we managed to catch some nice trout with a really slow presentation. We were almost dragging our artificial lures over the top of the grass and at times just letting it sit for a split second to draw the strike. We also caught some in the deeper residential canals on live shrimp.

The canals also produced some small mangrove snapper, sheepshead, rat redfish and small snook. Seemed like the darker the bottom, the better no matter where we were. The MirrOlure 4-inch soft Shad paddle tail in Opening Night color was the artificial of choice. Again, work the bait as slow as possible.

Offshore, the 1866GAMEFISH guides are wrecking the big amberjack, red grouper, mangrove snapper and hogfish when they can get out. Frozen baits, live pinfish and shrimp work well.

They are calling for warmer weather this weekend, so grab the family and go fishing.

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.