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Sunday, Sep 23, 2018
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Tarpon Action Really Picking Up

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, early last week had a couple of hook-ups with tarpon, one on a fly and another on a DOA Baitbuster. After casting a black and purple Toad fly into a school of tarpon numerous times, I changed the color of the fly to chartreuse and my angler hooked up on the third cast. The pattern has been to have a "push" of tarpon schools moving south along the beaches at first light and then a lull in action until midday. Reports from other tarpon anglers fishing from Longboat Pass to the mouth of Tampa Bay also indicated better action later in the day, including several tarpon landed on flies.
Captain Jim Klopfer, of Adventure Charters in Sarasota, reported good action in Little Sarasota Bay from Stickney Point to Spanish Point with trout to 22 inches, mangrove snapper, jack crevalle and a 5-pound pompano. The fish hit live shrimp, both free-lined and under a popping cork. "The early-morning bite was best, but fish continued to bite later in the day if the tide was strong or there was a little cloud cover. The best spots were oyster bars in 1 to 2 feet of water that dropped off sharply to 4 or 5 feet of water with a grassy bottom," Klopfer said. Captain Jack Hartman, of Lucky Dawg Charters, also reported good action with snook to 30 inches on surface-walking plugs near Buttonwood Harbor this week. There should be significant schooling of tarpon along the beaches as we head toward a new moon Tuesday.

Call captain Rick Grassett at (941) 923-7799 or visit www.flyfishingflorida.net or www.snookfin-addict.com.

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