Just when I thought it could not get any hotter out there mother nature showed me different. With 4 days straight of no afternoon rain storms the days became almost unbearable, and the fish seemed to take to a very secluded hiding spot by noon because of it. But when the rain finally came it was like someone turned on the time to eat sign! I am sure this all happens mostly because of water temperature and the effect the rains have on it. I know it gets hotter and hotter everyday we go with out it on shore, so I’m sure the water dose the same thing. And warm water usually leads to very sluggish fish.
By the middle of last week mother nature was back on track with her rain and the fish were pretty hungry to go along with it. I fished every day last week and split time between Tampa Bay and the waters off of New Port Richey. Each morning started off catching bait and both areas are loaded with bait right now, one or two throws of the net will bring you more that enough for the day. Remember that in the summer you do not want to pack your wells full or you will kill most of your bait.
The trips I ran down in Tampa Bay were very good, there is alot of fish to catch and alot of different types to catch also. We were able to catch Redfish, Trout, Ladyfish, Jacks, Mackerel ,and there were even some Tarpon. The key to fishing this week was water movement, I fished the best tides I could get and when the water was moving the fish were biting. I fished the deeper edges of almost any flat to find the Trout, Mackerel, and ladyfish and there was always a few sharks mixed in with them. The reds I was able to find on high tide under the Mangrove edges, most of the reds came on cut bait while the others all ate live ones. Keep your eyes open while you are set up on the edges of the flats as there are still a very good amount of tarpon around.
New Port Richey
I always love fishing in my home waters, there is never anybody around this time of year and I get most of the areas to myself. This usually means that the fish in these areas are very relaxed and are not getting much pressure. This past week I was able to do very well on the Trout and mackerel, with some very good redfish mixed in when the tide was high enough for them to get comfortable. We had one very calm day that I decided to run out to a rock pile that is about 5 miles off our coast, we were rewarded with several sharks and a nice cobia that never quite made it to the boat. I have been doing the same thing in New Port Richey as I have been in Tampa Bay, look for deep edges with good water flow.
Yesterday was a fun trip for me, we went scalloping off of Homossasa and we got our limit very easily. We started in about 5 foot of water and the scallops were everywhere. This is a great charter to do in the summer as you are in the water staying cool and the whole family can do it, plus at the end of the day you have some of the most delicious shellfish to make what ever you want out of them.
Even though we are in the hottest part of the year there are plenty of fish to catch and the crowds are very light, now is the time to get in some great fishing.