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Daily fishing report
By JIM HUDDLESTON
Published February 9, 2005
Anglers who find cleaner water are seeing consistent patterns during this cool and windy season.
Speckled trout have been biting artificials off Caladesi Island and north into the St. Joseph Sound. Higher tides are bringing redfish to the docks and oyster bars where they feed on small baitfish and crustaceans.
Using the wind, drift grass flats with white potholes in the 3- to 5-foot range throwing soft plastics. Darker colors, such as motor oil and turtlegrass, with a sharp 1/8-ounce jighead seem to outproduce lighter colors. Working a shoreline of docks with warmer water resulted in numerous trout and redfish in the 4- to 5-pound class this past week. With slower outgoing tides in the afternoon, points and deeper cuts will create more water movement and make for staging areas for these gamefish. With bright blue skies overhead, switching over to live shrimp under a cork produces more bites. Four to 5 feet of 15-pound fluorocarbon leader with a No. 1 hook will ensure a more stealth approach to catching weary fish in gin clear water.
As the tides push in, redfish feed aggressively around older docks that provide a habitat where food gathers. Livebaiting here will require at least 20-pound fluorocarbon to prevent breakoffs. Breaking up a few shrimp and spreading them in the area will help kickstart the bite.
Jim Huddleston charters out of Tampa, Palm Harbor and Clearwater and can be reached at 727 439-9017 or at firstname.lastname@example.org