tampabay.com

Daily fishing report

By DOUG HEMMER
Published November 28, 2005


Windy conditions make traveling across Tampa Bay slow and risky. Sight fishing for sheepshead and mangrove snapper on light tackle may not sound exciting, but the action is steady and challenging.

The clear water around the residential canals makes sight fishing easy. Using a trolling motor, slowly move along the docks looking for sheepshead hanging near the docks and along the sandy areas in front of the sea walls. Using a 6-pound outfit, small hook and a center cut piece of fresh shrimp, you only need to cast the bait close to a fish to get a hook-up. Some of the sheepshead weigh 5 pounds or more. On tackle this light it can be a challenge to land the larger fish. Find a spot that's holding good numbers, dice a few shrimp into small pieces and toss them where you see the fish. Anchor the boat and fish the same spot until the action slows. The best part about this style of fishing is not having to look for mangrove snapper. They will show up and beat the sheepshead to the shrimp on most casts not placed next to the sheepshead.

--Doug Hemmer charters out of St. Petersburg. Call (727) 347-1389.