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Daily fishing report
By DOUG HEMMER
Published April 18, 2006
We had a school of a hundred or more redfish hanging on an oyster bar in lower Tampa Bay on Monday. I and two other guide boats spotted the school and anchored like a wagon train around the bar. Only a few redfish were caught before the action slowed.
For the next few hours, we chummed and waited for the redfish to start feeding. They moved over the oysters, and seeing them was difficult. Just as we were starting to leave, a group of F-16 jets flew over. The noise spooked the school and gave away their hiding spot, on the back side of the bar.
As soon as we saw the water shaking, all three boats threw handfuls of live chum. The redfish started slamming the chum with exciting surface explosions. Over next hour or so, all three boats hooked more than 20 redfish.
Patience was key. Once you find a school, stay close and wait. Often, the redfish will move back through.
The large schools of small threadfins that invaded the flats last week are starting to be replaced by schools of scaled sardines. These larger and much hardier baits are best used for snook fishing.
--Doug Hemmer charters out of St. Petersburg. Call (727) 347-1389.