tampabay.com

Daily fishing report

By STEVE PAPEN
Published October 8, 2006


With Red Tide affecting nearshore and offshore waters, we have had problems getting our wells with live pinfish and threadfin herring to the fishing grounds. Live bait is crucial for offshore fishing until the water temperature falls into the lower 70s.

Oxygen systems are becoming standard on boats. Pure oxygen injected into a bait well helps keep bait alive through most conditions, including Red Tide or warm water temperatures.

Using lively baits offshore on a recent trip produced gag and red grouper to 20 pounds on ledges in 135 feet of water. These fish are in traveling mode, making their way inshore.

Snapper fishing is still strong and trips to 80 feet of water are producing great catches. Mangrove snapper and red snapper eat frozen sardines, but a live cigar minnow or Spanish sardine usually produces a better quality fish. There also have been large schools of yellowtail snapper in some of the wrecks in 100 to 140 feet. Yellowtail snapper can be drawn to the surface by chumming. Break out the smaller spinning gear and free-line small chunks of cut sardines.

Steve Papen charters out of Indian Shores. Call (727) 642-3411 or visit fintasticinc.com.