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Captain's corner


© St. Petersburg Times, published April 12, 2001

The grass flats from the Dunedin Causeway to the north tip of Anclote Key have been productive. Because the gulf is near, the water usually stays clear and there is a a steady influx of fish. The action can be non-stop, and you never know what you may catch.

My catches during the past week have been: trout, Spanish mackerel, cobia, bluefish, jack crevalle, ladyfish, sea bass, flounder and some lesser-known species. The most unusual catch was a 40-inch flat needlefish.

Drifting increases your chance of finding fish. As I drift, I have everyone work jerkbaits or curly-tailed jigs on 1/8-ounce jig heads. Spinning rods rigged with 10-pound line are perfect; also productive is a fly rod with a sinking-tip line and a Clouser minnow fly. A light drag setting is critical because mackerel and bluefish hit with such force, if there's no give, your line may be cut.

- Capt. Wade Osbourne operates Afishionado Guide Services out of Tampa and can be reached at (888) 402-3474 or by e-mail at

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