By DAVE MISTRETTA
© St. Petersburg Times,
published June 23, 2001
Tarpon fishing has remained strong for the past few weeks. The annual migration has spread from the Keys to the Panhandle. Half of the fish have already gone offshore and spawned, the main reason we have such large numbers. Areas up to 100 miles out are expected to become the birthplace of thousands of tarpon each summer. Northbound fish rolling along the beaches are telltale signs the silver kings have come back from this offshore ritual. In the past, this has provided fantastic action since appetites are strong after traveling such a long distance.
Situate yourself in their path by anchoring around the location of the rolling fish. Normally if one school passes, more will follow. Live threadfin herring are a favorite dinner for the silver king, and they are readily available along our beaches. Suspend the baits 6-8 feet from the surface.
A second choice for baitfish would be dead shad. Laid on the bottom, these baits can be quite productive. Other species of fish may visit -- sharks, cobia, tripletail, sting rays and mackerel top the list.
A great spot to try this method of fishing is along Indian Rocks Beach. This location has produced many giant tarpon for years.
- Dave Mistretta captains the Jaws Too out of Indian Rocks Beach. Call (727) 595-3276, or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.