By RICK FRAZIER
© St. Petersburg Times,
published August 11, 2001
Take advantage of the early flood tide around sunrise because it's likely that the reds will. Use a stealthy approach to sneak up on a school of feeding spot-tails. If one gets spooked, your efforts are wasted. Watch a school's movements to determine your attack. If it's hard to tell what direction they're moving, remember that feeding fish move into the current or wind.
Topwater baits will get the hits, but the rest of the school will scatter when the fish you hook pummels your offering. Small pinfish fished under a float is best. Cast your pinner to the up-current side of the pod. Belly-hook the pin to make it swim erratically.
Late season tarpon action is possible. Plenty of fish are rolling in the back bay areas such as residential canals and rivers. Sit quietly in a deep canal and wait for the silver flash when they come up for air.
Imitation mullet plugs work well in this situation. Cast well in front of rolling fish so they'll see it when they come back to the surface.
With live or fresh dead bait, a flashy sardine or pinfish will get their attention too. So will a stinky dead shad on the bottom.
- Captain Rick Frazier runs Lucky Dawg Charters in St. Petersburg, (727)510-4376 or e-mail