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Captain's corner

By DAVE WALKER

© St. Petersburg Times, published September 14, 2000


Redfish have made the scene in Old Tampa Bay in the past few weeks. I'm not talking about just one or two either.

Large schools of reds are cruising the outside of the flats at lower tides and can be targeted by looking for groups of mullet and fishing in them. As the tide moves in, so do the fish.

We are catching these fish on live greenbacks, shad-shaped jigs (chartreuse) and gold spoons. The greenies we free-line or use under floats.

Live chumming has been particularly effective for grouping the fish close to the boat. By doing this, it is nothing to catch 20 or more quickly. I like a smooth, loose drag. Relax and enjoy the ride.

Snook are showing up in greater numbers every day. The large breeders are returning to the flats for the fall feed. Fishing like we do for redfish is equally as productive for the snook.

"Poons" are still under the bridges at night in fairly good numbers. Calm winds are a must for this situation. They will cruise right along the shadow line and cast a silhouette that is stunning. Reel a large jig into its face and hold on.

Don't expect to land many fish this way, but it is still a great time and a nice way to beat the heat of late summer.

-- Dave Walker charters out of Tampa. Call (813) 831-0355.

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