From: Capt. Bob Smith
Date: 28 Jun 1998
Remote Name: 188.8.131.52
Sarasota Florida Fishing Report.
By Capt. Bob Smith June 27, 1998
Since my last report, I have found kingfish up to 24 lbs, cobia up to 70 lbs, some very nice gag grouper and some nice snapper. While fishing for bait in 24 feet of water off Lido beach, we had a large cobia come to the boat. So I hooked up a tarpon rod with a fresh live thread herring and held it over the side. After circling around and under the boat six times, the cobia took the bait. My party took turns and after about 25 minutes, landed a 70 pound cobia on twenty pound test line.
I found kingfish on the artificial reef, M-3 and they have been on and off for the last week and a half. The kings and barracuda were taking live sardines we had caught on the way out and on the (M) reefs. I rigged with 4 feet of 40 lb mono leader, 6 inches of #6 steel leader and a 5/0 hook. Depending on the weather we would anchor, drift or pull the baits at idle speed on the flat calm days. We also had a lot of fun casting tube lures to the barracuda and if you have never done that you need to try it. Top water for large cuda is awesome!
We also picked up some grouper and snapper while drifting the live sardines. I saw one gag come in on M3 that was 18 lbs. All the reefs have big jewfish on them and we could see them best on M-5 as they followed up our 4 lb amberjack or any fish that was big enough for them. We did hook a few big jewfish, but it was no contest and no one wanted to go to bigger rods with this hot weather :).
There has been plenty of bait fish from the beach out to the M reefs but you may find the bait a little nervous on the reefs. The gold hook bait rigs have been getting pinfish, grunts, pilchard, threadfin, cigar minnows and Spanish sardines.
Tarpon have been easy to find along Longboat beach, but for what- ever reasons will not bite very often. It has not been a good year for tarpon hookups! I have and I have watched others throw all kinds of bait to them with very limited results.
North of the bay just off of the ICW before Cannons marina channel, some very large trout are being caught with live pigfish using a float. Redfish and snook are also around the docks throughout the bay. Some snook, Spanish mackerel and pompano have been in the passes.
Enjoy and Protect!