Sarasota Fla. Report 12/13/98

From: Capt. Bob Smith
Date: 13 Dec 1998
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Sarasota Florida Saltwater Fishing Report

By Capt. Bob Smith December 13, 1998

There are still some kingfish offshore but most of the action is with barracuda, little tunny and some nice grouper on the bottom. I spent most of my time just a mile or two off the beach fishing for cobia, Spanish mackerel and flounder.

Every day was unique! I never knew which fish would be the prevalent feeder and I kept three sets of rods ready at all times. Fishing the artificial reef "C" that is in about 25 feet of water, I used mostly live shrimp and Diamond jigs, but I am sure that many other baits would have worked as well this past week. Cobia was the big fish and on some days, the cobia action seemed to be non stop, while other days it was Spanish mackerel on diamond jigs or live bait with eight pound test line. Most of the time we spent switching from top to bottom and from light to heavy rigs. Sometimes all methods would be working at the same time for different species. The only times it really slowed down was when the wind stopped completely and the water got glassy.

We found flounder in small schools on the bottom up to three pounds and also the large sheephead are beginning to show up. Trigger fish and grunts were plentiful as always. The cobia would take the bait on the bottom, free-lined or on a float and would eat live shrimp, crabs, fish or take an artificial bait. When the mackerel moved in, we went to the light rods and eight pound test line. Most of the mackerel were small but keeper size and the largest were caught on live bait.

On the bay, redfish have been the best that they have been in years. Big Pass and around the docks behind Otter Key have been the hot spots. Live shrimp fished on the bottom with a small split shot has produced redfish after redfish along with a few flounders. Of course sea trout, pompano, jacks and a variety of other fish are being caught but redfish are hot on the bay.

A new weather front is on the way in and may change a few things but we never know how or what it will effect.

Enjoy and Protect.