Sarasota Fla. Report 01/10/99

From: Capt. Bob Smith
Date: 10 Jan 1999
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Sarasota Florida Report January 10, 1999 By Capt. Bob Smith

Over the last two weeks it has been hard to find good weather due to the cold fronts and wind but for the few nice days we could fish, we had some good results. The second day after the cold front we found the flounder stacked up around the artificial reefs just a mile offshore. The flounder were taking live shrimp and seemed to be the only fish on the bite. The flounder were not real large but all were keepers.

About everything I can think of has been caught during the last couple of weeks, but the truth is, it has been very hard to fish because of the weather. Cobia, pompano, Spanish mackerel, bull reds, trout, grouper, snapper, sheep head and flounder are all about the reefs and grass flats both inshore and offshore. Although water temperature may make some species move out of an area, wind and rain may only slow their feeding pattern down until the water condition improves. Yes, fish are cost conscious of how much energy they might spend to catch their prey in difficult conditions and may wait for things to settle down. They are also very leery of quick changes in their environment and need time to adjust.

The best action on these windy days has been along the coast with an east wind, north east, being the best. You want to find and mark some structure, then anchor over it. There is plenty of natural and artificial reef bottom to fish between the beach and the 30 foot depth about three miles out. This should keep you in the calm water. Fish the bottom for most of the action but also free line and/or float some live bait such as shrimp, white-bait, sardines out the back. Pinfish and grunts work better on the bottom than the top but all the live bait will work well on the bottom. A strong north or south wind will find me fishing in the passes and around protected docks. I find that once the wind gets to 20 mph, the fishing drops off most everywhere but you never know for sure J.

Pompano, trout and redfish have showed up around most of the bay but the numbers have been down except short periods of time. The coming week looks good if the wind will stay under 20 mph. It goes without saying that long offshore fishing will greatly depend on that.

Enjoy and Protect!