2/13/99  Fishing Report

From: Tarpon Springs to Crystal River, Fl.
Date: 10 Feb 1999
Remote Name:


2/13/99 Fishing Report for Tarpon Springs to Crystal River, Fl. By Capt. Dennis Royston


The past weeks weather was again unseasonably worm. Day time highs in the low 80s with light winds. Fog in the mornings has delayed starting times for anglers without good GPS or mapping navigation aids. The forecast for the up coming weekend is a cold front passing through west central Florida on Friday. The weekend is expected to be cool and dry. Winds ? Water temperature on the near shore flats is up to the middle 70s.

The unusually worm water has brought schools of pilchards into the area. With this bait came Spanish and King Mackerel. My time was focused On Trout, Snook and Redfish. While fishing for Trout on the grass flats we did have lines cut off by Spanish Mackerel. South of the Anclote River, Trout are still the prime target. North of the Anclote River Trout remain out of season until March 1st. From Hernando Beach south the Snook are showing up at mouths of the rivers and creeks. The entrance channels to the residential Canals are showing a few Snook. ( this weekends cold front may change this). All along the cost Redfish have been providing good action. Wade fisherman have been doing very well around Oyster Bars and hard bottom. In the clear shallow water stealth is the name of the game. A quiet approach is a must with this spooky fish. Live bait like shrimp, pilchards, Chubb’s and sand fleas are good choices. Jigs, spoons and even light top water plugs work well.

For those of you that are shore bound or don’t want venture far from home there is a lot of action in the rivers and canals for Sheepshesd and Mangrove Snapper. Both fish have small mouths and are known as bait stealers. Use a # 4 short shank live bait hook with a split shot or the lightest weight that will hold bottom. Place weight about 10” above the hook. Fresh shrimp is always good. You will hook more fish if you cut your shrimp fingernail size pieces. These fish provide lots of fun and are great table fare.

In the last year I have seen a lot anglers using canoes and kayaks to fish the estuaries and back country. Most of the canoers chouse to fish 2 to a boat . One person paddles while the other casts the shoreline. Both anglers can fish while drifting over Grass flats ore open bays. The kayak fisherman seem to have more comfort and versatility. The low cost and maintenance of these vessels make them worth considering. Ether of these craft only take a few minutes to slip into the back of a pickup, van or on top of the car. The boats can be slipped into roadside creeks, canals and shore lines that are not available to larger craft. GOOD FISHIN for information call Capt. Dennis Royston (727)863-3204