Florida Fishing Report

Florida Fishing Report: Florida Fishing Charters

Our Florida fishing report page offers up to date information on fishing in the Tampa, Clearwater, St. Petersburg, Tarpon Springs, Orlando and Boca Grande area of Florida's West Coast. For more information on our Florida fishing charters and tarpon fishing charters, please click the link below

Florida fishing charters

Florida Fishing Report

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Florida Fishing Report

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Bobby Jones (left) with grandfather Bob Greenwald with a pair of oversized reds.

Sever fronts and abnormal low-pressure systems continue to throw curves in the spring pattern. While record temperatures and snowfalls are being set throughout the eastern seaboard, Florida has not been spared a deep dip in the northern jet stream. I try to keep my reports as accurate as possible. Overall, it has been a tough spring. Severe and record cold fronts have plagued us since the first week of November 2002. Just as soon a pattern establishes, once again Mother Nature wreaks havoc. It is not easy being optimistic on a couple of April mornings with sheens of frost blanketing the boat. 

However, as a farmer of the sea, I have become hardened to the surprises and variables of nature. Hopefully it is now all behind us. On those small windows in between the recent fronts we have had some typical and outstanding spring days on a variety of species.

Large schools of reds have provided non-stop action for as long as you care to catch them on several trips. Ultra clear and very skinny water had the fish swimming through our baits with a careless attitude 6 weeks ago. Now with the more favorable spring flood tides, there has been enough water to get these fish to drop their guard and feed relentlessly. The pattern has been consistent minus any top FUBAR awards to the league of jon boats, skiffs, kayaks, waders etc. that have taken a likení to me anywhere I sit for a day or more in this modern era.
Erica Hardy with an oversized redfish taken on a recent outing with her brother Shawn.

Trout fishing remains strong and for the most part, has been one of the best years in recent memories. Fish are scattered throughout their range with the inconsistent weather. Points, cul-de-sacs, the last oyster bar guarding rivers and creeks, spoils and barrier islands are all producing.

Snook are feeding when the water temperatures are in their comfort zone. While the good olí days of yesteryear for the snook in this area are now just some fond memories, there remains some action for those willing to put in their time.

Aimee  and Justin Salt were all big smiles while pounding the reds.
King and Spanish mackerel, bonito, and some huge sharks were providing non-stop action just a couple miles off the shoreline prior to the major fronts. The key was finding the bait pods.From that point, there was not much you could do wrong. When the water was clear in these same areas, limit grouper catches were being taken by trolling plugs. Barracuda were suckers for a free lined mackerel over the wrecks and artificial reefs.

Easter weekend I will focus my attention to giant tarpon. As with everything in the adverse weather patterns, they have been off. With some luck the weather will now stabilize. Prior to the latest front and while in Boca Grande Pass early last week, I had taken a water temperature reading of 78 degrees. Meteorologists are forecasting a warm week and my fingers are crossed!

Screaming Drags and Tired Arms!

Robert McCue


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Florida Fishing Report

Last Update 13APR03
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