Florida Fishing Report

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Florida Fishing Report

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Our Florida fishing report page offers up to date information on fishing in the Tampa, Clearwater, St. Petersburg, Tarpon Springs, Orlando, Bradenton, Sarasota, Port Charlotte 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

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Old man winter came knocking early this past fall. Thinking back, it was the first week in November when I had to cancel the first trip of the autumn fishing season. December rolled around and the Artic Canadian air swept across Florida with an atypical dip in the jet stream. We ended 2010 much like we started it with record setting cold temperatures.

The weather seems to have stabilized this past week with more typical temperatures, lows in the 50s and highs in 70s. Between the passing cold fronts, winter’s staple species of red drum and speckled sea trout are constituting the primary catches along the southwest coast of Florida.

Savvy winter anglers use the below mean low water depths to target redfish, trout, sheepshead, flounder and the oddball snook that are trapped inside these puddles located on the edges of the flats. The fishing can be fast and furious, despite the cold water. The primary catch is often in good numbers but is typically smaller, school-sized fish. Nonetheless, it beats shoveling snow or working!

The first weeks of the year are always a busy time for long time fishing guides as they prepare to close out their records from the previous year and begin to schedule wise clients who are looking to get their dates set during their favorite months or moon phases. As always, the main attraction of the center ring is GiantTarpon.

Each year, thousands of people make the trek to southwest Florida to experience the best GiantTarpon fishing in the world. They come from Bangkok, Germany, England, Russia, just as they may come from Cleveland, New York City or Fargo. Some are people of purity who will not have a tarpon eat anything but chicken feathers known as “flies” and will use long wimpy rods, satisfied, even if they are only able to see and present a fly to a dinosaur. Others are satisfied anchored on an edge with 8 rods in the gunwale rod holders baited with fresh cut bait. Like most tarpon fishing, the hours of boredom are punctuated by moments of chaos. The “sight-fisher” will spend hour after hour staked out on a shoal waiting for a trespassing tarpon or they will depart well before daybreak and cast live baits in the massive schools of fish off the beach that near always result in at least one landed fish per morning. 

For some, fishing in the deeper passes is the only way or “no way”, the action is often hot and furious. It is "pass fishing" that is ALWAYS a favorite "past time" envy of those who seem to carry themselves above God. When there is professional jealousy in fishing, someone is experiencing "too much success"! Oh yes…no single species of fish defines and divides fishermen like the tarpon. That has not changed in over 135 years.

Over the years, I have humbled myself in my approach to fishing. Yes, I will always have the desire to compete, out wit and boast, but I have also learned that there is a sense of peace in the quest for GiantTarpon.

Today I notice things such as advertising slogans that may read things like “I live for this”.  I also witness possessed egomaniacs who do the fishing and catch the fish for their clients and know they (captain and client) have missed the meaning of what this is all about. The tarpon is merely a catalyst between people to form memories that are perpetual in time. This is what I sell.

Each year, tarpon mass in our waters like they do in no other place in the world. As it was after the cold winter of 2010, the cold winter of 2011 too will produce an exceptional cycle of fish (short of some other natural variable).

The new 2011 will be my 23rd year as a full-time fishing guide. In addition to a loyal following over the past couple decades, I too field many new inquires to fish the peak of the GiantTarpon season. If you have intentions for peak spring fishing on our flats for snook, redfish, trout, cobia, tarpon, permit or any of the other numbers of world-class gamefish available to us, now is the time to book.

Get live reports via our Blog

Over the years, keeping the fishing reports updated and fresh has been challenging when you spend your life on the water. Now, in the era of "smart phones", we have found a way to over-come this hurdle.

All season I have been up-loading live reports and pictures to our Facebook site. We've had an overwhelming response! I'll continue to use this page to keep a general picture of the fishing easily accessible to all. However, we strongly encourage you to join us in being on the cutting edge.

Would you like to see the images you see on this page the second they are taken, read live micro fishing reports and view live video from the boat? Here is how....

In Facebook, you must register to view our pages. You can become a “friend” of mine by request at



"Like" (formerly "become a fan") the GiantTarpon.com Facebook "Fan Site" for a free chance to win a free guided GiantTarpon with Capt. Robert McCue. Your name must appear in the "Like" list on the left hand side of the Facebook page to be eligible. The drawing will be held April 1st , 2011 or at 1500 "Likes".


You can also receive our text micro-blogs by “following” us at www.Twitter.com/GiantTarpon on your phone or use just the web.

Screaming Drags and Tired Arms!

Robert McCue

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Florida Fishing Report

Last Update 3JAN11
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