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From center ring the main event lets get ready to rrrrrrrrrrrumble !!!
My apologizes for the tardiness of this report. Here it is Easter Sunday, and finally a chance to write a fishing report. A fishermans job is never over.The Vernal Equinox has passed and like clockwork the fishing has gone into overdrive. At first March came in like a lamb, but in just days became a lion. Though we faced some difficult challenges during the past weeks, everybody left happy with bagged gamefish and sugar coated memories.
Enter the lamb. Last weeks full moon brought warm air, strong tides, screaming drags and tired arms. Snook, redfish, trout, cobia, mackerel, jacks were the star attractions of the center ring. As a matter of fact, grand slams were taken on 8 of the last 10 days aboard the Bounty Hunter.
Snook are biting best on the edges of the flats and in around backcountry holes. Most fish have been averaging about 30 inches. The fish are under tremendous pressure. I do not see this changing in the future. Please if you are proficient in catching these most special fish, release them! As evident by this years harvest, snook are in trouble around here. While the top guides will continue to satisfy the thirst for snook, the question is . for how much longer?
I believe fish cycle. Each year a species seems near absent and yet another one is over abundant. I must say, reds have been spotty at best. Trout on the otherhand have been phenomenal. Big trout.
For those who know how to work the circuit from January through mid April, 1999 has been the best year of quality and quantity speckled trout fishing in years. For the past two moon phases the bite has been hot from Port Richey north. On average we have been catching 25 to 30 trout between 3 and 7 lbs. a day. Find the shallower spots that feature oyster, rock, grass, cul-de-sacs, and are within 500 yards of deepwater. These fish are suckers for anything that moves.
Please remember or as you will soon learn, these fish are so fat because they are stuffed with fully hydrated roe. If you find these fish, return some to the water to spawn. Further, harvesting the last females out of an area will result in a dead spot the next year. I sadly admit I have been witness to such an event this year. The state must protect these fish. As fisherman we must pick up the slack and not just speak conservation, but practice it as well.
Cobias are starting to show on the backs of the large southern stingrays. I have spotted them several times the past few days while chumming for crickets (Scaled Sardines). Salt and pepper bottom in 4 to 6 feet is the places to find them. The easiest technique is to drop a frozen block of chum and suspend a couple palm-size pinfish 5 feet below a balloon. Oh yea hold on.
The mackerel are showing around the passes and on the deeper flats. Action building into the dark moon should peak with large schools. If the water remains clear, kingfish will be up on the beach this week.
For those in the know .GIANT TARPON are beginning to show. The numbers will build in the "early" spots the next few weeks. Be ready, they are gonna pour in quick this year.
Screaming drags and tired arms!!!!!
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