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August in west central Florida and we can expect afternoon thunderstorms just about every day along wit 90 plus degree temperature, August can be one of the hottest and muggiest months of the year. I tend to spend less time on the water and use the month to catch up on boat maintenance and my never ending list of honey do’s. When I do fish in the heat of the summer I tend to start early avoiding the heat and afternoon thunderstorms.
Summer time fishing for Mangrove snapper has started off as one of the best in years. The mangrove snapper tend to school on deeper structure. Some of the best mangrove snapper fishing is done on the artificial reefs just west of Simmons Park and Port Manatee. July and August are the 2 peak months to target this overlooked species. All it takes to catch these tasty fish is to find some structure in deeper water and send down a small shrimp on a number 2 hook. Hold on there are some big snapper in the bay this year!
Capt. Jason Prieto reported catching a 25 inch red grouper just off Shell Point on a deep rock pile. I don’t know if this was a record for Tampa Bay but it’s one of the biggest red grouper I’ve seen caught this far up and inside the bay. Red grouper tend to be found further offshore.
Redfish continue to be on the slow side however; we did manage to put a few on the boat this last month. We worked the Simmons Park area on high tide using our trolling motor to ease around the many mangrove island that line the area from the park north to Apollo Beach. Scaled sardines seemed to work well placed about 16 inches under a bobber.
There are still plenty of Spanish mackerel inside Tampa Bay. The trick is to get them to bite. The mackerel bite has been somewhat slow this summer season. I do expect that to change as we head toward September. When fishing for mackerel try using a 40 pound shock leader with a # 1 triple x long shank hook. Live sardines, threadfin hearing and shrimp are the baits of choice.
So far this summer Trout fishing has been typical with lots of catch reports of smaller sized fish. (Less than 15 inches). Trout have to be between 15 to 20 inches before you can keep one to take home for dinner. Each angler is allowed 4 trout and one of the 4 can be over 20 inches. Look for grass in the 4-
Summer is a great time to wade fish. Pick days when the tides will be low near or just after sunset. I typically use artificial baits and have great success with Trout, a few Snook, and Redfish. If for nothing else watching a beautiful sunset while fishing a pristine Tampa Bay grass flat is reward enough
Capt. Danny Guarino a lifelong resident of the Tampa area and full time fishing guide on Tampa Bay. 813-
Capt. Danny Guarino
|December 2014 Fishing Forecast|
|November 2014 Fishing Forecast and Report|
|October 2014 Fishing Forecast|
|September 2014 fishing Forecast|
|August 2014 Fishing ForeCast|