Thank you for visiting The Islander Newspaper Online.

We are currently updating our website to provide you better service and function.
If you would like to access the new site, please, click here: The Islander Newspaper

Sorry for any inconvenience. Our new site and service will resume shortly.

Web Master

The Award Winning & Best News on Anna Maria Island, FL Since 1992

"The Award Winning & Best News on Anna Maria Island, FL Since 1992"

Monday, Apr, 21, 2014
Florida Press Assn. Award-Winning Web Site
Home Latest News Weather Sports Real Estate Classifieds Island Guide Islander Store

 SECTIONS

 • 

Main News

 • 

Classifieds

 • 

Opinions

 • 

Streetlife

 • 

Calendar

 • 

Fishing

 • 

Sports

 • 

Real Estate

 • 

Obituaries

 • 

Weather

 Features

 • 

Cortez Cook Off: The Results

 • 

Anna Maria Island Bridge FDOT replacement bridge

 • 

National Hurricane Center (Atlantic)

 • 

Advanced Search

 • 

I love AMI

 • 

Mystery Story

 • 

Fishing Laws

 Classifieds

 • 

Classifieds Page

 • 

Place An AD

 • 

Items for Sale

 • 

Garage Sale

 • 

Estate Sale

 • 

Announcments

 • 

Lost & Found

 • 

Pets

 • 

Transportation

 • 

Boats & Boating

 • 

Fishing

 • 

Kids 4 Hire

 • 

Help Wanted

 • 

Health Care

 • 

Services

 • 

Lawn & Garden

 • 

Landscaping

 • 

Home Improvement

 • 

Business Opportunities

 • 

Rentals

 • 

Real Estate

 Weather

 • 

Today's Forecast

 • 

10 Day Forecast

 • 

Today's Tides

 • 

Emergency e-mail

 • 

Storm Watch

 Archive

 • 

News Archive

 • 

2009 Top Notch Gallery

 • 

2008 Top Notch Gallery

 • 

2007 Top Notch Gallery

 • 

2006 Top Notch Gallery

 • 

2005 Top Notch Gallery

 • 

2004 Top Notch Gallery

 Useful Links

 • 

Island Links

 • 

i.wed

 • 

Islander Store

 • 

About this Site

 Contact Us

 • 

Islander Store

 • 

Subscribe

 • 

About Us

 • 

e-mail us

Story Tools

Date of Issue: April 28, 2010

Tarpon on the verge to invade beach waters

Nice bite

Caleb Helmer of Anna Maria caught this 6-foot black tip shark last week while surf-casting with a chunk of ladyfish off the beach in Holmes Beach. Helmer said he successfully released the shark. Islander Photo: Zack Geeraerts

Bill Starrett of Anna Maria, left, and Gary Huffman caught this 38-inch snook wade-fishing with a live sardine on light tackle near Long Bar in Sarasota Bay. Islander Photo: Courtesy George Kyd

Tarpon fishers are frothing at the mouth at word that the silver kings are loaded up in Charlotte Harbor and the Everglades. That means in a week or so, the bruisers will be rolling off Anna Maria Island beaches. Water temperatures in the nearshore Gulf last week were at 71 degrees. Once that temperature reaches about 73 degrees, look for the probable arrival of tarpon.

Bait is loaded up offshore and anglers are enjoying fast action on nearshore reefs and wrecks with cobia, kingfish and other fish. It has been an unusually good cobia season, with numerous reports of 50-90 pound cobia.

Capt. Warren Girle said he’s still fishing the same five redfish in north Sarasota Bay. He said most of the schooling fish are over the slot. There also were some big groups of redfish on the east shoreline. “I think a lot of the legal fish have been taken home,” Girle said. He added that there are still a lot of trout and Spanish mackerel in the bays, but no pompano in the areas he’s fished. “We didn’t skip any this week,” Girle said. “I would think that New Pass, Big Pass and the Middlegrounds (in Sarasota Bay) has pompano.”

Offshore, Girle reported cobia on the 3- and 7-mile reefs, as well as keeper grouper, mangrove snapper, Key West grunts and porgies in 40-50 feet of water. He said kingfish have been skyrocketing through baitfish. “In the middle of Sarasota Bay and on the west shoreline, there were a ton of nice-size shiners,” Girle said.

James Followell from the Sunshine Skyway south fishing pier said he has been seeing Spanish mackerel, pompano, grouper and a few kingfish.

Capt. Zach Zacharias of the DEE JAY II out of Parrot Cove Marina said angling action has busted loose, and the hardest decision to make each morning is what species to target. He said bait is plentiful most days, and there is a really good range of sizes and species.

He said the wind relaxed most of the week and his clients enjoyed action with kingfish, Spanish mackerel, cobia and pompano, along with a variety of hard-bottom critters.

Inshore, he reported excellent results with spotted sea trout, flounder, mackerel and pompano. Redfish have been plentiful in the area and are beginning to show signs of settling and feeding. A handful of snook have been boated and released. “They are starting to show up on the flats more and more, but their pattern is still well behind what it should be at this date,” Zacharias said. “I feel the FWC made the right decision to close down spring snooking this year and I encourage anglers to leave them be as much as possible during the spawn. Here’s hoping that the slightly cooler water temperatures for mid-April will extend this banner spring action long into May.”

Bob Kilb from Rod & Reel Pier said anglers have been catching a lot of Spanish mackerel, few pompano and an occasional black drum. “There’s so much trash fish around the pier that you can’t fish hardly,” Kilb said. “The pinfish are terrible.”

Capt. Logan Bystrom said now that the bait is in the area and the winds have been kicking up, he’s been kite-fishing and live-bait fishing the nearshore reefs and wrecks for kingfish, Spanish mackerel, sharks and cobia.

Capt. Larry McGuire of Show Me the Fish Charters said he has been catching a little of everything — big gag grouper, mangrove snapper, a lot of kingfish, cobia to 40 pounds, amberjack and blacktip and sand sharks. Depending on the trip, he’s been catching kingfish at 7 miles, grouper 7-30 miles, cobia around 12 miles and amberjack about 30 miles. “So there’s fish everywhere,” McGuire said.

McGuire said he’s been using live bait, such as pinfish and grunts, for kingfish. He’s also been using Got-cha plugs for kingfish and cobia or bottom fishing over a ledge or rock pile for grouper and snapper. He also was free-lining live white bait, sardines, blue runners and cigar minnows. McGuire said his biggest cobia at 40 pounds hit a sardine.

Capt. Mark Howard of SumoTime Fishing Charters said the springtime fishing is hitting its peak with a plethora of species feeding heavily. Spanish mackerel continue to flood into the deep grass areas of Tampa Bay with some fish weighing in the 5-pound range. He said shiners are on the flats, and anglers can chum with Purina tropical fish food to entice premium baits into cast-net range.

He added that big threadfins are in 6-8 feet of water, and kingfish are off our coast anywhere from near shore to 8 miles out. “Look for the diving birds to give away their location,” Howard said. “Shark fishing is coming on strong with blacktips, spinners and lemons cruising the bay and passes. Speckled trout have been chewing ferociously when the tide has been moving. Their sizes have varied from 14-26 inches.”

He said speckled trout are abundant over the grass flats around Anna Maria. Live bait and Berkley gulps in pearl and new penny have been the baits of choice. He said redfish have moved into the mangroves and are feeding on the incoming tide, and cobia has finally showed up off the beaches and the artificial reefs. “A live pinfish will turn these bruisers appetite into overdrive,” he said.

Send fishing news and photos to fish@islander.org

Have your say:

No comments for this page. Feel free to be the first

Username:

Contact:

(email or url)

Subject:

Your View:

Please enter the security code below:

security  

Get breaking news

Follow the Islander on TwitterBecome a fan of The Islander on Facebook

Sign up to receive breaking news alerts via e-mail. We'll send you a notice when the news and classifieds appear online every week, before the print edition hits the streets.

Click here for Gulf oil spill updates related to Anna Maria Island.

Historic Anna Maria City Pier Plank Walk

Put your name, your message, your memorial on the Historic Anna Maria City Pier prior to the Pier Centennial Celebration! And join the fun!

CLICK HERE for Stoltzfus e-mails and related court documents.


FREE Island
Vacation Guide:
get it here

Cortez Cookoff

Click here for 2010 Cortez Cookoff Winner and recipes

To advertise here, please
visit our rates page
or contact us at:
sales@islander.org
Phone: (941) 778-7978
Fax: (941) 778-9392

Back to top of Page

Home | Weather | Real Estate | Classifieds | Archives | Contact | Island Links
Islander Store | Subscribe About this site | Classifieds Page | Place an Ad
For Sale | Garage Sales | Announcements | Lost & Found | Pets | Transportation
Boats & Boating | Fishing | Kids for Hire | Help Wanted | Health Care | Services
Lawn & Garden | Landscaping | Home Improvement | Business Opportunities | Rentals | Real Estate

Our Privacy and Copyright Statements © 1992 - 2009, The Islander