Morning moving tide is the key to success during these dog days of summer. Bait is smallish but it's what the fish are keying in on right now. Virtually every grass flat in Tampa Bay has bait. Once the well is loaded head to deeper water. Spanish mackerel up to 30 inches are traversing the deep edges of the same flats bait was caught on. Chumming with live bait works well and don't be afraid to cut some up to get a slick going. A chum bag is never a bad idea as it will draw in all sorts of bait fish and predators will soon follow. Recently Spanish mackerel, trout and small sharks have been all over the deep flat edges and they have been cooperating well. Snook are biting but you have to fish the peak tidal movement of the day. They are eating the small baits just like everything else is. Chum heavy to get them fired up and trickle back enough to keep them interested. Redfish are the same as the snook — pick the best part of the tide to target them. Cut bait and live sardines are baits of choice. All the above said, morning incoming tide is best if you have that option, if not the best time to fish is when you can. Scalloping in Homosassa has been fantastic and is a great way to beat the summer heat.
Tim Whitfield can be reached at (813) 714-0889 or firstname.lastname@example.org.