Tampa Bay Fishing Report May 2007

2007-05-12 15:34:11
Tampa, Florida - Saltwater Fishing Report
Woody Gore

Snook Season Closes… May 1, 2007 until September 1, 2007. You can still catch them but they got to go back. If you’re lucky enough to catch a really big spawning fish; be gentle when handling it because some of the large breeders may still have their eggs. If not handled carefully they could prematurely lose that precious cargo. Anyone catching a large fish always wants a photograph for bragging rights but remember, never hanging it vertically from a gripping device when taking photos. Always support the fish horizontally. Whenever possible release smaller fish boat side using a de-hooker keeping in mind, where fish are concerned less is more. The less handling or netting a fish endures… the better its chances for survival.

Speaking of de-hookers they also work great for catfish, ladyfish, jacks, mackerel, or any other stinky, slimy and toothy specie. Shakespeare offers an exemplary tool for just this purpose and it floats.

If the earlier months of 2007 are an indication May should be awesome fishing or for just being outdoors. Summertime’s coming and things like too much sun and not enough water causes people to perspire often to the point of dehydration. Whenever a person becomes dehydrated and does not take action to remedy the situation a medical emergency can quickly present itself. Dehydration leads to heat exhaustion or worse heat stroke. Know the warning signs for both watching yourself and your guest. Drink plenty of fluids while you’re on the water especially those replacing lost electrolytes.

For some reason people feel that alcohol and boating go together. If you must consume alcohol… do it in moderation and never if you’re operating a vessel. Alcohol quickly impairs your reaction time and ability to make quick decisive decisions. If you get stopped by the FWC, Police, Sheriff, or Coast Guard they call it… (BUI) Boating Under the Influence carrying a hefty monetary fine, jail time or both. And worse yet… you don’t get caught but… imagine killing or injuring a family member, your fishing buddy or someone else. Whenever you consume alcohol, do it responsibly and never if you’re operating any motor vehicle.

Snook are eating just about anything you toss at them and as the water returns to normal Snook fishing shows promising signs. If you’re into using live baits sardines or greenbacks work. You’ll usually find plenty on the flats, around markers or bridges. If you’re a land based angler try the Sunshine Skyway Fishing Pier, St. Petersburg Fishing Pier of one of the many other piers around the area. If wading be careful keeping an eye open for Stingray’s. You might also keep an eye open for the occasional Bull Shark. I’ve seen several good sized fish cruising the shallow flats. Artificial lures should produce all month and for some good visual action try topwater lures like the MirrOlure Top Dogs or 7M Twitching Lure. Soft plastics are a good choice and usually produce especially when rigged on light weight jig heads or weed-less using a 2/0 worm hook and bullet weight.

Redfish are definitely starting to eat and they really like these warmer water temps. Greenbacks, small pinfish, and shrimp always work for reds but so does cut bait like ladyfish, mullet or half a blue crab. For some tackle busting early morning excitement try tossing an artificial top water lure” around a grass flat or pitching soft plastics like Old BaySide’s Shadlyn around the mangroves on high in coming.

Looking for Snook and Redfish around Tampa Bay? You will find them almost everywhere from the southeast shore including the Alafia River, Picnic Island, Simmons Park, Bishop Harbor, Joe Island down into Bradenton and Sarasota. On the north end around Weedon Island, Fourth Street, Cypress Flats, Rocky Point, Double Branch, and Culbreath Isle. The Inter-coastal, Tierra Verde, Pass a Grille and Boca Ciega offer good Snook fishing, especially at night around the docks and bridges.

Spotted Sea Trout fishing is always productive during the summer. Try pitching a live shrimp or small pinfish suspended under an Old BaySide Paradise Popper Cork on an incoming tide. Look for broken bottom grass flats in two to six feet of water for summertime Trout. Topwater popping plugs on a calm early morning flat are always great fun and don’t be surprised if a big Redfish grabs the lure.

Look for hard sandy or rocky broken bottom flats (grass flats with plenty of potholes) around Picnic Island, Simmons Park, Bishop Harbor, Joe Island down into Bradenton and Sarasota. Upper Tampa Bay sports good fish around Weedon Island, Fourth Street, Cypress Flats, Rocky Point, Double Branch, and Culbreath Isle Flats.


Mackerel, Sharks, Cobia, Kings and Tarpon should be everywhere. Cobia will cruise markers or flats behind manatees or rays. Mackerel feed on Threadfin schools and Kingfish and Sharks will be feeding on the mackerel. Tarpon are already showing on the beaches and around the Skyway. Artificial reefs and fish attractors are always good producers for Grunts, Snapper, Sheepshead and Gags.

“GIVE ME A CALL & LET’S GO FISHING” Guiding and fishing Florida waters for over 50 year’s and the results are always the same “Memorable Fishing Adventures”. If you need information on booking single or multi-boat charters, organizing company or corporate events.

Call Capt. Woody Gore. Mobile: 813-477-3814 Office: 813-982-2034 or Email me at WGORE@IX.NETCOM.COM. Visit WWW.CAPTAINWOODYGORE.COM on the web.

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Woody Gore

About The Author: Captain Woody Gore

Company: Captain Woody Gore Charters

Area Reporting: Tampa Bay, Clearwater, St. Petersburg

Bio: Born and raised in Tampa, Capt. Woody developed a passion for fishing as a child and years later, he is still expanding his fishing knowledge base and skill levels. Now with over 50 years of worldwide fishing experience he does everything possible to create an unforgettable and world class fishing adventure.

Click Here For Past Fishing Reports by Captain Woody Gore