Tampa Bay Fishing Report October 2008

Archived in the category: Fishing Reports
Posted by: Captain Woody - Comments Off on Tampa Bay Fishing Report October 2008

Snook Snook season is open and the water temperatures should start cooling down a bit. When that happens, snook fishing ought to brighten up in Tampa Bay. We’ve maintained decent snook action all summer and October should turn out nicely. Anglers have been catching impressive quantities of fish on both half and three-quarter day trips with most averaging in the 22-27 inch range with several over 30 inches. Our big fish for September was a 39 incher. Artificial lures are a blast for those who enjoy matching wits with a linesider and live bait, free-lined or under a cork will always do the trick.

RedfishThe redfish where booming in September compared to August and this month should be outstanding as well. We’re still catching plenty in the 20 to 30 range with our big fish tipping the measuring stick at 33 inches. When redfish hesitate to take live greenbacks or pinfish, which is seldom, try tossing out a piece of cut bait, i.e. mullet, bluefish, or ladyfish. If redfish are in the area they’ll find it. I like to suspend it under a cork to let the scent travel with the current.

Sea Trout – The Trout bite will continue right into winter so be prepared for some decent October trout action. Drift any good grass flat, tossing livebait free lined or under a popping cork, or toss around some artificial lures and have a ball catching a mess for dinner.

Mackerel, Sharks, Bluefish, and CobiaLarge schools of mackerel, bluefish, yellowtail jacks and ladyfish are still around the bay chasing bait. As you travel the bay watch for diving birds and you’ve found feeding fish. Set up a drift near the activity and get ready for some fast and furious drag screaming action. I use 60 lb. Seaguar leader and long shank 2/0 hooks. Believe me when I tell you to be prepared to retie and use plenty of hooks.

Be prepared for the occasional cobia or shark to pop up at the worst moment, always have a rig ready to toss a small pinfish to a passing cobia. Cobia normally turn immediately to take a pinfish, we caught two in September one small one 35 inches.

It doesn’t take much chumming to get a shark bite going they seem to be everywhere. We normally catch plenty of smaller fish but our largest last month was somewhere close to 100 lbs.

Mangrove Snapper – these great eating fish are all over the bay and not bashful about eating small greenbacks or shrimp. You must be quick or they’ll clean you hook before you know it. If you feel the bump and do not hook up, reel in because your baits gone. Remember the first part of my report about Amendment 27/14 rule changes… well it applies to all snapper fishing… use circle hooks, have a vent tool and de-hooker.