Early Summer Success
June is here already and what a year thus far it has been. We had one of the warmest winters on record but the wind in May just seem to keep blowing causing a change in the fish patterns. June marks the start of summer and while it might be hot, I like to enjoy the consistent light winds this time of year. It makes planning your trips a lot easier and fishing is very good. It’s a great time to get out and do some fishing. So here what you can expect to catch this month.
Tarpon is stealing the month as they continue their migration along the coast. If you have not encountered the battle of the Silver King its something every avid angler should check off their bucket list. Tarpon are pretty easy to find the you can find them breaching the surface at first light just off the beaches early morning. You will also find plenty of success fishing the passes and bridges as fish use these areas to feed frequently on bait as it passes through. Patience and planning around optimal feeding times is key with Tarpon as they are picky fish. Once you hook up with the Silver King the wait will be worth it.
Snook fishing is good almost year round in Tampa Bay but June offers some great opportunities to catch the bigger females. Snook this time of year move around the outer flats and spoil islands to get ready for the summer spawn. You will get more hook ups on bigger fish and they tend to feed heavily leading into the spawn. Tackle of choice would have to be free lined baits or if fishing the outer flats get out your Cajun Thunder Bay Bay float, these work great when fishing potholes. Tampa Bay offers some of the of the best Snook fishing in the state so make sure to get out on a trip and enjoy the experience
Summer also brings our Mangrove Snapper run. Mangrove Snapper are one of the most overlooked species in the bay. Snapper invade the reefs and wrecks of Tampa Bay as smaller fry bait shows up on the flats. With the smaller bait it’s a good idea to downsize hooks, I like to go with a Daiichi #1 circle hook. Snapper also have keen eyesight so going to #20 leader will also help with hookups. Mangroves are a great fighters when matched with light tackle. It’s a great time to get out and do some Snapper fishing.
Last would have to be Red fish. While most think it is too hot this time of year to chase Reds, you can have some great success when planning the tides and early starts before water gets hot. Reds still school up throughout the summer and good areas to start is along the outside flats and outer sandbars. Fishing the higher tides in the mornings up along the mangroves will also be very productive. Sometimes using artificial bait first thing in the mornings will be a very productive approach. I love throwing the Zman minnowz soft plastic baits along the mangroves on high water, this is always a great way to catch early morning Reds. When chasing the bigger schools of Reds on the outer bars it’s always a good idea to have a Miro Lure hard bait tied up as these fish are typically on the run. Tight lines!!
Captain Jason Prieto is a full time captain and has been fishing the waters of Tampa Bay since he was a kid. He is a native Floridian and would love to share his knowledge and experience through his charters. If you are interested in booking a trip you can reach him at 813-727-9890 or www.steadyactionfishingcharters.com. You can also catch his latest fishing reports by tuning into his radio program Tampa Fishing Outfitter Radio Show on 1040 NBC sports Sundays from 8 to 9AM or on our Facebook live feed Tampa Fishing Outfitter Radio.