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Thread: 17 species in 5 days

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Posts
    3,648

    Default 17 species in 5 days

    I fished 5 of the past 8 days in Tampa Bay with guide Neil Taylor of Strike Three Kayak fishing. This was my sixth trip to Tampa in 2016 to fish with Neil covering 22 days on the water. We had very agreeable weather -- calm winds, rain held off until we were done each day, and not as hot as it was a few weeks ago.

    I started last Sun by jigging light lures next to bridge pilings in 10-15 ft depth. The lure is a combination of a 1/2-oz Silly Willy spoon and a teaser fly tied by Neil. Both are tied onto the same loop using a loop knot.

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    I hoped to find large black drum and cobia, but they did not show up. I did get five species that day including one new to me (striped burrfish - a large spiny pufferfish).

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    I had several days of business, then returned to fish with Neil on Thurs, Fri, Sat, and Sun. We fished near the southern mouth of Tampa Bay all four days. We fished in several different types of habitats. Often we anchored up on shallow flats and cast 1/8-oz jigheads and 12 Fathom plastic tails. At other times we paddled along the edges of mangrove islands casting the same light lures. On three of the days, we jigged the Silly Willy/teaser rig in 8-10' depth in a channel between two islands. This latter form of fishing produced the most variety. On each of these days I caught at least 6 species with some overlap but some new species each day. Here is the list of species I caught during the five trips.

    speckled trout
    snook
    pompano
    ladyfish
    gag grouper
    flounder
    hardhead catfish
    grunt
    pufferfish
    striped burrfish
    pinfish
    pigfish
    spadefish
    spanish mackerel
    lizardfish
    mangrove snapper
    jack.

    Today we were on the water before sunrise and watched the sun come up while catching fish.

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    After a lousy start (several tangles and broken lines in the dark), I found my stride and had my best day of the five. I caught 6 large pompano on the jig, six snook casting to mangrove edges, and two cute pufferfish that inflated when I touched them.


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    I am already booked to return to fish with Neil in December. Several of my OGWLF buddies will join me then.
    John Veil
    Annapolis
    Native Watercraft Manta Ray 11 and Slayer Propel 10
    Member - Pro Staff team for Native Watercraft

    Author - "Fishing in the Comfort Zone" - light tackle fishing techniques for kayaks and small boats

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Location
    Annapolis, MD.
    Posts
    412

    Default

    Glad you had a successful trip. Looking forward to our Dec. visit.
    John
    Annapolis
    Native Slayer Propel 10, Native Ultimate 12

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Location
    Clinton,Md
    Posts
    275

    Default

    That's an awesome list of species John V! That puffer with the long spines look tough. Glad you had a great trip.

    Yak67
    2016 Hobie Outback LE#217

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Pasadena, MD
    Posts
    2,260

    Default

    Good job warming up the fish (and Neil) up for our December visit, John.

    Give me specks, redfish, ladyfish and snook.

    I can definitely do without the spiny pufferfish. A picture is close enough for me.
    Mark

    Olive Hobie Revo 13
    Hidden Oak Native Ultimate 12

    Author: The Simple Joys of Kayak Fishing (Tips and Tales From an Old Guy in His Plastic Boat)
    Available on Amazon.com

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