Afternoon showers and the high temperatures sometimes make August a tough month to fish. The same pattern holds true from last month. Get out early and target the shallow waters for snook, redfish, and trout. When temperatures start to rise, move deeper and target the mackerel, snapper, and shark. The bait has been an issue in our region. The new hatch of white bait (greenbacks) started to show up at the end of last month. Look for it to move into the normal areas in our region this month. A ¼ inch net is a must.
This often overlooked species has been and should stay around all month in our region. They offer good drag pull and are just flat out fun to catch. Sharks follow the food source. Find areas that are holding mackerel, lady fish, and blue fish, and you are sure to run into some sharks. As far as rigs go, I like to use a Penn Senator 113H with 40lb mono. An 80lb Ohero fluorocarbon leader tipped with a 105lb wire and 6/0 Daiichi circle hook will do the trick. Spanish mackerel is my bait of choice. They are extremely bloody and oily. You will run into reef sharks, black tips, nurse, and hammerheads to name a few.
The trout should continue to stay productive this month. My bait of choice will be the newly hatched whitebait. Areas around Simmons Park to Joe Island will hold fish. Find the deeper grass ranging from 3’-6’ and it should hold plenty of trout. A 25lb Ohero fluorocarbon leader and #1 Daiichi circle to match the small bait will do the trick. Trout are an extremely sensitive fish. Handle each fish as little as possible and use a dehooker tool to remove the hook from the fish you don’t keep.
Look on the flats out front of Simmons Park and the flats south of Cockroach Bay for some schooling fish. Get out early and approach these schools quietly and keep your distance. Live white bait (greenback), cut threadfin, or cut or live pinfish are great baits. As the water temperatures rise, look to fish the mangrove trees. The redfish use the tree’s shade to stay cool. The mangroves all along the Southshore will hold redfish.
Best of the Rest
Although season is closed, you can still catch and release snook. Look for some post spawn fish to go on the move. They will stage in their normal areas before the move for fall. Remember every fish is important to the recovery so land the fish as quick possible and release it unharmed. There still will be some tarpon hanging around. Look for the fish to move up our region from the Skyway all the way up to downtown. Cobia will also be hanging around all summer. Be sure to keep a lookout at the range markers as you run the bay. Have a pinfish rigged and ready to go.