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January 28, 2011

Great Tampa Bay Winter Fishing For Redfish & Trout

As the cool fronts continue to move through good fishing remains constant.

Tampa Fishing Charter Report -End of January

Hello from Anna Maria I know it's pretty cold up north for you snow birds, I thought we might have a pretty cold week ourselves last week, but it really was pretty nice. I would say we only had one cold day in the 50s and one really cold night. I was surprised this morning that it felt kind of balmy this morning when I woke up. I guess the days are getting longer and the water has more time to warm up during the day. The high was 78 degrees today but we have a front moving though as I write and it's going to cool down for a few days, the high is supposed to be in the high to low 60's. That should be good for me though, it makes it easy for me to pattern the fish when it stays a little cooler. Last week on some of those warm days the pattern was changing really quickly as the water warmed quickly and that left us scrambling at times to change up tactics.

Over all the fishing has been pretty solid though. We have been catching a lot of Reds, some up to 30 inches. I found some really large school of giant Reds that were laid up too shallow to fish, they were just too spooky. The same school will start biting better though as the water warms and we have higher average spring tides.

Trout fishing remains strong, my largest this week was 26 ½ inches. I would consider that a trophy Trout, although as spring comes fish that size should become more normal. That being said that is a big Trout, my largest ever is a little over 30 inches. I would say February, March and April have been my very best months for Trout fishing in the past.

We have been getting some nicer Sheepshead; the largest ones are about 5 pounds. They are so good to eat. Most of my fishermen that like eating fish a lot love catching Sheepshead.

I am still getting a few Black Drum up to 6 pounds or so, little ones like that are fun to catch on light tackle and good to eat as well.

I have not been able to get offshore Grouper fishing lately. The wind has been blowing a little too hard each day I start thinking about heading out to give it a try. I'm sure they are biting out there though, if the wind would just lie down a little.

Well that's what I have going on right now, Redfish and Trout should make up the bulk of the catch this week. Large Bull Reds should pick up shortly. Tarpon season is filling quickly, now is the time to start making arrangements if you want to plan a Tarpon trip. As always I hope you have enjoyed my report.

Capt. Matt Ercoli