The weather has finally settled in southwest Florida and the fishing is heating up.
We?ve been doing well on snook, spotted seatrout and redfish on topwater plugs, jigs, jerk worms and fly on the Sarasota Bay flats. The snook have been ranging up to 32 inches, the redfish 28 and seatrout 20. In addition, there are some monster jack crevalle prowling the bay.
Jack Littlejon and Robert Cook, both of New York, fished three days with me and did well on fly rod. They caught a number of spotted seatrout, ladyfish and pompano. Most of the fish were taken on Clouser Deep Minnows.
Freshwater action also is improving, but low water is a problem. We?re in the midst of a severe drought.
A recent trip to Lake Manatee resulted in lots of hand-sized bluegill, several big shellcracker, stumpknocker and seven bass to 2 pounds. The fish took No. 10 poppers and No. 12 bead-head nymphs.
Flats fishing should improve in April as the water warms and we get into good tidies. Fishing also will be excellent on the deeper grass area and edges of the sand bars for seatrout, bluefish, Spanish mackerel, ladyfish and pompano.
We look for great action in the Everglades during April for bass, bluegill, shellcracker, peacock bass, speckled perch and the exotics ? oscar and Mayan cichlids. Our Everglades trips often result in 100 fish per person.