Florida Offshore Fishing Yellowtail Snapper and African Pompano

Tampa Florida Offshore Fishing Yellowtail Snapper + African Pompano

Dive into the Adventure: “Florida Offshore Fishing for Yellowtail Snapper + Bucket List Catch of an African Pompano”

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Recently featured in an episode by Landed Fishing, “Florida Offshore Fishing for Yellowtail Snapper + Catch of an African Pompano” showcases an action-packed offshore fishing journey that begins in Tampa, Florida.

Join Captain Shaw and a seasoned crew of Captains with Reel Lucky Fishing Charters at the helm, this video not only offers a glimpse into the strategic nuances of fishing but also highlights the thrill of reeling in some of the Gulf of Mexico’s most sought-after species.

Watch Video: Florida Offshore Fishing Yellowtail Snapper + African Pompano

Tampa Florida Offshore Fishing – Yellowtail Snapper + African Pompano

Journey Offshore with Expert Guidance

The video showcases a typical day out on the Gulf, where the Gulf waters serve as both a battleground and a playground for anglers.

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Captain Shaw along with Captain Joe of Reel Lucky Fishing Charters based out of Tampa Florida, a veteran in navigating these waters, expertly leads the crew to prime fishing spots known for Yellowtail Snapper. Their approach combines local knowledge with proven fishing tactics, ensuring an exciting offshore fishing adventure.

Tampa, St Petersburg, Anna Maria Fishing Charters

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Florida Fishing Company
Inverted Fishing Charters St. Petersburg Florida

Catching Yellowtail Snapper Fishing

Throughout the episode, the crew focuses on targeting yellowtail snapper, a species admired both for its fight and its flavor. We’ve got a wealth of tips on how to effectively attract and catch Yellowtail Snapper:

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Chumming Techniques:

The crew demonstrates how a well-placed chum line can help when fishing Yellowtail Snapper, setting the stage for action-packed fishing.

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Tackle Tips: The importance of using light tackle and small, sharp hooks to match the finesse needed for yellowtail, known for their wary nature. In this episode the crew uses heavier gear to quickly surface these fish.

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Bait Selection: Shrimp and cut bait are shown as the baits of choice, appealing to the snapper’s preference for fresh, lively prey.

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The Thrill of a Lifetime: African Pompano

Incredibly in this video is the remarkable catch of a 25-pound African Pompano, a rare and exciting moment for any angler. This bucket list catch is presented not just as a personal achievement, but as a testament to the reel screaming action of the Gulf and the extraordinary opportunities available when fishing off Florida’s coast.

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Why Watch This Landed Fishing Episode?

For anyone dreaming of their next big fishing adventure or looking to learn more about offshore fishing in Florida, this video has it all.

Educational content with the sheer excitement of sport fishing, all set against the stunning backdrop of the Gulf of Mexico. The expert tips provided are invaluable for both novices and seasoned anglers aiming to enhance their technique or understand more about these specific species.

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Yellowtail Snapper Biology, Preferred Baits, and Rig Setups

In the Landed Fishing episode, viewers get a look at the art and science of fishing for yellowtail snapper in the Gulf of Mexico. To help anglers better prepare for their own fishing adventures, understanding the biology of yellowtail snapper, their preferred baits, and effective rig setups is essential.

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Yellowtail Snapper: A Closer Look

Scientifically known as Ocyurus chrysurus, the yellowtail snapper is a vibrant and sleek fish, easily recognizable by its bright yellow stripe running from snout to tail, which intensifies in color during spawning.

These fish are typically found in tropical and subtropical waters, favoring habitats around reefs, where they can feed on smaller fish, crustaceans, and mollusks. Yellowtails can live up to 6-7 years and grow up to about 30 inches, though commonly they are caught at smaller sizes.

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Preferred Baits and Effective Rigs for Yellowtail Snapper

Baits:

The yellowtail snapper is particularly fond of:

Shrimp:

Mimicking natural prey, live shrimp are irresistible to yellowtails.

Cut Bait:

Pieces of smaller fish such as sardines or squid can be very effective, especially when used in conjunction with chumming.

Rig Setups:

To maximize your chances of catching yellowtail snapper, consider the following setups:

Jig Heads:

When tipped with shrimp or cut bait, small jig heads can be very effective for yellowtail as they allow for precise placement near the reefs where these fish feed.

Knocker Rig:

This setup involves placing a weight right above the hook, allowing the bait to stay close to the bottom yet move naturally with the current. It’s ideal for fishing over reefs or sandy bottoms.

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Dealing with Predators: The Shark Challenge

An important consideration when fishing for yellowtail snapper, especially in the open waters of the Gulf of Mexico, is the presence of predators like sharks. These predators are attracted to the same chum lines that lure in the snappers, and they can often intercept your catch before you can reel it in. To combat this, being quick on the reel is crucial:

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Speedy Retrieval:

Once you hook a Yellowtail Snapper, a fast and steady retrieval can help minimize the chances of sharks taking your catch. This requires not only quick reflexes but also a reel that can handle high-speed retrieval without sacrificing torque.

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Heavy-Duty Gear:

Using slightly heavier tackle than typically recommended for yellowtail can also give you an edge in pulling fish quickly out of the water before sharks can intervene.

Fishing for yellowtail snapper in the Gulf of Mexico offers both challenge and reward. Armed with knowledge about the fish’s preferences and behaviors, along with the right baits and rigs, anglers can significantly enhance their chances of success. Whether you’re watching expert anglers like Captain Shaw and his crew or planning your own trip, understanding these dynamics enriches the adventure of fishing.

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Skyway Bridge Pier Fishing Tips

Tampa Florida’s Skyway Bridge Fishing Pier

Guide to Fishing at the Tampa Skyway Bridge

Fishing at the Tampa Skyway Bridge is an experience like no other, especially when targeting Tarpon and Grouper.

Open 24/7 and known for its rich action-packed and accessible fishing facilities, the Skyway Bridge is a prime destination for anglers looking to land these giant saltwater fish species.

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This detailed guide will delve into everything you need to know for a successful fishing trip at this iconic location.

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Introduction to the Tampa Skyway Bridge

The Tampa Skyway Bridge, officially named the Bob Graham Sunshine Skyway Bridge, stretches across Tampa Bay, connecting St. Petersburg in Pinellas County to Terra Ceia in Manatee County.

The bridge itself is part of I-275 and is a recognized symbol of Florida. After the old bridge was partially destroyed in 1980, the new structure was completed in 1987, featuring a cable-stayed design.

What makes this location particularly special for anglers is the Skyway Fishing Pier State Park, which utilizes remnants of the old bridge as fishing piers on the north and south sides of the bay.

Watch Video: Skyway Fishing Pier

Skyway Fishing Pier Tips

Here are some tips to increase your fishing opportunities next time you visit the Skyway Fishing Pier:

Know the Tides:

Fishing is often most productive during moving tides. High tide and the first couple of hours of outgoing tide usually see the best action. Use a tide chart specific to the Skyway area to plan your trip.

Use Live Bait:

Live bait such as shrimp, pinfish, and crabs are highly effective in attracting local species. The natural movement and scent of live bait can prove irresistible to nearby fish.

Fish at Night:

Consider night fishing for a chance to catch species like snook, tarpon, and sharks, which are more active and less wary in the dark. The pier is open 24 hours, and lighting along the structure attracts baitfish, which in turn attract larger predators.

Target Seasonal Fish:

Be aware of what species are most likely to be around during different times of the year. For example, tarpon generally appear during the warmer months, while sheepshead can be more abundant in cooler months.

Use the Right Gear:

Due to the variety of fish and the strong currents near the pier, using heavier tackle can be advantageous. A medium to heavy rod with a strong line (20-30 lb test) is recommended, especially when targeting larger fish like tarpon or grouper.

Pay Attention to Weather Conditions:

Fish activity can vary with weather changes. Overcast, breezy days can lead to better bites as fish are less spooky and more active than on bright, calm days.

Learn from Locals:

Spend some time observing or chatting with regular anglers. They can offer valuable insights into what’s biting and what techniques or baits have been successful.

Facilities at the Skyway Fishing Pier State Park

The park is renowned for being the longest fishing pier in the world, offering ample space and opportunity for anglers of all skill levels. Open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, the fishing piers allow for both daytime and nighttime fishing adventures. Facilities include:

fishing floridas skyway bridge pier

Ample Parking:

Directly adjacent to the fishing areas for easy access.

Bait Shops:

Located on both the north and south piers, these shops offer a variety of live and frozen bait, fishing tackle, and snacks.

Restrooms:

Clean and accessible restrooms are available for anglers’ convenience.

Picnic Areas:

For those who want to take a break and enjoy the beautiful views of Tampa Bay.

World’s Longest Fishing Pier

Pier Hours

24 hours a day, 365 days a year

Entry Fees

$4 per vehicle, plus $4 per adult

Location

4905 34th St. South #5000
St. Petersburg FL 33711

Phone

Contact Info
727-865-0668

https://www.floridastateparks.org/parks-and-trails/skyway-fishing-pier-state-park

catching big tarpon from the skyway fishing pier

Targeting Tarpon

Tarpon, also known as the “Silver King,” are highly sought after by sports fishers for their impressive size and acrobatic leaps when hooked. They can grow to be over 200 pounds and live in both salt and freshwater.

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Best Times to Fish for Tarpon

Tarpon season at the Skyway Bridge runs from late spring through summer, with peak activity from May to July. During this time, tarpon migrate through the waters of Tampa Bay, following the warm currents.

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Techniques for Tarpon Fishing

Effective tarpon fishing techniques include:

Live Baiting:

Use mullet, crabs, or pinfish. Position your bait at varying depths to find where tarpon are feeding.

Artificial Lures:

Large streamers, plastic worms, or poppers can be effective, especially during the early morning or late evening.

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Targeting Grouper

Grouper are bottom-dwelling fish known for their size and strength. The most common types around the Skyway Bridge are gag grouper, red grouper, and the formidable Goliath grouper.

Best Times to Fish for Grouper

Grouper can be caught year-round, but the best months are from June to September, when the water temperatures are warmer and the fish are more active.

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Techniques for Grouper Fishing

Bottom Fishing:

Use heavy tackle and strong lines because grouper often retreat into rocky crevices after being hooked.

Live Bait:

Ideal baits include squid, sardines, and pinfish. Drop your bait near underwater structures where grouper like to hide.

Chumming:

Attract grouper to your area by releasing a chum slick into the water.

catching live bait on the skyway fishing pier

Using the Ballyhoop Net

The Ballyhoop net revolutionizes how anglers can catch live bait. Its unique collapsible design allows for quick deployment and retrieval, making it an indispensable tool at the Skyway Bridge.

Here’s how to use the Ballyhoop net effectively:

Deploying the Net:

Simply toss the net into the water and let it sink. The hoop design keeps the net open, allowing schools of baitfish to swim in.

Retrieving the Net:

Pull the net up once you see that baitfish have entered. Its design minimizes escape, ensuring you get ample bait.

Handling and Storage:

The Ballyhoop is easy to handle and can be stored compactly, making it ideal for use on crowded piers.

Skyway Bridge Tampa Fishing

Local Expertise:

Skyway Misfits and GrouperMVP

Learning from experienced anglers can drastically improve your fishing skills. The Skyway Misfits, a group of seasoned pier fishers, and GrouperMVP, known for his focus on big-game fishing, are invaluable resources.

They offer insights on local conditions, bait preferences, and tackle recommendations. Following their YouTube channels and social media platforms will keep you updated on the latest techniques and fishing reports.

Conservation and Regulations

Fishing at the Skyway Bridge is regulated to ensure sustainability of fish populations. Always check the latest Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) regulations regarding size limits, bag limits, and season dates. Practice catch and release whenever possible, especially with species like tarpon and Goliath grouper, which are crucial for maintaining the ecological balance in Tampa Bay.

A Florida Fishing Adventure for All Anglers

Fishing for tarpon and grouper at the Tampa Skyway Bridge offers an unparalleled opportunity to engage with some of the most exciting marine species in Florida.

By preparing adequately, utilizing effective gear like the Ballyhoop net, and respecting local regulations and ecosystems, anglers can enjoy a fulfilling and sustainable fishing experience.

Remember to leverage the knowledge of local experts and immerse yourself in the vibrant fishing community at the Skyway Bridge. Happy fishing!

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Tampa Florida Offshore Fishing Amberjack, Tuna, Snapper, Grouper

Tampa Offshore Fishing Experience with Hog Squad Fishing

Calling all adventurers and angling enthusiasts!

And who better to guide you on this adrenaline-fueled journey than the renowned crew of Landed + Hog Squad Fishing?

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Offshore Fishing in the Gulf of Mexico

Led by the seasoned Captain Randall, Landed Fishing is synonymous with action-packed offshore excursions that leave anglers breathless and brimming with tales of epic battles with some of the ocean’s most formidable inhabitants.

From the moment you step aboard, you’ll be immersed in a world where every cast holds the promise of adventure and every tug on the line ignites your senses.

Reel in the Big Ones

From the pulse-pounding excitement of hooking a blackfin tuna to the Herculean struggles with an amberjack, Tampa’s offshore domain promises no shortage of thrills. Maintain composure, exert steady pressure, and reel in your quarry with finesse.

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Watch Video: Tampa Offshore Fishing

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t8T0BWyaLJI

Gulf of Mexico Species Spotlight:

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Amberjack

These brawny fighters are prized for their immense strength and tenacity. Found near wrecks and reefs, they’ll test the mettle of even the most seasoned anglers.

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Blackfin Tuna

Agile and acrobatic, blackfin tuna are lightning-fast predators that prowl the open waters. Their explosive strikes and blistering runs make them a favorite among thrill-seekers.

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Red Grouper

With their striking coloration and voracious appetites, red grouper are a staple of Tampa’s offshore reefs. Patience and precision are key to enticing these elusive giants.

yellowtail snapper fishing tampa florida

Yellowtail Snapper

Known for their delectable flavor and cunning behavior, yellowtail snapper are prized targets for anglers seeking a challenge. Mastering the art of presentation is essential for success.

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Barracuda

These sleek predators are lightning-fast and razor-toothed, making them formidable opponents on the line. Exercise caution when handling them, as their sharp teeth can inflict serious injury.

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Shark

From sleek makos to mighty hammerheads, Tampa’s waters are home to a diverse array of shark species. While landing one is a thrill, always prioritize safety and handle them with care.

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American Red Snapper

Revered for their sweet, succulent flesh, American red snapper are a prized catch among anglers. However, strict regulations govern their harvest, so be sure to adhere to all size and bag limits.

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Landed Fishing Difference

What sets Landed Fishing apart is their unwavering commitment to delivering an unparalleled fishing experience. With a keen eye for spotting bait balls and surface activity, Captain Randall and his crew possess an uncanny ability to navigate the Gulf’s vast expanse with pinpoint precision, ensuring you’re always in the thick of the action.

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Beyond the Catch: Unforgettable Moments

Yet, it’s not just about the fish you reel in—it’s the moments in between that truly define the Tampa offshore fishing experience. Whether it’s swapping stories with fellow anglers, basking in the warmth of the Florida sun, or marveling at the beauty of the Gulf’s pristine waters, every moment spent aboard is a memory.

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Partnering for Future Adventures

As Landed Fishing continues to chart new waters and push the boundaries of angling, we’re on the lookout for local businesses and creators along the Gulf Coast to join us on our next adventure. Whether you’re a bait shop with insider knowledge or a filmmaker with a flair for capturing the thrill of the chase we want to hear from you.

Together, we aim to elevate the fishing experience to even greater heights.

hooked up offshore fishing in the gulf of mexico

Book Your Adventure Today

So, what are you waiting for? Embark on the offshore fishing adventure of a lifetime with Hog Squad Fishing or with Captain Randall of Florida Fishing Company. Whether you’re a seasoned angler or a novice eager to cast your first line, there’s no better way to experience the adrenaline-pumping thrills of Tampa’s vibrant waters. Book your adventure today and prepare to make memories that will last a lifetime.

Florida Fishing Company

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Tampa Florida Bridge Fishing with Crab for Monster Fish

Tampa Bridge Fishing using Crab for Monster Fish

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Tampa Bridge Fishing for Giant Fish

In this episode from Landed Fishing, Captain Shaw joins forces with Hog Squad Fishing and Tsunami Fishing Tackle for a memorable fishing adventure beneath the bridges in Tampa Bay, Florida.

A must-watch for anyone interested in the strategies and excitement of catching big fish, specifically massive black drum, using crabs as bait.

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Using Crabs as Bait: Saltwater Fishing

Crabs are an exceptional choice for bait when targeting large fish like black drum. In this episode, Captain Shaw and the crew delve into why crabs are so effective.

The natural diet of black drum includes crabs, making them an irresistible and authentic bait. Learn how to properly rig the crabs to ensure they attract the drum, and they demonstrate the technique in action.

The use of crabs not only mimics the drum’s natural prey but also increases the chances of catching the larger, more elusive fish.

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Tackling the Giants: Fishing Gear and Technique

This episode also provides invaluable insights into the gear necessary for such a task.

Captain Shaw and his companions discuss the specific rods, reels, and line types that best suit the hefty challenge of reeling in black drum.

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Detailed explanations help viewers understand the importance of using sturdy gear that can withstand the struggles of large, powerful fish.

Watch Video: Catching Giant Fish Under Bridges

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Catching BIG Black Drum in Tampa Bay

Each year, large groups of black drum congregate in the Tampa Bay area, providing a perfect opportunity for anglers to experience the thrill of catching these giants.

The migration patterns vary from year-to-year but make certain times of the year particularly fruitful for targeting black drum, and this episode perfectly captures one of those peak moments.

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Book Your Tampa Fishing Charter

For those inspired by the episode and interested in trying their hand at catching some impressive black drum themselves, consider booking a charter.

You can fish with Captain Shaw through the Florida Fishing Company or with Captain Devan at Hog Squad Fishing. Both captains are experienced and knowledgeable, and they can provide an unforgettable fishing experience in the fruitful waters of Tampa Bay.

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When Sharks Attack these schools of Bull Drum

Bridge Fishing: Bull Drum vs Bull Sharks

Join us as we head out to the Bridges in Tampa Florida for some BIG Black Drum with Hog Squad and Rad Reeling Fishing.

Captain Shaw Bridge Fishing Tampa Florida

Captain JC from Rad Reeling Fishing

Captain Dylan from Hog Squad Fishing

Choosing the Right Rig: Knocker Rig vs. Carolina Rig

When fishing for large black drum in Tampa Bay, the choice of rig can significantly impact your success. This choice is often influenced by factors such as location, tide, and the behavior of the fish.

Captain Dylan hooked up with Big Bull Drum under Tampa Bridge

Get Hooked Up with Hog Squad Fishing

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Bridge Fishing: Knocker Rig

The Knocker Rig is particularly effective in areas with strong currents or deeper waters where bait needs to be kept at the bottom.

This rig allows the weight to slide directly down to the hook, knocking against it, which helps in keeping the bait in place amidst strong water movements.

It’s excellent for fishing directly beneath bridges or in channels where black drum might be feeding during moving tides.

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Bridge Fishing: Carolina Rig

The Carolina Rig, on the other hand, is better suited for areas where a more delicate presentation is needed.

This rig features a weight fixed on the line some distance from the hook, using a leader. This setup allows the bait to move more naturally in the water, mimicking live prey effectively.

It’s ideal for shallower waters or when fishing over grassy flats where drum may be wary of overhead shadows and disturbances.

Both rigs have their advantages depending on the fishing conditions. Anglers need to consider the tide—for light-biting fish and better sensitivity the Knocker Rig might be the better choice.

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Tsunami Fishing Tackle: Gearing Up for BIG Fish

In the episode, there’s palpable excitement about testing out gear from Tsunami Fishing Tackle. Landed Fishing is eager to see how their equipment fares against the legendary Florida tarpon. Tsunami’s reputation for durable and high-performing tackle makes them a promising ally in this challenging endeavor.

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The episode hints at future sessions where the crew will employ Tsunami rods and reels, which are known for their strength and reliability, crucial factors when dealing with the power and size of tarpon.

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This focus on gear testing is not just about the thrill of the catch but also about providing viewers with real, actionable insights on what works best in specific fishing scenarios. By stacking Tsunami’s gear against such formidable fish, Landed Fishing aims to offer viewers a thorough assessment of tackle performance in extreme conditions.

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Whether you’re a seasoned angler or a novice, this episode from Landed Fishing is not just entertaining but also educational, packed with tips and techniques for successfully fishing with crabs and tackling some of the largest fish in the Gulf Coast. Don’t miss out on the action, and consider booking your next fishing adventure in Tampa Bay to experience it firsthand.

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Netting Pass Crabs Bait for Catching Tarpon

Catching Pass Crabs for Tarpon Season

Netting Pass Crabs: A Family-Friendly Adventure Florida

As summer draws near, Florida’s anglers gear up for one of the most exhilarating fishing seasons—the Tarpon season. Known for their sheer strength and acrobatic leaps, Tarpon are a prized catch among sport fishermen worldwide. In Florida, a unique and cost-effective method of baiting these mighty fish involves netting pass crabs on a falling tide, an activity that combines family fun with practical fishing preparations.

Catching Pass Crabs on a Falling Tide

This episode, coming straight from the beautiful waters of Sarasota, Florida, dives into the prep work for the 2024 Florida Tarpon and Permit season.

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A Family-Friendly Activity

Netting pass crabs is presented as more than just a fishing chore; it’s a fun and educational activity for families. Participants learn about the local marine ecosystem while engaging in a hands-on activity that teaches patience and technique. It’s a perfect way for families to bond over a shared interest in nature and fishing.

What are Pass Crabs?

Pass crabs, small crabs found in the waters around Florida, are a top choice for baiting Tarpon and other finicky saltwater species like Permit. These crabs are typically swept out into the open during falling tides, making them accessible for netting. While pass crabs can be bought for about $3 each, catching your own not only saves money but also adds an engaging element to the fishing experience.

It’s all about strategy and timing, and we’re here to show you how it’s done.

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Watch Episode: Netting Pass Crabs for Catching Tarpon

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How We Do It

Join us as we take you through the steps of skillfully navigating the waters and using nets to catch these elusive crabs. Whether you’re a seasoned angler or a curious viewer, this episode is packed with actionable tips and engaging tactics.

Techniques for Successful Crab Netting

In the video, Captain Randall demonstrates effective techniques for netting pass crabs. The key is to use a long-handled dip net and to gently scoop the crabs from the water without causing harm. It’s important to move swiftly yet steadily to capture the crabs as they are carried out by the tide.

Why Catch Your Own Bait?

In the world of saltwater fishing, everything follows a hierarchy. To catch a legendary fish like the silver king (tarpon), you first need the right bait.

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And what’s better than pass crabs? These crabs are tarpon’s snack of choice, and catching them is an art in itself.

This episode focuses on hand-catching these crabs using nets during a falling tide, a method that guarantees freshness and quality—just what you need to attract a mighty tarpon.

The Best Time to Net Pass Crabs

The optimal time for netting pass crabs is during a falling negative tide, which occurs when the tide level is below the average sea level. This phenomenon causes the crabs to rush out with the outgoing waters, making them easier to capture. Captain Randall, a seasoned Floridian fisherman, emphasizes timing in his fishing video, guiding viewers on how to plan their crab-catching adventure according to tidal movements.

The Best Time for Bait Catching

Captain Randall shares his seasoned insights on why hitting the waters a third of the way into a falling tide offers the best chances.

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This timing isn’t just a guess; it’s calculated for maximum efficiency. The falling tide helps put you on the maximum flow of the crabs, making it more likely and easier to scoop them up.

Bonus Tip: Planning around the peaks that present negative tides can significantly boost your chances of netting pass crabs.

DIY Crab Holding Tank

After netting, ensuring the crabs’ survival until they’re used as bait is important. If you don’t have the luxury of buying bait or living on or near the water, Captain Randall shares a do-it-yourself guide for building a crab holding tank back at home.

This simple setup involves a basic aerated tank that keeps the crabs healthy and vigorous, ready for a fishing trip. Materials for the tank can typically be found at local hardware stores, and the build is straightforward enough for family participation.

DIY Bait Holding System

In this must-watch segment, Captain Randall takes us through a clever DIY project designed to keep your bait fresh and lively for the entire fishing season. Perfect for anglers who live near the water and want a cost-effective solution to store live bait, this episode showcases a simple yet efficient setup using everyday items that won’t break the bank.

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Building a Budget-Friendly Bait Holder

Captain Randall’s DIY setup begins with a standard $100 water tub from Tractor Supply. This 100-gallon tub is durable and spacious enough for the task, but Randall recommends filling it with about 50 gallons of water or less to optimize space and ensure the crabs have ample room without overcrowding.

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Aerating the Water

The key to keeping the bait alive and healthy is proper aeration. For this, Captain Randall installs a commercial-grade dual air stone aerator.

This system efficiently oxygenates the water, mimicking the natural environment of the pass crabs and ensuring they stay vigorous and fresh—just what you need to attract tarpon.

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Protecting Your Setup

Understanding the Florida climate, Captain Randall also highlights the importance of keeping the system out of direct sunlight to prevent overheating and maintain a stable environment for the crabs. His setup includes a protective cover that shields the tub from the harsh sun while keeping the water cool.

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Why This System?

This DIY solution not only saves money but also gives you the freedom to maintain a steady supply of live bait. For tarpon anglers, having quick access to lively pass crabs can make a significant difference in your fishing success. Plus, it’s an enjoyable project that adds an extra layer of self-reliance to your fishing prep.

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Get Hooked on Fishing!

Don’t miss out on the rest of our exciting season. Each episode builds on the last, from preparing your gear to landing the catch of a lifetime.

Subscribe to our YouTube channel Landed Fishing to stay updated with Captain Randall’s adventures. Learn from the best, and see firsthand why fishing in the Gulf of Mexico is a must-do for anyone travelling to Florida who loves the thrill of the catch.

Keep Watching

Loved this episode? There’s more where that came from! Continue watching our series to follow Captain Shaw and his crew through an exciting year of fishing in the Gulf of Mexico.

Each episode is a new adventure, with tips, tricks, and tales that any fishing enthusiast can learn from.

Whether you’re here for the fishing insights or just for the thrill of the sea, subscribing to our channel ensures you’re never left out of the boat.

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Kingfish Fishing Tampa Florida

Tampa Florida Kingfish Nearshore + Offshore Fishing

These fast and aggressive predators are known for their thrilling runs and are highly sought after by sport fishermen.

Best Time to Catch Kingfish

The best times to target kingfish in the Gulf of Mexico are during the spring and fall migrations when water temperatures are ideal. In the Tampa Bay area, the peak seasons are typically from March to May and then again from October to November. During these times, kingfish move closer to shore, making them more accessible to anglers.

tampa florida fishing nearshore fishing rods sunshine

Effective Baits and Lures

Kingfish are opportunistic feeders, primarily focusing on small fish. Live baits such as white bait (scaled sardines), threadfins, and greenbacks are particularly effective because they closely mimic the kingfish’s natural prey.

underwater bonita fish tampa florida

When using live bait, a common technique is slow trolling or drifting to cover more area and entice bites. For artificial lures, spoons, dusters, and deep-diving plugs are excellent choices. These lures should be trolled at different depths to match the feeding depth of the kingfish during different times of the day.

Watch Video: Tampa Florida Kingfish

Tuesday @ 2PM EST

tampa nearshore fishing mackerel bonita kingfish hog squad fishing 85

For those interested in experiencing this thrilling fishery firsthand or learning more specific tactics, the full fishing video by Landed Fishing provides an excellent reference. It not only demonstrates effective strategies for targeting kingfish but also gives a glimpse into the marine life of the Gulf, making it a valuable resource for any angler looking to improve their skills or just enjoy the adventure of fishing in Tampa Bay.

Fishing Techniques

To successfully catch kingfish, anglers should focus on areas with known underwater structure or temperature breaks, which kingfish often patrol for food. Trolling is a highly effective method because it allows you to cover a lot of water.

Anglers often use downriggers to keep the bait at the desired depth where kingfish are most active. It’s also important to use sturdy tackle, as kingfish have sharp teeth and can easily cut through weaker lines.

suzuki motors sea pro 250 landed fishing

Be Prepared for Anything

As showcased in the Landed Fishing’s video from an early season trip out of Tampa Bay, the Gulf of Mexico offers a dynamic and sometimes unpredictable fishing experience. In one outing, you might target kingfish and end up encountering Spanish mackerel or even tuna.

The video captures the excitement and unpredictability of fishing in these waters, illustrating the importance of being well-prepared and flexible.

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Grouper: Sarasota Offshore Fishing

Techniques for Red Grouper: Sarasota Offshore Fishing

sarasota florida offshore fishing red grouper april 2024

Offshore Fishing: Sarasota Florida

Sarasota, Florida, offers a diverse and rich fishing experience which caters to anglers of all skill levels. Nestled on the Gulf of Mexico, Sarasota provides access to exceptional offshore fishing where anglers can target species such as grouper, snapper, and kingfish.

suzuki marine offshore fishing outboards

Inshore, the grass flats and mangrove-lined shores are perfect for hooking spotted seatrout, redfish, and snook.

For those preferring a more serene environment, Sarasota’s numerous bays, and estuaries offer ideal spots for fly fishing.

Additionally, the area’s numerous piers and bridges allow anglers to easily access deeper waters without a boat, making it easy to drop a line and enjoy some leisure fishing.

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Whether it’s battling big game offshore or enjoying the tranquility of backwater fishing, Sarasota is a true haven for fishing aficionados.

Fishing Florida’s Gulf Coast

For anglers planning their next Gulf outing, this episode is rich with practical advice, from rigging techniques to catching live bait. The use of Knocker or Carolina rigs, in particular, is a game-changer for those aiming to explore bottom fishing tactics.

offshore fishing sarasota florida april 2024

This recent episode is packed with fishing tactics and insights for anglers targeting the elusive red grouper.

live bait in livewell

Gathering Bait with the Ballyhoop Net

The excursion begins with the collecting livebait, using the innovative Ballyhoop net to ensure the baitfish remain vigorous and attractive. After a successful chumming session, the livewells are quickly filled, setting the stage for a productive day on the water.

ballyhoop net catching live bait

ballyhoop net catching live bait

ballyhoop net packed away in sleeve

Bait Selection:

Live threadfins or grunts are preferred, their vigorous movements making them irresistible to the grouper. The freshness and vitality of the bait are crucial, as evidenced by the quick strikes experienced by the team.

Offshore Fishing Techniques: Deploying Bottom Fishing Rigs for Grouper

Once offshore, the crew’s attention turns to the red grouper, known for their preference for underwater structures such as reefs and hard bottom sea floors.

catching red grouper sarasota florida april 2024 offshore fishing 1

In this outing the anglers employed both Knocker and Carolina rigs, effective setups that allows them to quickly get the live bait down to the ocean floor.

Watch Video: Sarasota Red Grouper Fishing

New Episode Thursday at 2PM

sarasota florida red grouper fishing

underwater red grouper fishing sarasota florida3

Rigging Details:

A Carolina rig or knocker rig involves a heavy sinker placed above the hook or leader extending to a strong hook.

This setup ensures your bait can get to the strike zone faster and stay positioned longer

Positioning Offshore:

Accurate boat positioning is important for anglers when fishing over reefs or wrecks. Using GPS to mark productive spots allows for precise placement and targeting of grouper in the Gulf of Mexico.

florida offshore fishing sarasota red grouper

The Thrill of the Fight: Florida Offshore Fishing

The fishing session peaks with the capture of a legal-sized red grouper and intense battles with a giant bull shark, fought for nearly an hour. This episodes highlight the unpredictable nature of deep-sea fishing and the adrenaline-pumping excitement it can bring for curious anglers.

Captain Shaw and Junior’s adventure provides not just a blueprint for targeting red grouper but also inspires anglers of all levels to explore the depths of the Gulf of Mexico.

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Anna Maria Island Inshore Snook and Redfish

Anna Maria Island Redfish + Snook

big snook caught anna maria island florida 2024 hookd on chelz

Discover Family-Friendly Fishing and More at Anna Maria Island

With its picturesque white sandy beaches, crystal-clear waters, and a friendly, laid-back atmosphere, the island offers a perfect escape from the hustle and bustle of daily life.

A Prime Fishing Destination

Anna Maria Island’s inshore waters are a fisherman’s paradise, known for their incredible saltwater fishing opportunities. Anglers can expect to catch a variety of species such as tarpon, snook, redfish, and trout, particularly around the mangroves, grass flats, and bridges.

Releasing Caught Redfish Anna Maria Island Florida

The island’s fishing opportunities are plentiful with its easy access to both Tampa Bay and the Gulf of Mexico, making Anna Maria a great destination for both inshore and offshore fishing.

Watch Video: Anna Maria Snook + Redfish

The Beaches of Anna Maria Island

Famous for its seven miles of uninterrupted beaches, which include Bean Point, Coquina Beach, and Manatee Beach. These beaches are perfect for sunbathing, swimming, and even shell collecting.

anna maria island inshore snook fishing florida 2024

Old Florida Charm

Anna Maria maintains an “Old Florida” feel with its quaint cottages, small shops, and absence of high-rise buildings. This commitment to preserving its original character makes it a unique destination.

kings pier boat ramp anna maria island boatlaunches

The island’s Pine Avenue is a great example, lined with boutique shops, art galleries, and eateries that showcase local art and cuisine.

Eco-Tourism and Outdoor Activities

Beyond fishing, Anna Maria Island is a hotspot for eco-tourism. Visitors can kayak through the mangroves, go paddleboarding in the calm Gulf waters, or take a guided tour to learn about the local wildlife. The island also has several parks and nature reserves, where wildlife such as sea turtles and shorebirds can be observed in their natural habitats.

Snook Fishing Anna Maria Island Florida
Inshore Saltwater Fishing

fishing anna maria island with hookd on chelz

Family-Friendly Atmosphere

With its safe beaches, variety of outdoor activities, and welcoming community, Anna Maria Island is particularly appealing to families. The island offers many child-friendly activities and events throughout the year, ensuring that younger visitors have just as much fun as the adults.

fishing floridas anna maria island 2024

Island’s Easy Accessibility

Located just a short drive from cities like Sarasota and Tampa, Anna Maria Island is conveniently accessible yet feels worlds away. This makes it an ideal spot for day trips or long stays.

Florida Fishing company

Anna Maria Florida Fishing Charters

Whether you’re casting a line in the rich waters, relaxing on the beach, or exploring the local culture, Anna Maria Island offers a picturesque setting with endless opportunities for creating lasting memories. Join us for your next adventure and see why so many families return year after year!

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Captain Ray

Captain Ray

BIO

Captain Ray

A true native of Saint Pete Beach, Captain Ray has dedicated the last 15 years to fishing and diving in the area, becoming an expert in the local marine environment.

Captain Raymond Alexander is at the helm of the innovative fish tagging project operated by the non-profit organization Grayfish Tagging in the beautiful waters of Saint Pete Beach, Florida.

Captain Ray St. Petersburg Florida
Captain Ray, St. Petersburg, FL. Underwater Photographer, Marine Conservationist

Gray FishTag* Gag Grouper, St. Petersburg, Fl

Gray FishTag* Gag Grouper, St. Petersburg, Fl

Region(s)

St. Petersburg, Fl
Tampa, Fl

Species

Redfish, Tarpon, Hogfish, Snapper (variety), Tuna (variety),Grouper (variety)

Style

Inshore, Sight Fishing, Bottom Fishing, Reef Fishing, Wreck Fishing

underwater photography hogfish captain ray st petersburg florida

underwater fish whale shark photography captain ray alexander st petersburg florida

Aquatic Expertise

Captain Ray’s deep understanding and experience with the local sea life, especially Hogfish, Stone Crab, and Tripletail, make him an invaluable guide and resource of information. 

His extensive work in fish tagging the local St. Pete Gag Grouper population has not only contributed to conservation efforts but has also enhanced the knowledge base of the species in St. Pete, establishing him as a leading figure in marine education.

Giant Stone Crab Claws Florida

Watch Episodes

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A Variety of Marine Adventures:

Starting in September 2024, Captain Ray will be expanding his offerings to include fishing, snorkeling, and sunset charters.

These excursions promise to provide both thrilling experiences and educational opportunities, catering to all levels of adventurers from beginners to seasoned marine enthusiasts.

underwater fish photography captain ray alexander st petersburg florida

Commitment to Education:

He works across multiple schools in the Saint Pete Beach area, focusing on marine education, helping to foster a love for the ocean among students.

The Next Generation of Marine Conservationists

When he’s not guiding tours or conducting research on the water, Captain Ray shares his knowledge with the next generation as a teacher.

The wonder of the ocean, valuable insights into marine life and research with Captain Ray.

Join the Adventure:

If you’re interested in volunteering or learning more about the Saint Pete Beach fish tagging program with Grayfish, you can reach out to Captain Ray. 

Contact him via Instagram @stingray_alexander.

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Diving for Stone Crab St. Petersburg, Fl

Catching Florida Stone Crab Claws

A Sustainable and Delicious Adventure

Giant Stone Crab Claws Florida

Stone Crabs St. Petersburg, Florida

Stone crabbing is not only an exhilarating water-bound adventure but also an eco-conscious one, particularly along the vibrant Gulf Coast of Florida.

In St. Petersburg, Captain Randall and his experienced stone crab expert @Stingray_Alexander introduce both novices and seasoned crabbers to the sustainable art of harvesting stone crabs, a practice that uniquely combines environmental stewardship with the joys of fishing.

giant florida stone crab claws

The Basics of Stone Crabbing

Stone crabs are known for their delicious claws, which are a renowned delicacy. The interesting aspect of harvesting these crabs is that they can regenerate their claws, making stone crabbing a model of sustainable fishing.

The process involves catching the crabs, carefully removing one claw (if it meets size requirements), and then returning the crab safely to the water to ensure its survival and regeneration.

The claws must be at least 2.875 inches in length, as measured by the propodus, which is the larger, immovable part of the crab’s claw. This legal standard helps protect younger crabs and ensures the population remains stable.

Watch Episode: Florida Stone Crab

Captain Randall Florida Fishing Co

Captain Shaw, a seasoned host of Landed Fishing and a professional guide for the Florida Fishing Company.

He shares his experience and insights into this method of diving for Florida Stone Crab Claws, An overview of snorkeling for Stone Crab in St. Petersburg, FL, everything you need to know about Stone Crab and how to get started.

How to Identify and Harvest Stone Crabs

During an excursion with Captain Randall and Stingray Alexander in St. Petersburg, anglers learn how to identify stone crabs and distinguish between males and females, size limits and best conservation practices—knowledge that’s crucial for anyone interested in sustainable crabbing practices.

catching stone crab st petersburg florida

Male crabs tend to have a larger and slightly more elongated carapace, while females have a wider abdominal region.

Raymond demonstrates the proper technique for safely detaching the claw, which involves a precise method to ensure the crab’s ability to regrow its claw effectively and survive. This practice is critical and requires a responsible approach to avoid harming the crab.

large stone crab claws tampa florida

Fun Facts About Stone Crab

Regenerative Claws:

Florida stone crabs can regenerate their claws, which is an incredible natural adaptation. If a claw is lost, a new one will grow back after a few molting cycles, although it may take up to a year for the claw to reach full size again.

Sustainable Delicacy:

Because only the claws are harvested and the crabs are returned to the water alive, stone crabbing is considered a more sustainable form of fishing. The legal size for a harvested claw must be at least 2.875 inches, ensuring younger crabs can continue to grow and reproduce.

havesting legal stone crab claws st petersburg florida

Righty or Lefty?:

Stone crabs can be right-handed or left-handed, depending on the dominance of their crusher claw. The crusher claw, which is larger and heavier, is used to break open shells and can be found on either side of the crab’s body.

Seasonal Harvesting:

The harvesting season for Florida stone crabs runs from October 15 to May 1. This regulation helps protect the crab population during their breeding season and ensures the sustainability of the fishery.

Flavor Favorite:

The meat from stone crab claws is considered a delicacy, known for its sweet and tender texture. It is most commonly served cold with a mustard sauce, a traditional accompaniment that enhances the crab’s natural flavors

Florida Stone Crabbing Tours

These adventures are suitable for all ages and offer a hands-on learning experience about marine biology and the importance of conservation.

Stone Crabbing tours not only focus on the harvesting techniques but also on the habitats of stone crabs. These tours around the docks and waters of Tampa and St. Petersburg provide insights into the crabs’ ecological role and the best practices for responsible crabbing.

florida stone crab claw harvesting

Preparing and Enjoying Stone Crab Claws

After the adventure, the next best part is enjoying the catch. Stone crab claws are typically boiled and served cold with a dipping sauce, often a mustard sauce or melted butter. Captain Randall shares some of Stingray Alexander’s Stone Claw cooking and preparation tips with participants, turning the day’s catch into a delicious meal.

stone crab fishing st petersburg florida

Stone Crabbing in Florida

It’s an activity that appeals to environmentalists, food lovers, and adventure seekers alike. Whether you’re a local or a visitor, stone crabbing is a must-try experience that highlights the natural bounty and ecological mindfulness of Florida’s Gulf Coast.

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Guide to Offshore Fishing in the Gulf of Mexico
Guide to Offshore Fishing in the Gulf of Mexico
Netting Pass Crabs for Catching Tarpon
Netting Pass Crabs for Catching Tarpon
Anna Maria Island Inshore Fishing Snook + Redfish 2024
Anna Maria Island Inshore Fishing Snook + Redfish 2024