June Tampa Bay and St. Pete Beach Charter Fishing Report
Summer is officially here in St. Pete Beach and that means that we are catching tarpon on the regular now during our fishing charters. We had a few late cold fronts but those are gone and the water is heating up with temperatures in the mid 80’s.
We have been seeing the big schools of tarpon all over the Tampa Bay area from the Sunshine Skyway to some of the smaller bridges as well as in the passes but the most enjoyable time to catch these tarpon is off the beaches like St. Pete Beach, Treasure Island, Madeira Beach, Indian Shores, Redington Beach, Clearwater Beach and Anna Maria in the early morning before the summer time temperatures get too hot. There has also been a large amount of sharks being caught lately while out tarpon fishing during the evening with some really nice blacktip sharks coming around. These sharks put up one heck of a fight and the timing couldn’t be any better with Shark Week happening at the same time so most people are really pumped when they see one of these big sharks.
Another summertime favorite in the Tampa Bay area is catching snook that have made their migration out to the beaches and passes. These fish are spawning right now so they are feeding like crazy but they are out of season to keep so snook fishing during the summer is purely for sport. It is extremely important to remember that these spawning snook need to be handled with care in order to make sure our snook population continues to grow. The proper way to hold a snook is with one hand holding its lower jaw (similar to a bass) and to have your other hand supporting their lower belly.
(See picture below for reference)
Another popular fish to target in the Tampa Bay area right now is mangrove snapper aka “mango’s”. Mangrove snapper are one of the best tasting fish in the Tampa Bay and while most tend to average in the size of 10-15″ we have caught some much bigger that you usually don’t see unless you are offshore in the Gulf of Mexico. The bag limit (amount you can keep) for mangrove snapper is 5 per person and people are limiting out regularly and bringing home a nice dinner for the whole family. As always, Capt. Zack will clean your mangrove snapper for you when you get back to the dock so all you have to worry about it cooking it up yourself or bringing it to one of the many restaurants in the area that will cook up your catch for you.