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Breaking Tampa Bay, Florida and national news and weather from Tampa Bay Online and The Tampa Tribune |
Breaking Tampa Bay, Florida and national news and weather from Tampa Bay Online and The Tampa Tribune |
Sunday, Apr 20, 2014
Clearwater doctor unveils Shroud secrets
Wayne Phillips gives seminars designed for the layman on the history of the Shroud of Turin, with 100 facts supporting the claim it wrapped the lifeless body of Christ.
During Bollywood,  local officials say transportation issues will be more on the scale of a major convention or concert. FILE PHOTO
Transportation officials, firms unsure of Bollywood impact
Lightning winger Ryan Callahan wants more time in the Canadiens zone in Game 3. FILE PHOTO
Bolts’ Filppula, Callahan seek spark against Canadiens
Josh  McCown knows he is with the Buccaneers in part to mentor the player who will eventually replace him even though  he’s been placed atop the depth chart and is the odds-on favorite to open the 2014 season as the  starter.
Bucs Beat: McCown here to mentor, win


Fennelly: Friendly rivalry grows among childhood pals

MONTREAL — It's been 20 years, but Donna Callahan can still see and hear them out in front of the house on Groveview Circle in suburban Rochester, N.Y. Her Ryan is on the cul-de-sac with his big brother Mike. So are the Gionta boys: Mike's buddy Brian and his kid brother, Stephen. Maybe some others join in, but it's always hockey — street hockey, roller hockey, any hockey.

Editorial: Right time for pension reform
Bollywood comes to Tampa
Editorial: Protecting natural springs should be a priority
Obamacare will harm the doctor-patient relationship
Letters to the editor: Not automatic

Small King Conchs

Posted Mar 10, 2008 by Frank Sargeant

Updated Mar 10, 2008 at 10:09 AM

Hello Frank, I read your column Sunday and do agree with you. The bay is looking better these days. I have, though, noticed a few things. The absence of kings crown conchs. I used to see them everywhere and they were big. Now I rarely see them, and when I do they are very small. Do you have a take on this? Also, I was at the Gandy area the other day and noticed the absence of seagrass off of Georgetown. This area used to be huge and it was full of trout. When I was a boy, my stepfather and I always fished there first because of all the grass. Now the grass is very sparse and it is mostly sand flats. I wonder what happened there?  But, I have noticed that the grass is coming back in the shallow water off of Simmons Park in Ruskin. Also, do you know if they are going to replace the reef markers in the bay? I saw one washed up on the beach at Picnic Island the other day. How can the average fisherman find the good locations without electronics we can’t afford? I enjoy your columns and am glad Tampa Bay is still a wonderful place to fish. Thanks, Mike Baier

A:  I’m starting to see quite a few small king conchs along the south shore, but I understand these are slow-growing; maybe in a few years we will see more of them once again throughout the bay. Re the big flat near Gandy, I don’t know why that one has not come back, but it might be worth noting that this area was one of them where water quality was marginal in the most recent report. On the reef markers, I will pass along your request to the county and see if we can’t get something going on that front, though with the current budget crunch in nearly all departments, it may be a challenge. Thanks for your note, and good fishing. FS

Fishing In The Everglades

Posted Feb 21, 2008 by Frank Sargeant

Updated Feb 21, 2008 at 01:09 PM

Dear Mr. Sargeant: First, I would like to thank you for your efforts through the years to educate and inform the public about hunting, fishing, and conservation issues.  I have enjoyed your columns for many years now and I still look forward to them each Sunday.

I also wanted to seek your advice with regards to an upcoming fishing trip.  For the past 4 years, my company has allowed myself and two colleagues to take one of our most important customers on a fishing trip.  We are all avid fishermen, but our customer is even more fortunate in that his job has allowed him to fish all over the world.  One trip that he has never done is a trip to the Everglades.  We are interested in pursuing snook and redfish primarily, but we are open to fishing for trout, tarpon, or even goliath grouper.  We would like to go in April or May (2-3 days of fishing), but we are flexible if there is a better time of year to target these species in the Glades.  I don’t know if you are comfortable recommending any specific guides, but I thought I would see if you could at least point us in the right direction.  We want to make sure we find a reputable guide with a proven track record.  Also, any recommendations on lodging or the best areas of the Glades to fish would be appreciated.  Thank you. - Don Beard

A: Captain Pat Kelly is one of the best in that area for snook, and he gets a lot of big fish in April and May. He can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) or 863-644-4401. Pat used to keep a house down there where he lodges his clients—may still have it. Otherwise, check with him on suggestions for lodging at Chokoloskee or Everglades City. Tight lines, Frank Sargeant

Mullet Shortage

Posted Jan 28, 2008 by Frank Sargeant

Updated Jan 28, 2008 at 11:35 AM

Q: I strongly disagree that mullet have made a comeback to previous levels. That is before commercial netting, just for the roe. The fish would be discarded after removal of the roe and the roe shipped to Asian countries. I was not for the gill net ban, only against the roe fishing. I had a gill net boat and netted on my days off from my job as a Hillsborough County deputy. To me it was recreational. I was never able to cash in on the roe mullet runs due to my work hours. I sold the gill net boat before the net ban and went back to cast netting. There were several areas I could depend on to cast net my limit weekly. In my opinion mullet are the best eating fish that swim. In ‘96 I moved out of the area and moved back in ‘06. Since moving back to the Bay area I have returned to my old cast netting areas and the mullet are not there. Also there is a bridge in Dunedin where we threw our nets blindly with success until the roe netting began in Clearwater Bay. I haven’t been back to this bridge in years but I doubt that the mullet have returned. There should be a ban on exporting the mullet roe. There was never a shortage of mullet before exporting began and the roe was only consumed locally. I make my own cast nets and have a boat just for cast netting (wide, flat bottom and stable). I am a nephew of Gene Turner’s and although not as vocal, I am concerned about the lack of mullet in our waters.  G. Turner

A: Many anglers feel the way you do. Of course, the commercial netters don’t agree, but the FFWCC will consider the input from various user groups as well as the biological status of the fish before they make any changes. Hopefully, we won’t see a return to toward the bad old days prior to 1995.

Tilapia Vs. Nile Perch

Posted Jan 7, 2008 by Frank Sargeant

Updated Jan 7, 2008 at 01:56 PM

Hi Frank: Enjoyed your article on tilapia. Set me straight, I recall about 30 or 35 years ago these fish were introduced into Lake Parker in Lakeland. The purpose at that time was to attempt to control elodea and other water weeds. These fish were called ‘‘Chinese Carp.’’ Do you know if these are the same kind of fish as tilapia? I looked at the Florida Fish & Wildlife web page and it says that these fish are mistakenly called Nile Perch. What say you? - Chuck Wilkeson, Zephyrhills

Chuck: No, tilapia are not the weed-eating carp. A species known as the white amur has been introduced here and there to cut down on weeds, and the fish are sterilized before they are released so that they won’t reproduce. The idea is they eat the weeds, then gradually die out. It hasn’t worked too well, though. As you indicate, tilapia and nile perch are not the same species. Tilapia reach maybe 8 to 10 pounds, nile perch over 100 pounds. They look quite a bit alike, but the nile perch is actually a distant relative of the snook, as well as the Australian barramundi. Best, FS

Trolling Some Area Lakes

Posted Nov 29, 2007 by Frank Sargeant

Updated Nov 29, 2007 at 02:49 PM

Mr. Sargeant: First let me thank you for help in the past. I started fishing Hicks Park after reading an article you wrote about it. It is truly a great park. My 6-year-old son caught his first bass on an artificial worm there. Later you helped out when the lake became overgrown with weeds and needed treatment from the city. Anyway, I have moved to the northwest part of Hillsborough. I still have a john boat and would like to find some other places similar to Hicks Park that I can fish with only a trolling motor maybe a little closer to home. Any suggestions? - Marty Palmer

Marty: Lake Rogers Park might be worth a try - I’ve not fished it personally, but it looks pretty good. It’s west of Gunn Hwy, where Race Track and Boy Scout Roads join. Also, you’re pretty close to Lake Tarpon, which can be pretty good at this time of year - the canal on the south end is great with a RatLTrap when the water is moving. Tight lines. FS