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Rains don’t slow action; sport shrimping turns on

Posted Jun 7, 2012 by Frank Sargeant

Updated Jun 7, 2012 at 04:13 PM

Captain Ray Markham and crew took advantage of a rainy day this week to wax the snook, reds and trout in the Terra Ceia area – 16 snook, a dozen redfish and two dozen trout came over the side, with many caught during actual downpours. Topwaters such as the Top Dog, the CAL jig with shad or curly tail and the Eppinger Rex spoon did the job, Markham said, with most of the snook and reds right against the mangroves, requiring accurate casts to score.

This is prime time for sport shrimping, Markham said. A strong headlight and a long-handled net do the job, and wading around the Skyway is a good place to start – basically you look for the glowing eyes and step carefully to avoid stingrays. Taste these wild shrimp and you’ll never buy domestic market shrimp again; .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

Tarpon continue to bite, but some anglers report the best action has been on schools showing up as much as six miles offshore, probably because those outside fish get a lot less pressure than those in the passes and on the beaches. Captain Billy Nobles reported from Boca Grande that tournament pressure there from jig fishermen had pretty much shut down the bite in the pass, but he’s finding steady action on offshore fish in his new Yellowfin; http://www.captainbillynobles.com.

Captain Angie Douthit reports frequent rains are keeping Okeechobee water levels up, which makes for safer navigation. Bluegills and shellcrackers continue on a hot bite – the fish are still bedding – and Douthit catches them on ultra-light spinning gear with live red worms. Top areas include Kreamer/Rita Island areas including Pelican Bay; Long Point, some parts of the East/West and Observation Island areas, Bird Island, some parts of the Monkey box (inside and outside); Fisheating Creek Bay area and some areas of the North Shoal and Kings Bar; http://www.southfloridabassfishing.com.

Captain Mike Shellen reports great action at the Big O during the first hours of daylight on spinnerbaits around the Kissimmee grass, with catches of up to 40 fish before things start getting too warm. Most of the bass on the edges are small, however larger fish can be caught by flipping farther back in the cover with heavily weighted soft-plastics; http://www.okeechobeebassfishing.com.

Tribune correspondent Frank Sargeant can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

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