Spring's Greetings Fellow Fisherman !!!
Good news on this month’s fishing report for The Gulf of Mexico: fishing out of St. Petersburg this month has been quite active. The Kingfish run is in full affect and you will find your bait inside the bay to just a few miles offshore. The Spanish Mackerel are also in abundance all up and down the beaches. Good fishing to be had in the Gulf this month.
Hogfish Chains Offshore
Moving offshore from 55 to 75 ft., the Hogfish and Mangrove Snapper bite has been spotty to off the chains, depending on where you fish. There has been a nice congregation of Hogfish and Gag Grouper right now at: N2746.830/W 8306.865. Don't fool yourself, there are plenty of these fish from 25 to 50 ft. of water, but they seem to be a little smaller. The bigger Hogs seem to be just a little bit deeper from this location, on out to the West. So, peel your shrimp and get fishing for those Hogfish in the Gulf.
Red Grouper Roaming
Going out a little farther to 105 to 145 ft. at: N2742.210/W8328.100 to N2742.360/W8339.780 the Red Grouper bite has been fair to good. With big fish, 20+lbs. Roaming these regions. There are not very many on each spot, but if you catch 1-3 Grouper, a couple Lane Snapper, and a Mangrove or two, then that was not a bad stop. You'll have to work just a little bit to get these nice fish, but it will be well worth it. Get drifting.
Tuna in Tampa Bay
Let's talk about Tuna and more specifically, the Tuna in the Tampa Bay area. They have invaded. With fish being caught as shallow as 55 ft. There seems to be larger groups out a little deeper, in the 95 to 125 ft. depth.
Any of the big wrecks, from the Pillsbury to the Finbarge to the Shrimp boat, in 100 ft., up off Clearwater, this line here, seems to be holding good quantities. Find the bait, and you will find the Tuna. There seems to be a mixture of Bonita, Kingfish, and Sailfish, so be on the lookout. Several large sailfish have been caught in the last two weeks. There’s lots of Tuna to be had so bring your lucky fishing hat.
Best Times to Fish This April
This full moon is the beginning of Spring night fishing. 7 days a month, don't forget to take advantage of the moonlight bite. The big Mangos and Yellowtails are on a rampage this time of year with the water temp change. Feeding voraciously, getting fat, ready for the spawn in July and August. These are 7 day long, golden opportunities that happen once a month to visit this area: N2816.860/W8306.970 I have found nice quantities of Mangos feeding and gathering in this area. This is the Florida Middlegrounds. You cannot move your boat more than a few hundred feet without finding a new spot. There is a wide variety of species in this area, at this time of year. Mangrove Snapper, Yellowtail, Gag Grouper, Scamp, Beeliner, Porgy Kingfish, Tuna, and Cobia. Great place to fish in the Gulf of Mexico in April.
Hope this Gulf Coast fishing report helps put you on some fish. Until next week, when we'll be giving you our Long range/Offshore report. Find more fishing reports for The Gulf of Mexico on the Gillz Gear fishing blog.
Tommy Butler, X-treme Fishing & Consulting