Quiet Waters Fishing Charters, run out of Sarasota, FL found good fishing both day and night over the last few weeks. Water temperatures are peaking in our area with surface temperatures in the high 80s in the morning and exceeding 90 degrees by late afternoon. Despite the warm water, fishing has been excellent for both fly anglers and anglers using light tackle. The number of baitfish in our area has certainly helped keep the fish active and feeding.
We’re starting our day trips around sunrise when temperatures are coolest. There are shallow flats around Sarasota that are consistently holding redfish and snook. Being around baitfish and in close proximity to deep cooler water seemed to be the key to finding shallow water species. EP baitfish patterns and floating minnow flies worked best in these areas. Anglers fishing with light tackle did best using soft plastics that included weed guards.
The deep grass was the ideal place for anglers that were more concerned with action than the species they were catching. The fishing action on the deep grass is getting to ridiculous levels. Clouser minnows and paddle tails is all that it takes in the areas that are dense with fish. Bluefish, jacks, and larger pompano provided the most exciting action, while seatrout of all sizes remained the most reliable.
Dock light fishing at night has been the best time to target snook and juvenile tarpon in the Sarasota area. Numerous anglers landed larger snook while fly fishing and with light tackle. Some were humbled by even larger snook that ate their flies and then immediately bolted and broke them off on dock pilings.
The best flies for larger snook have been EP baitfish patterns and small shrimp patterns. For light tackle anglers, both two and three inch Vudu shrimp or lipped plugs that suspend worked the best on larger snook. Using a bite guard of at least 30 lbs. fluorocarbon increases the likelihood of landing larger snook.
Anglers that love juvenile tarpon and those looking for their first connection with a tarpon found the dock lights to their liking. Juvenile tarpon provided consistent action throughout the month of August. Most fish were between 10-20 lbs. but we found a few larger than that. Feeding them was not too difficult on most nights, but getting a hook in them and keeping them pinned was challenging at times.
The fly patterns that worked best on juvenile tarpon were Bob’s tarpon fly and a lightly dressed EP baitfish patterns. The majority of the tarpon caught on spinning tackle were fooled with small shrimp imitations. The Vudu shrimp was a reliable lure over the last few weeks, however, we did hook a few on lipped plugs.
As we move into late summer, we should see the development of more dependable patterns for redfish and snook during the day. The deep grass will continue to provide good action for both fly and light tackle anglers looking to bend the rod. The dock lights will continue to provide excellent opportunities for anglers to target both large snook and juvenile tarpon well into September. Call, text, or email if you’re interested in a trip with Captain Brian Boehm
Thanks for reading,
Captain Brian Boehm
Quiet Waters Fishing