"Lots of people committed crimes during the year who would not have done so if they had been fishing. The increase of crime is among those deprived of the regenerations that impregnate the mind and character of the fisherman." Herbert Hoover.
With all the rain we had last week the big question on anglers minds was “Is this ever going to end?” After walking around for a week with wet feet I’m convinced that webbing was starting to grow between my toes like a duck. So when we got a break from the weather over Memorial Day weekend, anglers of all ages came out into the sun to catch up on some fishing. It was lawn chairs, coolers, and fishing gear everywhere. The best part was watching the young children come into the Bait House with their parents all excited about getting to go fishing. The kids came up with some very interesting questions, some easy to answer, others not so much. Six-year-old Peter P. from Clearwater walked up to the counter carrying a small bait net and asked, “Can a shark bite through this net or do I need that big one over there?” That question was followed up with “How do I pull the teeth out of the shark so I can make a necklace out of them?” Peter’s parents said that Pete had heard about the record Hammerhead being caught and he was thoroughly convinced that every fish they were going to catch would be a shark. A young British girl wanted to know if we carried “That thing on TV that you turn on and it makes a noise and all the fish come to where you’re fishing and you can catch them?” I’d love to see that infomercial. I explained that we didn’t have any of those and she told me “You should get some. They’re cool.” Looks like the British are selling fish callers over there. One of my favorite questions of the weekend was asked by a boy who brought a bobber over to the counter and asked “Do you have blue ones?” I tried to tell him that bobbers are red and white so you can see them on the water, but he came back with “You could use a blue bobber, and the fish couldn’t see it, and you could sneak up on the fish, and you could catch him then.” Quite a compelling argument he made. Hat’s off to all the parents who are getting the next generation of anglers excited about fishing.
In my last column I had mentioned that if the rays had moved into the area, there was a chance that the Cobias would also be here. Well, they are definitely here. We’ve seen several caught in the area over the last two weeks. Most are being caught using a bobber set at four feet and tipped with a greenback minnow. Redfish are abundant in the area lately. They are hitting everything from live shrimp, cut ladyfish, and Berkley Gulp Baits.
I just tried Berkley Gulp for the first time and had great luck hitting Redfish. I used a quarter ounce jig head and the Gulp 3” bronze shrimp. Give it a try. New on the Fishzilla front: Nobody has caught him yet, but I listened to a very compelling argument that Fishzilla could be a large jewfish. Seems they had trouble working on the bridge at one point because large jewfish were bothering the divers. Just another possibility!
Remember that the Bait House has dock access for your boat and we carry all the bait and tackle that you need. We also have rental rods and reels as well as aerated bait buckets for your day on the water. Thanks to those that email at Jim2988@msn.com and as always, Good Luck Out There!
Jim can be found daily at the Bait House - Clearwater Municipal Marina, phone 446-8134
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