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Tampa Winter Fishing Report/2016

Its time for a Tampa winter fishing report. Yes winter has finally hit the bay area. Honestly I didn’t know if we were ever going to get winter weather here in Tampa Bay. We did and it has changed the game of fishing and the variety of fish we will catch.

Trout fishing is still good in the back water creeks, canals and around the spoil islands and oyster bars. A slow presentation of our baits it what has been producing best. When the water temperature drops our fish slow down and prefer the slow presentation.

This Tampa winter fishing report will put the spot light on the warm water out flow area of our local power plant. When water temps in Tampa Bay drop into the low 60’s we have a lot of fish that migrate to that area to seek refuge. Large Jack Cravelle, Sharks,Cobia, Permit and Pompano just to name a few. As always we are catching these fish on light tackle. Getting out between the winter fronts moving through the area is key. Timing is everything.

Choosing the right bait is important. For trout fishing live shrimp or a small soft plastic jig imitating a shrimp or minnow work well. Hard suspending artificial baits worked slowly will also produce.

Light tackle spinning rods and reels keep trout fishing interesting. Okuma is the brand of rod and reel I prefer. They make some great affordable gear.

Sheepshead fishing around the residential docks and inshore structure can also be a great way to put a few fish in the box.

I don’t expect this winter pattern to last long. Usually by the middle to the end of February things will begin to change again. Until then we will enjoy what Tampa Bay has to offer this time of year.

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