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Capt. Bob Smith
12/5/04 11:24 AM
Sarasota Florida Report [Post#: 1805 ] Reply to this post

December 4, 2004

Sarasota Florida Fishing Report
By Capt. Bob Smith

Grouper on the bay! Yes, this is the time of year that small boaters have a chance to limit out on keeper size gag grouper and the occasional black grouper. They are hard to tell apart but are equal in table fair and have to be a minimum size of 22”. You are allowed five grouper total per day. Harts Reef has been one hot spot, but they can be found on any structure, deep channel, docks, or artificial reef around the bay. I need to note that I could not get any to bite yesterday but this was probably due to the weather.

A popular method of fishing for them is trolling large deep diving plugs slowly. I prefer live, fresh caught, medium size pinfish or grunts. I like to cast free-line baitfish to the structure because if he sees the grouper he won’t swim to it. When the grouper are at their best, the pinfish will dance on the surface and as soon he sinks you will have a fish on. You should not anchor over a structure like you would offshore because the water is too shallow on the bay and you will spook the larger fish. Use no less then twenty pound test line and forty to sixty pound mono leader. Lock the drag down! You can’t let grouper take any line or they will put into the rocks or cut you off.

The other hot fish on the bay has been pompano. Pompano are being caught consistently in the afternoon on the Middle Ground grass flats with some good runs in Big Pass during the morning. Tipped pompano jigs, small live shrimp, DOA shrimp, and on fly have all been working well.

The fish are here but the weather will turn them on and off. You do have hope and that is all we can ask for when we go fishing.

Enjoy & Protect
My Website: http//

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