Catch of the Week
Gray McLean, from Charlottesville, Va., caught and released this red on a Grassett Snook Minnow fly while fishing the ICW near Venice at night with Capt. Rick Grassett.
BRADENTON—Fishing this week produced snook, reds, trout and bluefish during the past week. According to our contributing captain, Rick Grassett, the best action was fly-fishing for snook at night in the ICW near Venice. Next week, a temporary red grouper bag limit increase will be legal in state waters on December 30, followed by the January 1 season closure. Negative low tides in the coming week should concentrate reds and trout in potholes.
- The recreational red grouper bag limit in Gulf of Mexico state waters (excluding Monroe County) will increase Dec. 30 from two to four fish, followed by the Jan. 1 season closure of shallow-water grouper in Atlantic state waters.
- The red grouper bag limit increase is one of several fishery management changes made at the November Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) meeting in Key Largo.
- Management changes in 2012 will also affect gag grouper season, which is currently closed to fishing in Gulf of Mexico state waters (excluding Monroe County) and will continue to be closed through March 31, 2012. (This includes the regularly scheduled annual closure from Feb. 1 through March 31 in Gulf state waters.)
- Both measures will help the state achieve consistency with federal red and gag grouper management efforts.
- The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission’s Statewide Nuisance Alligator Program is accepting applications for contracted nuisance-alligator trappers in Hillsborough and Manatee counties.
- Applicants must have a clean criminal record, no fish or wildlife law violations and a valid, working email address. Also, applicants must reside in the county in which they intend to work.
- Applications must be received by Thursday, Jan. 5, 2012.
- To learn about the requirements for becoming a nuisance-alligator trapper and to apply online, visit MyFWC.com/Alligator and click on ” Statewide Nuisance Alligator Program.” For more information, email FWCGator@MyFWC.com.
- The amount of air pollutants in the atmospheric plume generated by the Deepwater Horizon oil spill was similar to a large city according to a new NOAA-led study published today in a special issue of Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
- Researchers from the NOAA Earth System Research Laboratory (ESRL) and NOAA’s Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences (CIRES) in Boulder, Colo., along with university colleagues, focused on ozone and particulate matter—two pollutants with human health effects.
- About eight percent, or about one of every 13 barrels of the Deepwater Horizon-spilled oil that reached the ocean surface, eventually made its way into airborne organic particles small enough to be inhaled into human lungs, and some of those particles likely reached the Gulf coast when the winds were blowing toward the shore, according to the study.
Weekly Fishing Report by Capt. Rick Grassett
Jerry Roth, from Longwood, Fla., caught and released this red on a CAL jig with a shad tail while fishing Sarasota Bay with Capt. Rick Grassett.
Catch and release night snook fishing was on fire early last week! Anglers fishing with me on my Action Craft flats skiff the Snook Fin-Addict, out of CB’s Saltwater Outfitters on Siesta Key, caught and released snook, reds, trout and bluefish during the past week. The best action was fly-fishing for snook at night in the ICW near Venice. Snook gorged themselves on glass minnows around lighted docks and ate my Snook Minnow fly just as well. In addition, we also caught trout and reds around docks on the same fly.
Bruce McLean, from Sarasota and his son, Gray McLean, from Charlottesville, Va., fished the ICW near Venice with me on Monday evening. They caught and released more than 15 snook to 23 inches, 6 trout to 18 inches, and 4 reds to 22 inches on my Grassett Snook Minnow fly. Not only did Gray catch his first snook on a fly, he also caught and released several slams!
The action got even better on Wednesday evening when Bill Rhodes from Hernando Beach, Fla., fished the same area with me. The bite was so good at quitting time that we decided to turn it into a 6-hour trip. Bill also had a fly rod slam catching and releasing more than 40 snook to 23 inches, 6 trout to 19 inches and a 22-inch red on my Snook Minnow fly! Exercise caution when snook fishing this time of year. I always use tackle and leaders heavy enough to land them quickly with minimal handling. If water temperatures plummet following a strong front, I won’t fish for them at all until conditions stabilize.
Bill fished Sarasota Bay with me on Thursday morning. The action was slow, but he managed to catch and release a couple of trout and a bluefish on a Hansen Glass Minnow fly near Whale Key. He fished a tandem fly rig with a smaller fly about 24 inches ahead of a larger fly on an intermediate shooting head fly line creating the illusion of schooling bait fish.
Jerry Roth, from Longwood, Fla., fished Sarasota Bay with me on Friday morning. Despite beautiful conditions it was slow to start. We had a negative low tide with good sunlight and mullet so thick you could walk on them, but we covered a lot of water before we scored. Jerry finished the day with 4 reds to 24 inches caught and released on a CAL jig with a shad tail near Buttonwood Harbor.
Negative low tides early next week, as we head away from a new moon should concentrate reds and trout in potholes. Fish deep grass flats of Sarasota Bay for trout, blues, Spanish mackerel, pompano and flounder. As long as it stays mild, we should also have action with false albacore, Spanish mackerel and tripletail in the coastal gulf when conditions are good. Have a Merry Christmas!
Capt. Rick Grassett
Snook Fin-Addict Guide Service, Inc.
FFF Certified Fly Casting Instructor
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Weak high pressure remains over the area until Monday night when a low-pressure system over the western Gulf of Mexico lifts to the northeast. A cold front associated to the low will move through the coastal waters from late Tuesday afternoon to early Wednesday. High pressure will build over the region behind the front and remain in place through Thursday.
East winds around 10 knots. Bay and inland waters a light chop. There will be a slight chance of showers in the afternoon. Monday night will bring southeast winds around 10 knots. Bay and inland waters a light chop.
2011/12/26 Mon 12:07 a.m. 2.36 H
2011/12/26 Mon 08:35 a.m. -0.66 L
2011/12/26 Mon 03:17 p.m. 1.13 H
2011/12/26 Mon 07:00 p.m. 0.92 L
Southwest winds around 20 knots. Bay and inland waters choppy. There will be a chance of showers and a slight chance of thunderstorms. Tuesday night will bring northwest winds around 10 knots. Bay and inland waters a light chop.
2011/12/27 Tue 12:53 a.m. 2.2 H
2011/12/27 Tue 09:11 a.m. -0.5 L
2011/12/27 Tue 03:39 p.m. 1.18 H
2011/12/27 Tue 08:03 p.m. 0.85 L
Northwest winds around 10 knots. Bay and inland waters a light chop. Wednesday night will bring north winds around 5 knots. Bay and inland waters smooth.
2011/12/28 Wed 01:41 a.m. 1.97 H
2011/12/28 Wed 09:45 a.m. -0.31 L
2011/12/28 Wed 04:02 p.m. 1.27 H
2011/12/28 Wed 09:10 p.m. 0.77 L
Northwest winds around 10 knots. Bay and inland waters a light chop. Thursday night will bring north winds around 10 knots. Bay and inland waters a light chop.
2011/12/29 Thu 02:32 a.m. 1.71 H
2011/12/29 Thu 10:17 a.m. -0.11 L
2011/12/29 Thu 04:28 p.m. 1.38 H
2011/12/29 Thu 10:24 p.m. 0.68 L
Northwest winds around 10 knots. Bay and inland waters a light chop.
2011/12/30 Fri 03:30 a.m. 1.43 H
2011/12/30 Fri 10:49 a.m. 0.1 L
2011/12/30 Fri 04:58 p.m. 1.49 H
2011/12/30 Fri 11:44 p.m. 0.54 L