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Anna Maria Island Fishing Report: April 2023

April is our transition month on Anna Maria Island and this one got off to a beautiful start. Warm temperatures and very little rain have provided us with beautiful, clear water in the upper 70’s. Anna Maria is living up to her nickname as the American Caribbean.

On the fishing front, speckled trout are the hot ticket in town. Our fish are finishing up their spawn and are on the prowl for a meal. Now is the ideal time to target the largest trout of the year. Although the regulations allow retention of one trout over 20”, our captains encourage their clients to release these larger, spawning fish to ensure a healthy fishery moving forward. That being said, plenty of 15”-19” slot fish are around to provide the family with a great dinner.

Captain Blake has been putting his clients on the great trout bite in Sarasota Bay with fish up to 24” being brought to the boat. Redfish are also hanging around the mangrove shorelines and snook are there as well. Near shore, the Kingfish are showing up off the beach and our Spanish mackerel bite is heating up in Tampa Bay.

Captain Jake has spent a good amount of time on night patrol this month, finding tarpon for his clients at the bridges and snook on dock lights. If you have ever wanted to target tarpon on fly, this is a great chance to experience their amazing, acrobatic fight in a very accessible way.

Now is a great time to just take a day and experience everything our area has to offer. On a recent exploratory trip to a local key we found beautiful sugar sand beaches, watched dolphins show off their hunting skills on a school of ladyfish and got up close a personal with some curious manatees. On our way out, tripletail suddenly materialized on scattered crab buoys all around us. After testing our casting accuracy and closely scrutinizing our offerings, they eventually tired of us and just as quickly disappeared. Just another beautiful day on Anna Maria Island.

Captain Rich

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