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Cooler weather is creeping in and the days are getting shorter. Fall is near and the fishing is exploding in north Pinellas. Bait has invaded the beaches, gathering by the millions in the troughs along the shore. Pelicans and other shore birds are dipping and diving in the morning, indicating the location of the thickest schools of baitfish. Filling the well is easy as long as the winds are light. Most gamefish are responding to the sardines, also called 'greenbacks' or 'whitebait', since it is so plentiful everywhere. Nearshore mackerel are hitting within 3 miles, often following the hordes of bait moving with the tides. Large jack crevalle are marauding the jetties and passes, chasing anything that moves. The most exciting fish this time of year for inshore anglers is redfish. They begin to school on the flats, foraging on incoming and outgoing tides, often grouping just off of the mangrove shoreline. Lowtides allow them to be easily detected, pushing water as they move around. As the tides get higher, I target oyster bars and tidal creeks, chumming heavily to get the fish interested. Once a fish is hooked, I'll anchor and cast baits in the location of the hooked fish. Many times the school is nearby and curious enough to occasionally have a fish or two follow the fighting redfish to the boat. Chumming will usually keep them close by. As the bite slows, move slightly in the direction of the tide. Redfish will normally move only a few yards once irritated by the commotion of casting and landing fish.

Capt. Brian

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