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Sports Columns

New salt water single inline hooks are a win-win for anglers and fish

Each year we see more new salt water hard plastic lures being equipped with single inline hooks rather than treble hooks. The excellent Rapala Coastal Series twitch baits are a good example. I’m sure soft tissue mouthed fish like seatrout that readily bite small crankbaits and top waters and, ...

Sheepshead bite great in some areas, improving elsewhere

Off- or near-shore sheepshead fishing has been top-notch while inshore sheepie fishing steadily improves. Check out a bridge, oyster bar, mangrove point or dock near you. Don’t overlook downtown Cape Coral for your annual sheepshead outing. Saves gas and travel time. Use your electronics ...

Keep an eye out for big snook sunning near the shore

While casting around shallow mangrove shorelines on these delightfully warm winter afternoons, don’t be surprised to see the biggest snook of your life sitting motionless on the bottom sunning itself just a few feet ahead of the boat. If you’ve never seen a really big snook close up, at ...

Trout fishing picks up

Pick your tide and weather window and enjoy the good fishing both in and offshore. Starting last Friday, two of us caught nearly 60 trout, a few rat reds, scads of ladyfish and a few bonus pompano, all on ultra-lite spinning outfits and fly rods. Small jigs heads and paddle tail soft ...

Despite red tide reports, hungry seatrout are out and about

As of mid-week, the FWC website red tide sampling map showed no measurable concentrations of Karenia brevis from Sarasota south past Charlotte Harbor and Pine Island Sound. Unfortunately samples collected at Lighthouse Beach on Sanibel showed medium concentrations. Samples are evaluated on a ...

Fish are now looking for warmer locations

My Christmas tree branches are already starting to droop under the weight of so many lures. For the person afflicted with the fishing disease, this is a fun way to decorate but obviously not recommended for households with small children or tree climbing house cats. When looking for inshore ...

No white Christmas, but more red tide

It’s been 20 years since I’ve seen snow and a white Christmas would be a nice treat. Instead we get another red tide, health concerns and fish kills. As of Dec. 18, the FWC reported high concentrations of Karenia brevis or red tide somewhat stalled along our Southwest Florida coast with ...

Maybe a boat club membership is the way to go?

Maintaining any boat, especially an older one, can be an expensive proposition. I know this to be fact. A repair shop in Matlacha has a dedicated parking space for me with my name on the blacktop and a plaque with my picture on the wall inside. Clearly, the boat is happier there than at my ...

Fishing quiz winners know their lures

Congratulations! Charlotte and Carl Veaux provided the first correct answer to last week’s Thanksgiving antique lure quiz and thanks also to the many others that responded. Heddon Batwings and Four-points appeared in the early 1900s and are actually hookless fish decoys highly prized by ...

What’s your go-to lure for that big tourney catch?

If you could only use one lure type on your next Southwest Florida big money flats tournament, what would it be? Would you choose a top-water plug, MirrOlure-type twitch bait or a soft plastic jig? A spoon? For someone that carries a small tackle store's worth of lures and flies on each ...