Winds could take bite out of fishing

A breezy weekend may make it hard to get after gag grouper that have been biting very well offshore. But trolling deeper inshore waters just might turn the trick, anyway.

King and Spanish mackerel and little tunny action also may be harder to come by as local waters take a serious plunge in temperatures.

Sheepshead were reported biting on offshore reefs this week, for the first time this season.

Redfish were widespread and biting from the outer bays to well up the coastal rivers.

Snook appetites were up as the linesides put on fat in preparation for the winter.

Trout continued to bite well, halfway through their annual closure, ending Jan. 1.

Lake Trafford anglers were catching crappie this week, and in some very large sizes, until the front moved through on Wednesday.

Crappie also were biting a bit in Lake Okeechobee, although the big story on the Big O always is all about bass, which are sure to start bedding as lake waters cool.

OFFSHORE: Paul, Tim and Andrew McConnell all caught gag grouper from 22-1/2 to 28 inches, with the big one taking a blue runner meant for goliaths in 43 feet of water, where the boys teamed up on the release of an estimated 400-pounder Sunday. Also on a Fishbuster Charter in 43 feet, 17 miles out of New Pass on Saturday, Bob Welch and his friend, Carl, used live shrimp to box a 16-inch sheepshead, a 15-inch mangrove snapper and a mess of porgies and grunts, while hooking an estimated 10-foot shark that self-released three times.


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