Tampa Bay Mackerel Fishing
A few days ago I got a call from one of my younger cousins Phillip. He told me he wanted to go out fishing. He was leaving to go back to school and he just wanted to spend the day on the water and catch some fish. He was going to bring his younger brother Stephan to spend his last day of being in town together. I told him to meet me at the marina in the morning and we would go and catch bait together and go straight to my fishing spot. We got to my bait spot bright and early and I started to chum for bait. I chummed hard and after 5 minutes I started to see shimmers of silver under the chum slick. I knew they were going to start to show up. I threw the net the first time and I didn’t catch many. I knew the bait was there but I decided to move in a little closer to the depth change, where the water went from 4 feet to 3 feet. I started to chum again and within a few minutes the water started to show silver specks all over. One cast and one of my cousins said, “There they are, You got them” I told him not enough yet! After throwing the net a few more times we had enough baits to fish for the entire day.
We left our bait location and I started to navigate to the mouth of the bay, which was my spot that I wanted to fish. On the way to the fishing grounds on the horizon we saw schools of birds diving into the water. They asked me if they were diving for bait. I told them that was a school of mackerel under the birds. The Mackerel were feeding on a school of glass minnows and the birds were diving in the water to catch all the pieces that were floating up. The ones the mackerel had just missed. By the time I got one of my rods ready to toss at the mackerel, the mackerel went down on the water column. After all the excitement of watching the mackerel jump we kept going towards the mouth of the bay. While I was getting closer to my spot, I see a boat that looked like he was anchored on my fishing spot. Sure enough, when we got there a friend of mine was anchored right on it. As soon as he saw me, he smiled and asked me to anchor right next to him. So I did just that. We fished for about an hour. We caught a few snapper but the current was starting to pick up. I don’t like fishing that spot when the current gets strong. I told my cousins that we were going to make another move. They were excited. I told them, on my next stop be ready. I’m going to text the fish right now and they will be there waiting on us. They started laughing. I threw a prayer out, actually a few prayers to the fish gods all the way to the spot. We Navigated all through the bay , from one end to another. I anchored the boat and I made the first cast. As I was giving the rod to one of my cousins I felt the bite. The fish gods answered the call. I told them, you see that text that I sent the fish worked. We caught so many fish. It was one after another. The Mackerel bite was ON FIRE!! They had a blast. Right around noon one of them said they were starting to get hungry. I was like Oh yes, Lets rap it up and we will go and eat. They asked me where we could go close to the marina. I told them I had the perfect place to go and have a cold one and a good sandwich. As most of you know, I think The Wharf is the best place on the water. They had burgers while I got the pork wings. After a great lunch we came back and I filleted all their fish for them to take home. It was another great day on the water, this time with family. I’m glad they were super excited and had a great time.