Captain Tony Bozzella: Jacksonville
Hard to believe Sept. is here so fast. Great month for tailors in the grass. Redfish will be foraging on crustaceans in the grass and places they normally can not get to with tides reaching 5.5 and higher. This is the base line for the tides in this style of fishing. Pay attention to wind direction, west winds lower and east winds raise the water on the Northeast coast. Get familiar with the tides and enjoy some of this annual fishery. This is true sight fishing with redfish actually feeding with there tails waving in the air. When looking for flats that hold fish, look for short spartina grass flats and be patient. Stand look and listen, give a flat that you think will be good a little time. You can also see sheephead that will be up on the flat tailing as well.This is not a numbers game, but, a quality sight fishing experience. As fish cruise the flat, they may not be seen. When they feed that is when they stop and tail. So give it afew minutes. Good lures and fly's include weedless gold spoons, weedless crab & shrimp patterns and most weedless soft plastics. The key is weedless and accurate casting to get the bait in the path of the fish! When he stops tailing and moves forward that is the time to move or twitch the bait so he can focus in on it.
Sept. is also time for the start of the mullet run. Tarpon, bull redfish, and a variety of other mullet eating fish will be in the areas inlets and were bait is schooled up making there transition South. Flounder will be readily taken on a TBS jig and finger mullet combo in the docks heading towards mayport. Shrimp will also be a great choice of bait, however, you will find alot of strikes from Mangrove snapper and "bait steelers." Mud minnows are an excellent choice as well. The trout also love them and there will be plenty of them in the docks and Inter coastal waterway. The white shrimp run will have fish fired up and hungry. Fish around areas of concentrated bait weather shrimp or mullet. Lure fisherman, this is a great time to fish your favorite plug or any mullet imitation. Jacks, ladyfish, and bluefish will be in the mix and stretching lines along with all the other more favorable species. Along the edges of the St. Johns river and inlet drop offs will hold huge spawning redfish that can be catch with a simple fish finder rig on the bottom. Best bait will be a crab, mullet, or ladyfish. Often times larger gear and weights are needed to hold in the heavier current. With the heat still up, fishing early and late can be a good choice. Until next time, get out and experience the great outdoors!
Capt. Tony Bozzella / TBS JIGS
Professional Angler / Guide
About the Captain: Capt. Tony Bozzella knows fish and he knows fishing. He should -- he literally grew up on the water, near Montauk, at the eastern end of Long Island.
Capt. Tony is a full time guide and long time tournament pro having a top 5 and multiple top 10 finishes on the Professional Redfish Tour. He has won the Mitzi Skiff Redfish Shootout overall tour champion, Key Largo Backcountry Challenge and the Top Guide Award. Capt. Tony also won first place in the 2004, 2006 and 2007, Celebrity Redbone tournaments and has over 30 top 5 finishes throughout the Southeast. He has been featured on ESPN, OLN, FOX, television, various magazines and news articles. Capt. Tony is patient, knowledgeable, easy going and he also owns and operates TBS Jigs and Charters, a company with quality custom rods, flats lures & jigs and inshore charters that specialize in Light tackle Backcountry and Fly fishing. He is also on the Pro Staff with The Florida Sportsman Magazine, traveling the state, with 8 shows a year, teaching and seminar speaking.