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November Fishing Forecast – Tampa Bay

By: Captain Danny Guarino

November, and a little more comfortable. What a pleasure to be outdoors. As always, November kicks off the annual migration of fish headed for warmer waters south of our area or into the local rivers. Fish will seek a comfortable area in regard to both temperature and habitat.

Spanish mackerel will hang around until the water temperatures drops through 70 degrees, then mackerel will head south. Best concentration of mackerel will be just off the gulf beaches, a bit of a run from the northern part of Tampa Bay but well worth it. When fishing Mackerel a little heavier tackle is a must. Try using a 50-pound test leader and at least 20-pound test line. Big live pilchards will work just fine on a 1/0 or 2/0 long shank hook.

Snook will head into the rivers and deeper water of Tampa Bay looking for warmth. I would expect the snook bite to be even better in November than what it was in October. Live bait is my bait of choice when looking for Snook. I like to have a pilchard about 3 inches long free lined on 10-pound test using a 1/0 circle hook with 25-pound Ohero fluorocarbon leader. The lighter line and leader are not readily seen in the clear cool waters of November.

Trout will be on the deeper grass and some of the deeper spots in the Manatee and little Manatee Rivers. Try fishing trout with a DOA shrimp under a Cajun Thunder or some of the wide verity of soft plastic tails along with a jig head. My rule of thumb is to use live bait on warmer days and artificial on the cooler days. Lighter tackle using 10 pond test and 15 to 20 pond test leader, I like to use circle hooks in sizes 1 or 2.

Redfish will move near the many oyster bars that fill the back country of Tampa Bay. Try using a pin fish under a bobber. Another good way to catch Red fish is to use cut up lady fish or pin fish. The dead bait ad’s a little scent to the waters. When fishing with dead bait you must have patients and do expect to catch plenty of catfish.

Capt. Danny Guarino is a lifelong resident of the Tampa area and semi-retired fishing guide on Tampa Bay. If you are looking to hire a Charter Captain in the Tampa Bay area give Capt. Danny a call. He has an extensive network of long-term proven Tampa Bay Fishing Guides, all are insured and licensed. Let Capt. Danny take the guess work out of finding a fishing guide

Contact Captain Danny Guarino at 813-956-2010


Photo Credits: Patrick Latzanich on a recent fishing trip arranged by Capt. Danny Guarino. 813-956-2010

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