Red Drum: Sciaenops ocellatus - Red drum are a dark red color on the back, which fades into white on the belly. The red drum have a characteristic eyespot near the tail and are somewhat streamlined. Three year-old red drum typically weigh six to eight pounds. When they are near or over twenty-seven inches, they are called “bull reds”. The largest red drum on record weighed just over 94 pounds and was caught in 1984 on Hatteras Island.
Snook: Centropomus undecimalis - The common snook (Centropomus undecimalis) is a species of marine fish in the family Centropomidae of the order Perciformes. The common snook is also known as the sergeant fish or robalo. It was originally assigned to the sciaenid genus Sciaena; Sciaena undecimradiatus and Centropomus undecimradiatus are obsolete synonyms for the species. One of the largest snooks, Centropomus undecimalis grows to a maximum overall length of 140 centimetres (4.6 ft) but common length is 50 centimetres (1.6 ft). Of typical centropomid form, it possesses drab coloration except for a distinctive black lateral line. It can also possess bright yellow pelvic and caudal fins, especially during spawn.
Spotted Seatrout: Cynoscion nebulosus - is a common estuarine fish found in the southern United States along coasts of Gulf of Mexico and South Atlantic Ocean. While most of these fish are caught on shallow, grassy flats, spotted seatrout reside in virtually any inshore waters, from the surf of outside islands to far up coastal rivers, where they often come for shelter during cold weather. Contrary to its name, the spotted seatrout is not a member of the trout family (Salmonidae), but of the drum family (Sciaenidae). It is popular for commercial and especially recreational fishing in coastal waters of the southeastern United States. Adults reach 19-25 inches in length and 3-17 pounds in weight.
Been a great Tarpon season so far around Anna Maria Island, Holmes Beach, and in the Tampa Bay Area. Some strange weather and interesting conditions, but we been catching them up. Here are some of the highlights from May.
Cobia: Rachycentron canadum - Attaining a maximum length of 78 in and maximum weight of 172 lb, the cobia has an elongated fusiform (spindle-shaped) body and a broad, flattened head. It is dark brown in color, grading to white on the belly with two darker brown horizontal bands on the flanks. The large pectoral fins are normally carried horizontally, perhaps helping the fish attain the profile of a shark. The first dorsal fin has six to 9 independent, short, stout, sharp spines. The mature cobia has a forked, slightly lunated tail, which is usually dark brown. The largest cobia taken on rod and reel came from Shark Bay, Australia, and weighed 60 kg (135 lb).
Tripletail - (Lobotes surinamensis) is a warm-water marine fish found across the tropics. Tripletail grows to 35 in. in length and weighs up to 41 lb. Tripletail has scales that extend onto its dorsal, anal, and caudal fins and a head profile that concaves as the fish ages. It has a compressed but deep body with a triangle-shaped head. The eyes are small, but the mouth is large. The name "tripletail" is given because of the fish's three rounded fins: dorsal, caudal, and anal.
Gray Snapper: Lutjanus griseus - Its color is typically greyish red, but it can change color from bright red to copper red. It has a dark stripe running across its eye if observed from the top when it is under water. This species can reach a length of 89 cm (35 in), though most do not exceed 40 cm (16 in). The greatest recorded weight for this species is 20 kg (44 lb).[
2021 Tarpon fishing season
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Permit: Trachinotus falcatus - Permits can be distinguished by their elongated dorsal fins and anal fin. The dorsal fin is shaped like a scythe. Permit tails are also deeply forked, and their bodies are compressed laterally. Permits have no scutes and have a large, orange-yellow patch on their abdomens in front of their anal fins, while their pectoral fins are dark. The permit fish can reach a maximum length of 48 in and can weigh up to 79 lb
Tarpon: Megalops atlanticus - Tarpon grow to about 4–8 ft long and weigh 60–300 lbs. They have dorsal and anal soft rays and have bluish or greenish backs. Tarpons possess distinctive lateral lines and have shiny, silvery scales that cover most of their bodies, excluding the head. They have large eyes with adipose eyelids and broad mouths with prominent lower jaws that jut out farther than the rest of the face.[