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One Short Morning - Tarpon

stpetebaitmanstpetebaitman St. PetePosts: 925 Officer
I have not taken the camera on a tarpon excursion in months. Went out last weekend one morning and had a fun trip. Ended up jumping 9 tarpon before 10am. We landed a handful of them, including a double header just as the sun was popping up which is always fun. The fish were eating a variety of baits - mullet, and baitbusters that we sight casted to rolling fish. 

I hope this red tide stays away. 

Anyways, we grabbed the camera for a couple minutes and snapped some cool photos, enjoy. 


  • lukkyracerlukkyracer Posts: 742 Officer
    Those tarpon are pissed off! Cool
  • CyclistCyclist Posts: 23,346 AG
    Those are some great pics!

    I tried that once way back with a film camera.....see that blurry thing in the water, and the big boil......yeah....but where is the fish?
  • Jack HexterJack Hexter New Port RicheyPosts: 4,772 Moderator
  • surfmansurfman WC FLPosts: 5,981 Admiral
    Great Pictures!
    Tight Lines, Steve
    My posts are my opinion only.

    Be thankful we're not getting all the government we're paying for.  Will Rogers
  • TarponatorTarponator Under a BridgePosts: 13,976 AG
    Sweet pics.  That one posed for you!
  • releasegearreleasegear Posts: 760 Officer
    Finally a post Trent - great job and pics

    Mike Wilhite - Fisherman/President

    Born Offshore Gear

    'Performance Fishing Apparel'
  • kmagnusskmagnuss Posts: 3,222 Captain
    So cool.  Bringing the dslr camera for me is a guaranteed skunk... I just don't do it anymore.  :blush:
    Tarpon... everything else is just bait.
    Captain Keith Magnussen - Crooked Rod Charters
  • permit_mepermit_me Posts: 1,052 Officer
    i love it! taking pics is tough. the gopro gets pics but the quality is lacking. I really need to get a dslr camera. 
    kmagnuss, you oughtta bring one every trip and take pics for clients and sell em the nice shots!
    i really need to get out. i had been stuck up here for 6 weeks with my drive floded for over 200 ft long and have not been able to get my boat out (on the trailer anyway). just dumped 80 ton of rock in there so i can get out this week.
  • permit_mepermit_me Posts: 1,052 Officer
    slipped out yesterday early before the rains. did a little tripletail fishing then tried for a tarpon. put out a ladyfish and a few minutes later jumped my biggest tarpon of the season.  She was a flyer! when she busted on the ladyfish, she inhaled the thing but no hookset. The leader was scuffed for a good 3 feet.  Ive had this problem before with mullet and ladyfish.  and if they come back on it and i get a hookset the leader is toast. 

    How can i improve the hookup on that 1st big hit that get swallowed?
  • stpetebaitmanstpetebaitman St. PetePosts: 925 Officer
    Troll the ladyfish or stay tighter on the line. The tarpon suck the ladyfish into their mouths and swallow afterwards. If you are getting major scuffs there is probably too much slack in your line, and the force of the eat is greater than with a crab, so the fish is probably inhaling some line inadvertently. 

    Also, when you are using big baits, don't be afraid to bump up your leader to 100lb or higher.  I have used ladyfish a lot for bait and if you are tight on the line, things go well. If you are not, most of the time you come back with a bare hook or frayed leader. 
  • trs912trs912 Posts: 156 Deckhand
    How do you rig a ladyfish?  Where do you hook it?  Do you put it under a float or freeline?
  • SloughSlough S.w. Ga./ St. JamesPosts: 5,144 Admiral
    Great shots! Thanks
    I didn't say it was your fault, I said I was blaming you
  • stpetebaitmanstpetebaitman St. PetePosts: 925 Officer
    trs912 said:
    How do you rig a ladyfish?  Where do you hook it?  Do you put it under a float or freeline?
    Hook it in the nose, using a float should be determined by the depth the tarpon are sitting. If it is 20ft deep and the tarpon are sitting 4ft above bottom, probably no float. If it is early morning and the tarpon are slow rolling and finning, you'll want to keep your bait high in the water column.
  • TarponatorTarponator Under a BridgePosts: 13,976 AG
    edited August 2018 #15
    Just like mullet, tarpon just miss ladyfish with some frequency.  Unless you're using a hook too small for the job, I don't think there's much you can do except perhaps go to a smaller bait they can engulf all at once (like whitebait).  It's just the nature of the beast when fishing with live mullet/ladyfish.
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