Tampa Bay Trout Fishing

expeditions offer hours of relaxation as you drift over the grass flats with your rod and reel. With the number of trout in Tampa Bay, chances are you won’t go home empty-handed.

A Trout by Any Other Name

Trout have many names and species, including sea trout, spotted seatrout, speckled trout, and specks. As the various names imply, this type of trout has black spots along its sides and back over a silver underbelly.

An average adult trout ranges between 12 and 24 inches long. Once a trout gets past 22-24 inches, we call it a gator trout. Trout typically weigh between 10 and 12 pounds, though the record for the biggest trout caught in Florida tips the scales at 17 pounds 7 ounces.

Best Places to Catch Tampa Trout

You’ll typically find trout in grass flats in about 1-6 feet of water. They like to stick close to mangroves near the shore, though you may also find them hidden in deep grass holes. During the winter, trout sometimes venture into water as deep as 15 feet.

Our inshore trout fishing charters from St. Pete and Anna Marie Island to Tampa Harbor channels make the ideal trip for catching trout in their preferred habitats at any time of year.

Trout Season

One of the best parts of fishing for trout in Tampa Bay is that they are never out of season. However, per Florida saltwater fishing regulations, spotted seatrout season closes for February in the Western Panhandle zone, as well as through November and December in the Central East zone.

Trout spawn inshore from March to November, making those months especially promising for reeling in a trout. However, you can catch trout year-round—just make sure to fish in deeper water during the cooler months. 

Tips for Catching Trout

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission recommends following these tips for trout fishing success:

  • Lure trout hiding in holes using a free-line rig baited with live shrimp or small pigfish.
  • Use a float to ensure the bait drifts over grass beds.
  • Spoon lures, top-water poppers, and soft-bodied jigs make the most effective bait.
  • Return any undersized trout to the water as soon as possible to help ensure a healthy population. Keep in mind that spotted seatrout are currently catch-and-release only until May 31, 2021.

Why Trout Fishing Charters

Trout fishing charters allow you to kick back, relax, and fish while Aquatic Escapes takes care of the rest. Our experienced team takes you to the best spots for a higher chance of finding a trout on the line and leaving you with lasting memories of your fishing trip.

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