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As the temperatures cool down and the days become shorter, many anglers in Tampa Bay, Florida, begin to focus on targeting snook inshore. Snook are among the most popular game fish in the Sunshine State and can provide a challenging fight on light tackle. This blog post will give you an overview of what you need to know to succeed in snook fishing inshore in Tampa Bay this fall.

Snook In Tampa Bay

Snook are a species of fish that are found in subtropical waters. They have a black lateral line that extends onto their tail, and they can grow to be quite large. Snook are known for being wary and difficult to catch, which is why they are prized by fishermen. They are also known for their love of warm water, and during the winter months, they often move up into estuaries and channels where the water is warmer. This makes them easier to locate during the winter; those who are patient and willing to travel to these areas can often find success. Snook are a delicious fish, and those lucky enough to catch one often have a story to tell about it.

A picture of Hooking Some Fall Snook in the Bay with Fishn Fl.

When to Fish for Snook

The fall is an excellent time to target snook inshore in Tampa Bay. Snook typically begin their fall migration from the Gulf of Mexico back into the bay in late September or early October as water temperatures cool. By December, this migration will continue throughout the fall months until snook is generally confined to areas near passes and inlets. So, if you’re looking to get out and fish for snook this fall, October and November are generally the best months to do so.

Where to Fish for Snook

Snook will be most active in areas where baitfish are plentiful during their fall migration back into Tampa Bay. As a result, they can often be found around mangrove shorelines, docks, piers, and other structures that provide cover and ambush points for baitfish. Popular spots for catching snook-inshore in Tampa Bay include Rocky Point, Picnic Island Park, Egmont Key State Park, Anclote River Park, and Madeira Beach.

A picture of Hooking Some Fall Snook in the Bay with Fishn Fl.

How to Fish for Snook

Anglers targeting snook inshore in Tampa Bay will typically use light tackle consisting of spinning or baitcasting setups spooled with a 10-20 lb test line. For lures, Heddon Spooks Jr., Rapala Twitchin’ Raps, DOA CAL Shadtails, and MirrOlure MirrOdine XLs are all excellent choices. Baits such as shrimp, crabs, pinfish, and pilchards are also effective when targeting snook inshore around Tampa Bay. When fishing with bait, using a Livewell or aerated bucket is essential to keep your bait alive and fresh.

Final Word

The fall is an excellent time of year to target snook inshore around Tampa Bay. As water temperatures cool, Snook will begin their annual migration back into the bay from the Gulf of Mexico in late September or early October. They can be found around mangrove shorelines, docks, piers, and other structures that provide cover and ambush points for baitfish throughout the fall months until they’re generally confined to areas near passes and inlets by December. So get out there and enjoy some excellent fall snook fishing action! It’s not too late to book your trip today and have one of Tampa Bay’s show you about some fall snook fishing.