Capt. Tony was born and raised in central Michigan where he grew up fishing for bluegill, rock bass, pike, walleye, and yellow perch.
He taught his children, both of whom are adults now, how exciting and fun fishing could be, and now he looks forward to his granddaughter’s summer visits, so he can impart the same love of fishing on her.
Although Tony has fished the Florida Keys, Tampa Bay, Boca Grande, and beyond, since he and his wife, Laura, moved to Sarasota 18 years ago, he spends most of his time fishing in the Sarasota area.
Capt. Tony loves sharing his passion for fishing and the Sarasota Bay with others and he’s especially patient with young and beginning anglers.
Capt. Tony is a graduate of Sea School in St. Petersburg, Florida, the premier maritime training school in the country, and he is licensed and insured by the U.S. Coast Guard.
Tony is also certified in First Aid and CPR, and he will provide all the U.S. Coast Guard approved safety equipment you’ll need for a fun day on the bay.
I mostly use hand picked live shrimp for bait. The shrimp are caught on the bay at night, by shrimp boats that are rigged just for that. Hand picks are the largest of the shrimp caught that night. It might be the only place you go fishing that the bait could taste better then what you might be catching.
We also use live fish and crabs. But some times we need to use good artificial bait like DOA shrimp on the grass flats, buck tails to bounce on the bottom in the passes for pompano, or fast moving spoons and diamond jigs for mackerel. We will do what ever it takes to put fish in the boat.
With a very large variety of fish in this area, this boat will allow you to fish the shallow grass flats for Trout and Redfish or move to the docks and Mangroves for Snook. On those windy days, make the long runs across the open bay to the protected fishing grounds without taking a bath.
We can fish the swift waters of the inlets for Pompano and Bluefish, the beaches for Tarpon and Cobia, or the natural and artificial reefs for a possible Grouper, Barracuda, Permit, Snapper, or Kingfish, just to name a few. I carry plenty of live bait and artificial lures on board for different kinds of fishing. This is hands on fishing for the novice or experienced. I find them, you catch them! I find it more gratifying for both of us if I teach you how to catch fish rather then catch fish for you.
Tackle we fish with:
The rod and reel of choice for most of our fishing and the one we never go fishing without are the Penn 350 and 450 spinning reels with 12 pound test tournament monofilament line, or 20 pound test Power Pro and a one piece, 7', graphite rod. Some times we need to kick it up for bigger fish, then we might go to a Penn 550 with 30 pound test line.
Methods of fishing:
Drifting with a free-line and casting or dragging your bait. Anchoring over a reef and dropping your bait straight down with a small splitshot or jig. Casting under docks and boats. Sight fishing and casting to a fish or schools of fish. Popping cork with live bait or D.O.A. artificial baits. I hardly ever troll but sometimes we need to for fish in the mackerel and tuna family.
What do we fish for:
I normally fish for what is on the bite at the time of your trip. I can also target fish if you ask, but that could be less productive if they are not on the bite. I am like any predator, I may be looking for Elk but if I find Buffalo I am not going to give up a meal. Snook, redfish, grouper, pompano, tarpon, cobia, etc. are all on our list to catch and we are more likely to find concentrations of a species at different times of the year, but they are not predictable to the day or week that they will be hot. Mother Nature Rules and I just look for the best action and fun we can have in your time span.
My boat is fully equipped with fishing and navigational electronics. The boat has permanent flotation built-in. I fish only the Sarasota area, so I am always up to date on the local fishing activity.
Remember, the more options you have when fishing the better your chances are of having an action filled day. Good fishing weather will give us more options, but if the weather is poor and the fishing is good, we will never notice the weather.
Enjoy and Protect!