Use traps as guide

Kings in the trap line: There is a myriad of colored foam buoys floating offshore along the coastline. Each represents a trap on the bottom, placed by commercial fishermen hoping for stone crabs. The owners bait them with a variety of fish and other smelly concoctions. Most anglers who want to attract a king mackerel will tie on a chum bag. Well, consider the crab traps to be doing the same. In essence, each trap is a chum bag of sorts. They attract not only crabs but baitfish. Think about this when looking for a big king mackerel.

Tips:¬†Look at the water surface around the trap buoys. If you see a faint sort of oil “slick” near, chances are the traps were freshly baited. There isn’t much reason to head any further offshore. You will probably have as good a chance at the king mackerel without burning up fuel. One warning: Do not touch the traps or buoys. Laws regulate and protect the licensed private property plus the contents.

Larry Blue charters the Niki Joe from Madeira Beach Marina. Call (727) 871-1058 or visit

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