Inshore– More sheepshead action this past week, as the water cleared behind the last front before this recent one they were obviously thick under the dock and biting well! Behind this recent front the waters have gotten very stirred up, but the sheeps seem to be unaffected. Wednesday we had a handful of young anglers on the docks filling coolers with sheepshead. Black drum still biting well too, they are always mixed in with the sheeps cruising the bottom and will hit the fiddler crabs too. Snook fishing was good ahead of this last blow, the waters finally cleared and warmed up in the passes for them to start moving around but this latest front will disrupt that once again. Most of the action for snook was at night on the outgoing tide. Flounder fishing inside the passes is going well too, dragging soft plastics or fishing live shrimp along the bottom of the sandy bottom is the best approach for the flounder.
Near shore– The hogfish bite was getting really good this past weekend! This past Saturday and Sunday we brought in large catches of hogs on our private charter boats and the party boats got handfuls too. However, this recent cold front will slow them down a bit, they do not like to feed as actively in the muddier near shore waters. Hopefully it should clear quickly by Friday afternoon or Saturday for sure and the bite will pick back up before the high pressure builds causing Monday night/Tuesday the wind to pick up again. The kingfish are the same story as the hogs, the muddy and now chillier near shore waters makes it hard to get the kingfish chewing. However, as the water clears, calms and warms they pick back up where they left off. We saw this start to happen this past weekend before this recent front.
Offshore– We have not been on our 39 hour fishing trip since Tuesday of last week, but we have had some offshore fishing trips on the Flying HUB 2. The tuna fishing is still going well in the blue water but they are spread out and sporadic. Kingfish have been steadier out in the deeper offshore waters but also spread out and sporadic too. Red grouper bite was picking up a bit before this big blow. We were finally starting to see them become more aggressive and in larger numbers. Luckily that deep-water closure for grouper will be ending in a week or so and then we will be more able to dial into the keeper red grouper as they won’t be able to hide from us past 120ft or 20 fathoms where they have been closed since February first. Triggerfish still biting well and we’ve been able to dial in on these guys with ease since they opened up March first. Snapper species are continuing to bite well and that will only improve as the waters warm up and summer spawns approach.
Want to watch Capt Dylan Hubbard’s Daily video reports? Check out the Hubbard’s Marina Youtube channel and don’t forget to SUBSCRIBE! – Hubbard’s Marina daily fishing & boating report
Captain Jack’s dolphin corner
We now have started our special spring and summer trips that include our 11am dolphin watching nature cruise and eco tour trip option. These 11am cruises are just like our 1 and 3pm dolphin cruises, however, they aren’t offering daily like the afternoon trip. These 11am dolphin tours are offered Tues, Thurs and Saturdays! Dolphin watching nature cruise and eco tour information – https://hubbardsmarina.com/dolphin-watching-cruises/
Due the breezy weather and gorgeous conditions this time of year is a perfect time of year to join us for a 3 hour shelling trip to shell key from Hubbard’s Marina or for a ferry to Egmont key from Fort De Soto Park because the shelling is absolutely outstanding this time of year. If you want more information on our Egmont key ferry trip, check out this link – https://hubbardsmarina.com/egmont-key-ferry-cruise/
We also started up our 3 hour shelling trip to shell key from Hubbard’s Marina these 3 hour shelling trips run Monday, Wednesday and Fridays from 9am till noon and offer an hour of shelling time on shell key. For more info on the 3 hour shelling adventure, check out this link: https://hubbardsmarina.com/florida-shelling-cruise/
Lots of baby birds lately at the bird nesting island or local rookery named ‘dog leg key’ inside Boca Ceiga bay. We cruise by this island on every dolphin watching nature cruise and eco tour at Hubbard’s Marina and it’s only $19.50 for adults and half price for kids 11 and under!
Dolphins have been quite active lately in large groups socializing the juveniles and playing ‘catch’ with large fish like redfish, mullet or snook showing the juveniles how to better utilize their sonar to hunt down their prey. The tossing and slapping on the water stuns the fish allowing the juveniles more time to hunt them down before they take off.
Our local bird nesting island and rookery named dog leg key is full of juvenile birds right now making it an awesome time of year to join us for a dolphin watching nature cruise and eco tour at Hubbard’s Marina! We have baby pelicans out on the island along with some juvenile great blue herons that are growing fast. It’s very early to see the baby pelicans but it’s great to see them having their broods early.
Hubbard’s Marina Sea Adventures, Tampa bay ferry and taxi, and the Madeira beach water taxi are all now proudly power by Honda Marine! If you come visit us for a dolphin tour, sunset cruise, Egmont key island trip, snorkeling, shelling, water taxi ride or any type of ferry or pleasure cruise trip then you will be riding a boat powered by Honda Marine! These new motors look great, are super quiet and are great on fuel economy! It was tough to get four boats re-powered with new engines but it was well worth the change and were very happy! Hope you get a chance to see these brand new super cool engines at work on board one of our pleasure cruise and ferry boats! To learn more about Honda Marine engines for your boat, check out their website: https://marine.honda.com/ they have the best warranty in the industry right now, you get a full 5 years and you just can’t beat that!
Tampa bay ferry News
Tampa Bay Ferry, a subsidiary of Hubbard’s Marina, operates three ferry/water taxi routes currently and is hoping to further expand that in the near future! Right now we currently offer the Egmont key ferry, Madeira beach water taxi and the Shell key ferry is launching this weekend!
The shell key ferry will be operating out of Fort De Soto County Park just like our Egmont key ferry operations but unlike the Egmont key ferry you will catch the shell key ferry from the boat ramp at fort De Soto! The Egmont key ferry runs out of the bay pier at fort De Soto. They are both the same price, $20 for adults and $10 for kids 11 and under! For more info on any of our ferry or water taxi routes you can visit- http://TampaBayFerry.com
Also, big news is that the Madeira beach water taxi is now running seven days a week to accommodate the large spring break crowds! That allows more options to get around the area and avoid the beach traffic, plus you can hop on the water taxi for a relaxing cruise all day or for just a two hour loop whatever you prefer. Plus, you can bring your dog or a cooler of beer or BOTH!
The Madeira beach water taxi has been carrying huge numbers the past few weeks! We have broken record numbers of passengers multiple weeks in a row with the largest number to date this past weekend of nearly three hundred passengers in three days!
To catch the madeira beach water taxi, stop by Hubbard’s Marina, ABC marina, ROC Park, the McDonald’s/Slyce floating dock, jungle Parada or Middle grounds grill in Treasure Island for a ride on the Madeira beach water taxi! These are the six stops we are currently servicing with the water taxi and ABC marina and Jungle Parada are the two stops offering free parking. The Hubbard’s Marina stop offers $5 all day parking when you stop by the Hubbard’s Marina office for a parking ticket voucher.
Upcoming up at Hubbard’s Marina
Want to win a FREE 10 hour all day or FREE 5 hour half day at Hubbard’s Marina? Join Captain Dylan Hubbard (https://www.facebook.com/CaptainDylanHubbard/) for a great seminar at Bass Pro Shops Tampa Saturday March 24th at 2pm! For more information, check out the Facebook event: https://www.facebook.com/events/194996691250145/
The Easter bunny will also be at the bass pro shops that day if you want to bring the family out for photo opportunities with the Easter bunny!
Friday March 30th, we have a 44 hour full moon fishing trip with a load and on that trip the deep water closure for red grouper will be over by day break enabling us to stay out deep and capitalize on great deep water grouper action!
Our 12 hour night snapper fishing trips have started now and we offer these Friday nights around the new or full moons! These trips are 7pm until 7am and they offer a great shot at fishing for mangrove snapper, porgies, lane snapper, vermilions and more! We fish around 25-35 miles out for around 7-8 hours of fishing time.
We have lots of 39 hour and 44 hour fishing trips coming up with light loads, to see all our 12,39,44 and 63 hour trips and what dates they run and what fish they target you can check out the specialty trip schedule at this link: https://hubbardsmarina.com/specialty-fishing-trip-schedule/
If you want to do a customized private fishing charter with the ORIGINAL and longest running private charter fishing fleet in Florida, Hubbard’s Marina is the place to be! We do all types of unique private charter fishing options, plus were the only ones in the area that can accommodate larger groups of 7 or more on our private charter fishing trips out of Johns Pass Madeira beach. We have four custom built private charter fishing vessels at Hubbard’s Marina that can be privately chartered for you and your group’s fishing adventure.
We have changed around a lot of stuff on our website, you should check out the added material on our FAQs page to further explain bait options, best spots on the boat, rod rental options and lots more helpful information to hopefully help first time anglers with us have a more quality experience. To see the changes, check out the FAQs: https://hubbardsmarina.com/faqs/
PLEASE sign up for the 2018 clubs or renew your 2017 membership ASAP, we are doing our end of year cleaning of the club and your membership will be changed to inactive if you don’t renew soon!
Don’t let your membership laps and loose seniority, call us today and get set up for the 2018 regular’s club membership!
Remember, this is a loyalty program not a discount program so you got to go fishing often to make it worth it for yourself.
Captains Mark and Dylan Hubbard
Vice president and Regular’s club manager Hubbard’s Marina
(727)393-1947 ext 306
Hubbard’s Marina Preferred Partner Showcase:
The Friendly fisherman Restaurant has some great new menu items for 2018, check out the new options you can try on your next visit to the friendly