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Fishing in Tampa is a popular pastime for locals and visitors alike, and with the city's location on the Gulf of Mexico, there are plenty of opportunities to catch a wide variety of fish throughout the year. However, the weather can vary significantly from month to month, so it's important to plan your fishing trips accordingly. In this blog, we'll explore the best times to fish in Tampa by each month of the year, including the fish you can catch, average temperatures, and potential for rain.

redfish in tampa

When Is The Best Time To Fish In Tampa?

The best time of the year to fish in Tampa really depends on what species of fish you are targeting and what type of fishing experience you are looking for. That being said, many anglers consider the months of April, May, and June to be the prime fishing season in Tampa.

During these months, the water temperatures start to warm up, and a wide variety of fish species begin to move into the shallower waters around the mangrove shorelines and grass flats. This includes popular game fish such as snook, redfish, tarpon, and trout, which are all known for their aggressive feeding behavior during this time of year.

Additionally, the weather during these months tends to be mild, with comfortable temperatures and lower humidity levels than during the summer months. This makes for a more pleasant fishing experience, especially when you're out on the water for several hours at a time.

Of course, this doesn't mean that other months of the year aren't good for fishing in Tampa. Each month of the year offers unique opportunities to catch different species of fish. However, if you're looking for the best overall fishing experience in Tampa, spring is a great time to plan your trip. Below you can explore what fishing looks like each month in the Tampa area.

January

January can be a great time to fish in Tampa, especially for sheepshead and redfish. These fish are most active in the cooler months and can be found around structures like docks and bridges. The average temperature in January is around 70°F (21°C), and while there is some potential for rain, it's generally one of the drier months of the year.

February

February is another good month for sheepshead and redfish, as well as spotted seatrout. These fish can be found in the same areas as in January, but may also be found in deeper waters. The average temperature in February is similar to January, but there is slightly more potential for rain.

March

As the weather warms up in March, the fishing opportunities expand. This is a great month for snook fishing, as well as redfish and spotted seatrout. These fish can be found in shallow waters, around oyster bars and mangrove shorelines. The average temperature in March is around 75°F (24°C), and there is a slightly higher chance of rain.

April

April is a great month for fishing in Tampa, with a wide variety of fish to be caught. This is the start of tarpon season, and they can be found in the deeper waters of Tampa Bay. Other fish that can be caught in April include redfish, snook, trout, and cobia. The average temperature in April is around 80°F (27°C), and while there is some potential for rain, it's generally a dry month.

May

May is another great month for fishing in Tampa, with plenty of opportunities to catch tarpon, snook, redfish, and trout. This is also the start of kingfish season, and they can be found in the deeper waters of the Gulf of Mexico. The average temperature in May is around 85°F (29°C), and there is a higher chance of rain, especially in the latter half of the month.

June

June is a hot and humid month in Tampa, but it's also a great time for fishing. This is when the tarpon bite really heats up, and they can be found in the deeper waters of the Gulf of Mexico and Tampa Bay. Other fish that can be caught in June include snook, redfish, trout, and Spanish mackerel. The average temperature in June is around 90°F (32°C), and there is a high chance of rain, especially in the afternoon.

July

July is another hot and humid month in Tampa, but there are still plenty of fish to be caught. This is a great month for snook and tarpon fishing, as well as redfish and trout. Spanish mackerel can also be caught in July, and they can be found in the deeper waters of the Gulf of Mexico. The average temperature in July is around 92°F (33°C), and there is a high chance of rain, especially in the afternoon.

August

August is the peak of tarpon season in Tampa, and they can be found in the deeper waters of Tampa Bay and the Gulf of Mexico. Other fish that can be caught in August include snook, redfish, and trout. The average temperature in August is around 92°F (33°C), and there is a high chance of rain, especially in the afternoon.

September

September is a transitional month in Tampa, as the weather starts to cool down and the fish begin to move around. This is a good month for snook and redfish fishing, and they can be found in the shallower waters around the mangrove shorelines. Trout and Spanish mackerel can also be caught in September. The average temperature in September is around 89°F (32°C), and while there is still a chance of rain, it's generally less than in the previous months.

October

October is a great month for fishing in Tampa, as the weather cools down and the fish become more active. This is a good month for snook and redfish fishing, as well as trout and Spanish mackerel. Kingfish can also be caught in the deeper waters of the Gulf of Mexico. The average temperature in October is around 84°F (29°C), and while there is still a chance of rain, it's generally less than in the summer months.

November

November is another great month for fishing in Tampa, with plenty of opportunities to catch snook, redfish, trout, and Spanish mackerel. This is also the start of cobia season, and they can be found in the deeper waters of the Gulf of Mexico. The average temperature in November is around 77°F (25°C), and while there is still a chance of rain, it's generally less than in the summer months.

December

December can be a good month for fishing in Tampa, especially for sheepshead and redfish. These fish can be found around structures like docks and bridges, as well as in the shallower waters around the mangrove shorelines. The average temperature in December is around 71°F (22°C), and while there is a chance of rain, it's generally one of the drier months of the year.

Fish With The Best Tampa Fishing Guides

No matter when you're looking to fish, we have plenty of local professional fishing guides ready to get you out on the water. Working with a professional guide means you'll get access to local knowledge and fishing spots that better ensures you're going to find something to catch. Browse our Tampa fishing charters now and easily book online in minutes!