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Tags for Winter has finally made it to the Keys! Not for long!

Travisholeman  Fishing  Crabbing  Shrimping  Florida  

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Winter has finally made it to the Keys! Not for long!

By tholeman - Published January 09, 2012 - Viewed 2168 times

This first week of 2012 was a cold one by Keys standards! It lasted all of 3 days! As a resident you have to take advantage of the little moments that Mother Nature offers is secret bounty! 

What to do when it’s cold and blowing? Go scrimping and crab-n!  The cooler weather and water temps get the blue crabs and shrimp moving! Both can be done with hand nets where water is moving and wading is possible! Each annual Florida license holder is allowed 5 crab traps! The best bait we find are the left over heads and spines of the food fish we often chase when the weather is cooler! 

Snapper of any species are my personal favorites! Go catch a limit of two of snapper, clean 'em and freeze the carcass for your traps! No waste and the end result is a tasty boil for the friends and family near you! Better than a BBQ if you’re a crab and shrimp lover!

In a few hours time my lady Katie Lynn, my brother Bear and a good friend Kyle managed to get enough shrimp for a couple of boils and were not even close to our limits! 
Another productive method is to set up the lights on the boat and go drift the passes with hand nets! The mesh needs to be small enough to not allow the shrimp through but big enough to move freely in the water!  The key to netting shrimp, as Kyle puts it,  “slow and steady”.  Believe it or not, the more you move the more the shrimp move away from the net. I personally like to just swing the net back and forth and intercept the shrimp path... others like to chase 'em!
So on the next cool or cold front don’t let it keep you off the water! Get the nets and a 5 gallon buck for each angler and go fill them up! 
Good Fishing!
Capt. Travis Holeman
keywestangling@gmail.com 305-906-0301

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