Red snapper snaps back for strong finish

Tina Harbuck

Earlier this week it appeared that all the big snapper had been snapped up — wrong.

On Wednesday a couple of the boats proved me wrong.

Coming in from a four-hour trip aboard the Mighty Fine with Capt. Paul Cornish, Daniel Garza of Texas landed a huge red snapper. It was so big they wanted to make sure they had the weight right so they went up and used the trusty little Fish and Game Scales at the docks. Garza’s snapper weighed in at 24.4 pounds. Not too shabby.

It wasn’t long after that Capt. Harold Staples on the Al-Lin and his group from New Orleans and Colorado backed in with a tub full of fish. They had grouper, red snapper, white snapper and Almaco Jack.

Capt. Ben O’Connor and his group from Missouri on the 100 Proof brought in a massive catch of red snapper, a couple of scamp and grouper as well. Captain said he took a gamble and made a run to find the snapper and needless to say it paid off with a good catch and some happy customers.

Arkansas anglers on Fish-N-Fool with Capt. Casey Weldon filled the racks with red snapper, mingo, white snapper and a couple of Almaco Jack.

Texas anglers on the No Alibi with Capt. Chris Couvillion pulled in a good catch of red snapper and grouper.

Capt. Travis Ream and his anglers from Texas on the Kitchen Pass reeled in a good grade of red snapper to go along with a few scamp and Almaco Jack. Ream said they saw a few dolphin skyrocketing while they were fishing. “It looked like the Gulfarium,” he said.

Wisconsin anglers on the Un Reel with Capt. Justin Destin loaded up on the red snapper and a couple of Almaco.

When Capt. Ken Bolden backed in the Just-B-Cause his deckhand Tyler had a big grin on his face. He said you’re going to want to stick around for this one. First he pulled out a tub of fish filled with red snapper and black snapper. Then he went to the fish box and hauled out a monster snapper.

“He didn’t come up quietly,” Tyler said. “He was hung on a rock.”

Nevertheless they got it in and the snapper weighed in at 25.5 pounds.

Kansas anglers on the Sweet William III with Capt. Bill Watson brought in a good showing of red snapper, barracuda and king mackerel. As the deckhand was cleaning up the catch, one of the anglers said, “I guess we’re not in Kansas anymore.” He went on to say all they catch back home are flathead catfish and bass. So the barracuda, king and snapper were looking pretty sporty on the racks.

Texas anglers on the First Light with Capt. Steve Hauesler came in around noon on Wednesday with a great catch of red snapper, plus a bonus blackfin tuna.

Capt. Brantley Galloway on the Full Draw came in late Wednesday afternoon with a big catch of red snapper, some big white snapper, scamp and red grouper.

Folks, the snapper fishing is not finished yet. Charter boats with a federal permit, which is the majority of the boats, can still catch red snapper through Aug. 1. The red snapper derby is not over yet.

See you at the docks.

Click to the listen: