I didn’t know this before, but you can catch shrimp by walking in the water and scooping them up with a net. I heard about this from a friend at work. He said his friends went out in one night and filled up a 5 gallon bucket. That’s a lot of shrimp!
The shrimp go up into the Tampa Bay estuary and rivers to spawn in the winter. Then from Jan to June they drift out to the gulf on the outgoing tides . When the tide comes back in they hide in the water grasses and hang on, waiting for the next outgoing tide.
To catch them, you walk in the water at low tide at night with a headlamp looking for the reflection glow of their eyes. Then you scoop them up with a net. Note: this is not as easy as it sounds. Check out this if you want to learn more and see a video of how it works. We might need to get that Ozzello shrimper before next season.
All you need are a net, a floating bucket, a headlamp, and a cooler of beer.
To see where we went, put this into maps.google.com: 27.65769,-82.720549
This is the view. It is so pretty around here.
Here is me ready to go out:
We only saw about eight shrimp. Yes, that is 8 single shrimp. In our defense it is the last day that experts say you could go and expect to catch anything. Also, I heard that the storm pretty much cleaned out most that were left. I’m just glad we actually saw them. I caught two and my buddy Tim caught two. Only one of them was big enough to keep. There was another shrimp I had a go at that I didn’t catch. As I started scooping, this shrimp jumped out of the net and about 6 feet away through the air! Boy, those little buggers can move quick!
Here is our big haul:
Not exactly a rousing success, but we were outdoors drinking beer and having fun. There is always next season. Stay tuned for my next harebrained adventure! It’s a doozy!