To say fishing been good is an understatement! This is will go down as one of the best years up and down the coast out of the last ten or fifteen years. That’s a strong statement. That being said it’s still just fishing. A front can slow the bite. Usually fishing will be good just before the front and after the fish have adjusted to the conditions. Immediately after a front sounds like an ideal time to fish. On the contrary even if you find clean water fishing will likely be fair to poor (immediately after a front).
Several mild winters and ideal salinity levels have come together to create a bumper crop of seatrout. Seatrout can be found on almost patch of marsh grass. Seatrout are on the move in search of shrimp. An ideal time to target this fish is either when the shrimp are entering or leaving the grass. Current can concentrate bait and fish. When conditions come together the bite can be fast and furious. Many fishermen are taking a few to eat and releasing the rest (many legal fish). Drops that can produce seemingly an endless supply of fish one day might not produce a single bite the next. Fish will move as bait moves. Porpoises and fishing pressure can also change a pattern. When fishing look for conditions: clean water, bait, lack of porpoises and good drift. When these come together you’ll likely find fish. Almost any patch of marsh grass might be holding a thick school of seatrout. When targeting reds look for hard structure: oysters shells, hard bottom and thin grass.
One fisherman asked me yesterday how long could he expect to catch fish. It all depends. On some past years we’ve seen a hot inshore up to New Year’s. Cold fronts always play a big part. . Don Adams, Adams Baithouse has said shrimp are already starting to become hard to find. Shrimp that are plentiful one day can be pulled out into the sounds on a big tide. Shrimp in the Savannah area are usually pretty scare by New Year’s. Fishing should be hot as long temperatures are mild and shrimp are plentiful. Enjoy it!
Tides look good for the coming week. Weather permitting could be some of the best fishing of the year! Time to wet a line!
Good Fishing! Always practice catch and release – keep a few and release the rest!
Capt. Jack McGowan