Fishing has been pretty good despite wind and building tides. Redfish and seatrout are biting! A few reports of limits on seatrout. Most of the action is still on reds. Lots of fish in the 14 to 15 inch range. Some of the reds are up to 16 inches. A few bonnet head sharks can be found on the flats and hanging off of points. Lots of shrimp in the creeks and rivers. Big tides can blow shrimp out of the rivers into the sounds. Fishing big tides is definitely tricky. Nonetheless, fish can be caught. Finding drifts that aren’t too fast and clean water is critical. In general when fishing big tides anticipate a smaller window of opportunity to find fish. Usually the best opportunity is around the top of tide, lasting about an hour. One fishermen today targeting the top of tide caught a couple of 19 – 20 inch reds and a 21 inch seatrout. Finding fish on big tides isn’t unusual. Nonetheless bear in mind if you don’t find fish on the top of tide you’re now hunting for clean water and a fishable drift. Finding suitable conditions can be difficult but possible. Your favorite big water tide drop might have a fellow fishermen on it. Best advice for fishing less than favorable conditions “just go fishing”. Nature is always surprising. Days that were suppose to be a bust can be very productive. Currents that were supposed to be ripping might be fine for fishing. As Miss Judy says, “it just fishing”. With that in mind sometimes a low expectation can be greatly exceeded. Go fishing!
When heading out to look for reds on the flats a couple of fishermen in my boat said they saw a big fish jump. Thoughts were it was a late season tarpon or perhaps a spinner shark. The fish jumped again, this time the id was easy a large sturgeon.
Have heard several reports this week of one or two large flounder being caught while fishing. Several fishermen also report catching a mangrove snapper. This is typical a warm water fish that is found further south. Basically an indication of warm water.
One report that needs to be made is be very careful when handling stingrays particularly small ones. I’m always reluctant to write anything about myself but this is a little different. Today while removing a hook from ray I got barbed in the hand. The hook out device that is normally fool proof wasn’t today. Small rays are more nimble than the heftier ones. Shaking the hook out of a larger ray might be suitable, for a smaller ray it definitely is not. Thanks to Miss Judy an the ER at Memorial Hospital a bad situation was righted. Lessons learned. Soak the injury in as hot as water as you stand and get medical attention immediately. The hot water actually draws out the toxin. It’s difficult to describe the discomfort, it’s real. When in doubt, cut the leader.
Anticipate tricky fishing conditions until tides start to fall. First tides under 8 feet are on Wednesday October 3rd. Tides look ideal going into weekend of October 5th and 6th. Hope this report of interest and some help.
Good fishing! Capt. Jack McGowan