Last week fishing was hampered by tropical storm Fay. On the water Monday, Saturday and Sunday. Despite lots of rain Don Adams of Adam’s Baithouse reported that shrimp are plentiful and the water is clear despite the rain and wind. Strong weather events usually result in muddy water and higher than normal tides. For some reason still plenty of clean water. Prior to the storm we had plenty of bites. Catching fish was difficult due to the wind. Nonetheless we caught some nice seatrout. As the main brunt of the storm passed wind was still big factor. We found lots of black drum and redfish in the heads of some creeks. In a four hour trip we likely had two dozen or more black drum (2 to 4 pounds) with half a dozen redfish from 20 inches on up. This is a good day for any conditions much less marginal conditions. Most of the shark action in Warsaw has been confined to small sharks about 18 inches. Some whiting being caught. Reports of good catches of whiting and redfish in Tybee Creek. Fishermen who were able to get out of the wind and find clean water had a good chance of catching fish. As Fay pushed away fisherman were able to return to the water. Lots of small redfish still being caught. Most of these fish are around 13 ½ inches. We landed some nice redfish up to 10 pound, a few flounders and some seatrout. Anticipate the best action to be deep until top layer of fresh water mixes with the salt. Lots of small redfish and seatrout. Nicer fish can be caught on the flats but the best recent action for seatrout has been by those fishing deep. Lots of small fish so bring plenty of bait! Bait shops should have good supplies of bait but you never know. Throwing can be fun and effective way to catch your own bait. My thought is that if takes more than about 30 minuets to get a quart you’re better off buying the bait. Sometimes you’ll find the bait shops are closed or out of bait so throwing your cast net can work. A couple of days ago after 30 minuets of throwing with not much to show for it I decided to throw for a few more minuets. It might be an exaggeration but I think I had about three quarts in six casts. Pretty amazing! The bait, shrimp, are about prefect fishing size. Lots of bait means it wont be long till seatrout and redfish are in the creeks and rivers. Of course there are fish in the back waters now but in the coming weeks these fish will gain size and there will be more of them!
Capt. Wild Bill Jarrell of Yellow Bluff reported spotting lots tarpon! Finding bait for tarpon fishing can be problematic. Plenty of pogies one day and gone the next. I always recommend getting some bait the day before fishing. Lots of rain can drive pogies out of the sound. Dead baits can work well for tarpon just make sure the bait is fresh! A typical summer wind is a south, southwest wind. Sounds pretty easy to fish. The fronts of barrier island can get pretty bumpy. Most tarpon are caught early or on overcast and cloudy days. This is true seatrout and redfish as well.
When asked does it look a good season for fishing? My answer is absolutely, YES! So far plenty of bait. We have had good rain. The marshes look lush and green. Most folks are in agreement the limits we have on seatrout and redfish are working. It wasn’t many years ago that Georgia had no limits. Limits means lots of fish are being released that otherwise would not. In the last few weeks I’ve released several redfish that been caught more than once. Even when a fish is legal size you don’t have to kept it. Kept what you want to eat and release the rest.
Tides this week are a little funky with evening tides over 8.2 and 8.3 feet on Friday and Saturday respectively. Tides aren’t the best. Fishing could be good to poor going into the Labor Day weekend. The safe bet is to anticipate fair fishing, Thunderstorms are always a summertime possibility. Fishing could be problematic but you never know unless you go! Hope you have fun on the water! Beat a fast retreat if storms pop up!
Before closing a few words about attending a recent CCA (Coastal Conservation Association) meeting. The theme of meeting of the meeting was resource first! What a great theme! In short a great a resource can mean great fishing! This is what the CCA is advocating! This something all who enjoy the coast can be proud to get behind. Support your local CCA chapter!
Hope this of interest and help!!
Good Fishing! Capt. Jack McGowan