Lots of rain has put a slight damper on fishing. That said, conditions can change quickly! Areas that were holding lots of shrimp are empty. What’s happened? Fish, shrimp and are seeking more favorable conditions. For fisherman it’s a matter of finding those places. Despite a lack of shrimp in local waters Don Adams is finding and catching lots of shrimps. Don is shrimping deep. Fishermen can take a clue when there are periods of heavy rain fish and shrimp are often deep. Sometimes the most effective rig is a carolina rig or better known as a bottom rig. Likely there is a layer of fresh water floating on top of the salt. Also pay attention to what’s biting. If you’re catching whiting on a seatrout drop maybe it’s a whiting day. Fish for whiting. Just after some heavy rain we were catching whiting on almost every drop. While fishing along some with large chucks of mullet for tarpon and sharks we were still catching whiting. My words were I think you guys are meant to eat whiting tonight. For whatever the reason the whiting bite has especially good following the rain. Some shark action. Of course large bonnet head sharks are ever present. Black tips and sand bar sharks seem to be the most abundant. The best bite has been near the sounds. Lots of undersized seatrout, redfish and flounder. As conditions continues to improve the bite will pick up. When catching undersized fish its possible to work up some keeper fish. Typically you’re catching seven or eight undersized seatrout for each keeper fish. In the coming weeks the small fish should fatten up. Large ladyfish can be found prowling around rips and points. Lots of croakers! Although not a fish to be taken it’s good to see good numbers of this fish! Some reports of large stag bass (large redfish) around St. Cathrine’s and Wassaw. Labor day is thought of as time when large stag bass run the beachfront. A few have already been caught! The flounder bite in recent is little off.
August is generally deemed the top month for tarpon in locals. Usually it is. When large baits, large menhaden, push into local waters tarpon will follow. So far some baits have pushed in but the bulk of the bait fish have been smaller river menhaden. Some tarpon have been caught but to date not a particularly strong bite. Don’t count the big fish out. As stated earlier conditions can quickly change. One day last week while tarpon we caught as anticipated several large sharks. We got close to two tarpon but no hook ups. A few tarpon have been caught but at present only a lackluster bite. Most the tarpon have caught on mullet.
Evening tides will be springing this week with tides cresting on Wednesday evening. Fishermen can find and catch quality but conditions will be more challenging. Look for clean water. Try fishing deep for whiting, seatrout and redfish. Those throwing a cast net for shrimp might struggle if water remains brackish. Again conditions can change quickly one or two days without rain and shrimp will once again be plentiful along marshy banks. Despite a temporary set back to local fishing caused by weeks of heavy rain the long effect will likely be very positive for shrimp, crab and fish.
Hope this of help! Fish On!
Keep only what you plan to eat and release the rest.
Capt. Jack McGowan