Mar 23, 2009

By | March 23, 2009

As conditions continue to warm the bite is progressively getting better! Whiting an indicator fish are showing in increasingly larger numbers. The general thought of this relatively small but tasty fish is they indicate the arrival of Spring fishing and what’s to come (sharks, tarpon, jacks, spanish and more)! This year as in most years the bite starts a little further down the Georgia coast and moves up. On one recent outing we landed over 30 keeper size fish and released several smaller ones. The bite for most of that fishing period was soft and slow requiring feel and a delicate touch. A soft slow bite likely could be due to water temperature below 60 degrees or slower than normal currents. Each day is a little different. Adjusting is part of fishing. Its funny whether fishing for sheepshead, whiting or some other fish making adjustment is all part of it.

With warming conditions and water temperature in the mid to upper 60’s. seatrout are starting to bite! Some fishermen are saying the bite is a little late year. On the other hand an official from the Georgia Department of Natural Resources stated there were no fish kills over the winter. Likely fishing will be good in the coming days, weeks and months! Seatrout catches thus far have been scattered and inconsistent anticipate that to change as temperature rise. Miss Judy saying – 65 and everything is alive is good number to gauge fishing success! (For more about Miss Judy, her fishing report, or to book with her go Typically seatrout in the Spring in the back waters will be large, hungry and feeding. Mud minnows are great bait to target Springtime seatrout. A favorite simple rig is to hook a mud minnow on 1/4 oz. jig and simply let it sit. Shrimp are the favorite bait in local waters nonetheless sometimes during the Spring a mud minnow can be very effective. If possible take some of both.

Sheepshead action remains strong! Fishermen both inshore and near shore have caught large numbers. Sheepshead can be a great fighting fish. At times tricky to catch but well worth the effort. My only caveat with sheepshead fishing is the larger fish are the ones loaded with roe. My traditional view has been past on to me by my mother that is smaller seafood is the best (to eat)! I think this holds true with sheepshead as well. Often fishermen will have hunters mentality that is larger is better. A 22 inch seatrout while looks nice and tastes only fair. This fish could hold thousands of potential seatrout in it. In short the largest seatrout are usually females loaded with roe. A 22 inch seatrout and above would be a great fish to release! With all that said keeping a few fish to eat is a ok. Part of goodness of fishing is that you can eat some what you catch.

Along with the whiting around the sandbars cold water sharks have shown up as well. As temperatures rise cold water sharks (dog fish) will recede to cooler ocean water and warm water sharks will start filling local waters.

Redfish have supplied most of action the past several weeks. Some fisherman believe the past year provided the best fishing ever in local waters! Nature despite wind and a cold winter has been extremely kind. More black drum last year than many can remembered . So far the black drum catch has been pretty incidental, one here one there. As temperature warm more drum should start showing up as well. Reports of large numbers of redfish being caught slightly north and south of Savannah by fishermen using traditional float rigs. Redfish are in good numbers and be found in schools by patience fishermen.

Tides throughout this week look good. Negative tides start on Wednesday March 25 and will extend through weekend. Although tides are in the negative range they are only slightly negative. The impact for fishermen will likely be minimal. Tides looks good! Whiting fishing good, seatrout fair to good to excellent, redfish fair to good. Bait is plentiful in the baitshop once reports start coming back of good catches anticipate bait can be hard to come by.

Hope this of interest and help! Fish On!

Capt. Jack McGowan