Stopping by Tybee Island Bait and Tackle a few days ago , the owner and manager – CT, said this first time in three weeks his thermometer has read over 50 degrees. (CT said)This does not sounds significant however it is. It was great to see temperatures rise this week to around 55 degrees. Fishermen are still finding large schools of redfish on the flats. Redfish, fish in general, will move. Finding fish on flat one day does not mean this is a given. Lots of things can influence where schools end up: dolphins, boats, fishing pressure, water conditions, and an available food source just to name a few. Nonetheless when you find a spot that fish like at some time they will return. Trick is being there when conditions are right!
As one fly fisherman recently said most of the reds this of the are in about a foot of water. This means extreme shallow drafting boats will have an advantage. That said more conventional drafting boats can still stay on fish.
The sheepshead fishing can be good to excellent this time of year! Fishermen have done well offshore as well as inshore. Friday we managed 10 or 12 keepers, a couple of nice black drum and one redfish. We caught our fish on fiddler crabs using either a carolina rig or light float rig. The trick is to find fish in places that are fishable. Wind and current can play havoc on the best drops. When conditions allow the sheepshead bite should be good inshore as well offshore!
Most action on redfish has been on plastics. Some reports of fishermen catching reds on mud minnows. Seatrout reports have been few. Anticipate seatrout to start showing up temperatures continue to raise.
Stripers although action has been relatively consistent with most anglers catching some fish. Most reports of fish being caught on live or dead finger mullet on bottom or float rigs. Raising temperatures should likely help!
With St. Patrick’s day on Wednesday, March 17th most of the attention is turning to local festivities. Strong west, southwest winds has made fishing challenging. Tides look good this week. As wind lay fishing conditions will likely vastly improve allowing fishermen to access flats they haven’t been able to fish in weeks. Fishing has been challenging with below normal water temperatures and windly conditions. On the other hand the seasons are rapidly changing. Water temperatures are on raise! Neat time to target redfish, blackdrum, sheepshead and stripers!
Hope this of interest and help!
Capt. Jack McGowan
Fiddler crabs are pleniful a good sign nature is heating up!