As we head from late fall to early winter the bite has been good! Many fishermen are reporting lots of small seatrout. Many of these fish are only six to eight inches. Fishermen are believing if we don’t have a fish kill due to cold weather there will likely be a bumper crop this spring. There have been larger size seatrout catches but fishing is becoming spotty. Those finding fish are putting in the hours and fishing many drops.
Bait shrimp is still available in some bait shops (Adams) but conditions are rapidly changing and shrimp will become more scare in the coming days and weeks. A favorite winter pattern is to fish the heads of creeks. This means fishing towards the back of the creek. Sometimes water can be slightly warmer in the these places. Another cold water patterns is to fish the flats. Flats are those areas that are exposed at low tide. At low tide flats can soak up heat from the sun. As the tide turns, starts to come in, fishermen might find redfish and seatrout in these shallow water areas. Approaching a flat stealth-fully is important. A school of reds could be laying on the flat. Long casts and a quiet approach is important! Once you locate a school it can be possible to catch several fish out of a school. Then you might be catching not just fishing. It can happen but takes having several things lining up. A quiet is approach cannot be stressed enough. A crash of anchor or even a bad cast could send a school of reds scampering.
This week there have been some stripers caught up river. Remember stripers in the Savannah River system have to measure 27 inches with a limit of two fish per angler (always check the regulations). The water in the Savannah River has been muddy most of the fall. Muddy water is not ideal for stripers. Like seatrout – stripers are considered sight feeding predator fish. Best chances of success will be on small tides fishing the top of the tide.
Sheepshead action has been good! This time sheepshead are in transition (moving between inshore and offshore) and will take a variety of baits besides fiddler crabs. If you want to fish for sheepshead and you cannot find fiddler crabs try shrimp, oysters or even barnacles. They will eat a wide variety of bait this time of year.
Hope this is of interest and help!
Keep only what you want to eat and release the rest (always obey the regulations).
Capt. Jack McGowan
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