When fishermen think about March Madness usually fishermen are thinking about a hot redfish bite. It can and does happen. Late winter cold snaps as well as low salinity has delayed our bite. In the last two weeks water temperature has risen from 49 degrees to 59 degrees. This is a dramatic jump in a short period time. At present we are not seeing much bait but as conditions continue to warm bait will push in and the bite will be picking up.
The best action continues to be redfish and sheepshead. The nearshore wrecks have supplied most of the sheepshead action, however, not all. Fishermen can find sheepshead on inshore structure close to the sounds as well.
Redfish can be found well inland even in off colored low salinity water as well as close to the sounds. The bite so far has not been hot but as conditions heat up the bite can rapidly turn on. Redfish will take a variety of live and dead bait as well soft plastics, flies and artificals. In recent days several of reds we’ve caught have had sea lice on them. Some fishermen say this is a sign of lethargic redfish in cold water. Others say when redfish have sea lice on them it is means they moving from deep water to shallow water to feed. In other words, seeing sea lice on redfish could mean hungry fish coming up on the flats! We are also seeing redfish with characteristic blue tails. To me blue tails means hungry fish. Some fishermen have said their tail always blue. Sometimes the colors seem to pop. When this happens those days seems to be particularly good for reds! Spring is right around the corner and the redfish action will likely be heating up!
As of today the seatrout bite has not fired off. Its time for seatrout to start moving up from deep holes to shallow water in search of an easy meal. Putting two mud minnows on a hook, double shot, is a trick to entice a reluctant seatrout to eating.
The Spring bite is right around the corner. Typically the first fish to show in the sounds are whiting followed by big reds, sharks and lots of other species. Hope this is of help and interest! Hope to see you on the water!
Capt. Jack McGowan