Fishing Report May 2016
Capt. Rick Davidson, Editor (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Sea Hag May Report
May has been a great month for trout, redfish and cobia. The whitebait have finally showed up in good numbers nearshore, and that’s where people have been finding large silver trout, keeper seatrout, Spanish mackerel, and lots of ladyfish and blue runners. Redfish have been plentiful nearer the shoreline, especially on near-flood tides. Offshore, kingfish and amberjacks have made up most of the catching; while gag grouper have been open in state waters, on June 1 they are available in federal waters as well. Flounder have been plentiful, though small, near sandbars and creeks. Here are some pictures of this month’s catches….and the first may be the surprise catch of the year. Tim Seese and Kyoho Lee were trolling for kingfish west of Little Bank in 30+ feet of water when they landed this beautiful sailfish. This is only the third sail I can remember that’s been caught in close waters, and it was a nice one.
Fishing forecast for June
June is a big tournament month in Steinhatchee. The Doug Johnson Reeling for Kids tournament is June 3-4. More information is available at: http://www.reelingforkids.com/
The ladies get their shot during the Nautigirls Tournament on June 11th, and there is a pro redfish series event on June 18th. For more information, contact the ship’s store at Sea Hag Marina.
And for the really really big prizes, make sure you register for the CCA STAR Tournament. 101 days of fishing, great prizes including trucks and boats, and there has already been one tagged redfish caught….but no prize because the person wasn’t entered. Don’t be crazy….you’ve got as much chance as anyone else. There have been 8 tagged redfish placed in Dixie and Taylor Counties. Don’t miss out on a chance to cash in. More information can be found on this website: http://www.ccaflstar.com/
As I mentioned earlier, gag group season opens June 1 in federal waters, with a size limit of 24”. The grouper aggregate bag limit is four fish per person; 2 can be red grouper, 2 can be gags. Unfortunately amberjack are closed for two months. As usual, the recreational red snapper rules are complicated, but the first short season opens June 1-2 for recreational only, but June 1-16 with a charter captain.
Inshore fishing will continue to be very productive. Redfish are schooling in near-shoreline areas and around inshore bars. Hot spots have been the shoreline between Dallus Creek and Fisherman’s Rest to the north, and Bird Island to Sink Creek to the south. During the last week of May we saw a pretty strong influx of floating grass, so consider using jigs, popping corks, or cut bait instead of lures with treble hooks. Another ticket is to use large soft plastics that are Texas-rigged to avoid the grass. Z-man Lures make a large floating shad and also a popping floating soft bait, and you can find a selection in the Sea Hag Ship’s Store. Any larger soft bait rigged without an exposed hook will be very useful in heavy grass, along with gold spoons. Trout have been caught around the nearshore bars, especially Little and 9 Mile Banks, west of the bird rack, and in the area toward Keaton known as doghead. These bars have been holding lots of white bait, and that’s the ticket. Find them and you’ll find the fish.
And the best for last….at the end of the month, scallop season opens. We’ve already seen some great looking scallops in shallow waters near the bird rack. It looks like it’s going to be a great season. Here’s a brief review of scalloping by our own Capt. Tommy Thompson:
If you haven’t already, you need to make plans for accommodations and boat rentals at the Sea Hag Marina. Lodging is always a challenge during the season; some people renew their reservations every year, so don’t delay….call today.
Capt. Steve Rassell lastcastras.com 352 359-5902
Trout fishing continues to be good both on the shallow grass and deeper holes. Sand trout are in the deeper holes and lots of Spanish around the sand bars. The bigger redfish are starting to move into the shallow grass around the creeks.