December 2023 Fishing Report and January 2024 Forecast



Capt. Rick Davidson, Editor (


December 2023 Fishing Report

We’ve had a wonderful Christmas season at the Sea Hag Marina. One of our best presents: our store is now completely open after the hurricane flooding, and looks better than ever!
Lots of festivities this month, with a golf cart Christmas competition, a poker run, and our Tiki Bar hosted some live music. Some wind and rain kept folks off the water for a few days, but the fishing was great for those that persevered. The big trout came out to eat this month, and the redfish stuck around as well. Here are some pics of this month’s catches.



Fishing Forecast for January 2024


As always in January, everything depends on the weather. There aren’t any hard freezes in the near forecast, but they will be coming at some point, and that will mean trout in the river. Fishing the river is always fun when the trout are plentiful; some years are better than others, but when they’re there in good numbers, there are several ways to fish. The old-timers will troll up and down the river, slowly trolling sinking plugs like a 52M Mirrolure until you locate fish. They will be large schools in deep water near the channel, so an alternative is to anchor near the channel (make sure you’re not in it) and fish the bottom with jigs tipped with either live shrimp or Gulp baits. As always in cold water, fish very slowly and make sure your bait is near the bottom. It’s very rocky in parts of the river that hold fish, so you may lose some tackle; make sure you’ve got plenty for backup. Trout in the river schooling are usually keeper size or smaller, but for larger trout, like many of the ones caught this month, head outside the river and fish areas with rocks on the flats or dark muddy bottom. Those areas will hold heat after morning sunshine. The conditions are important; perfect would be two days or so after a real cold front, with bright sunshine and a low morning tide rising in the afternoon. Fish very slow sinking lures; unweighted Texas-rigged soft baits, Paul Brown Corky lures, or shallow running suspending lures like the Live Target sardine. Drifting live shrimp over rocky areas works very well. Fish SLOW. Fish are cold-blooded and their metabolism in cold water keeps them from chasing any distance for bait or lures. And now that the store is up and running, we’ve got live bait, pinfish and live shrimp, that will work great this time of year.

There’s only one tournament this month, and that’s the Florida Redfish Series on January 27th. But if the weather stays warm, there will be fish on the flats and this is a great time of year to find some big ones. And if it freezes, consider river fishing….it’s great fun.

Have a happy safe New Year’s and come see us.

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