Redfish and trout continue to be staple on the flats.
The reds are on nearly every rocky point or hard bottom cul-de-sac at the fringes of creeks, rivers and bayous. We have been successful catching high numbers of lower- and mid-slot fish.
Over-sized trout have been common catches while targeting the reds. Lower-slot to under-sized trout are abundant over the grass in 3 to 6 feet of water.
The deep grass flats 3 to 9 miles offshore are producing a potpourri of species. Large Spanish mackerel, bonita, bluefish, ladyfish, small sharks, cobia, jacks and an occasional kingfish are providing non-stop action.
Starting on Monday, stone crab trappers will begin to pull and re-bait their traps at regular intervals. The long lines of freshly baited traps create a novel chum line that often attracts fish for several days or weeks. Surface activity and low flying birds in the areas of the trap lines will point you to the fish. Remember, “molesting” a trap that does not belong to you is a crime and there is no reason to be that close to them.
Unique to our deep grass flats are “muds”. Frenzied fish feeding on shrimp and migrating baitfish over the grass often stir the soft bottom that creates defined areas of off-colored water. On occasion, the “muds” themselves are barren of fish; however, by drifting in close proximity to them, you may relocate the action.
Small rock piles surrounded by sandy holes over the grass flats are starting to produce legal sized grouper in 8 to 12 feet of water. Expect the action to gel with a passing cold front or two.
Capt. Robert McCue can be reached at (800) 833-0489 or through his website, www.GiantTarpon.com.