Georgia Saltwater Fishing Report October 2011

GON Staff | September 28, 2011

Saltwater: Inshore: Excellent. Capt. David Newlin reports, “The inshore bite is as good as it gets. Redfish are everywhere. The smaller fish are in the shallow water eating shrimp. The big redfish are in the deeper channels and in the surf. Fish a piece of mullet on the bottom for the big fish. As always, a live shrimp under a cork works great in the shallow water. Almost all of the fish are longer than 14 inches. We’re catching a lot of trout in the sound. Live shrimp works best. Some lures should start working in the next few weeks as the water cools off. October should be great fishing.” Capt. Judy Helmey reports, “The month of October offers fishermen a bigger bite scenario. Inshore fishermen get to experience the big bull red fish migration. These monsters start their migration from where they have been holding in the creeks, rivers and upper sound areas. Once in the backs of the sounds, this is a fish that finds a suitable place to bulk-up before making way to the beachfronts and then the ocean. Schooling baits such as mullet and menhaden provide much feeding opportunity for these fish. Where you see any surface action, stop, wait and look for any turbulence from underwater feeding or seabirds in a feeding pattern. Another place to look as well as fish are areas where currents come together forming some sort of a rip. Here are a few suggestions: Always looks for any surface oils, sometimes referred to as cat paws. If there is any bird feeding action, always check out the size and type of the seabirds. If it’s pelicans only, what you most likely have is schools of menhaden, meaning, “no bigger fish feeding here.” However, this would be an area that schools of big reds could show up for feeding. The best rig to use for big bulls reds when anchored around live oyster beds are small adjustable floats with about 12 inches of 30- to 40-lb. test fluorocarbon leader with either a semi-circle or a standard 2/0 to 3/0 Kahle hook. Best baits for this rig are going to be lip hooked live mullet, peanut menhaden or live shrimp hooked up under the horn. If live bait isn’t an option, there are plenty other baits that will work such as cut mullet or dried shrimp. When working rips or feeding schools of redfish use diamond-shape jigs (1- to 3-oz.) with or without red, green or yellow miniature tube lures. Capt. T.J. Cheek reports, “The inshore fishing in coastal Georgia has been outstanding. The trout have really shown up in numbers. They are constantly on the move, so we have been staying on the trolling motor locating schools and then pounding on them once we find them. The trout have been eager takers of live shrimp, DOA Shrimp and Gulp baits. Topwater baits like Zara Spooks have been great at daylight. The redfish are here, too, but not in the same numbers as the trout. We’ve seen some nice fish in the 30-inch range, though, and they are biting on the typical redfish baits like, Gulp baits, spinnerbaits, cut mullet, shrimp and jerk baits. In October you can expect the inshore bite to continue and the bull redfish to show up in force on the sandbars and breakers. We are catching our bait now to put away for the bull reds, because it will be harder to come by later in the season. Offshore: Tough but improving. T.J. reports, “The storms have really made it tough. There was a great bite going on, but after a few close calls from hurricanes and tropical storms the fish have scattered out and are slowly getting back to normal. The Spanish mackerel have been stacked up about 20 miles offshore, though. I expect the offshore fishing to get really good as the water cools and the tropical weather subsides.”

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