Southeast Georgia Fishing Reports With Capt. Bert Deener – March 29, 2024

Capt. Bert Deener | March 29, 2024

Noah Mitchell fooled this big chain pickerel on Tuesday, March 26, by by trolling a white-white blade Dura-Spin on the east side of the Okefenokee Swamp. He released it.

The spring bite is in full swing. Incessant spring rains have kept the rivers in the floodplain, and that shows no signs of changing in the near future. Fortunately, the weekend weather forecast is good, so plan an outside family adventure this Easter Weekend.   

Satilla River: The annual Satilla Riverkeeper fishing tournament is coming up and will continue from April 12-21. Get the details on their Facebook page.

Okefenokee Swamp: The bite is improving with warmer weather. Noah Mitchell fished with me on Tuesday on the east side, and we caught and released 33 fish. We pitched crawfish Warmouth Whacker Jigs and chartreuse Okefenokee Swamp Sallies for a little while in the canal and caught a dozen fliers, a couple pickerel and a couple bowfin. The fliers were all big enough to eat. We switched to trolling Dura-Spins and picked up a bunch of pickerel up to 23 inches and some bowfin up to 5 pounds.

The best colors of Dura-Spins were lemon-lime, white-white blade and blood red. An angler pitching around the island caught 15 warmouth on Tuesday morning. Another angler fooled 20 warmouth in four hours of fishing Wednesday morning. The warmouth are around, but you will have to work for them. The most recent water level (Folkston side) was 121.18 feet, but that was before the rains on Wednesday night and Thursday morning.

Local Ponds: Chad Lee fished an Alma area pond with his buddy Daniel Johnson, and they caught 17 big crappie. They were throwing minnows skewered on 1/16-oz. Capt. Bert’s Flashy Jigheads for their specks. They also flung Christie Craws and spinnerbaits and caught six bass up to 4 pounds. Jimmy Zinker fished a south Georgia pond this week and caught a 7-lb., 9-oz. bass on a hard swimbait and lost another big fish at the boat. BJ took his son Hayes to a Brunswick area pond this week, and they caught some nice bass on wacky-rigged Trick Worms.

Saltwater (GA Coast): The number of reports dropped off this week with the poor weather most of the week. Seth Carter fished with a friend in the Brunswick area Wednesday after the storms came through and caught some redfish (both oversized and slot fish) on artificials. They threw Gulp! Shrimp on a jig head—both with a popping cork and without the cork. Cason Kinstle took several families whiting fishing this week, and they caught a bunch. They fooled whiting with shrimp on the bottom fished in the sounds.

Wat-a-melon Bait and Tackle in Brunswick is open Friday through Sunday from 6 a.m. to 4 p.m. each week. They have plenty of lively shrimp and fiddler crabs and also have live worms and crickets for freshwater. They’re on Highway 303 just north of Highway 82. For the latest information, contact them at 912.223-1379.

Last quarter moon is April 2. To monitor all the Georgia river levels, visit the USGS website. For the latest marine forecast, check out

River gages on March 28 were:
Clyo on the Savannah River – 14.3 feet and falling
Abbeville on the Ocmulgee – 10.4 feet and rising
Doctortown on the Altamaha – 10.9 feet and falling
Waycross on the Satilla – 15.5  feet and falling
Atkinson on the Satilla – 13.6 feet and rising
Statenville on the Alapaha – 15.8 feet and rising
Macclenny on the St Marys – 6.5 feet and rising
Fargo on the Suwannee – 9.8 feet and rising

Capt. Bert Deener guides fishing trips in the Okefenokee Swamp and other southeast Georgia systems and makes a variety of both fresh and saltwater fishing lures. Check his lures out at Bert’s Jigs and Things on Facebook. For a copy of his latest catalog, call him at 912.288.3022 or email him at [email protected].

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