Area, State Fishing Report

Area, State Fishing Report (Feb. 22)

February 21, 2013 

Estuary

Look for | Red drum, spotted seatrout, black drum, sheepshead.

Comments | Between rainfall and cold and windy conditions, there hasn’t been too much fishing going on over the past week, and the weekend doesn’t look much better. Anglers can expect to find muddy conditions in areas affected by the rainfall, such as Winyah Bay and the Santee Rivers. Still, Capt. Mike McDonald of Gul-R-Boy Guide Service reported a water temperature of 50 degrees in Winyah Bay and North Inlet on Thursday, easily warm enough for red drum and even spotted seatrout to remain active. Look for reds, trout and black drum at area jetties.

Inshore

Look for | Black drum, sheepshead, croaker.

Comments | The surface ocean water temperature at Apache Pier dipped to 50 degrees early in the week but had rebounded to a reading of 53.0 degrees as of 4:45 p.m. on Thursday. Action remains slow on Grand Strand piers with only sharks, skates and a few croaker being caught this week. Best bet is the near-shore artificial reefs such as Jim Caudle, Paradise (Three-Mile) and Pawleys, where black drum, sheepshead and black sea bass are prevalent. Black sea bass are on the scene in the biggest numbers but can’t be harvested by recreational anglers until June 1.

Offshore

Look for | Wahoo, blackfin tuna, amberjack, triggerfish.

Comments | Options are limited in the offshore waters considering the bevy of reef species that cannot currently be harvested by recreational anglers.

Shallow-water grouper species including gag, red and scamp among others, are closed until May 1 and vermilion snapper (beeliners) are closed until April 1. Also, red snapper are closed indefinitely. Amberjack, triggerfish, porgy and banded rudderfish are the main desirable species than can be harvested from the reefs. With bottom fishing virtually shut down, trolling is the best option and wahoo are available when conditions permit along with blackfin tuna.

Freshwater

Look for | Bream, crappie, bass, catfish.

Comments | Local rivers continue to be on the rise with more rain in store Friday and Saturday in the Carolinas. The fish can still be found though, as Luke Cannon of Conway landed a limit of bream this week at Bucksport. Look for bream at Samworth, Yauhannah and Conway, along with Bucksport, hitting worms on the bottom in 8-10 feet of water. Crappie can be found in the same depths and areas and are taking minnows in the vicinity of ditch mouths and brush piles. Catfish action continues to be good, particularly on cut shad. Tom Alexander won the weekly bass tournament with a three-fish aggregate weighing 7 1/2 pounds including a lunker of 4.1 pounds.

By Gregg Holshouser, For The Sun News

State fishing

Santee Cooper System | Striped Bass: Good. Capt. Jim Glenn reports that striper fishing is good in both lakes, with striper concentrated in and around large schools of baitfish. Bait will be suspended in deep water in Lake Moultrie as well as in some of the bigger creeks in Lake Marion. There are also concentrations of baitfish along the old river channel in Lake Marion as well.

S.C. DNR

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