Thursday, June 15, 2017

Catching Not Fishing

It seemed we had almost non-stop catching today! And it's the third day in a row that the fishing has been great here at Amelia Island, Florida. I met Matt Park, his friend Wren and his two sons Dylan and Joseph up at the Dee Dee Bartels Park where we launched and headed north and up to the Jolley River to make our first stop at an exposed oyster bank on the very last of an outgoing tide. All four anglers were tossing jigs and live shrimp to the exposed oysters and it wasn't long at all before the bite began.

Wren was first on the board, knocking the skunk off with a nice keeper sized Flounder. Then Joseph hooked up with something a big and an all out battle ensued. He played the big fish for a while then Matt took over for a while then Joseph jumped back in and together they landed a big 4' Bonnethead Shark, boy what a fight! Matt finished that spot with a Ladyfish catch and a small Redfish landed.
We ran further up the river and kept going all the way to the MOA
and this paid off. The group put a couple of more Bonnetheads in the boat and Matt found a honey hole for keeper sized Seatrout. Dylan had been making excellent casts and his perseverance paid off with a small Croaker catch then he two added to the keeper sized Trout catch. Wren added another shark and Joseph caught a hard fighting Jack Crevalle before we crossed over to fish some still exposed oysters on an incoming tide.

Again, it was "catching"  not fishing! Matt had a good bite and, FISH ON! This was a nice fish and when it rolled up near the bank we knew it was a good sized Redfish. He played it perfectly and patiently and soon landed a nice Slot Sized 24" Redfish. After catching a small but feisty Black "puppy" Drum, Wren had her big hookup. She too had a big fish and fought it perfectly. After a good battle she landed another 24" Redfish.

(Somewhere in there we had another Slot Red, and young Joseph put the only Black Tip shark in the boat - I lost track!)

We made one last stop at Snook Creek, added another Black Drum and a Jack Crevalle caught by Dylan, then we called it a day, another great one to be fishing here at Amelia Island.


Anonymous said...

Thanks Captain. Joseph said not to forget his black tip shark! Can't wait until next year!

Capt. Lawrence Piper said...

This time of year I fish with basically 2 rigs. I prefer my "jig" rig. I'm only using a size 1000 reel with 10lb braided line, 6'6" Rod. I add a 18" fluorocarbon leader (14#) tied with a uni-to-uni knot. Then I tie on a 1/4 oz jig and I fish either live shrimp or mud minnows. The mud minnows don't get picked off so much by the baitstealers, and last longer in a bait well.

On higher tides I use a "float" rig" Size 2500 reel with 15lb braid, 7' Rod. I tie the braid directly to a weighted Cajun Thunder float. The leader underneath is 2.5-3' of fluorocarbon (14#) and then a 3/0 circle hook. Fish this over flooded oyster beds.

IF I had only one rod I guess I'd go with the larger 2500 reel, 15#braid, 7' Rod and rig it for the jig or the float depending on what tide it is.

The Bonnethead sharks rarely hit a minnow, they like the shrimp. The Reds will hit either. Flounder prefer the minnow, but will eat shrimp. Trout will eat both.