- Published: Friday, 12 January 2018 00:00
There has been a pretty good bottom bite, but now that grouper has closed you will have to concentrate on Black Sea bass, vermillion snapper, black snapper and white snapper in order to have something to take home. Close to shore wrecks are still holding some flounder so take along some bull minnows or other live bait if you can get it, if not they will hit a fresh strip bait like Bonita or bluefish. In Federal waters (recreationally) you can now keep trigger fish till the 15th and amberjack till the 26th. See Gulfcouncil.org for Federal regulations.
The speckled trout bite is good, some good sized fish getting caught in the bayous, lagoons, canals and creeks. Bright sunny days make it a little easier to predict where they will be but cloudy days seem to widen their range a bit. Some small reds up in these areas too, artificial baits are working but live bait is king if you can get it. You may even find some sheepshead warming themselves in the back waters but man are they spooky, if they can see you they just won’t eat. Watch your bottom machine and be mindful of the water temperature, it is a good indicator of where fish will be. Out by the jetties there are a lot of bluefish, some mangrove snapper, Black Sea bass, and some bull reds. Also some squid have been reported around the marinas at night.
There is a decent whiting bite, a few pompano, some flounder and a good bit of blue fish. Every now and then a bull redfish and even some black drum are caught but usually the reds are too big to keep..