This unique fish is in it’s migratory phase now and can be found in many local waterways as it moves into more protected waters. These fish are a favorite of many anglers this time of year. Flounder are bottom fish as you may know, and baits vary from place to place. Live shrimp can be hard to find in many places this time of year as well. The soft plastic baits can be just as productive if fished properly. While a shrimp style bait can be productive, a white jig can be even better for this species. A slow jigging presentation with longer pauses can entice these fish to bite. A paddle tail jig or curl tail white or chartreuse color will be the best presentations for darker water where you may find these fish right now.
While they may be found in holes and low areas, the bottom structure is what is most important for these fish. Flat sandy bottom next to structure is a great place to start looking for these fish. Without a depth finder or bottom sounder, the structure may be hard to find. You may need a lot of probing casts to find the structure, and a good understanding of water movement. Some tidal creeks and fast moving water areas will hold fish without much structure as these areas hold feeding fish very often. The idea here is that the fish are trying to eat as much as possible before the water gets too cold and the food supply goes down.
You’re skill level will determine a lot of how you fish. A good spinning reel will allow any angler to be more successful due to ease of use. The presentation can also be enhanced with the right rod size and action. A lighter rod action will allow for better feel of bites as these fish may be light biters. The action will also enhance the action of the lure.
Some anglers prefer a heavier rod as these flat fish can use water current to approach structure and get away. A good idea is to try both options and see if one is better for the situation you are in. See these specials. Most rod and reels come with multiple options for action, strength and line capacity, so some research may need to be used for selection.
Don’t be surprised if you catch redfish, trout, sheephead or even black drum in these same areas as these other species frequent the same areas for much the same reasons. Moving water is best as this means the fish can stay still and allow the current to bring prey to them and they don’t have to use as much energy to chase the prey. You may even be able to use the current to move your bait into the appropriate area for catching fish. Of coarse for flounder you will want to keep the bait on bottom much more than other species as flouder lay on bottom more than other fish.
In the spring these fish can be found sight fishing on the flats, but during this time of year the migration to rivers and creeks, or even jetties, makes it harder to see these fish as brackish water is darker and moving water may be difficult to visualize fish. Again a depth finder can help find flat spots next to structure. Don’t forget to check local regulations as size and limits are different in most areas.