Southport – May 11, 2017
Jimmy, of Wildlife Bait & Tackle, reports that the speckled trout, flounder, and red drum bite in the backwaters is picking up.
Those wanting to target the speckled trout should use mud minnows on a Carolina rig, or throw MirrOlure MR14s and MR17s. Artificials like Gulp are working on the fish, too, as are slow sinking shrimp. Rigging soft plastics under a popping cork in 2’ of water (about 3-4’ off the bank) and letting the current take it should connect anglers to the trout.
The red drum have been hitting spinner baits, and both live and cut bait will work as well on the reds.
Elizabeth River and Dutchman Creek are holding black drum. Soak bait shrimp and sand fleas in the middle of the channels to connect with the fish.
Anglers fishing on the ADM pier are connecting with sheepshead when dropping fiddler crabs and sand fleas right up next to the pilings.
Those fishing the shoals are still catching bluefish, and trolling Clarkspoons will connect you to both the blues and spanish.
Slow pulling menhaden will produce early season kings from time to time.
The Virginia mullet are still biting around Caswell Beach, and they will fall for bait shrimp and sand fleas.
Annette, of Dutchman Creek Bait and Tackle, reports that anglers are still catching a few kings off the pier, as well as whiting on bottom rigs.
There are a few trout in the backwaters, and nearshore anglers are still connecting with black sea bass.
Shane, of Fin-Fisher Charter Services, reports that speckled trout are hitting topwater plugs like MirrOlures, but they will also fall for artificials like Betts Perfect Sinker Shrimp.
Red drum are falling for the same thing, in addition to cut pogies.
The flounder are starting to make an appearance, with keeper-sized fish being landed on pogies.
The king mackerel have moved in close to the beach, and anglers should again use pogies to target the fish.
Mark, of Angry Pelican Charters, reports that the bait in the backwaters and along the beach has returned, along with the nearshore king mackerel bite.
Chopper blues are feeding around the beach and nearshore reefs, along with some over-slot red drum. Cut bait, or live bait on bottom, on a Carolina rig with 30-40 lb. fluorocarbon and a 1/0 hook should do the trick.
Sharks are patrolling the same waters, so beware if fishing with lighter tackle.
The black drum bite in the backwaters, on shrimp, has been good, and flounder are starting to show up in better numbers. Peanut pogies are plentiful, and they are the go-to bait for flatfish.
Wally, of Oak Island Charters, reports that inshore anglers are connecting with black drum in the creeks on dead shrimp rigged on Carolina rigs.
Those heading to the Gulf Stream trolling ballyhoo can expect to connect with mahi that have now re-entered area waters.
The grouper bite is good for those dropping down, and anglers should start targeting the fish about 35 miles out.
Ryan, of Fugitive Charters, reports that king mackerel are showing up on the beach. Spanish are also starting to show up, too, and they should be moving back in full-force in the coming weeks.
The bite is starting to heat up in the backwaters, with flounder moving back into the usual haunts in improving numbers.
Vance, of Ocean Crest Pier, reports that anglers have landed king mackerel off the end of the pier on king rigs.
Chopper bluefish are still in area waters, with a 12.5 lb. blue recently landed.
Those dropping to bottom are connecting with sea mullet and croakers.