Fish Post

Southport/Oak Island – August 29, 2019

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Annette, of Dutchman Creek Bait and Tackle, reports that a few flounder between 17-21” have been coming in, with Gulp-tipped bucktails, finger mullet, and shrimp accounting for most of the action.

Slot reds and keeper black drum are being caught with fresh shrimp.

Speckled trout have been sparse, with one or two fish coming in sporadically.

There have been a lot of sheepshead from the Southport waterfront down to Lockwood Folly, but no monsters have been in the mix. Most of the sheepshead have been small.

A few spots have been found swimming along the beach, as have some nice whiting. There are a lot of sharks and skates in the mix, too.

Offshore, black sea bass are hugging the bottom near the tower, and 15-30 lb. king mackerel are being pulled in on the troll.

John Parmenter with a 32″ red drum caught on a Carolina-rigged frozen mullet on a dock behind Oak Island.

Tim, of Wildlife Bait and Tackle, reports that there has been a great red drum bite inshore, especially with over-slot fish. Plenty of nice reds (over 30”) have been attacking small peanut pogies.

Flounder fishing has been decent, and a few black drum have come in here and there. Sheepshead are still biting, though they have been small. There haven’t been a lot of trout in the area either, but the bite is slowly picking up.

In the surf, lots of large whiting have been landed, and the catches have included several citation-sized fish.

Just off the beach, the spanish mackerel have been getting bigger, and tarpon have been seen patrolling as well.

Grouper and black sea bass are firing up on the offshore bottom.


Robert, of Reelin’ Pelican Fishing Charters, reports that the red drum bite has been hot on the falling tide and flounder are biting at the high tide turn (especially during the first two hours of the rising tide and the last two of the falling). Finger mullet have been the bait of choice for both.

Flounder are also biting on the nearshore reefs. Most of the ocean flatties have been found out in deep, cleaner water. Finger mullet are a better bait choice than pogies, which are getting chewed up by trash fish.

Spanish fishing has been hot along the beaches when trolling gold, green, and pink Clarkspoons. Rigging them on #1 and #2 planers has been the key to success. Those looking for big spanish have done well light-lining live mullet around the nearshore wrecks and reefs.

Gary Hall, of Castle Hayne, with a just under-slot red drum caugh near Southport with a live mullet on a Carolina rig.

Mark, of Angry Pelican Charters, reports that inshore flounder and redfish are biting in the creeks and in the Lockwood Folly River around docks.

There are plenty of big flounder biting on the nearshore reefs, with a few trout coming into the mix, too.

Spanish are feeding near bait pods along the beach, where smaller baits in green and red are working better in the murky water, which hasn’t seemed to affect the mackerel’s activity. The spanish are currently in shallower water than has been seen for most of the summer.

Kings are swimming between 15-20 miles out. Cigar minnows pulled behind Pirate Plugs, or slow trolling live bait, will find the kings.


Ryan, of Fugitive Charters, reports that the inshore red drum and flounder bite has started to pick up. Those fishing with live finger mullet on Carolina rigs near docks and marsh lines have hooked into plenty of action.

Nearshore, trolling Clarkspoons for spanish has produced fish in the 2-4 lb. range. Those looking for larger fish (in the 5-6 lb. range) have had success light-lining live baits around nearshore structure. Sharks have also been feeding around the nearshore reefs and wrecks, and anglers have landed blacktips, spinners, and blacknose sharks.

Trolling offshore has produced good numbers of kings and barracudas when targeting deeper water.

On the bottom, dropping live baits has produced grouper and amberjack, and those soaking cut baits have landed black sea bass, snapper, triggerfish, and grunts.


Wally, of Oak Island Charters, reports that anglers targeting the nearshore reefs for flounder have had success landing double digit numbers. Most fish have been keepers and have hit live finger mullet.

Light-lining finger mullet around the reefs has produced quality spanish. Some fish have weighed in the 4-6 lb. range. A few sharks have been in the mix as well. Trolling Clarkspoons off the beach has landed good numbers of spanish in the 1-3 lb. range.

King mackerel are chewing cigar minnows in 65-100’ of water.

The red drum bite is starting to pick up in the backwaters, and most of the action has been coming from live bait.


David, of Ocean Crest Pier, reports that anglers plugging from the pier early in the morning have landed a few keeper spanish. Gotcha plugs and Stingsilvers have been the best lures.

Those fishing the bottom with fresh shrimp and sand fleas have landed small croaker and whiting.


Morgan, of Oak Island Pier, reports that flounder, whiting, croaker, pompano, and some small black drum have been coming in over the rails. Live bait is the best option. An occasional spanish mackerel is coming in as well.