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South Carolina Shallow Saltwater Fishing Report for June 21, thru August 17, 2005

Right on schedule, the big reds showed at our jetties. We had several days of over 20 fish in the 15 to 35 pound size class and caught our second really big red in 6 years that weighed in at 52 pounds. We will have the photos of the big one on the site sometime soon. Live bait is again the bait of choice for most days and for some reason, some days, it can be hard to find. The mullet minnows are late hatching again this season and are just barely big enough to tempt a hungry red so that makes the peanut sized menhaden the bait of choice again this year. Most days we managed to catch from 5 to 10 reds but some days we caught less and some days we caught more, but the average was around the 5 to 10 a day. Fortunately, most of the inshore fish we’ve been catching have been in the 7 to 12 pound size which makes for a really good fight on light tackle. When I speak of light tackle, I mean rods with some spine and 20# test line. The warm water doesn’t have very much oxygen in it and the quicker you can get them in, the easier it is to revive them and let them go. The tailing tides produced very few really good days. Most of the big tide days were disappointing but we did manage to catch some on the fly rods. We have more big tides due here starting around August 15th and continuing on through August 25th. Black drum have shown in good numbers again this season. These fish have no bag limit or size limit here in our state and some people have been really catching and killing them in big numbers. For the life of me, I can’t see why someone will kill every fish they catch and then call themselves “sportsmen.” A few tarpon have been sited and a few have been hooked, but as far as I know, none have been boated here in our area. Another thing that’s going on as we speak is that there is another serious move being made to raise the bag limit on red drum. Our Department of Natural Resources, Marine Resources Department politicians have decided that they can “live with a three fish limit” on reds. They try to make the point that it’s only a “one fish increase” when it’s really quite a lot more than “one fish.” I was never really good with math but when you go from 2 to 3, that’s a 50% increase! And, if my memory serves me right, a few years back, the total estimated reds landed in SC was around the 200,000 mark. That would mean that if the bag limit was increased by 50%, somewhere around another 100,000 would be caught and killed. That is not an insignificant number!

Please, take care of our fish, it’s simply the right thing to do.

Gene Dickson
Delta Guide Service www.deltaguideservice.com
Georgetown, SC 29440 1-843-546-3645
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