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AHQ INSIDER Edisto Island (SC) Spring 2021 Fishing Report – Updated April 29

  • by Jay

April 29

Inshore surface water temperatures around Edisto Island are about 68-69 degrees while the creeks can hit the mid-70s on sunny afternoons. Water clarity is good in both rivers. 

A strong topwater bite has developed in the mornings for both trout and redfish, and Captain Ron Davis, Jr. (843-513-0143) reports that for about the first two hours of the day you can catch both species on top. 

The trout have moved out to the main river to spawn and they can be caught around the white shell points. The fish are busting with eggs. While early in the morning topwater lures are hard to beat, after that DOA shrimp will work well if you can’t get live shrimp. 

Ron is also catching more good fish, but getting less bites, throwing the WillowVibe with a 3-inch Slim Swimz. The bait seems to weed out the little ones. 

While the numbers are still not fantastic, the redfish action has gotten better on the flats with the warmer weather in the last few days.  Mud minnows fished around oyster shells are working the best outside of the early topwater bite. 

The creek pattern is still stable, and they are catching lots of 17-18 inch fish as well as occasional 30 inchers. You should fish for two hours either side of low tide around downed trees, docks, sea walls, and rock near deep bends and/ or holes. Mud minnows are also working the best in the creeks. 

Captain Ron Davis, Jr. with a big Edisto redfish caught on the flats
Captain Ron Davis, Jr. with a big Edisto redfish caught on the flats

The sheepshead bite remains totally wide open inshore, and Ron says it is as good as it gets. Average sizes are about 4 pounds and there are plenty of bigger fish being caught. Fish fiddler crabs around docks with 6-8 feet of water on lower tides. 

Good numbers of flounder have moved back inshore, and while you can catch them in the main rivers the best numbers are being caught in sandy creeks directly fed by the ocean such as Frampton, Jeremy and Townsend. Mud minnows are again hard to beat.

In the surf and around sandbars whiting fishing is wide open with cut mullet, squid, or shrimp. Big ones are around right now. 

As it usually is at this time of year, at the nearshore reefs in 30-40 feet of water the fishing is one fire. Bluefish, Spanish mackerel, weakfish, black drum, bull red drum and some keeper black sea bass (although you have to weed through a lot of small fish) can be caught. 

Out in 60-90 feet of water the bottom fishing is really good for vermillion snapper, triggerfish, black sea bass and more. 

The dolphin are showing up fast right now, and anytime the weather breaks in the next three weeks you need to go because this is the peak period.  Wahoo are scattered, and there are black and yellowfin tuna as well.  Yellowfin tuna are typically from the Southwest Banks to the Georgetown Hole but this year there are some as far south as the Edisto Banks.

March 25

Inshore surface water temperatures around Edisto Island are about 60 degrees. In the South Edisto the water is greener while in the North it is clearer. 

The trout fishing is good in the creeks for the 13-16 inch trout that stay all year in Edisto, but Captain Ron Davis, Jr. (843-513-0143) reports that it won’t be until water temperatures hit about 65 degrees that fish will move into the main rivers to spawn.  However, as water temperatures warm the fish are already starting to get more active. 

The pattern is still holding pretty similar, and the best bet is to start at the back of major creeks and work your way out. Most any grub fished on a ¼ ounce jighead will catch fish, but the color depends on water clarity. 

There’s little doubt that this is the worst time of the year to catch redfish on the flats, in large part because they are feeding on tiny bait and you literally cannot match the hatch. 

In the creeks fishing is better, and when you can find the fish they are still willing to eat. You should fish for two hours either side of low tide around downed trees, docks, sea walls, and rock near deep bends and/ or holes. Mud minnows, shrimp and mullet are all working. 

On the other hand, besides October this is probably the best time of the year for catching sheepshead inshore. While some of the better fish are still offshore, there are also lots of 4-9 pound fish close in. Fish fiddler crabs around docks with 6-8 feet of water on lower tides. 

Small black drum can be found inshore, and flounder are just starting to trickle back inshore. When water temperatures hit about 65 the biggest push will come, but the first wave (of generally smaller fish) is already starting to be caught inside the first creeks close to the ocean. 

At the nearshore reefs in 30-40 feet of water the small black sea bass can make the sheepshead and black drum fishing difficult, but bluefish are already starting to arrive in droves.  Weakfish are also here and should stay good through April, while in the next few weeks the Spanish mackerel should come. The earliest Ron has seen them arrive is when the water hits 62 degrees.  Bull reds are already around. 

Right now the only bluewater species being caught is wahoo, but by the 3rd or 4th week of April the best dolphin bite of the year should arrive if it follows the pattern of the last four years.

A good weakfish caught with Captain Ron Davis, Jr.
A good weakfish caught with Captain Ron Davis, Jr.

February 24

Inshore surface water temperatures around Edisto Island are about 50-52 degrees. The South Edisto is brown but clear, while the North Edisto is green and clear. The water color has not affected the fishing. 

The trout fishing is still pretty decent in the creeks, and Captain Ron Davis, Jr. (843-513-0143) reports that in a typical day of fishing you can catch a dozen or so. That’s pretty good for this time of year. The fish are in some but not all creek bends, and the best pattern is to cover water with most any grub on a ¼ ounce jighead either trolling or putting the trolling motor down and casting. Of course slow down and really work an area if you get bit. 

A good February catch with Captain Ron Davis, Jr.
A good February catch with Captain Ron Davis, Jr.

The redfish are still pretty finicky on the flats if you can find them – and that’s a big if right now. While there aren’t a lot of schools around you can try to sight fish for them on the incoming or the outgoing tide. When you locate fish the best way to catch them is to cast Gulp! or Zman soft plastics on light flutter hooks past the school and then bring it back towards them to avoid scaring them. 

In the creeks the pattern is still unchanged, and when you can find the fish they are very willing to eat. You should fish for two hours either side of low tide around downed trees, docks, and rocks in deep bends and holes. Mud minnows remain the best bait. 

The black drum are in the same deep holes in the creeks as the reds, especially around trees. Fishing with fresh cut shrimp you will catch both species but the black drum have been pretty small. 

Most of the keeper sheepshead are gone right now, but around the mid-March new moon Ron expects some big ones to start to show up inshore again. They will be found in 6-8 feet of water around structure and fiddler crabs should be easier to get by that time.

There are only small whiting in the surf, but if you go out beyond the breakers to sand bars in 6-10 feet of water there are some better ones around. 

It’s been very windy recently, but on the nearshore structure in 30-40 feet of water there are some weakfish (soon to be more), black drum, and bull reds. Bluefish are already thick out there while the sheepshead are generally a bit deeper in about 40 feet of water. You generally have to wade through a ton of small black sea bass to catch them. 

While there have not been many recent reports with the weather, in 60-70 feet of water there should be good bottom fishing for keeper black sea bass. In 70-90 feet there are triggerfish, porgies, vermillion snapper and illegal red snapper. 90 feet is usually ideal. 

There should be some tuna and wahoo around offshore if the sea lays down and you can find water over 70 degrees.

February 5

Inshore surface water temperatures around Edisto Island are down to about 50 degrees and the water is still clear. 

The best trout fishing remains in the creeks, but Captain Ron Davis, Jr. (843-513-0143) reminds anglers that certain days the fish will be feeding – and on other days they will not. They don’t have to feed every day right now, especially as temperatures have dropped a few more degrees. They will also be in some creek bends and not others, without a clear pattern, so the best pattern is to cover water with grubs. 

Trolling is a very popular way to locate trout, and if you catch one or two then you should slow down and fish the area thoroughly. However, Ron prefers to put the trolling motor down and cast like a bass fisherman.

A variety of soft plastics on a 1/8 or 1/4 ounce jighead will catch fish, but Ron is throwing his newly designed ZMan Chatterbait WillowVibe. Because the blades hold it higher up in the water column he can cast a heavier bait further and then fish it at the same speed – covering more water. He likes to pair it with 3.75 inch Zman StreakZ or the 3-inch Slim SwimZ.

Of course, once you locate fish you can also cast live bait to them.

The redfish are still pretty finicky on the flats. You can still sight-fish for them on either the incoming or the outgoing tide, but it has gotten even more important to be stealthy and go after them quietly with a trolling motor or poling. The best way to catch them is to cast Gulp! or Zman soft plastics on light flutter hooks past the school and then bring it back towards them to avoid scaring them. 

In the creeks the pattern is still unchanged, and when you can find the fish they are very willing to eat. You should fish two hours either side of low tide around downed trees, docks, and rocks in deep bends and holes. Mud minnows are the best bait.   

Captain Ron Davis with two redfish caught on back-to-back casts with the WillowVibe
Captain Ron Davis with two redfish caught on back-to-back casts with the WillowVibe

While Ron has not seen any black drum mixed in with the reds on the flats, they are in the same deep holes in the creeks, especially around trees. Fishing with fresh cut shrimp you will catch both species.

There are still a few keeper sheepshead inshore that can be caught at low tide around structure with 10-15 feet of water on fiddler crabs, oysters and clams. However, most of the better fish have gone offshore. 

There are not many whiting in the surf, but if you go just beyond the sand bars to about 10 feet of water they are around in good numbers. 

It’s been too windy to get offshore much recently, but on the nearshore structure there should still be a few weakfish, and in 30-60 feet of water sheepshead and black drum can be picked up if you use shrimp or fiddler crabs. If you fish jigs and spoons and you will not catch them, but there are plenty of bull drum for the catching in 40-60 feet of water. 

When you can get out the best bottom fishing for black sea bass is in 50-60 feet of water, while in 80-90 feet there are triggerfish, porgies, vermillion snapper and illegal red snapper. 

There should be some tuna and wahoo around offshore.

January 22

Inshore surface water temperatures around Edisto Island are still around 53 degrees and the water is clear. 

The best trout fishing remains in the creeks, but Captain Ron Davis, Jr. (843-513-0143) reminds anglers that certain days the fish will be feeding – and on other days they will not. They don’t have to feed every day right now. They will also be in some creek bends and not others, without a clear pattern, so the best pattern is to cover water with grubs. 

Trolling is a very popular way to locate trout, and if you catch one or two then you should slow down and fish the area thoroughly. However, Ron prefers to put the trolling motor down and cast like a bass fisherman.

A variety of soft plastics on a 1/8 or 1/4 ounce jighead will catch fish, but Ron is throwing his newly designed ZMan Chatterbait WillowVibe. Because the blades hold it higher up in the water column he can cast a heavier bait further and then fish it at the same speed – covering more water. He likes to pair it with 3.75 inch Zman StreakZ or the 3-inch Slim SwimZ.

Of course, once you locate fish you can also cast live bait to them.

The redfish are still pretty finicky on the flats. You can still sight-fish for them on either the incoming or the outgoing tide, but it has gotten even more important to be stealthy and go after them quietly with a trolling motor or poling. The best way to catch them is to cast Gulp! or Zman soft plastics on light flutter hooks past the school and then bringing it back towards them to avoid scaring them. 

In the creeks the pattern is still unchanged, and when you can find the fish they are very willing to eat. You should fish two hours either side of low tide around downed trees, docks, and rocks in deep bends and holes. Mud minnows are the best bait.   

While Ron has not seen any black drum mixed in with the reds on the flats, they are in the same deep holes in the creeks, especially around trees. Fishing with fresh cut shrimp you will catch both species.

There are still a surprising number of flounder, including about 50% keepers, being caught while trout fishing in the very backs. 

There are still a few keeper sheepshead inshore that can be caught at low tide around structure with 10-15 feet of water on fiddler crabs, oysters and clams. However, most of the better fish have gone offshore and when a cold snap drops temperatures another degree or two most of them will leave. 

There are not many whiting in the surf, but if you go just beyond the sand bars to about 10 feet of water they are around in good numbers. 

It’s been too windy to get offshore this week, but on the nearshore structure there should still be a few weakfish, and in 30-60 feet of water sheepshead and black drum can be picked up if you use shrimp or fiddler crabs. If you fish jigs and spoons and you will not catch them, but there are plenty of bull drum for the catching in 40-60 feet of water. 

When you can get out the best bottom fishing for black sea bass is in 50-60 feet of water, while in 80-90 feet there are triggerfish, porgies, vermillion snapper and illegal red snapper. 

There should be some tuna and wahoo around offshore.

January 14

Inshore surface water temperatures around Edisto Island are around 53 degrees and the water is clear. 

The fishing is in a pretty stable period on Edisto Island, but Captain Ron Davis, Jr. (843-513-0143) reports that the redfish have gotten finicky on the flats. You can still sight-fish for them on either the incoming or the outgoing tide, but it has gotten even more important to be stealthy and go after them quietly with a trolling motor or poling. The best way to catch them is to cast Gulp! or Zman soft plastics on light flutter hooks past the school and then bringing it back towards them to avoid scaring them. 

In the creeks the pattern is unchanged, and when you can find the fish they are very willing to eat. You should fish two hours either side of low tide around downed trees, docks, and rocks in deep bends and holes. Mud minnows are the best bait.   

While Ron has not seen any black drum mixed in with the reds on the flats, they are in the same deep holes in the creeks. Fishing with fresh cut shrimp you will catch both species.

There are still a few trout that can be caught on the main rivers, but Ron reports that the action in the creeks is much stronger – especially if you can find a calm day. While the fish will eat mud minnows on the bottom, you can’t cover much water to locate fish this way and so if you aren’t fishing grubs you really aren’t fishing! Trout are often in the creek bends but not always, and there is not necessarily a lot of rhyme or reason to where they are stacked up.

Trolling is a very popular way to locate trout, and if you catch one or two then you should slow down and fish the area thoroughly. However, Ron prefers to put the trolling motor down and cast like a bass fisherman.

A variety of soft plastics on a 1/8 or 1/4 ounce jighead will catch fish, but Ron is throwing his newly designed ZMan Chatterbait WillowVibe. Because the blades hold it higher up in the water column he can cast a heavier bait further and then fish it at the same speed – covering more water. He likes to pair it with 3.75 inch Zman StreakZ or the 3-inch Slim SwimZ.

A nice box caught this week with Captain Ron Davis, Jr.
A nice box caught this week with Captain Ron Davis, Jr.

There are a surprising number of flounder, including about 50% keepers, being caught while trout fishing in the very backs. 

There are still a few keeper sheepshead inshore that can be caught at low tide around structure with 10-15 feet of water on fiddler crabs, oysters and clams. However, most of the better fish have gone offshore and when a cold snap drops temperatures another degree or two most of them will leave. 

There are not many whiting in the surf, but if you go just beyond the sand bars to about 10 feet of water they are around in good numbers. 

On the nearshore structure there are still a few weakfish, and in 30-60 feet of water sheepshead and black drum can be picked up if you use shrimp or fiddler crabs. If you fish jigs and spoons and you will not catch them, but there are plenty of bull drum for the catching in 40-60 feet of water. 

The best bottom fishing for black sea bass is in 50-60 feet of water, while in 80-90 feet there are triggerfish, porgies, vermillion snapper and illegal red snapper. 

The wahoo fishing was good right before Christmas, but recently it has slowed way down. Even with a couple of good days to get out there have not been many recent reports, but there should be some tuna around since they are here all year.

December 20

Inshore surface water temperatures around Edisto Island are around 55 degrees and the water is clear. 

While the main river bite for trout has pretty much dried up, Captain Ron Davis, Jr. (843-513-0143) reports that the action in the creeks is wide open – especially if you can find a calm day. While the fish will eat mud minnows on the bottom, you can’t cover much water to locate fish this way and so if you aren’t fishing grubs you really aren’t fishing!  Trout are often in the creek bends but not always, and there is not necessarily a lot of rhyme or reason to where they are stacked up.

Trolling is a very popular way to locate trout, and if you catch one or two then you should slow down and fish the area thoroughly. However, Ron prefers to put the trolling motor down and cast like a bass fisherman.

A variety of soft plastics on a 1/8 or 1/4 ounce jighead will catch fish, but Ron is throwing his newly designed ZMan Chatterbait WillowVibe.  Because the blades hold it higher up in the water column he can cast a heavier bait further and then fish it at the same speed – covering more water. He likes to pair it with 3.75 inch Zman StreakZ or the 3-inch Slim SwimZ. 

Right now the redfish are really biting well on the flats, either on the incoming or the outgoing tide. In the clear conditions it is sight-fishing and if you find the fish you will catch them.  Because the fish are spooky covering the flats with a trolling motor or poling is the best way to locate the fish, and you want to cast Gulp! or Zman soft plastics on a flutter hook past the school and then bring it back towards them to avoid scaring them. 

In the creeks the pattern is the same as it often is, and you should fish two hours either side of low tide around downed trees, docks, and rocks in deep bends and holes. Fish are very grouped up and so when you find them they are ridiculously easy to catch. 

There are black drum mixed in with the reds on the flats, but even more in the same deep holes in the creeks. They will take cut shrimp. 

The sheepshead fishing is still good at low tide around structure with 6-8 feet of water on fiddler crabs, oysters and clams, but with one more cold snap they will head offshore once water temperatures get to about 52.  

There are still a lot of whiting in the surf.

On the nearshore structure there are a ton of big weakfish in 30-40 feet of water, and there are also bull red drum and black drum out there. 

A 4-pound weakfish caught recently with Captain Ron Davis
A 4-pound weakfish caught recently with Captain Ron Davis

The best bottom fishing for black sea bass is in 40-65 feet of water, and past about 60 feet it is hard to catch much besides red snapper. There are also plenty of triggerfish out there. 

Tuna are very good at the Edisto Banks, but you have to weed through a lot of little tunny (false albacore).  The occasional wahoo is being picked up and this is supposed to be a peak time, but this whole year the wahoo fishing has been off.

November 19

Inshore surface water temperatures around Edisto Island are down to the mid to upper 60s. The North Edisto is clear while the South Edisto is a bit browner because of the rain – but still not bad.  Bait is finally leaving the creeks. 

It’s that time of year when each drop in the water temperature reminds inshore species that they need to feed up because soon there will be an absence of forage, and as a result Captain Ron Davis, Jr. (843-513-0143) reports that the trout bite is getting very good. On calmer days when clarity is higher fish can be caught on DOA shrimp fished under a popping cork around main river white shell banks, current breaks and creek mouths. Higher stages of the tide on either the rise or the fall are better. 

There are also good numbers of trout getting in the creeks, and Ron advises that the best pattern is to head to the very backs and then fish your way out with a ¼ ounce grub. You can also get away with a heavier lure up to a ½ ounce if you use Ron’s new bait, the ZMan Chatterbait WillowVibe which allows for better depth control and a slower a retrieve.  

The action for redfish has improved on the flats around oyster shells near points, although the best action is still at mid-tide moving in either direction. The best bait is scented plastics fished on flutter hooks. 

In the creeks the best fishing is found for two hours either side of low tide around downed trees, docks, and rocks in deep bends and holes. Mud minnows and mullet are the best bait. 

A nice redfish caught this week with Captain Ron Davis, Jr.
A nice redfish caught this week with Captain Ron Davis, Jr.

Right now is the peak time for sheepshead fishing and the bite continues to be excellent. The best action can be found at low tide around structure with 6-8 feet of water. Even though there are still some picker fish around fiddler crabs, oysters and clams will all work equally well. 

Black drum are mixed in with the reds in the creeks and with live or cut shrimp you can catch both species. However, the best place to catch black drum as well as a mixed bag of redfish, trout and flounder is to head up the beach to Townsend Inlet, Frampton Inlet or Jeremy Inlet and fish at the ocean mouths in the surf. There are also some hit-or-miss flounder in the creeks.  As they are starting to leave fishing close to the ocean is the best bet. 

The whiting fishing remains very good in the surf on pieces of shrimp, but to catch the best fish you need to target the inlets, sand bars, and areas with some sort of current break. Since water temperatures have dropped slowly it is still a peak time. 

This is also the time of year when the water temperatures allows bull red drum to be found running the beaches out to 20-40 feet of water wherever there is bait. The bite has been decent this year on the Edisto Rocks, you could catch one in the surf, but they are thick in the inlets. Cut or live mullet is the best bait. 

While the Spanish mackerel are gone the nearshore reefs are on fire for summer trout, black drum, sheepshead and bluefish. However, conditions are so windy you can only get out once or twice each week. 

When you can get offshore the black sea bass and other bottom fish have moved shallower into 60-80 feet of water. The king mackerel are also as thick as they will be in 70-80 feet of water anywhere there is bait. Early you can pull plugs and spoons and after that big menhaden offer the best action.

While a few wahoo have been caught, the blackfin tuna bite has been very good. Because the fish are boat-shy pulling small lures way back is the best pattern.

October 21

Inshore surface water temperatures around Edisto Island are about 75 degrees in the ocean, but the creeks have gotten as warm as 78-79 degrees. The South Edisto is highly tannic while the North is getting very clear. The creeks are totally full of shrimp and finger mullet and the mullet run continues off the beaches.

Each time the temperatures drop during the fall the fish feed a little bit more aggressively, as if cooling reminds them that the bait will be disappearing soon, but Captain Ron Davis, Jr. (843-513-0143) reports that when you get a warming trend in the fall it has the opposite effect. While it’s certainly still fall and so fish are biting, the bite will get better when temperatures start moving the opposite direction. 

As temperatures have warmed up over the last 10 days the redfish have gotten a little more skittish on the flats, and at dead low they have been downright spooky. The best time to catch them is at mid-tides in either direction fishing over the oyster shells around points. The best bait is live shrimp 18 inches under a cork. 

In the creeks they will eat about anything, but there are so many picker fish around that mud minnows or cut mullet are a better bet than shrimp. The best fishing is found for two hours either side of low tide around downed trees, docks, and rocks in deep bends and holes. 

A nice redfish caught in the grass with Captain Ron Davis, Jr.
A nice redfish caught in the grass with Captain Ron Davis, Jr.

The trout bite has slowed a little, but early and late there has been a good topwater bite. On cloudy days it can last for the first three hours, while on sunny days you are doing well to get an hour and a half. 

During the day live shrimp under a cork are working the best around main river white shell points on the high outgoing tide.

This continues to be the peak time for sheepshead fishing, and there have been some really good fish this year. The best action can be found at low tide around structure with 4-8 feet of water. Fiddler crabs are the best bait. 

Black drum are mixed in with the sheepshead, but they can also be caught on the flats and the creeks in the same areas as the reds. 

The flounder are still around with the warm conditions, and the best action is found in sandy creek mouths close to the ocean. Finger mullet on a Carolina rig are working well.   

The whiting fishing remains really good in the surf on pieces of shrimp, but to catch the best fish you need to target the inlets, sand bars, and areas with some sort of current break. This is the peak time. 

While 90% of the tarpon are gone, since water temperatures are still above 75 degrees there are still a few around. Those fish are generally in the ocean waiting for the big migratory mullet that head down the beaches, and they can be caught in 5-15 feet of water around current rips, sand bars, and points. 

At the nearshore reefs the Spanish mackerel fishing is still wide open, and there are tons of bull reds everywhere. They can also be found at the nearshore reefs, rocks, in the inlets, around current breaks, and in the surf as shallow as 3 feet or less. 

With the mullet run in full swing king mackerel can still be found from the beach to the ledge. You just have to look for bait. 

The cobia are still holding pretty deep in 90-100 feet of water and they can be caught jigging on the bottom. 

For reasons that are unclear the bottom fishing has been slow in 80-100 feet of water, and if you want to catch triggerfish, vermillion snapper, red porgies, black sea bass and more the best action has been deep on the ledge in 150-180 feet. 

There have been good numbers of blackfin tuna caught recently, and the wahoo never really leave. A few sailfish are also being picked up and 1-2 straggler dolphin are caught most trips, even as most of the fish are further along in their clockwise migration around the Atlantic Ocean.

September 24

Inshore surface water temperatures around Edisto Island are about 77 or 78 degrees in the main rivers, while a couple of miles out temperatures are still over 80.  The South Edisto is very dark with recent rain events. High winds and tides have also generally dirtied the water. Bait is at its peak for the year with the mullet run in full swing and big shrimp coming out of the creeks. 

With so much bait around the fish have gotten into the period where they are putting on the weight that will get them through the winter, and Captain Ron Davis, Jr. (843-513-0143) reports that this is translating into a really good bite for species like redfish. With the very high September tides there have been lots of big fish in the grass, but if you don’t want to target tailing reds the best time to fish with the big September/ October new and full moon tides is the quarter moon phases. 

On the flats the redfish action is pretty good around oyster shells, and right now the reds are bigger than typical and there seem to be less small ones than some years. The cold snap is already improving the bite in the creeks, and the best action remains around downed trees, docks, and rocks in deep bends and holes. 

Low tide is the best time to target the reds in both areas and finger mullet on a Carolina rig remain the best bait.

As is typical when the spawning activity stops in early September, the trout bite is going through a temporary lull although the fishing is still good. At the same time more big migratory fish are starting to run the coastline and arrive.  

Early in the morning in areas with relatively clear water there is still good topwater action around shell banks and main river points, particularly when there is a flood tide at dawn. 

During the day live shrimp under a cork are working very well, and DOA shrimp or finger mullet will also catch fish around the same main river white shell points. The high outgoing tide is best.     

This is the peak time for sheepshead fishing, and for the next four to six weeks the fish will be bigger than typical at this time of year. The best fishing can be found at low tide around structure with 4-8 feet of water. Fiddler crabs are the best bait. 

Black drum can be caught on shrimp around any type of structure. 

The flounder bite is better than normal for this time of year, and it should stay strong though October. While many of them are undersized the numbers are above average. Finger mullet on a Carolina rig are hard to beat around structure or areas with current. The biggest fish are in sandier creek mouths closer to the ocean.

A smorgasbord of Edisto inshore species caught with Captain Ron Davis, Jr.
A smorgasbord of Edisto inshore species caught with Captain Ron Davis, Jr.

The whiting fishing is really good in the surf on pieces of shrimp, but to catch the best fish you need to target the inlets, sand bars, and areas with some sort of current break. 

As water temperatures stabilize and hold around 80 degrees the tarpon fishing should be the best of the entire year, particularly with the mullet run in full swing. The fish feed best when temperatures are between 75 and 80, and it won’t be until temperatures drop to 75 and below that they leave.  Right now fish that are heading south are also getting to Edisto.  

The tarpon are generally in the ocean waiting for the big migratory mullet that head down the beaches, and they can be caught in 5-15 feet of water around current rips, sand bars, and points close to the ocean. 

The Spanish mackerel fishing is wide open at the nearshore reefs, but in 30-40 feet of water they are often holding about 20 feet down. If you troll a #1 planer with 20 feet of leader and a small Clarks spoon you are guaranteed to catch them, but there are also times when they come up and you can just cast at them. Look for the birds.

King mackerel are following the big mullet and menhaden and so they can be found from the beach to the ledge. You just have to look for bait. 

Bull red drum are also starting to group up for the spawn at nearshore structure. 

While the cobia fishing is better than in July and August, they are generally holding pretty deep in 80-100 feet of water. They can be caught jigging on the bottom. 

The bottom fishing will only get better for the next couple of months, and 80-100 feet of water is the best place to look for limits of triggerfish, vermillion snapper, red porgies, black sea bass and more.  

While the dolphin are basically absent in the fall because of their clockwise migration around the Atlantic Ocean, the wahoo and tuna fishing should pick up as things cool off. 

 

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