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Edisto Island (SC) Summer Fishing Report – Updated June 21

  • by Jay

The newest Edisto fishing report, updated August 2, can be found at

June 21

Captain Ron Davis, Jr. (843-513-0143) reports that Edisto Island-area inshore water temperatures are around 84 degrees – it got hot fast early this summer!  Because of rain the last two weeks the South Edisto (the actual river) is not as clear as the North Edisto.  Fish are eating well when you can find them.

Ron rates the inshore redfish bite as “fair,” basically a result of numbers being down.  When you can find fish they are willing to bite baits and lures.  On the flats fish will take fresh shrimp or mullet fished on a jighead or Carolina rig, and the first couple of hours of the day there is also a good topwater bite.  In the creeks the bite is pretty good early with cut shrimp or cut menhaden fished around docks, rocks, and trees found around bends in the creek.

The troutfishing was excellent, but now rates a good as it has gotten hotter.  Lots of small sub-keeper sized fish have been caught to go along with some better fish.  The first two hours of the morning there has been a good topwater bite, and after that mud minnows/finger mullet, live shrimp and DOA shrimp fished under a rattling cork in 3-5 feet of water have been working well.  Live shrimp are the best bait with finger mullet second but there aren’t a ton of either around in the creeks.  Main river shell points and creek mouths are holding almost all of the fish, and while the particular tide has not been that important finding clear water is key.

Flounderfishing is fair in the inlets, but the hurricane last year has added a wrinkle.  You can only get in and out of inlets like Townsend and Frampton with ¾ tide or better, and most of the better fishing is at the bottom of the tide cycle.  You either have to fish the weaker high tide, or commit to staying for a while and fish through low tide back to high tide again.  Mud minnows and finger mullet on the bottom are both working, and there are a lot of small flounder around.  At the nearshore reefs there are also flounder to be caught.

Inshore sheepshead fishing is good, although the sizes are a bit hit-or-miss with lots of small fish around.  Because there are so many croaker and pinfish present fiddler crabs are a must, and you want to target docks with 6-10 feet of water at low tide.  The best period is three hours either side of low water.

In the surf whitingfishing is good around turbulent sand bars at the mouths of inlets – you won’t find too much on the plain beach.  Tarponare just starting to show up and will be here through September.

Just offshore Spanish mackerel fishing has been good in 30-40 feet of water.  Look for birds diving and then cast small spoons at the fish.  On the nearshore reefs the spadefishbite has been outstanding – so good that Ron says it is probably the hottest thing going.  Any reef in less than 60 feet of water are holding the fish, and he says it is probably the best bite he has ever seen.  Usually the fish are very finicky, but perhaps due to the lack of jelly balls fish are hungry and so they are very willing to eat a ¼ piece of shrimp on a 1/0 or 2/0 hook either free-lined or cast with a small piece of split shot.

A big spadefish caught on Captain Ron Davis' boat off Edisto Island
A big spadefish caught on Captain Ron Davis’ boat off Edisto Island

The offshore bite for wahoo, tuna and dolphinhas slowed a lot, but the best bet is start out very early and troll until about 9:00 a.m. between 120-160 feet of water out to the ledge, and then bottom fish after that for vermillion snapper, black sea bass, grouper, triggerfish, etc.