Hilton Head Fishing Report for May 2015

Flat Calm Redfish Action

Spring is now in full swing and with the exception of a possible late cold snap we should be seeing an influx of new fishing opportunities. With water temperatures moving into the mid 70s our resident fish will surely become much more active while many migrating fish will be moving into our waters. Redfish, speckled trout, flounder, cobia, shark and triple tail are just a few of the fish that we will be targeting this month and with perfect spring weather its that time to head back to the outdoors!

Inshore Fishing:

Throughout most of the winter we have been fishing for redfish in gin clear water and though the water is starting to get that “dirty” look by now, the visibility can still be exceptionally good for sight fishing. While sight fishing we will need to move into the fish with extra caution as many of the redfish will be on high alert for predators and ready to push off with the slightest movements. We will also be looking too catch reds around the edges of the oyster bars, grass and creek mouths right now and though this style of fishing requires more patience than stealth it can be very rewarding. Mixed in with the redfish will be speckled sea trout and flounder and for the most part you can catch all of them by using the same tactics. Live bait is a top choice but working the edges with jigs, jerk baits and even topwater lures can be extremely effective. The key is to look for areas where there is bait being washed in and out of the creeks with the tide and you are sure to find hungry gamefish staging up to feed. Moreover, the shark fishing should get going on both the inshore and nearshore waters. Look to catch bonnetheads, atlantic sharp nose, blacktips and even some giant tiger sharks this month.

Wreck Fishing and Offshore:

We would generally be looking forward to the cobia run but the past few years have been slow to say the least due to increased pressure and over fishing especially on the nearshore waters. On the wrecks there should be cobia plus good numbers of black sea bass, bull reds, sheepshead and flounder. This can also be an excellent time to run out to the blue water of the gulf stream. The mahi-mahi bite will be red hot and there should still be a fair number of wahoo and black fin tuna around as well. For dolphin my bait of choice would be a ballyhoo either rigged naked or rigged in behind a bubbler or sea witch. Overall, these fish aren’t too picky as long as the bait is running true (not spinning or full of grass) while trolling. Just in case you do run into a finicky dolphin a few cigar minnows or hard tails in the live will should very well solve that issue. Until next time, Catch em Up!