Southport/Oak Island – October 10, 2019
Annette, of Dutchman Creek Bait and Tackle, reports that anglers targeting the surf zone have found plenty of action. Red drum, black drum, flounder, speckled trout, and a few spot have all been landed. A mix of fresh cut mullet and shrimp have worked best when fishing the bottom.
The inshore speckled trout bite has picked up. Anglers targeting marsh banks and points have found limits of fish. Live shrimp under float rigs, as well as Gulp soft plastics, have been the top producer. Most fish have been in the 13-17” range.
A few flounder have also been feeding inshore, and live finger mullet on a Carolina rig has gotten the job done.
Just off the beach, the king bite has started to heat up. Live baits have been the best way to hook good numbers of kings from the beachfront out to the 20 mile range.
Tim, of Wildlife Bait and Tackle, reports that the inshore and nearshore bite has been off the hook with flounder. Even though you have to throw them back, local anglers have been catching some monsters.
Speckled trout are biting first thing in the morning on topwater baits, and then mid-morning switch over to live bait or a shrimp-pattern Gulp, Vudu shrimp, or Billy Bay. The best tactic is to rig your soft plastics underneath a popping cork.
Red drum are everywhere. Most of the rat reds are back in the creeks, and reds of varying sizes are around the mouth of the river. Right off the beach, there are bull red drum biting on mostly live baits.
Black drum and sheepshead are chewing inshore on crabs and live bait.
Croakers, spots, whiting, and pompano are being brought in off the beach and on area piers.
Spanish mackerel are just off the beach, along with king mackerel, and the kings have also been chewing well at Lighthouse Rock.
Offshore, cobia are still biting on the bottom, and trolling has been generating a few sailfish. Wahoo are at the Stream and on fire.
The grouper bite is starting to heat up, and expect these fish to move in closer as the water cools.
Robert, of Reelin’ Pelican Fishing Charters, reports that some flounder and a lot of bull reds are primarily being caught in the nearshore waters. Slot redfish have been holding in the marshes and around area docks. Fresh cut mullet and live finger mullet on Carolina rigs have been the ticket for all of the reds.
There are a lot of mullet running the beach, and the bull reds can be found in the same areas, especially around piers and other structure. They are also chewing at the Hot Hole, where you can expect to find 40-50” fish.
Speckled trout fishing has started to pick up. A mix of live shrimp and topwater plugs (like the MirrOlure She Pup) have worked best.
King mackerel have fired up just off the beach. Live baits fished around nearshore structure have produced good numbers (and sizes) of fish.
Mark, of Angry Pelican Charters, reports that the king bite is on from the mouth of the Cape Fear River to Lockwood Folly Inlet. Structure and ledges in the 40-50′ range have held the strongest numbers of fish. Live bait has worked best for the nearshore kings, but off a little further, dead baits have been successful, too. When pulling dead bait, Pirate Plugs and Blue Water Candy Shovel Heads have done well at drawing strikes from schooling fish, and pink/white and chartreuse/white have been the top colors.
Large spanish (in the 5-6 lb. range) have held tight with the nearshore kings. A mix of live and dead baits, as well as spoons, has gotten the job done. False albacore have been in the mix with the spanish.
Bull reds have started to trickle in to the area. Most fish are holding tight to bait pods off the beach, and live pogies fished on the bottom have been the top producing bait.
Ryan, of Fugitive Charters, reports that large red drum have been feeding well just off the beach. Those tossing live pogies have had the best luck.
Spanish fishing has been hit or miss near the beach. The fish that have been caught have been on the larger side, though. Live bait seems to be the ticket for the bigger spanish.
Kings have moved in close to the beach and around the mouth of the Cape Fear River. Live baits have produced quality fish and in good numbers.
The offshore bottom fish bite has heated up, especially in regards to strong numbers of beeliners.
A few smaller kings and mahi have been landed when trolling offshore.
Wally, of Oak Island Charters, reports that inshore fishing has produced good numbers of red and black drum. Targeting creeks with fresh shrimp and live finger mullet have worked best.
Just off the beach, the over-slot drum bite is starting to pick up. Anglers dropping large cut baits near structure have found a few fish.
The king bite has kicked off nearshore. Slow trolling live baits has been the best way to hook quality fish.
Steve, of Ocean Crest Pier, reports that anglers plugging from the pier have found steady numbers of spanish and bluefish. Gotcha plugs and Stingsilvers have been the lures of choice.
A few sheepshead have been landed around the pilings, and fresh shrimp and sand fleas have been the ticket to getting the sheeps to bite.
Hannah, of Oak Island Pier, reports that anglers have been catching red drum, black drum, flounder, trout, spots, whiting, pompano, and spanish. Shrimp and cut bait are producing.