We all like to catch fish; however, after the freeze there is that tad of doubt in the back of your brain, wondering what the coming days might bring to our bays. I am here to report we have been catching good numbers of fish this spring and that makes me feel good.
Results have been positive, but let’s take this opportunity to change our attitude and put back more than we take out. I feel the Good Lord spared Matagorda from what could have really been a bad outcome; nevertheless, I have been convinced to practice better proactive judgment for the good of our fishery.
Already we have seen some of the first topwater action of the spring on MirrOlure She Pups. The best bite has come on MirrOlure Lil’ Johns and morning glory Bass Assassin Sea Shads. Good catches have been posted in the back lake areas on Bass Assassins and other shad imitations. Most of the fish are holding tight to the grass line and coming out on the sand when the sun shines.
Good trout are showing at the jetty on live shrimp and I expect better action on the reefs with the swollen tides. East Matagorda Bay has seen its best action along the east end of the bay with stiff winds. Most of the mid-bay reefs have been off limits with muddy water. Expect the next calm day to produce better catches on the west end of the bay around the Tripod and 3-Mile Lake area.
The good news is most anglers are being very respectful of our trout stocks since the freeze and keeping very few if any until spring population surveys can indicate just how hard the middle coast was hit.
Redfish have been the mainstay so far this spring with high winds and higher tides, which has worked out great and taken pressure off our trout stocks. Shell in West Matagorda Bay has held lots of redfish for anglers on shrimp and cut mullet. It will only get better in the coming days with springtime tides creeping higher and higher. Good numbers of redfish can be found with mullet on sand flats around the Diversion Channel. It’s really all about the tide and a waiting game for the reds to move from the deep to the shallows.
Jetty anglers have been enjoying bent rods with cracked blue crabs and shrimp. Many of the redfish have been oversized but plenty of slot reds have been found on adjacent flats. With tides continuing to swell during April, expect redfish to roam the grassy shorelines and the farthest reaches of the back bays.
If anglers on our boats are wanting to take a few fillets home to eat, we have been encouraging them to try black drum. Many prefer their firm, white meat over redfish. Drum numbers have been impressive this spring around reefs and on the edges of channels. Many captains have said they haven’t seen black drum fishing this good in a few years. May is always a great time to catch drum since they work the edges of reefs for shrimp and crabs during high tides.
As far as wading goes, more of our clients like to get in the water in May. We love to work the sand and grass in West Bay with small topwaters and soft plastics.
Follow our catches on Facebook and Instagram (@matagordasunriselodge) and let’s all strive to be good stewards of our lands and coastal waters.
May in Matagorda - Conserving Our Fisheries