It’s o-fish-ally Summertime! Now, I know it has felt like summer for awhile…but the calendar finally says June 21. We hope your summertime plans involve a lot of bent rods and loaded coolers. 

On to the reports. This week, we have reports from North, Central and Southeast Georgia. Enjoy and Go Fish Georgia!

NORTH GEORGIA 

(Fishing report courtesy of Jeff Durniak, fisheries biologist with Georgia DNR Wildlife Resources Division, with help from Region Staff and Local Experts)

While we had a strong preview of summer in May, we are officially there now.  The summer season is upon us, with very hot days and strong afternoon thunderstorms.  While these conditions are challenging, they could be worse.  I’ll take regular rain over drought conditions and forest fires any time!  Just as in winter, we must adjust our angling behavior to the weather conditions and find those summer windows of opportunity.  Those summer windows are in direct contrast to winter’s, when we chased the sun for its warmth.  Now we’re avoiding the sun and its heat and fishing early, late, after dark, and in the shade.    We’re checking weather radar and river gauges to see if a local storm has dumped an inch of rain in the upper watershed and likely turned our bass river to yoo-hoo.   If not, we’re tossing poppers, buggers, and fodders (last week’s report).  If so, we detour to Plan B, a small stream, a pond, or a reservoir.

In contrast, trouters are hoping that a good downpour will hit our favorite headwater stream.  With great national forest management, those vegetated watersheds limit muddy runoff.  A trout stream after a good rain is a fish factory: the cold rain is a shot of “air conditioning,” the slight turbidity makes the fish feel like they’re hidden from predators, it hides us two-legged predators from them, and the runoff is a conveyor belt of terrestrial groceries: ants, beetles, and spaghetti.  Veteran anglers, on the hike in, will look down and smile at that summer spaghetti “hatch.”  Flatlanders often walk right over the earthworms, eyeball the creek, and say, ‘the water’s dirty.  I won’t catch any trout today,” while hillbillies pull out a big net, thicker tippet and the brightest San Juan or Squirmy Wormy in their fly box.   It’s trophy trout time in the summer!

Lakes and reservoirs will fish better with limited or zero sunshine.  Those off-hours are even better because the other lake users (boats, jet-skis, etc) won’t be around.    A nice, cool, early-morning trip to the lake is a great way to start your Saturday, and will leave you plenty of time for all of your weekend to-do’s.  Here’s the latest summer intel from our awesome biologists, hatchery managers, tackle shops, and guides.  We don’t have to worry about cold fingers and toes, so go get wet soon!

REPORTS FROM THE FIELD

Bass Shoal Zach Yak June2019
Fisheries Biologist Zach Moran

The Moran Report: (From Fisheries Biologist Zach Moran) — Summer is kicking off and with it brings new challenges for North Georgia anglers. Fishing can be tough but also rewarding if you fish according to the conditions.

  • Largemouth and Spotted Bass: If you are like me, you may be having a hard time adjusting from the shallow spring bite to the deep summer bite. I have swapped my jigs, Texas rigged worms, and square bills for shakey heads, drop shots, and deep diving crankbaits. The best bite I have found has been in the early morning along points throwing a walk the dog topwater or frog. Once the sun gets higher, move out to around 20-30 feet of water and fish structure or brush-piles with a drop-shot or shakey head. The key I’ve found to fishing deep is to have patience and a lot of confidence in your electronics. Trolling live herring around points and structure is another productive method and may result in better quality fish than artificial lures. Weirdly enough, cloudy days with a choppy surface seem to be more productive for me than flat calm sunny ones. Night fishing will also be very good using black spinnerbaits, crankbaits, frogs and worms. Fish will move shallow to hunt for food and be less spooky in the cover of darkness.
  • Hybrid Bass and Striped Bass: These fish will be moving deep and can be found hunting schools of shad as deep as 80 feet! Find a school with your electronics and drop 1-2 oz bucktail jigs baited with herring into the school. This can be some of the most fun fishing you’ll have all summer as fish become concentrated in deeper areas. Fishing at night with live herring can also produce large sized fish.  Watch our WRD summer reservoir profiles for tips on the best water depths.
  • Catfish: Fish at night on shallow points with nightcrawlers, cut bait, chicken livers, or live herring. Pro tip: use glow in the dark tape on your rod tips to detect light bites.
  • Sunfish: Fish for bluegill with poppers and crickets or small jigs. This time of year they will be schooled up in coves or near woody brush.
  • Walleye: Trolling in deep water with live herring, and spoons is the best way to catch these fish. Walleye are night hunters so you may have the best success fishing for them in the early morning or late evening hours.
  • Trout: Catch stocked fish with a variety of lures and baits including spinners, crickets, and mealworms. If you really want a challenge. Head to the tailwaters and fish streamers and jerkbaits for large trophy browns. Wild brookies can be caught on small pheasant tails, copper johns, wooly buggers, and small terrestrials like a black ant. Be sure to use appropriate handling techniques with all trout during these summer months as they can become stressed very quickly.
  • Other news. Took my folks for a float trip on the upper Chattahoochee this past weekend. We had an absolute blast navigating the class 1 and 2 rapids in our kayaks, and I managed to hook some nice Shoal Bass on a topwater.

LAKE NEWS

Good Gardening: (From Jim Hakala, Fisheries Biologist) — Armuchee Fisheries staff recently participated in a native button bush transplanting in partnership with the E3 BassMasters club.  The club has been raising approximately 300 small button bush cuttings the last few months.  The cuttings grew well and needed to be transplanted to larger pots to maximize their growth.  The transplanting was successfully carried by E3 club members and Fisheries staff this past weekend at Arrowhead WMA.  The plants, now in their larger pots, will continue to be grown-out in small pools filled with water until later this year.  Once they reach 2-3 feet in height the button bush will be planted in Lake Allatoona, where they will provide shallow water fish habitat for years to come.  Funding for the project was secured by the E3 BassMasters through a grant awarded them earlier this year.

Lanier Bass:

  • Largemouth on Lanier.  Caught 3 Largemouth one morning. This was the best one. Shaky Head with a Green Pumpkin Trick Worm. (From Jack Becker, Academy Sports, Gainesville)
  • Henry C just called me from the lake (6/21 @1030 hrs) with this report and some pics: A topwater bass bite is beginning on Lanier.  If it’s overcast, you can call them up from brushpiles on humps and points in 20-25 feet of water by using nosy surface lures and flies.  If its’ sunny, the fish are hanging deeper and are much harder to bring to the top. More info HERE.
  • #3
  • #4

Lake Chatuge: Latest report HERE.

Summer Striper Bonanza: Hey Jeff, It’s just an embarrassment of riches in the rivers and reservoirs right now! Those WRD fishing reports gave me just enough intel to start looking in the right places for my summer quarry.  Enjoy the pics of my trio.   If other north GA anglers would check out those reports and do a little homework themselves, they can also cash in on this summertime bonanza. – From angler Browniez

Ken’s Reservoir Reports: The Southern Fishing Report by Ken Sturdivant

LAKE LANIER IS .79 FEET OVER FULL, THE CREEKS ARE STAINED AND THE MAIN LAKE IS CLEAR THE RIVERS AND UP LAKE COVES ARE VERY STAINED. 80S(This report brought to by: Jimbo Mathley) — Bass fishing is very good. The fish are on points and humps in 15 to 20 feet of water, depending on time of day and conditions. The fish have continued to intensify their presence on the brush. There is some top water activity present on shallow rock points in the mornings, and the offshore top water bite is definitely getting stronger. Chuggers, walkers, wake baits and poppers are all getting bites right now. The swimbait bite is really picking up as well. Want more specific details? Subscribe to my weekly video fishing reports HERE. Make Sure you get your summer fishing trip booked NOW! I am full for June and filling up for July get your date booked and let’s go catch some fish!

LAKE ALLATOONA IS FULL, CLEAR AND 80’S(This Report has been brought to you by Robert Eidson of First Bite Guide Service)

Bass: Bass fishing is good. There is a short top water bite at first light and that bite will continue to get slower and slower to almost nothing as it gets hotter. First thing in the morning fish the points on the main lake and also secondary points for schooling fish using a big swim bait and top water with some good success. Also be sure to have a Lucky Craft pointer 78 handy and work it along those same main lake and secondary points. Make long casts and this expands the strike zone. Once this action slows get out the drop shot rigs and use a Yamamoto Flat Tails, 3.5 inch Cut tails, tiny flukes, Baby Sluggos and Basstrix baits. Some fish are right on the bank and out to 10 feet. Boat traffic will move them out by mid-morning. For the bigger fish concentrate a little deeper in the 40 to 50 foot range.

Striper: Line side fishing is great. The bite is awesome and very consistent right now. Down lining threadfin shad in the mouth of Stamp Creek, Cooper Creek, Iron Hill, Stamp Creek and Clark Creek have been the ticket. Down lines are working best fished between 20 to 40 feet deep. The schools are huge right now. Our boats are averaging over 25 fish on four hour trips right now. If you are thinking about introducing your kids or grandkids to fishing the time is now. Call and booking your outing.

LAKE HARTWELL IS 1 FOOT OVER FULL, CLEAR DOWN STAINED UP RIVERS, 80S: Bass fishing is fair. The increased weekend traffic and the lower lake levels are creating a few mud lines along the banks and some of the main lake points. Bass are being caught on the edges of these mud lines while cranking a Hot Mustard DT 6. Fish this pattern in the mornings and late afternoon hour. Also don’t forget to continue fishing the big rocks that lay close to the deeper water. The fish will use these large rocks to hide from the sun and also to ambush their prey. A 1/4 ounce jig or a small chrome Rat L Trap or a #5 Shad Rap can work. These will be smaller fish. This is when the Lowrance Structure Scan technology can do. Ride in front of the docks and stay out 80 feet. Set the Range to 80 feet and look for the brush and the fish will show up as small dots.

WEISS LAKE IS AT 0 FEET 1 INCH BELOW FULL POOL AND CLEAR AND 76 80 DEGREE’S(Report brought to you by Mark Collins Guide Service)

Bass: Bass fishing is good, the fish have moved to deeper water, on brush, around and under deeper docks in 10 to 15 feet of water. The river and creek channel ledges, submerged, road beds, points and humps are producing fish also. Pitching a pig and jig under and around deeper docks with brush. Use a medium to deep running crank bait in front of deeper docks with brush is producing some quality fish also. Some smaller bass are still being caught shallow, under and around docks and weed beds.

Crappie: Crappie fishing is fair. The fish have moved back to deeper water. Spider rigging with live minnows on the creek and river channel ledges and deep brush in the flats, is the way to catch these post spawn Crappie. Shooting docks is producing a few Crappie also.

Striper: Striper fishing is fair. Fish are being caught in the lower Chattooga River, the Cave Hole and Little Spring Creek, on live Shad down lined about 8 to 10 feet deep and flat lined live shad.

TROUT

Cave Spring Smiles: Thanks to a special delivery from Summerville Hatchery, lots of smiles were had!

Trout_StockingTruck2Stockers: More than 43,000 trout will depart state and federal hatcheries this week for cold mountain streams and icy tailwaters.  Watch for the updated stocking list at midafternoon each Friday HERE or on your smart phone if you’ve signed up for the list via email or text.  If you still see last week’s list by 5PM each Friday, try refreshing that web page.  Best bets are colder, high elevation streams (Wildcat, Rock, Cooper, Dicks, Hooch on WMA, Tallulah) and the Lanier and Blue Ridge tailwaters.  Some lower elevation waters (Holly, Johns, Stamp, Panther) are still cool enough to stock, but fish them in the mornings before rising water temps make those fish moody.

trout bkt speck school Zach June2019Georgia Trout Map 101: Georgia brook trout fishing video.  These are hatchery brookies, not our native “specks.”  We’re now done stocking brook trout for the season, as we got them out Burton’s door while the water was cold.  Enjoy the Georgia trout map, too.  Need one? Call 770-535-5498.

Big Speck: Look at what a good water year or two can grow in our mountains.

Stocker Reports: Wildcat Creek Report HERE 

Tailwaters: Nice short trip to the Toccoa Tailwater

Fly Fishing for Kids: Great tips from one of the top experts, Tom at Orvis. Go about halfway into this podcast to hear his ten tips for introducing kids to flyfishing.

One more! And one more from Smokies friends Ian and Charity.

A FEW MORE THINGS

KFE Kudos: Here’s a DNR shout-out to the Blue Ridge TU’ers, who still know how to thread a cricket on a hook to help a kid!

Fun Saturday Event: 10 Year Celebration-NGTO

Monday- Lake Hartwell Striped Bass Public Meeting: Jeff Durniak and Anthony Rabern of Georgia DNR Fisheries will be there – how about you? More info HERE.

Thanks for buying your fishing tackle, fishing licenses, and Trout Unlimited car license plates.  From fish attractors to DO meters to trout chow, we sure appreciate those operating funds. Good luck this weekend.  Don’t forget your sunscreen and your rain jacket. Be flexible, and let the weather and water guide you to some great summertime angling in north Georgia.

CENTRAL GEORGIA 

(Fishing report courtesy of Steve Schleiger, fisheries biologist with Georgia DNR Wildlife Resources Division, with help from Region Staff and Local Experts) 

Reservoir Fishing Reports Courtesy of Southern Fishing with Ken Sturdivant.  

CLARKS HILL IS DOWN .43 FEET, STAINED, 80’S

Bass fishing is fair.  There is a good lipless crankbait bite on the main lake.  Use the Spro Aruku Shad 75 in old glory color on 10-pound Sufix Siege clear line.  The best places to fish the bait are on points on the main lake.  This is where your electronics and Lowrance down Scan technology can help find these deeper fish on the humps and points.  Use a steady retrieve with the crank baits.  Have a spinnerbait available in these same areas or a soft plastic jerk bait.  A good spinnerbait to use is a 1/2 ounce Strike King Spinnerbait in chartreuse and white.  The best soft plastic jerk bait to use is a 6-inch Big Bite Baits Jerk Minnow in glow silver on a 6/0 EWG Gamakatsu Hook. There are still a lot of fish around shallow docks especially those that have brush under or around them.  This is when the Lowrance Structure Scan technology can do its thing.  Ride in front of the docks and stay out 80 feet.  Set the Range to 80 feet and look for the brush and the fish will show up as small dots.  Deep cranks and Carolina rigs are the tickets on the ledges.

LAKE OCONEE IS FULL, 70’S

(Report brought to you by Mark Smith at Reel Time Service) —  

Bass: Bass fishing is good.  Buzz baits fished along sea walls and around docks will produce good size fish the first hr. of daylight and the last hr. of daylight.  The Shad Rap in natural color has been producing very well around docks on the main lake.   Later in the day don’t forget soft plastics under docks from the middle of the coves to the back of the coves.  Sugar Creek has been out-producing the other creeks over the past week.

Striper: Striper fishing is good.  The afternoon bite seems to be the best option.  The fish are starting to move up the lake toward the rivers.  Good fish can be found on humps and points as well as the pipeline.  Spoons, umbrella rigs as well as thread fin shad have been producing well.

Crappie: Crappie fishing is good.  The longline bite has taken off over the past few days.  The fish are starting to stack up on the trees.  Long-lining down to the top of the trees has been the best producer over the past week.  Use your Lowrance to look for the fish in the timber and then pull your jigs over the tree.  

WEST POINT LAKE IS FULL, CLEAR, 80’S

Bass fishing is fair.  There is an early top water bite until mid-morning.  Use the water Devils Horse lures and all white buzz baits.  All white seems to be the hot colors with a little green in the skirts.  After the sun gets up, slow rolling spinner baits and large crank baits has been the best way to get to the deeper fish on the river.  Bass are tight on the creek channels and drop offs mid to lower lake.  Carolina rigged Zoom green pumpkin Trick worms or the same color in the Zoom lizard in the six-inch size will work and some extra Mega Strike scent will help the fish hold the baits longer.  Head down the lake towards Maple Creek but stop just short at marker 8 on the left hand side; Old Potts Road dumps into the lake here.   There is good fishing between markers 6 and 8 and as the day warms up, you can take your Carolina rig and fish the road bed out in deeper water.  First thing in the morning, fish up close with Skitter Props and X Raps.

LAKE SINCLAIR IS DOWN 1.1 FEET, STAINED, 80’S

Bass fishing is good.  Lots of fish are shallow early.  Fish are hanging around shallow cover looking for bream and shad.  Fish docks, seawalls and blow downs and work a Texas rigged lizard or Net Boy Baits 1/4 ounce Flippin Jig.  Add some JJ’s Magic to soft plastics for more bites.  Fish buzz baits and spinnerbaits around grass beds mid to up lake.  All white blades and skirts are good.  Later this month, fish will move off the banks and stage in 10 to 12 feet of water.  Carolina rigged Wackem Crazy Baits Pointy Tail worms will load the boat.  Use red bug or June bug colors.

LAKE JACKSON IS 1 FOOT OVER FULL, CLEAR, 80’S

Bass fishing is good.  Use a white 3/8 or 1/2 ounce spinnerbait with nickel willow leaf blades.  Also try a white ChatterBait and an Alabama Rig.  Rip rap and seawalls in the creeks are hard to beat.  Top water is good so use the popping style baits like a white Zell Pop and a Rico as well as prop style baits, also in white.  After the sun gets high work the mid-lake docks and seas walls with the black brown Net Boy Baits flipping jig.  Any trees over the water can have a roaming bass around and a trick work can fool them.  Also use the white Zoom Super Fluke shallow. 

McDuffie PFA (More Info HERE

  • Water Temperature: 78⁰F
  • Water Visibility: 17 – 54+ in.
  • The Fish Cleaning Station is open.

Bass: The bass bite has been up and down lately with the significant rain events, but nice bass continue to be caught early in the mornings and later in the evenings in Jones, Willow and Breambuster on baits that imitate shad.  Especially in Breambuster, shad are schooling where the siphon drains flow into the ponds (especially after a rain) and schools of nice bass are aggressively chasing them.  Numerous nice bass have been caught in Rodbender lately.

Bream: Quality bream are being caught in Jones and Bridge Lake in the mornings and evenings.  Nice shellcracker are being caught in Willow.  Fish feeders at Jones and Beaverlodge Lakes are excellent spots to fish for bream.  Fish a spot for 30 minutes or so then try another if it hasn’t worked out.  The anglers really catching bream right now seem to be moving around a lot to find them.

Channel Catfish: The catfish action has been really good lately, with many anglers having a lot of success fishing in the mornings and evenings.  Night fishing in Jones Lake has been excellent, with many catfish around 10 lb. being caught recently.  Many nice catfish have been caught in Bridge Lake and Beaverlodge Lake lately and numerous smaller catfish have been caught in Jones Lake during the day.  Trophy-sized catfish have recently been caught in Willow Lake as well.  Fish feeders at Jones and Beaverlodge are excellent spots to fish for catfish.  Remember, the PFA record catfish has not been set!  Any channel catfish caught on McDuffie PFA that exceeds 12 lb. 2 oz. will qualify as an official PFA record fish.  Please see application at kiosk for details.

Striped Bass: Stripers can be found in Clubhouse and Bridge Lakes.  Try fishing in Clubhouse or Bridge Lake using chicken liver and worms.

SOUTHEAST GEORGIA 

(Fishing report courtesy of Bert Deener, fisheries biologist with Georgia DNR Wildlife Resources Division, with help from Region Staff and Local Experts)

The good news is that we’re going to get another shot at the great panfish populations on the southeast Georgia rivers. The bad news is that it’s going to be awhile (if it stops raining…) because they’re high again, except for the St. Marys. Pond, Okefenokee, and St Marys River fishing were all good again this week. Last quarter moon is June 25th. To monitor all the Georgia river levels, visit the USGS website HERE.

ALTAMAHA RIVER

The rains have started the big river rising fast, so expect it to be swift and muddy if you fish it this week. J.J. and Lance at Altamaha Park said that the mullet bite is still good. Anglers have been having the best luck on green worms fished on the back sides of sandbars. Flatheads are still being caught on goldfish, and channel cats ate livers and shrimp. Up in the feeder creeks, some good bream and redbreasts were caught this week. Crickets fooled them, while worms produced some good shellcrackers. Bass anglers reported catching a good number of fish in the 3 to 5-pound range. The river level was 6.6 feet and falling (83 degrees) at the Baxley gage, and 8.6 feet and rising (83 degrees) at the Doctortown gage on June 18th.

SATILLA RIVER

The river is coming back up with the heavy rains last week in the headwaters. The upper river will be blown out this week, but the lower river should still be fishable through the weekend. Michael Winge of Winge’s Bait and Tackle in Waycross said that the slug of rain slowed the upper river bite, but some big bream and redbreasts were caught on crickets in the Burnt Fort area. Some nice shellcrackers also ate worms in that same area. There will be a flathead catfish tournament held out of the Burnt Fort Landing from 5pm June 22nd through 8am June 23rd. The entry fee is $50 per boat, and there is a 20 bush hook limit per team (rod-and-reel angling is allowed while bush hooks are out). Only flathead catfish will be weighed in (with intent of getting the exotic predators out of the Satilla). For more information, contact Dale Anderson at 904-477-1815. The river level on June 18th at the Waycross gage was 8.4 feet and rising (80 degrees), and the Atkinson gage was 3.7 feet and rising.

ST. MARYS RIVER

SE GA Kristy Nugent St Marys Bluegill 6 16 19
Kristy Nugent fished with her husband (Chris) on Father’s Day on the St. Marys River and caught this monster bluegill on a rainbow Satilla Spin.

Chris and Kristy Nugent fished the St. Marys River out of Temple Landing on Sunday and caught a potpourri of species. They caught and released bass, bluegill, stumpknockers, and warmouth with artificials. The fish of the trip was Kristy’s monster bluegill that inhaled a rainbow Satilla Spin. The catfish reports were good this week, with lots caught on shrimp or worms put on the bottom. Bream, redbreasts, and warmouth were fooled with crickets in the tidewater portion of the river. For information about bream tournaments on the river, check out Shady Bream Tournaments on Facebook. The group plans to hold one more tournament this year, and it is slated for July. The river level at the Macclenny gage on June 18th was 1.7 feet and falling.

OKEFENOKEE SWAMP

Rob Murray took his grandson, Hayden into the swamp on the east side on Tuesday. They

SE GA Hayden Warmouth 6 18 19
Hayden pitched bugs on a bream buster in the Okefenokee (east side) on Tuesday morning and caught over 5 dozen warmouth while fishing with his papa, Rob Murray.

headed in early, and the warmouth bite was on fire right off the bat. Pitching bugs on a bream buster scored them about 75 fish total by 10:30. They had about 10 fliers, 5 bowfin (mudfish), and a pickerel along with the balance in warmouth. Matt Rouse fished with me on the east side Tuesday. We targeted bowfin for an upcoming article in Georgia Outdoor News. Glen Solomon and a friend fished the west side for bowfin that same day. The east side prevailed, with 67 bowfin eating Matt’s and my lures. We tried cut bait (I did not know it was possible to NOT catch a bowfin on cut bait, but we did it!) to no avail. We also tried minnows plugs with only a bite on Matt’s first cast, but then a bunch of water hauls. The hot bait for us was Dura-Spin in-line spinnerbaits. We tried many colors, but almost all of the fish were fooled with fire tiger – chartreuse blade, jackfish – silver blade, and crawfish – gold blade. Glen and his friend tried 14 different colors, but all but a couple of their fish ate a lime Dura-Spin with a gold blade. Our biggest bowfin was an 8.3-pounder that inhaled a fire tiger version and skyrocketed as soon as I set the hook. Glen’s friend caught their biggest, a 6.6-pounder.They had lots of species in addition to the bowfin. That same lime green Dura-Spin caught flier, bullheads and redfish pickerel. Yellow flies were not too bad in the open water, but they were chewing on us when we got in the shady spots under trees. Their numbers should drop off by July 4th. Other anglers reported catching lots of warmouth out of S.C. Foster State Park on the west side.

LOCAL PONDS

Last week a group of 3 anglers fished a Brantley County pond and landed a 7-pound bass, a 5-pounder, and 8 smaller 1/2 to 2-pound bass on buzzbaits (black and white/chartreuse/blue were the best colors). Another 7-pounder inhaled a trick worm.  Chad Lee caught lots of bass this week, but not as many big ones as last week. His big fish was last Wednesday – an 8 1/2-pounder that smacked a sexy shad crankbait. He got some Father’s Day gifts over the weekend and set out to catch fish on all of them (he succeeded). On Saturday he landed 10 bass up to 4 pounds on a floating snake crankbait, pink buzzbait, and a pumpkinseed stick worm. On Monday evening, Chad fished a Coffee County pond and had 8 bass up to 4 pounds on a red crankbait and a floating snake crankbait. Daniel Johnson and he fished Tuesday evening, and Daniel had two 3-pounders on a black/blue Christie Craw plastic. On Friday evening, an angler fished a Brantley County pond for 15 minutes and landed 4 big bluegills up to 1 1/4 pounds on 1/16-oz. copperfield Satilla Spins. Michael Winge reported that in Waycross area ponds, big bream were fooled with crickets and catfish ate worms.

SALTWATER (GA COAST)

Steve and Brenda Hampton fished for flounder from the Jekyll Pier on Friday, and Brenda had a nice 16-inch flattie. Steve has started a Facebook page “Flat Fish Fanatics”, so check that out if you are interested. Shane Barber fished out of Blythe Island this week and caught some small trout, whiting, and bonnet head sharks. In the Brunswick area, anglers reported catching trout, reds, and flounder in the backwater creek mouths and along shell beds. Mike and Trish Wooten of St. Simons Bait & Tackle reported that the pier bite has been great for whiting, trout, flounder, and sharks. On Sunday an angler landed 5 flounder (all over 16 inches), including an 8-pound class flattie on live bait. Another angler landed 2 keepers on live bait. Blue crabs were caught by folks working baskets. You can monitor the marine forecast HERE.

BEST BET

Pond fishing has been outstanding with bass and bluegill being caught in good numbers. The warmouth bite in the Okefenokee is still hot, but the size is down some from earlier in the spring. The bowfin bite is picking up in the swamp. Flounder fishing is tops in saltwater.