Fishin' & Fixin' - Sheepshead & Oysters

February 3, 2011 by Larry Pentel


Sorry for the lapse in fishin' reports but this weather we've been having has not been conducive to fun on the water !

While I have mainly been working on tackle and rebuilding the running gear on the cat's trailer I did have a father / daughter team at Indian Pass last week.

They came over right after one of those big blows and were fortunate to catch a couple beautiful winter days. While we had high skies and calm water, the bay was still all churned up from the front that had just come though making sight fishing for Redfish all but impossible.

The first day we tried briefly, spooking quite a few fish but unable to see 'em in the mud. We went and found Indian pottery shards, then picked up oysters instead.

My folks ( both of whom had never tried 'em) decided that oysters made for a wonderful dinner when we came back to the camp. The next day we went and looked again but the water hadn't changed so I loaded the boat back up on the trailer and we went to St. Joe and fished the intercoastal.

While I haven't done that for a few years I was happy to find that the winter fish patterns hadn't changed at all and the "ditch" was full of finny critters. We caught a bunch of Trout, several Redfish and a good mess of Sheepsheads. As is typical with the Inter-coastal in the winter a lot of the fish were shorts but the numbers made up for size. We kept 3 specks and 7 sheepsheads, released a couple dozen fish and fed a bunch more sheepshead.

Lots of puppy Reds

A typical winter Speck

Oysters and Sheepshead for dinner !

We came back to the fish camp and I fixed oysters and sheepsheads for dinner. It's hard to beat a day like that !

I have talked to several folks fishin' around the Destin Pass for the bull Reds. As is normal for this time of year they are schooled up tight and if you you get in 'em you can tear 'em up. I talked to 2 folks who had fished the same day, often with sight of each other. One boat caught 9, the other got skunked. All the fish seem to be over the slot and too big to keep but they sure are fun !

I am going to try to get offshore this weekend and run an AJ trip- looks like a pretty day for Sunday. In the meantime I have a pile of cobia tackle that needs greasing, new drags, line etc.




Larry Pentel's picture

Captain Larry Pentel is a native of South Walton, growing up just 300 yards from the beach. Having fished the local waters for over 40 years, he is very familiar with all the different types of local fish, their habits, and most importantly - their habitats. Captain Larry is the owner of Dead Fish Charters

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