With springtime patterns emerging along the west coast , many inshore species will use the shallowest water to hunt down a meal. As the water warms up, pinfish, sardines and other bait become a reliable food source for the big three – snook, redfish and trout. There are two key factors that anglers can look for when finding fish.
One – Look for birds picking around shallow flats on low water. Egrets and spoonbills will root around the most productive areas that have bloodworms and small crabs. Often times this area is the very shallowest section of the grassflat. These crustaceans are favorites of redfish and the bottom feeders will work that zone once the tide begins to flood. Two- work around mullet schools on high water. In the early spring, these schools will flush up the bottom as they work up towards the mangroves. The result becomes a massive buffet line for predators searching for an easy meal. Gold spoons and scented plastic shrimp are the best artificial offerings, as anglers can work the lures near the bottom. For live bait – shrimp and silver-dollar sized pinfish rigged with a small split-shot just above the hook will keep the bait down – where gamefish will be targeting.
Tackle- Long casts will help to disguise a presentation in cleaner water and place needed distance to weary fish. Ten to 15 pound braid is optimum for extending casts with spinning gear. Always try to set up to the schools with the wind behind the angler to get the most distance. Rigging the bait with weight forward will also cover more water