(Special to the American Press)
Last Modified: Wednesday, January 23, 2013 12:10 PM
With duck season in the history books, most hunters I have talked to had a good-to-excellent season with lots of ducks both the early and late seasons.
Spending numerous days on Toledo and Rayburn during duck season, I saw more ducks than I have in many years while we also saw more hunters and heard much more shooting. One morning I must have heard a hundred shots. The local marshes also had huge populations of ducks with Hackberry Rod and Gun reporting a near-record year, said Capt. Buddy Oakes.
Oakes reported they harvested more than 7,600 ducks while utilizing 12 to 15 blinds each day.
Many of our local fishing guides also work as duck guides during hunting season, which is true with both Capts. Kirk Stansel and Kevin Broussard. These guys, like many others, love the outdoors and enjoy the change from scales to feathers, rods to guns, then back again.
It’s time again for to pick up the rods for Stansel, who reported redfish is the main game in town as far as catching numbers of fish. This is mostly because of the massive amounts of fresh water from recent rains. He suggested shorelines close to bayous or weirs, the Salt Ditch and when weather permits, the main Gulf jetty.
As far as lures, Stansel recommended Berkley Saltwater Gulp! Shrimp and Mullet (both in 3- and 4-inch versions) on 3/8-ounce jig worked slowly keeping bait close to bottom. On trout, the best bet is stealth approach to wade slowly and quietly working hard bottom shorelines with Corky’s or favorite topwaters. Don’t expect a lot of bites, but be ready for that beautiful trophy trout.
Catch, photo and release the big trout. Send us a photo and a fish story!.
I just received an “on-the-water text” (mid-afternoon Tuesday) from Capt. Bruce Baugh that read one of his clients caught and released an 8-pound trout that hit a Broken Back Corky in pink. We should have that photo next week.
Local Calcasieu River tournament angler Doug Guins said the river has gotten back within its banks and water levels continue to drop to normal. Water clarity was better than Guins expected with stained-to-heavily stained conditions, which is a big improvement from last weeks muddy conditions.
Water temperatures are in the low 50s, and because the river is receding the cuts and drains are running and the fish are taking advantage of this opportunity to feed on the abundant forage being pushed out by the high water.
With these conditions, Guins suggested 3/8- and 1/2-ounce Stanley jigs, Texas-rigged Berkley Havoc Rocket Craw Worms, Stanley compact 3/8-ounce spinnerbait and small crankbaits such as Normans Little N, Little Scooper and Deep Little Ns.
Work these baits very slow. I would
recommend paying more attention to water temperature than water clarity
now as the warmer
water will produce better even if it is only a couple of degrees
difference. Usually the more stained the water is the faster
it warms and retains the heat better.
The Sabine river was still above flood stage at Deweyville, Texas, and is expected to be above flood stage for the remainder of the week.
The lower portion of the river is below flood stage but has a strong current. This will position the fish in eddys and in current breaks and should make it easy to pinpoint fish locations. Jigs, Soft plastics, spinnerbaits and crankbaits will produce fish in these areas.