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Old 07-19-2010, 07:02 AM   #1
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Default Choctawhatchee bay

Spent the last 5 days fishing in Choctawhatchee bay. Several things were strange to me. Wed and Thurs, both hardhead and sail cats were a frequent by-catch to my efforts for specks and reds, then they just disappeared. After that, no cats and no keeper specks. Sat and Sunday I caught small specks all morning long consistently, but not a single keeper in the bunch and I had been doing pretty well with nice size specks before that.

I also thought that it was very strange that while fishing for specks, I never caught, hooked, or even saw a single lady fish. They are usually all over my speck holes in the summer. Is anyone else seeing the same thing and does it seem as odd to you as it does to me that the cats disappeared and there are no ladyfish to be seen in these spots?

Red fishing was good for me in the very early morning at dawn, but they disappeared after that. FWIW, every speck I caught last week was on a drop off. Never found one in the deeper holes, they were constantly in the transition zone between the flat and deeper water, including the bigger ones earlier in the week.
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Old 07-19-2010, 12:12 PM   #2
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Fished the bay Saturday and Sunday and caught a ton of ladyfish and catfish. I haven't got up early and have been getting on the water at like 8-9, so where is the best place to fish when the sun is up?
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Old 07-19-2010, 03:50 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by Big Mack02 View Post
Fished the bay Saturday and Sunday and caught a ton of ladyfish and catfish. I haven't got up early and have been getting on the water at like 8-9, so where is the best place to fish when the sun is up?
You need to fish in the deeper water. When it gets hotter they go deeper, at least from my experience!!
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Old 07-19-2010, 06:18 PM   #4
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I'm leaving the water at about 9 to 9:30. While I'm fishing the fish are staying in the transition zone. I fish a basin 7-9 feet deep next to a deeper channel with a flat about 3 ft. behind it. Zero fish of any species have been in the hole. I caught my biggest specks on up on the flat on top water up to 9:30 up on the flat, but near the 3 ft. to 7 ft. transition. The smaller specks were consistently deeper and they were all that were left later in the week.

Still though, I've been fishing this spot for 6 years and have never found it to be without ladyfish and cats in the summer, even when there were no specks of any size.
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Old 07-21-2010, 11:45 PM   #5
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Funny thing about fish they swim all over the place. What are you going to do sue BP because the fish swam off to another spot. It's not strange not unusual for fish to move about from place to place.
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Old 07-22-2010, 07:06 AM   #6
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You're the only one who brought BP into this, not me and not any of the other replies. I simply made an observation that some trash fish had always been present the past 6 years were not there. I don't get to fish down there nearly as much as I'd like and I simply wanted to know whether there was a general lack of ladyfish this summer. I fished next to a local guy one day who had the same thoughts because he was not seeing any of them either. But, gee, thanks for your enlightening response.
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Old 07-22-2010, 12:19 PM   #7
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I've been fishing in Bay here most of my life and the only thing consistent is that fish move about. Sure there are spots that tend to have a congregation of certain species at specific times of the year but remember that fish constantly migrate ever reef fishes. I've been fishing in the Bay almost every day for the last week or so and I have caught just about everything that can be caught here. Also remember that the presence of bait and lack there of also makes a big difference. The hardest bites to get I've found was when the fish were gorging on big schools of baitfish.

Also what tripped my alert meter was your use of the words strange and unusual. Lately every time I see those words used in connection with fishing, it's either to blame BP directly or by innuendo. So even though you don't directly blame your strange and unusual findings on BP the implication is there because of what all the hype and big GOM news stories are about.
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Old 07-22-2010, 12:36 PM   #8
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I'd have to say simmer down...people have WAAAAYYYY to short of a fuse these days.
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Old 07-22-2010, 01:16 PM   #9
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I'd have to say simmer down...people have WAAAAYYYY to short of a fuse these days.
That's putting it rather politely ......
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Old 07-25-2010, 03:34 PM   #10
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If the conditions would remain constant, then the fish would stay at the same place.........bait, tides, sun, water temp, time of year and some variables that I don't know about.............

For me, fishing the bay is a very humbling experience....... Do well one day.....get skunked the next.....
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