Alabama's Gulf Coast Redfish Red Hot with Captain Kathy Broughton
Part of the What's Biting Series
Up until July 4th this summer, our area had rain making the rivers, bays, and estuaries stained. The water now has started clearing up in the bays. Fishing the docks in Perdido Bay for redfish has heated up.
I like a Carolina rig and bait with live menhaden, live shrimp, or live finger mullet for redfish. I use 10- to 12-pound test for my main line. Then I tie a leader of 20-pound monofilament to the main line and use either a No. 1 or a No. 6 Kahle hook or a No. 2 Owner J hook. We're primarily catching 18- to 22-inch slot reds, weighing 3-12 pounds. Anglers can keep three per person between 16-26 inches long, with one over 26 inches.
I haven't concentrated on speckled trout lately, because our area has had an east wind. Once the wind shifts, and the clearer and saltier water comes into the bays and estuaries, some big speckled trout will be caught in Perdido Pass and plenty of 1- to 3-pounders.
Just outside Perdido Pass and on the jetties, we've been catching nice pompano on live and dead shrimp. My client from Kansas who never had saltwater fished before broke the state record for permit with a 3.8-pounder recently. South Florida homes big permit, and when the water in South Florida gets hot, often the permit will move up the Florida coast and into Alabama.
But Alabama's permits are small. By the end of September into November, flounder will start migrating out of the estuaries, down the rivers and into the bays, before heading offshore. Cooler weather that forces the bait fish and shrimp to migrate out of the marshes and move to the open Gulf of Mexico will determine when the flounder will migrate.
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For more information about Gulf Shores and Orange Beach, visit www.orangebeach.com/fishing, our easy to access fishing information pages complete with marina and charter captain listings. For any questions, call Gulf Shores & Orange Beach Tourism's vacation-planning specialists at 1-800-745-SAND (7263). For a list of cook-your-catch restaurants, go to www.orangebeach.com/dining-nightlife/restaurants.