DNR's Jim Page with flatheads from the lower Satilla.

Flathead Control Also Crucial on Lower Satilla

Mid-afternoon under a searing August sun is no time to fish the lower Satilla River.

But Jim Page, Jason Mitchell and Ed Zmarzly aren’t exactly fishing. With long-poled nets and boats trailing voltage-packing cables, the DNR crew is searching for an aquatic invader: flathead catfish.

Continue reading “Flathead Control Also Crucial on Lower Satilla”

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Georgia Fishing Report: September 16, 2016

Central Georgia

North Georgia

Southeast Georgia

Central Georgia

(Info provided by Fisheries biologist Steve Schleiger and region Fisheries staff; Reservoir Fishing Reports Courtesy of Southern Fishing with Ken Sturdivant)

Lake Russell (full, clear, 80’s) – Bass fishing is good.  Rocky points are great all day locations but be sure there are bait schools in the area.  The Lowrance Structure Scan and Down Scan technology can sweep these areas and show you the schools of bait and the fish close by.  Small crank baits and Super Flukes are working.  Also use any color worm in shades of green.  Also use the spinner bait along with a variety of crank baits and an occasional top-water bait all day.  Shad Raps up in the rivers where current is present or the windblown points and banks is good.  On the full moon, Continue reading “Georgia Fishing Report: September 16, 2016”

Daniel Johnson of Alma caught his personal best bass, this 8.6-pounder, on Friday evening on the last cast before dark on a Big Bite plastic crawfish.

Georgia Fishing Report: September 9, 2016

North Georgia

Southeast Georgia

Southwest Georgia

North Georgia

(Info provided by fisheries biologist Pat Snellings)

Winter Water — Fueling North Georgia’s Summer Coolwater Fisheries

The dog days of summer might try to keep you from hitting your favorite fishing spots, but during this time some of your best fishing opportunities are available across north Georgia. Hot summer days raise the surface water temperature of a lake, but below the surface something interesting is happening — stratification.   And, because of that stratification, in the depths of a lake lies winter water. Continue reading “Georgia Fishing Report: September 9, 2016”

Crabbing is a fun family pursuit for the holiday weekend. The Bonvechio family (left to right: Lily, Tim, Hannah and Kim – the photographer) loves catching crabs with hand-lines on the Georgia coast.

Georgia Fishing Report: September 2, 2016

Central Georgia

North Georgia

Southeast Georgia

Central Georgia

(Info provided by Fisheries biologist Steve Schleiger and region Fisheries staff; Reservoir Fishing Reports Courtesy of Southern Fishing with Ken Sturdivant)

Lake Russell (full, clear, 80’s) – Bass fishing is fair.  There is a fair jig bite first thing in the morning just inside the mouth of Beaverdam Creek.  Use the 1/2 ounce jigs on a rocky bottom in ten to fifteen feet of water.  Have the Carolina rig ready and use it on the main lake points.  The south end of the lake is slow.  The Savannah River and Rocky River is the best area.  Finding structure on the ledges near deep water will be best.  Use the Lowrance Down Scan technology to find more fish spread out across the bottom.  An occasional top-water bite is not out of the question even with the warm water.  Fish east bank side of the rivers first.  As the sun comes up, this will be in the shade longer and hold more bass.

Clarks Hill (down 4.7 feet, 90’s) – Bass fishing is fair.  Early in the mornings, head up into the rivers and bigger creeks.  Try downsizing small finesse worms on a drop shot rig and light Carolina rigs.  Fish along the channel ledges and use Continue reading “Georgia Fishing Report: September 2, 2016”

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Georgia Fishing Report: August 26, 2016

Coastal Georgia

Southeast Georgia

Coastal Georgia

(Info provided by Fisheries Biologists Tim Barrett and Joel Fleming, and region Fisheries staff)

Savannah River:

Catfish: It’s time for catfish!  Catfish have been the focus for anglers over the last several weeks.  Some anglers are reporting that catfishing in the river may be the best they have seen it in over 15 years.  Catches of 50+ small to medium-sized channel catfish are not uncommon in many areas of the river.  These fish are being caught on primarily worms, fished on the bottom.  Anglers targeting larger channel catfish are fishing on sandbars in the evenings using cut or whole shad as bait.  Fish well over 15 pounds are not uncommon when targeting these larger fish.  Bush hooks, baited with cut bait, have also been very productive. Continue reading “Georgia Fishing Report: August 26, 2016”

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Georgia Fishing Report: August 19, 2016

North Georgia

Southeast Georgia

North Georgia

(Info provided by fisheries biologist Jeff Durniak and region fisheries staff)

The summer heat continues and, like the weather, this week’s fishing report sounds like a broken record.  Headwater trout, tailwater trout, and deep stripers (see Ken’s reports) are our best bets.  Reservoir bass are decent if you go early, or run around the lake and drop-shot brushy humps to find the few in each school with appetites.  River bass are good during those clear windows between the muddy water slugs from afternoon thunderstorms.  The good news is that our lawns are once again green.  The bad news is that we have to cut them, after a month-long break from that chore.  The best news follows. Continue reading “Georgia Fishing Report: August 19, 2016”

Blake Yarbrough landed and released this monster redfish in the Sapelo Island area over the weekend. The redfish bite in the sounds will pick up as we move toward their fall spawning time.

Georgia Fishing Report: August 12, 2016

Central Georgia

Southeast Georgia

Southwest Georgia

Central Georgia

(Info provided by Fisheries biologist Steve Schleiger and region Fisheries staff; Reservoir Fishing Reports Courtesy of Southern Fishing with Ken Sturdivant)

Lake Russell (full, clear, 80’s) – Bass fishing during the day is slowly improving.  A few bass are still attacking various styles of Shad Raps with the Glass and Jointed Shad Raps working well.  Change colors when the bass are small in size or the action gets slow.  A great place to find active bass is way up in the Savannah River. While in the moving water, use a small all-black buzz bait on a braid and work it right up next to any Continue reading “Georgia Fishing Report: August 12, 2016”

One of the peak bites during the dog days of summer is bowfin in the Okefenokee Swamp.

Georgia Fishing Report: July 29, 2016

Central Georgia

Southeast Georgia

Central Georgia

(Info provided by Fisheries biologist Steve Schleiger and region Fisheries staff; Reservoir Fishing Reports Courtesy of Southern Fishing with Ken Sturdivant) 

Lake Russell (full, clear, 80’s) – Bass fishing is fair and the fish are very scattered and they are roaming all day.  The fish are not on any particular structure as they just seem to be roaming the banks and humps.  There are lots of shad and the bass have plenty to eat and are not looking for artificial lures.  To catch them, head up the river and creek points for bass suspended in 15 to 18 feet of water.  Carolina rigs and worms and crank baits are Continue reading “Georgia Fishing Report: July 29, 2016”

Andrew Rich caught this big bluegill on Monday from the Altamaha River. A black/chartreuse Satilla Spin fished around willow trees fooled it.

Georgia Fishing Report: July 22, 2016

North Georgia

Southeast Georgia

Southwest Georgia

North Georgia

(Info provided by fisheries biologist Jeff Durniak and region fisheries staff)

It’s still hot and dry, despite some increased storm frequency across the mountains last week.  The good news is that these brief storms cool off the streams a bit.  The bad news is that the benefits of higher, cooler stormflows are fleeting.

http://waterdata.usgs.gov/ga/nwis/uv?site_no=02330450

The BIG news this week came from one of the cleanup batters on the Hooch Tailwater.  These guys use big bats and swing for the fences.  They often strike out, but when they connect, it’s usually a homer, far back into the upper deck.  That happened on the Hooch tailwater, and the story of the big brown is in the first bullet, below.

Our summer pattern continues, so pick your preferences.  Remember to check USGS gauges first to avoid chocolate milk, aim for shade, and be slow and patient with your offerings.  “Warm” fish are slow to react in hot water, and will avoid the high sun if they suspect predators in their midst.  Despite the continuing heat wave, Continue reading “Georgia Fishing Report: July 22, 2016”

Daniel Hampton of Waycross caught this 8-pound bowfin in the Okefenokee Swamp on Tuesday. It inhaled a fire tiger Dura-Spin inline spinner.

Georgia Fishing Report: July 15, 2016

Central Georgia

North Georgia

Southeast Georgia

 

Central Georgia

(Info provided by Fisheries biologist Steve Schleiger and region Fisheries staff; Reservoir Fishing Reports Courtesy of Southern Fishing with Ken Sturdivant)

Lake Russell (full, clear, 80’s) – Bass fishing is fair.  The fish are all small and they are moving around a lot.  Bass are roaming around in small schools from 6 to 10 fish and buzz baits will allow anglers to cover a lot of water fast.  The fish are moving to the points and creek bends especially mid to lower lake.  They are roaming on any wood all day and a crank bait cast through the wood will draw a strike and be sure to use bright colors.  Use the Rattle Back 1/2 ounce jig and a larger Pro Pork Trailer by Uncle Josh on the points.  The crank bait and spinner baits cast on the bank cover and slowly worked will get strikes.  Mid-day spinner baits down lake in the creeks are fair on cover using Stanley spinner baits with bright blades.  Later look for shallow strikes as the bass move to the creek banks and points during the day.

Clarks Hill (down 2.62 feet, 80’s) – Black bass are tight on creek bends down lake as well as main lake points.  The fish are biting but all presentations will need to be close to any wood and around docks.  Use the Zoom gourd green worm on a Texas rig in the tight bank cover.  Up the creeks, use a dark jig and pig combination and fish tight in any cover right on the bank.  The Lunker Lure Rattle Back jigs in the 3/8 ounce size in dark reds and blacks with a matching #11 Uncle Josh trailer will be best.  Add Real Craw scent and use it often casting to the same location.  Use a Leverage all white buzz bait and the spinner baits with willow leaf and Colorado blades in tandem on the wood and docks.  Be sure the skirts are bright colors in lime, white and chartreuse. Continue reading “Georgia Fishing Report: July 15, 2016”