Guide Ron Davis of Edisto Island said the redfish around Edisto are still in their tight, winter schools, making them easy to spot – but not always easy to entice into biting.

"These fish have spent the last couple of months being harassed by both man and dolphin, so they are super spooky and they can be tough to catch," said Davis, who still believes that, with the right approach, late February can be one of the easiest times to catch a limit of redfish in a short period of time.

Successful anglers are having their best success fishing the incoming tide up to mid-tide. Targeting oyster bars has been especially productive, and finding spots with a combination of oyster bars and spartina grass in small feeder creeks is an excellent start. Cut mullet and chunks of crabs are the most-productive baits, but scented soft plastics are also working. The plastics are most effective when cast well ahead of a school, drawing a strike from one fish. The school will break up into smaller groups, but they generally find themselves again in short order.

 

Davis warns against focusing solely on the shallowest of water, however. While fish are easy to spot, other redfish are hanging out in deeper holes in the creeks, especially if they are surrounded by shallower sandbars that keep dolphins out. Spotting these holes at dead low tide, then casting to them with cut mullet and crab chunks on light Carolina rigs is working. While these fish aren't as easy to spot, they are far less spooky and cannot pass up an easy meal.

 

Speckled trout are also plentiful around Edisto and have benefitted from the relatively mild winter weather. Anglers targeting trout are having luck in the deepest holes in the creeks, catching good numbers on Trout Tricks and 3-inch grubs on eighth- and quarter-ounce jigheads. Some creeks around Edisto average 2 to 4 feet of water at low tide, but they contain small holes anywhere from 8 to 20 feet deep; these are the spots to focus on. Low tide is currently the most productive tide for specks, meaning redfish anglers don't have to head to the landing when the tide goes out.