Who would ever think that seeing tiger sharks patrolling nearshore reefs would be a good thing for any angler with cobia on the brain? Even though catching them can be exhilarating by itself, just about every tiger shark cruising around the reefs off Little River Inlet is being shadowed by a school of hungry cobia that has been biting anything lately. Rain or shine, the hot cobia action should continue strong until the end of the month.

Capt. Tom Cushman of Myrtle Beach Fishing Charters is steady catching cobia at these reefs off the coast of Little River.

"It's been a real good cobia year with lots of fish around and lots of nice fish," said Cushman (843-997-5850). "On our short 4- to 5-hour trips, we have had several double-digit trips."

The tiger sharks seem to be his secret weapon right now.

"We chum the tiger sharks up next to the boat, and you will soon see several cobia following behind. We pick out the biggest one and sight-cast to him."

Cushman's best success is coming from live menhaden, pinfish and cigar minnows. He attaches the live bait to a 1- to 3-ounce jighead.

"Most of the time, they will take the bait right way, but sometimes they will turn away at the last minute," he said.

After several years of frustration, Cushman figured out a way to remind these cobia that they really want to eat what he has to offer.

"The key is not to let them eat the bait right away," he said. "Take it away from them, and they will have a whole new attitude when the bait comes around the second time."

When the live bait runs out, he continues to have good success on 6-inch Gulp! curlytail grubs in white, green and red.

"Get the wiggle going, and they will ream it," he said.

According to Cushman, the cobia action is good anywhere from the beachfront out to 25 miles offshore. But, his best action is coming at the nearshore reefs, such as the General Sherman, and the livebottom areas near the Jungle.