Capt. Allen Jernigan of Breadman Ventures said speckled trout are aggressively attacking topwater lures in the bays and creeks off the Intracoastal Waterway and New River around Sneads Ferry, with the action typically best in the early mornings and late afternoons and on rainy and overcast days.
"Many of the creeks and bays have shallow shelves that run out a ways from the bank before dropping into deeper water, and the edge of the shelf is where the trout are right now," said Jernigan, who is having his best success on MirrOlure She Pups. "The shelf is typically a foot or two deep and drops down to 4 to maybe 6 feet of water. There is bait moving along the shelf, and the trout are prowling the edge looking for it. The fishing is pretty easy; you just cast up on the shelf and walk the bait off the edge. Sometimes they are feeding real aggressively and run up onto the shelf and slam it in the shallow water."
Jernigan (910-467-1482) said some red drum and a few flounder are on the same shallow shelves. He gets occasional topwater strikes from the reds, but switching to weedless spoons and soft plastics on light jigheads has been the key for catching them.
"I always keep a couple of rods rigged with Flats Intruder spoons and light jigs with Salty Bay Cigar Minnow and Redfish Minnow soft plastics," Jernigan said. "If I see a red moving or when the topwater bite slows, we'll switch to them and keep fishing. The reds like this pretty well, but the surprise has been catching a slow but steadily increasing number of flounder. They really like the spoons and soft baits.
"We sometimes catch a few more trout on the spoons and soft plastics once the topwater bite slows," Jernigan said. "They haven't left, but something has changed, and they aren't jumping on topwater lures. They haven't stopped feeding, they're just going at it a different way."