Sunshine Brown’s Santee River shad


River shad keeping anglers busy

In both Carolinas, the springtime shad bite starts as early as late February and sometimes continues into May.

Lana Grace “Sunshine” Brown shows off a hefty shad she caught recently on the Santee River while fishing with family and friends. The bite on the Santee is tapering off, but anglers on eastern North Carolina’s rivers are still having some banner days.

Shad are anadromous fish, meaning they spend most of their lives in saltwater, but migrate to freshwater to spawn. They are generally the first fish of spring that bite in big numbers, and they mark the beginning of the hot bite for other species that anglers anticipate this time of year.

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Brian Cope
About Brian Cope 1838 Articles
Brian Cope is the editor of He has won numerous awards for his writing, photography, and videography. He is a retired Air Force combat communications technician, and has a B.A. in English Literature from the University of South Carolina. You can reach him at

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