Don’t avoid winter flood tides

Winter reds will pull up on flooded, high-tide flats to search for food, where they’re less pressured and likely to bite when a meal is presented.

Winter trips for redfish are some of the most-popular outdoor activities for anglers with salt running through their blood. No matter how cold or nasty it gets, diehard anglers will make it to the water.

While certain factors will play into anglers’ playbooks, the winter flood tides shouldn’t discourage them from launching their skiffs on a gorgeous February day. Jeff Lattig of Living Water Guide Service will not let a little lunar pull disrupt his fishing opportunities.

“The flood tides during winter are not a time to avoid at all,” said Lattig. “Don’t expect them to tail, but if you get to end of a feeder creek, they will float high and will definitely eat.”

Redfish are still looking for something to eat, and as the head of the creek starts to flood the flats, reds will sit at these entrances, looking for something to eat. Lattig prefers an afternoon flood tide when the sun has had a chance to warm the mud and sand on top of the flat. Any available bait will also find these areas to take advantage of the warm water. As the water begins to drain off these flats, water and bait will come back to the creek, making a perfect ambush point.

“They are shallow enough to get away from dolphins (and) absorb the sun, and close to deep water to escape aerial predators,” Lattig said.

These flats will not hold water long, but can provide a perfect opportunity for redfish to funnel all of the available food right into their strike zones.

About Jeff Burleson 1296 Articles
Jeff Burleson is a native of Lumberton, N.C., who lives in Myrtle Beach, S.C. He graduated from N.C. State University with a degree in fisheries and wildlife sciences and is a certified biologist and professional forester for Southern Palmetto Environmental Consulting.

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