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  • Kickoff for Tailing Redfish

    “May is kickoff for tailing redfish,” said Capt. Fred Rourk, “because of the moon cycle coming into full moon.”

    Beginning May 22-25, the tides will be 6.2 feet or bigger, and the reds will move onto the flats from North Inlet out of Georgetown down to Beaufort where Rourk does most of his fishing.

    Rourk says that these flats, which can be up to two miles long, will have several creeks that feed onto them during this time. This is where he looks for sandy, hard bottoms with short grass on them.

    “The bait will move back into this short grass, and the reds will follow them,” Rourk said. “And when you see reds with their heads down and tailing, then you know they are feeding.”

    Rourk likes to throw flukes or jerk shad in white or glow at these tailing fish with 1/16 oz., 4/0 weighed worm hooks.

    With live bait Rourk fishes mud minnows or mullet on the bottom with a three-way swivel, plus a 1/8-1/4 ounce weight and a 1/0-4/0 Kahle hook depending on the bait and tides.

    Generally, Rourk will use a 7’-10” spinning rod with 15 pound braid and a 15 pound fluorocarbon leader that is 18 to 24 inches long for targeting these tailing reds.

    With the kickoff for tailing reds beginning this week, give Capt. Fred Rourk a call at 843-241-4767 or email at and get lined up for some tailing red action.

    South Carolina Sportsman Field Reporter
    Capt. Glenn “Teach” Corley