Galveston’s Best-Trinity Bay

September 1st, 2015

Cooler Temperatures –Fall Pattern for Speckled Trout and Redfish

Bow hunting and Dove seasons are upon us anglers. Keep in mine, not to forget some of Galveston Bays finest fishing is also in full swing.
With the passing of each cold front, it has given us relief from the heat of the summer months as well as giving us greater opportunities for fishing Trinity Bay.
The cooler temperatures have already had an effect on Galveston Bay, especially Trinity Bay. In the later days of summer when the water temperature hovers around 90 degrees and there is no relief in sight; fishing for speckled trout or redfish is at best difficult. The fish are usually scattered and are very difficult to locate; sometimes the best time is to fish at night under some sort of lights.
So with the recent weather forecast calling for the first few cold fronts in ’2015, local fishermen look forward to these weather changes with great anticipation of the fall season. The fish start moving, some flounder will make their annual migration, and the golden croaker run is next followed closely by the speckled trout and redfish. These fronts tell the fish to start storing up food for the upcoming cold months ahead. This is also the time of year when the birds start working over the migration of shrimp out of the bay system. Some would say that perhaps this is their most favorite time of year. This time of year, the cooler temperatures make it very comfortable fishing and there seems to be less pressure on the bay because of the hunting seasons. Fishing pressure affects Trinity Bay as much as the weather sometimes. Best bet now is to key on watching for diving birds (seagulls and terns) hovering over nervous shrimp skipping across the water.
This can be some of the best fishing and most rewarding for your ice chests.
Best bet to use for success while working the birds is a bass assassin or shad body, with a quarter ounce lead head. Sometimes, you may want to use a heavier head to get the bait past the smaller trout near the surface. Larger trout to three pounds are almost always feeding near the bottom of the area in question. Excellent bait is a spoon. Because it weighs more and the spoon is larger, the distance to the frenzy birds can be reduced with a longer cast and drops quickly to those larger trout. This writer often wonders when the fish are in a feeding frenzy like that if it really matters what you throw, “but if it is not broke, don’t fix it!” As I said earlier, the fishing pressure has as much affect on Trinity Bay as the temperature. During the week, you can see the difference. Birds will be working the whole bay, but as soon as the weekend comes, the activity shuts down quite a bit. When you spot a flock of birds, especially in the back of Trinity Bay, a trolling motor can be a big advantage. If you go plowing in there fast with your big engines, the fish will scatter and very little will be caught. Use common sense, and stay approximately one hundred feet upwind of the diving birds and drift in with the aid of your trolling motor. I know sometimes this can be frustrating because you know the fish are there and you want to get there quickly, but I promise, if you motor right in on top of the birds, the fish will scatter. Remember that if there are boats already working the birds, they do have first right, so be courteous of those fishing and start looking for other birds and they should return the favor. Look for smaller number of birds (less than five) working as sometimes larger trout can be found under those birds as opposed to thirty to forty birds working a larger school of trout where the fish are smaller.
I hope to see y’all on Trinity Bay and remember to be courteous to the other anglers when fishing the birds.
Good luck and good fishing.

Capt. Paul Marcaccio- Professional Guide with 30 years of experience, U.S.C.G. & T.P&W license

Artificial Baits-Fool ‘Em

August 6th, 2015

Live bait best, but don’t ignore plastic alternative

For some saltwater anglers, the recent shortage of live shrimp in Galveston Bay has put their weekends on hold. Others do not seem to notice.
Keep in mind there are times and places in which live shrimp is a must, but summertime along the Texas coast is not one of them. Hatching of the South Texas brownies along with their migration ,the whites are here…………….
Sometimes is slowed by Mother Nature.
Fishermen who like to fish for the fun of it, shouldn’t let the absence of the white flag alter their fishing trips.
With a little persistence and some well placed luck, the use of plastic can be every bit as productive as the real thing on speckled trout, redfish, flounder, and maybe almost as good for gafftop and sandtrout.
Live shrimp is a fisherman’s tool, just like his rod and reel or his outboard motor and boat. But sometimes, this tool can be a crutch. Often times, some fishermen are too dependent on live shrimp. Typically, diehard live bait fishermen try the plastic route once or twice. If they are not successful, back to the live well igloo.
There are no guarantees even with a live well full of bugs or hoppers. And don’t give this writer the old adage, the family will go without, unless I bring home the bacon, if that were the scenario, the $18 or more it takes to buy a quart of bait would go much further in a discount food store.
Fishing is fun and part of that fun is being able to fool’em. Time, place and water conditions still matters as much, but you can do so choosing the correct lure and making it wiggle just so.
Granted, this is not easy, but the skills needed for most salt-water applications, come with patience and presentation.
Fishing with plastics is not like open-heart surgery. Experience is the best teacher and your classroom is always open. Soft plastic shrimp and shad imitations are for the most part productive and most users friendly along the Texas Gulf coast. Give me a hand full of jigheads and tails, and this writer will surely have fun fooling a few of the Texas big three. These lures can be worked both horizontally and vertically to cover all the necessary water to attract a surprising variety of fish. Texas big three are the prime targets (trout, redfish and flounder).
The Rat-L-Trap seldom sees salt water action in Texas. If you don’t like this lure and its kin. Ask Texas bass fishermen for a recommendation. They are available in many colors and finished with corrosion-resistant hardware and they work on any fish that eats piggy perch or menhaden.
Spoons are a must to carry on the bays of Galveston, but this writer has noticed a real downturn in the numbers anglers throw these days. Man, they can cut through a howling southeast wind like a sharp paring knife. Use ¼ oz-3/4 oz depending on the depth and distance you are trying to cover. A wide body spoon wobbles near the surface, while a narrow body plows more deeply through the water. Many a redfish have been landed with a gold spoon as well as other types of plastic imitation shrimp and shad bodies. You can chunk and wind all day with a spoon.
Mirro-lures, Spooks ,She Dog’s and Corky’s are among a family of somewhat advanced lures, but there is no single, magic way to work any of them.
Start with a slow steady retrieve and have a fishin’ friend begin with a quick erratic pull. Keep it moving? Let it sit. Try anything. And when a fish hits the plug, try and remember to retrieve it the same way the next time.
The length or weight of my stringer does not measure the success of my personal fishing trips any more. More so, the uncanny ability to fool one speckled trout or redfish on fake bait is all one needs.
Remember, have fun outdoors. Good luck and god fishing.
See Y’all on Galveston Bay.
Capt. Paul Marcaccio
BOI USCG & TP &W License