Time to Shrimp
Even though the recreational limit for shrimp
is one five gallon bucket (heads on) per boat, if you are in a
boat or one five gallon bucket (heads on) per person if you are on
a dock, this is the time for big numbers in your net.
Shrimping from a boat:
Both, boat and dock shrimping are best done
If you have a boat and like to eat shrimp,
now is the time to cast the net for some good eats. My net consist
of an 8 foot net with 3/8 inch mesh. If I am shrimping in deep
water, more than 7 feet, I have netting on the bottom of my net.
The purpose of the netting is to keep the net open as it falls to
the bottom. When you are in deep water and you do not have the
netting, the net wants to close and you do not get the full extent
of the coverage area of the net. The webbing holds it open like a
parachute and gives you a wider area of net coverage. The netting
can be two different material. The easiest is to take the net to a
lawn chair repair place and have them sew 2 inch wide lawn chair
webbing to the bottom of the net about 3 or 4 inches above the
lead line or you can but 2 rolls of 2 inch wide duct tape and do
it yourself. If you elect the duct tape method, drive a 16 penny
nail into something like a tree or post about shoulder high. Slide
one corner of the net at the lead line, from the nail, where you
can access both inside and outside of the net. Pull off about 4 or
5 inches of tape from each roll and press the sticky part of the
tape to each other, sandwiching the net between the two rolls of
tape. Continue this until the tape is completely along the bottom
of the net all the way around. Then go back and be sure the tape
is pressed firmly together. If you have taken your time to do this
correctly, you will have a net that will last a few years if you
are one of the lucky ones that does not get the net snagged on
something in the water. If you would like to have a net that
already has the webbing on it, there are several websites and
local tackle stores that sell the nets with webbing already sewn
to the net.
Now you have a net and you are going to
venture out to catch some shrimp. The old way is to find an area
where the bottom is free from snags, like trees, rocks and
oysters, get some stakes, like bamboo poles, long sticks or long
sections of 1x1 wood. Ease along in your boat pushing the stakes
into the bottom where some of the stake sticks up above the water
line. You will need to be able to see them. After you have about
10 or 15 of these in the water, you can bait up the area. The bait
as I use to do it was clay mixed with fish meal. Today, you can
purchase fish meal pellets and cakes from most tackle shops or
feed stores. Toss the bait about ten feet in front of each stake.
Now drink a beer and wait about 30 minutes. Now you can ease back
up to your first stake and toss your net over where you tossed the
bait. If you are in a good place and your net open up good, you
should have some shrimp. If you do have shrimp, continue this
until you have a 5 gallon bucket. If you have made several cast
and your net is void of shrimp, pull up your stakes and go to
another spot until you find shrimp. With the big numbers of shrimp
in the river right now, finding them should not be a problem.
Shrimping from a dock:
The only difference between dock and boat
shrimping is your ability to relocate. You will not need stakes as
you should be able to remember where you tossed the bait. A big
plus shrimping from a dock is most dock have access to electricity
and with electricity, you can have bright lights shining into the
water, which will help attract the shrimp.
Bait up all around the dock, drink a beer and
start casting. The other difference from boat to dock shrimping is
the more people you have on the dock, the more shrimp you can keep
as your limit is one 5 gallon bucket per person.
Fishing in this area is on fire with big
numbers of almost anything except sheepshead as they are a cold
water fish. Not only is there a pile of shrimp everywhere but also
big schools of mullet and glass minnows and the fish are taking
advantage of this time of plenty.
Over the past few weeks, I have had trout
from 1 to 6 pounds, redfish from keychain size, up to 12 pounds in
the creeks, a few small black drum, jacks, ladyfish, tarpon,
flounder, sharks, whiting and my least favorite, northeast
Florida pointy tail flounder (string rays).
My bait has been shrimp, mud minnows, my new
home made lures and my favorite soft plastics, Salt Water
Assassin. Since I have discovered these soft plastics, I have
caught a pile of very nice reds, trout and flounder, using them. I
had a customer last week that would not use a live bait and he
caught 9 trout to 5 pounds, 4 oversize reds and 5 flounder. He
tried to catch a shark that was cruising the bank but the shark
just would not eat the plastic.
Tarpon are here and last week I had 6 on and
managed to get 3 of them to the boat.
Sharks are here thick and those of you that
like to be hooked to a fish that pulls harder than most, will
enjoy the long battle from a shark.
Fun Fishing Inc
904 757 7550