After Fishing in the Keys for a few weeks, I have returned to Daniel Island. In my absence, the water temperature jumped several degrees and the fish have settled into their summer time habits. While a hungry fish will eat pretty much anything, in the summer they have a definitive preference for shrimp.
On Saturday, this was particularly evident. New moon low tides were running a foot below normal. On extremely low or negative tides, predators gather in shallow water areas and feast on shrimp. With very little water in the creeks, the shrimp are easy pickings for Redfish, Trout and Flounder. With this in mind, my plan on Saturday was to get super shallow (less than a foot deep) and look for feeding fish. However, a slight miscalculation found my skiff stuck on an oyster bar in the mouth of a small creek. Math was never my strong point but even I know that a skiff with a 6-inch draft will not float in 5 inches of water. Silly me.
Stuck on the bar in the sweltering heat, I drank a bottle of water and pondered my options. About then, a school of Redfish began chasing shrimp just ahead of my grounded skiff. So, I grabbed by fly rod, tied on a shrimp imitation fly and exited the skiff. Thankfully, the bottom was reasonably firm and I was able to wade into casting distance of the fish. My first presentation of the fly was immediately crushed. The fish were not particularly large but they were hungry (and I was stuck). Thus, I decided to stick around for a while. For the next hour or so, I enjoyed a hot Redfish bite, both figuratively and literally.
Fishing in the Keys is great. But, there is no place like home.