Hubbard’s Marina Fishing Report 8-26-22

Hubbard's Marina Fishing Report

Inshore Fishing Report

Snook action is going really well along our beaches during the day time, and at night around dock lights, bridge lights and passes the snook are extremely concentrated and active. Great time to get out there and catch and release some snook, but soon the snook season will open. Snook harvest opens in our direct area starting September first and ends at the end of November, but a keeper fish must be between 28 to 33 inches total length and your only allowed one. Also, remember in order to harvest a snook you must have a snook stamp on your FWC fishing license as well. At night around the passes the shrimp, crabs and some of the more realistic jerk baits like the skin series mirrordines are working well. During the day on the beaches soft plastics, live shrimp or free lined pinfish or grunts are great ideas to target the snook in the troughs along the beaches.

Redfish action has been going well throughout the area as of late. We are seeing most of the action around the back bay areas like those mangrove islands, shorelines, flats, or dock lines around the flats or mangroves. The cut dead bait chunks are great ideas around structures like docks, mangroves or oyster bars especially at higher tides. The live shrimp, white bait and smaller pinfish work well too, but limit your area of targeted area. The soft plastics are always a great lure option for the redfish no matter the time of year but when its extremely hot slowing that lure down is a good idea. I also love the artificial shrimp options too like the power prawn or DOA shrimp.

Trout action is going well around area dock lights at night, also the bridge lights too. During the day, we are finding them at the edges of the shallower flats, deeper flats and also around the beaches and passes. They love the live shrimp or white bait and sometimes the big boys will devour those smaller pinfish.

Black drum are super concentrated right now around bay area bridges. Especially in areas with deeper water like 15-30ft or more and good moving water. They love hunting the crustaceans along the bottom like crabs or large shrimp. We are seeing a few smaller ones cruising the flats and some dock lines around the passes too. However, to get on good numbers of the bigger fun to catch black drum one of our bay area bridges are the hot spots.

Mangrove snapper action is going extremely well throughout the area on virtually any structure. If you find a rock pile, dock or pier with any growth you will find clouds of mangrove snapper. Especially if you get there at the end of tide and start to chum as the current slows clouds of mangrove snapper will descend on your chum slick and it will be tons of fun pulling them up on lighter weight and light tackle.

Tarpon action still going well around the bay area even later in the year. We see pretty steady tarpon action through September, but even through the cooler months we do have pockets of local fish that don’t follow the majority of the fish out of the area as the waters cool. We are seeing good numbers of those juvenile tarpon in the back bay areas especially around the mouths of creeks, bayous, or back bay areas.

Nearshore Fishing Report

We are seeing a lot of that green water in our near shore areas right now due to the issues of fresh water influxing to the gulf from the Mississippi river and also the large amount of rain our area is seeing right now too. This increase in freshwater lowers salinity and also increases the murkiness of our local waters. We are seeing this phenomenon all throughout our near shore and even offshore waters. This does allow us a better opportunity to use heavier tackle and still get bites, but it makes it more tricky to use live bait, jigs or other methods outside of soaking a smelly, oily and attractive dead bait. Plus, we are noticing in areas of dirtier water we are having a more difficult time finding cooperative fish who are ready to eat. Look for those cleaner pockets of more blue water and you will find more actively feeding cooperative fish to target while near shore.

Lane snapper action has been going really well out there near shore with some good numbers of lanes in decent sizes are pretty commonplace. We are seeing them most commonly around 50-60ft of water or more and as you get deeper around 70-100ft we are seeing larger versions in pretty good numbers. We catch them often on squid chunks or threadfin chunks but they do love the live shrimp for the most part. Plus, while using the live shrimp you have a good chance at the good number of mangrove snapper we have been seeing too. The mangroves will take small chunks of the threadfins on the double snell rig, but they really like the live shrimp.

Red grouper are coming up endlessly near shore, but finding the keeper sized models of red grouper near shore is a bit more tricky. While you get deeper success chances grow significantly. We see them often on the live pinfish and the bigger chunks of smelly and oily dead bait like the mullet, bonita, mackerel and even larger threadfins.

Offshore Fishing Report

Red grouper is coming to a close for the remainder of 2022 at the end of day august 29th. They will re open automatically at the start of 2023 and theres also a chance as wave four data (July-August) from MRIP (marine recreational intercept program) comes in and finishes it’s QA/QC (quality control and quality assurance 3rd party review of data) that we could have quota leftover to land and we could potentially have a short opening of red grouper at the end of the year if there is still quota left to be caught. However, that data won’t be in and out of QA/QC until likely mid October or even late October so any extension or addition of more red grouper fishing days wouldn’t be until the start or mid November if there’s quota left.

Red snapper season is over now for the fed for hire recreational fleet (this is our sub sector or designation at Hubbard’s Marina). However, like the red grouper we learned at this recent gulf council meeting in Corpus Christi Texas that we could potentially see more season days and access if our ACT (allowable catch target) hasn’t been attained or exceeded. The same timeline and data lag would apply as explained above for red grouper. So there’s a possibility that we could see a early to mid-November set of red snapper and red grouper days additionally not expected. However, they could review this data and let us know neither will re-open but its worth keeping an eye out for this possibility. Remember, the added FWC red snapper dates are for private recreational anglers only and do not apply to us at Hubbard’s Marina since we are federal permitted for hire recreational fisherman. So please do not call and try to book red snapper weekend trips around those few select weekends the FWC is doing a really good job promoting because you won’t be able to keep red snapper with us on those weekends unless we get the extension discussed above.

Gag grouper fishing has been going well for us lately and were expecting that will only get better as we move through September with spits of slower periods depending on our depths fished. They are deeper right now especially with the warmer water so fishing a 12 hour extreme, 39 hour, 44 hour or long range private charter on the Flying HUB 2 are best options to get a decent shot at gag grouper. We have gag grouper season open until the end of the year and right now the big dead baits like mullet, bonita, and mackerel are working really well along with the new octopus jigs we have with their ink/scent tablets.

Mangrove snapper fishing also going really well for us too we are seeing some big mangrove snapper out deep and they get in high concentrations this time of year. Like the gags, its hot and they are hanging deeper and deeper when looking for good numbers of bigger mangrove snapper. We do see overall plentiful mangroves but the bigger 5-7lb average and larger are out deep. We are doing really well on the cut threadfin chunks and the double snell rigs. They are super leader shy and a bit finicky so lighter tackle is a good idea when the bite is slower and tough. However, you want to start heavier with the gag grouper season open and the chances for gag encounters high.

Yellowtail snapper fishing is going really well around the area, but we are seeing the majority of them out deeper on our 12 hour extreme, 39 hour and 44 hour trip. They love the smaller strips of squid around a quarter inch wide and about 2-3 inches long. However, the smaller chunks of threadfin are really good at catching some yellowtail too. Like the mangroves, they are more leader shy and they are smart so lighter tackle helps to get them going if the bite is slower.

Pelagic fishing is very hit or miss right now offshore but when you find pockets of cleaner water that isn’t so green we are finding more activity and better chances for some tuna, kingfish, wahoo or maybe a sailfish. Cobia are around out there too, but we aren’t seeing the numbers like we used to.