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Multiple Species Specialist
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
The trips last weekend were a hoot! The guys I took were from Wisconsin and were really looking forward to experiencing Texas saltwater fishing. They were both a pleasure to have on board and kept me laughing more often than not.

After discussing the different types of fishing available they decided on a multi-species nearshore trips. We started at the jetties freelining live shrimp on the outside rocks to get some continuous action. After a couple hours of bent rods we moved out into the Gulf for some rig action, bounced around to several looking for ling, bottom dropping around the legs and trolling the perimeter for kings. The deeper rigs in state waters produced the best almost non-stop action for Saturday and most of Sunday. We realized the best catches while tied up to the rigs and fishing on the bottom or 2/3 of the way down on suspended fish.

The bottom was covered with upper slot reds and 25% of them going oversize. Occasionally a small snapper or Spanish mack would hit on the way down. Ling would show up to spice up the action with the largest boated being 35", UFO's would show up and get on the bait or eat a smaller fish once hooked and they always made it into the structure without being caught. Kings, jacks, shark and Spanish kept a line busy downcurrent with a freelined ribbon or Spanish sardine whenever it was played out.

Catching on Saturday at the rigs was the best I've ever seen, if there would have been more than two customers on board I would have never been able to keep up with the constant de-hooking, baiting, reviving/decompressing fish and keeping up with new leaders to replace the lost ones. We lost over 50 circles hooks, 12 ribbon fish/live bait steel leaders, about 12lbs of lead and all of the 60-100lb monofilament leader material on board.

Best bait we had were ladyfish (redfish, shark and UFO's,) squid (snapper, ling, and spadefish,) and ribbonfish/Spanish sardines caught a little bit of everything.

They guys retained only partial limits and left with 10 gallon ziploc bags stuffed full. At least 95% of the catch was released in good condition. Saturday we realized over 100 redfish releases and Sunday over 100 snapper releases, all shark and ling were released healthy.

When the trip was over we tallied up the different species and this is what they caught;

Bluefish
Redfish
Hardhead Catfish (they included everything)
Jack Crevalle
Toadfish
Ladyfish
Black Drum
Red Snapper
Lane Snapper
Mangrove Snapper
Spadefish
Blacktip Shark
Bull Shark
Spinner Shark
Bonnethead Shark
Atlantic Sharpnose
Ling
Sheepshead
Spanish Mackerel
King Mackerel
Cero Mackerel
Pompano
Gag Grouper

23 species in all, that is a record for me in two days of fishing

These guys were sportsmen and all about "THE FIGHT," actual table quality of the species did not matter, they were looking to get the string stretched. Out of all the differant fish caught their top three favorites were JACK CREVALLE, SPADEFISH and KINGFISH.

There are plenty more where these came from, hope this weather stays good for a couple of more weeks!
 

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Thats about as fun as it gets. Sure wish I was there to enjoy a weekend, what a blast. Wish more people would just enjoy the thrill of the catch and not worry so much about what kind it is. Just a pull on the line is what it is really all about.
 

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Great report and pics. I live in the Austin area and I'm really going to miss my usual early October trip to the Galveston jetties this year, so I'm headed to POC within the next few weeks. I've had good fun the last two years catching and releasing plenty of bull reds in Galveston. Sounds like the jetties in POC will offer some good action. It will be my first trip to POC, so just wondering if anyone can give me advice on whether to fish the little jetties, the big jetties (Matagorda Ship Channel) or both and the best baits. I've had good luck with live shrimp and whole or cut shad around the Galveston jetties. I rarely keep any fish - just looking to get the Okumas singing.
 

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Multiple Species Specialist
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
The Matagorda Ship Channel jetties are your best bet for some oversize redfish. Cut shad works great, but hard to come by in POC. Most folks use Spanish Sardines, you can get a 5lb box at most bait shops for $10. Keep the bait frozen as long as possible since it is quite mushy, but good.

Cut the bait in half, use a 7/O circle hook and insert under the chin up between the eyes into/through the hard spot on top of their head. Save the tails for later when you get low on bait, or chunk a couple out up current when you hookup to get the rest of the school feeding when they cruise through.

Live shrimp will catch them, along with plenty of slot reds, mangrove snapper, spanish macks and ladyfish. Ladyfish make excellent bait, I like to steak them into pieces 1-1/2 inches wide and hook on the 7/O's. The smaller fish like snapper and pinfish nibble on the meat and make a good chum slick down deep for you to call in the redfish. Sharks really like the ladyfish also, as do the jacks...great bait!

Good luck on your trip, be sure to post up and let us know how you like POC- Curtiss
 

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Thanks Capt. for the very useful information and tips. I'm already rigged up with 7/0 and 8/0 circle hooks on my larger reels and 4/0 on a couple of smaller reels for the live shrimp. I did use Spanish Sardines once before and had a tough time keeping them on the hook, but should do better this time using your tip. I've caught Ladyfish before but never used them for bait, so I'll give that a shot and prep them as you described too if I catch any. I'll definitely post my results after making the trip to POC.

One of my fishing buddies is currently working out of town the rest of this season, but we've both been wanting to target some tarpon. I've bookmarked your website and will give you a call next season to chase the silver king.
 

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He looks like he's having a heck of a time with the hot weather. About how I looked in Wisconsin a few years ago in February.

Looks like a great trip. I'm sure they had a blast!
 
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