Croakers are really expensive now – extremely high livewell mortality - Page 3 - 2CoolFishing
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Old 08-10-2019, 06:15 AM   #21
JJohnson34
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Millions of dollars of dead croakers shoveled overboard

Have you ever wondered why plastic baits won't/don’t catch trout this time of the year and all the meat hunters are killing them with live croakers?

Why will they eat croakers voraciously and they won’t eat a plastic worm when the bay water is hot?

Fish are cold blooded like lizards, frogs and snakes… is it’s because their metabolism is highest when the bay water is hottest and they need to eat a lot to keep up with their high metabolism.

Do you remember a few years back when bait camps did not sell live croakers at all because the shrimpers couldn’t keep them alive on the catch boats… croakers were trash catch like hard heads and stinging jelly and always shoveled over board. Millions of dollars shoveled overboard all because they could not keep those little croakers alive on the boat 5 minutes.

It took shrimpers decades to figure out how to keep croakers alive on shrimp boats a few hours, long enough to get them to shore... Rocket Science solved the problem for a few of them.
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Old 08-10-2019, 09:03 AM   #22
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Yeah, the scret is letting them rejuvenate in a tank 2-3 days, you don't want the ones fresh off a boat. Back then, that's the ones you got. Now, there's a couple of guys in Palacios that supply alot of shops from there til Marker 37, and they are usually pretty hardy. If you know how to "fish" with croaker, there should be no reason to not have success this time of year. We all know how to fish plastics, and we will from Oct to May, but dang sure not in the Summer.
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Old 08-10-2019, 11:03 AM   #23
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tarpon ??

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Originally Posted by JJohnson34 View Post
Have you ever wondered why plastic baits won't/don’t catch trout this time of the year and all the meat hunters are killing them with live croakers?

Why will they eat croakers voraciously and they won’t eat a plastic worm when the bay water is hot?

Fish are cold blooded like lizards, frogs and snakes… is it’s because their metabolism is highest when the bay water is hottest and they need to eat a lot to keep up with their high metabolism.

Do you remember a few years back when bait camps did not sell live croakers at all because the shrimpers couldn’t keep them alive on the catch boats… croakers were trash catch like hard heads and stinging jelly and always shoveled over board. Millions of dollars shoveled overboard all because they could not keep those little croakers alive on the boat 5 minutes.

It took shrimpers decades to figure out how to keep croakers alive on shrimp boats a few hours, long enough to get them to shore... Rocket Science solved the problem for a few of them.
croaker may outfish tails or tops this time of year, i said may, may not. but rest assured we can fill the box using lures any month of the year, and twice on sunday. i don't say that bragging, just fact. you think mickey, west and plagg are coming in with empty boxes?? how about full limits, strictly lures. i don't allow shrimp or croaker on my boat, and we have no problem loading the cooler.

I have seen it where we were on fish, a boat load of barking monkeys pulls up, the tail bite shuts down, while the barking monkeys are running for their life. Pictured August trout on tails.
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Old 08-10-2019, 07:44 PM   #24
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croaker may outfish tails or tops this time of year, i said may, may not. but rest assured we can fill the box using lures any month of the year, and twice on sunday. i don't say that bragging, just fact. you think mickey, west and plagg are coming in with empty boxes?? how about full limits, strictly lures. i don't allow shrimp or croaker on my boat, and we have no problem loading the cooler.

I have seen it where we were on fish, a boat load of barking monkeys pulls up, the tail bite shuts down, while the barking monkeys are running for their life. Pictured August trout on tails.

Croaker will, period. Put a croaker fishernan next to you slinging tails and it'll be obvious.
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Old 08-10-2019, 09:34 PM   #25
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Croaker will, period. Put a croaker fishernan next to you slinging tails and it'll be obvious.
I out fish most of my buddies with tops or tails any time of the year.. especially for reds. However, I am no a snob and will tear the fish up on croaker also...

Both catch fish if you know what you are doing.
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Old 08-10-2019, 09:45 PM   #26
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I out fish most of my buddies with tops or tails any time of the year.. especially for reds. However, I am no a snob and will tear the fish up on croaker also...

Both catch fish if you know what you are doing.
Reds yes, but trout, if you put 2 people in the same spot, that know what they're doing, no contest. Nobody will ever make me believe otherwise.
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Old 08-11-2019, 12:28 AM   #27
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tarpon both ways

croaker will outfish lures this time of the year no doubt. However, I've been on reefs stroking nice trout on tails and/or tops, with excellent guides doing the croaker crawl, and having very little if any luck. I've watched it go both ways, it's the fisherman, not the fish or month. Regardless, I'm strickly an arties guy, and fish regularly year round. July and August can be tough months, but can be gang busters as well, when you land on them. Typically they are stacked in the cooler water this time of year.
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Old 08-11-2019, 10:23 AM   #28
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Yeah, I agree on that, this heat can be a great time of year to catch stringers of nice trout. My youngest is an arty throwing fool, but he always has his croaker rig on standby, lol. He does snag a few though.
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Old 08-11-2019, 11:42 AM   #29
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I bought 3 dozen yesterday at 6 am. I threw a few back in about 3 pm when i was done and thy were alive and kicking. I used some G-juice and put a little ice in the live well after a few hours.
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Old 08-12-2019, 07:26 AM   #30
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What’s the difference between a sport fisherman vs. the meat hunter fisherman?

I heard an older, matured Texas Game warden explain the difference a few years ago, we were all hunting in Colorado at the time and it went something like this… I still smile when I think about it.
The classic coastal sport fishermen buys all the Texas game licenses’ there is every year including the saltwater fishing stamp, belongs to several fishing clubs, many internet fishing/hunting forums, goes to club meeting faithfully and pays his club dues on time every year. Fishes with several $700 rods and reels with high tech linethat cost $2 ft. Throws custom made $12 green plastic worms “go-to confidence bait” with large red sparkle eyes and a motor oil tail that smells like a mixture of garlic, vomit and bacon grease all day from daylight to sundown year round summer fall and spring, fishes all day long 2 days a month his work schedule permitting, runs and guns 125 miles all over the bay like a 60 YO Nam-crabber, buys a new 60 K bay boat every 2 years, runs a 300 hp. 4 cycle Mercury motor, always hunting for and hoping to kill a 1 trophy trout. The TP&WD WARNING SIGNS posted at all the boat ramps warn fishermen don’t eat the fish – RE: Eat the fish and catch the Cancer.


The classic “meat hunter” eats what he catches. He runs a $500 used aluminum flat bottom boat with 40 hp. Yamaha, catches live bait croakers with a fish traps and shrimp with a cast net, always fishes with live croakers, menhaden, mud minnows or shrimp from June through September when the bay wateris hot, uses cheap green plastic worms the rest of the year when the water is cool, goal is to catch enough trout, flounder, red fish to fill-up a 48 qt.Igloo every trip, fishes 2-3 miles from his home, knows and fishes only the best 2 hours of the day 4 days a week, says the best days to fish are those real foggy mornings in the fall when the functional visibility is 30 ft. and the water is calm, glassy, quiet and sound travels exceptionally well. Net that 1st fish, hold the net at the water surface and let that fish splash the water 20-30 seconds before it’s boxed. Says that splashing attracts fish.


Fish Limits…a few years back there were no trout limits, then 20 trout limits, then therewas 10, in a couple weeks the limit will be 5 trout 2-3 lbs. of fillets if you are fishing birds. I can see a 1 trout limit for sport fishermen easily 10 years this September.


Pound for pound, fish cost more than deer. Kroger’s fish cost less thancatching it.
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