Weather has been a bit brutal for us so far this year, but sunny days are around the corner. This is the time of the year to knock the wintertime dust off your rods and start tying leaders. On the other hand, it's the start of sheepshead season!!! With their almost human-like teeth, these guys can eat through the shells of crustaceans, which makes my go-to bait of choice, fiddler crabs. As the rain is forecasted to clear up next week, my hunt for these tiny crabs is on. Currently, it's been a little too cold for me to find any great quantity of them locally but word has it, there are a few shops in Hilton Head and Savannah with fiddlers. We'll see... I could be patient and just wait for a little sunshine and a little less mud.
Sheepshead here in the low country typically stage up on the nearshore wrecks to spawn, most commonly during the full moons of March and April. These large, silvery fish with vertical black stripes are real good eating as they have a white, mild flavor that's perfect for baking, grilling and certainly frying. But, back to the sport of catching them (my mind tends to be driven by my stomach), these fish are incredible fighters, giving the angler the thrill of the catch. It's not uncommon to have a fight comparable to that of a small grouper from these fish. While we catch sheepshead year-round, we'll see the biggest ones over the next couple of months, so let's go! Check the weather and know I'm ready when you are!