TRICIA’S Mansfield Report
Capt. Tricia’s Skinny Water Adventures operates out of Port Mansfield, specializing in wadefishing with artificial lures.
Telephone 956-642-7298 Email Capt.Tricia@gmail.com
88 | July 2016
July is the beginning of our hottest weather and this is when you really need to get on the water early. Concentrate on areas where wind or tidal movement creates stacking areas for bait and ambush points for gamefish. Early morning winds are typically light and many believe this a good thing, but honestly it is not. We need wind to cool and oxygenate the water. However, not everything about July’s wind is a godsend. Prolonged strong wind tears shallow-rooted seagrass loose from the bottom that soon decays and finds its way to the surface. When it gets bad enough anglers want to tear their hair out. Floating grass scattered on the surface and suspended in the water column can be very difficult to get a lure through. Luckily, when the wind picks up, usually midday and afternoon, it begins to form into narrow windrows where we can cast into relatively clean water that lies in-between. The scientific name for these rows is Langmuir Spirals and you can Google it if you want to learn more. Science lesson aside, it is pretty easy to figure out that casting between the rows of the floating nuisance will help keep your lure clean and you will get more strikes. Another really neat aspect of the windrows is the
way they attract bait. Between the natural attraction of higher oxygen levels within the spirals (Google it) and the cover the floating grass provides, we often see small crabs, shrimp, and baitfish darting just below the surface. Redfish can often be seen suspending under the windrows, picking off the morsels that try to hide there. Many times I have lined my anglers between the rows with great success. One would be surprised at the quality of some of the trout we catch using this tactic. Spoils and shallow windward sandbars are some of my favorite structure types to target in July. ICW spoils allow trout and redfish the luxury of shallow nighttime feeding areas with quick deep-water daytime refuge. Look for spoils and sandbars that have bait stacked on top or along the edges. There’s a good reason the bait is shallow – more times than not it’s the presence of a serious predation threat. If I had someone requesting a quality trout in July I think I would definitely start on the spoils at first light. Larger trout seem to feed predominantly at night during summer and first light offers a shot at them before they retire for the day. First light is also generally the lowest-wind period of the day and bait
The July 2016 issue of Texas Saltwater Fishing Magazine.