Saltwater Fishing Trends - August 18, 2016

Fishing Off shore

Popular Marine Species

South Carolina marine recreational fishing regulations

Get specific tide information for various SC stations from NOAA

Information on fishing trends provided courtesy of, South Carolina's premier fishing report source. Customers of the Angler's Headquarters online tackle store have access to daily updates and full-length reports on its site.

Update to Cobia Regulations (effective May 1, 2016)

Closed Season

  • May 1 - May 31. Catch and release only in SC waters south of 032 31.0’ N latitude (Jeremy Inlet, Edisto Island).
  • June 20, 2016 – December 31, 2016. Fishery closed in state and federal waters.

Bag Limit

  • 1 per person, per day, and no more than 3 per boat per day. Applies only in SC waters south of 032 31.0’ N latitude (Jeremy Inlet, Edisto Island)
  • 2 per person per day (Federal waters and all other SC state waters)

Charleston (Updated August 3)

Inshore: The Charleston Angler ( reports that anglers are having a good redfish and trout bite early in the mornings due to hot weather. Fish have been caught using live minnows and shrimp. In addition, soft plastics and topwater lures have been producing fish as well as shrimp and crab flies.
Nearshore: Anglers are reporting a strong bite at the jetties with numerous species of fish being caught such as redfish, trout, flounder, black drum and sheepshead. Live or fresh dead shrimp have been producing the most fish as well as mud minnows and finger mullet. Artificial lures and soft plastics have been effective as well. The nearby wrecks and reefs have still been producing nice catches of black sea bass, amberjack, and sharks. Spanish mackerel and king mackerel have also been caught trolling clarke spoons and slow trolling live baits. Some anglers are also reporting hookups and sightings of tarpon near inlets and just off the beaches.
Offshore: Offshore trolling has slowed down a bit but anglers are still reporting catches of dolphin, sailfish, and blue marlin along with sparse catches of wahoo. Bottom fishing in 90-to-100 feet has been producing decent catches of black sea bass, grouper, vermillion snapper and red snapper. Bottom rigs with squid, dead or live baits and been effective.

Little River/North Myrtle Beach (Updated August 7)

Inshore: Captain Patrick "Smiley" Kelly (843-361-7445) reports that redfish both under and over the slot are both biting well, with the smaller puppy drum taking live shrimp, finger mullet, and Gulp! baits and the bigger fish wanting cut or live mullet. Small black drum have been very abundant, and they are eating both live shrimp and fresh, cut dead shrimp. Flounder fishing has been strong, with Gulp! shrimp fished on a quarter-ounce jighead producing (as well as live mud minnows/finger mullet). A 9.5-pound flounder was caught on one of their boats on Gulp! last month! Trout are still taking topwater lures in the morning, and live shrimp fished under a popping cork as well as Gulp! on a quarter-ounce jighead are also working.
Cherry Grove Pier (843-249-1625) reports that lots of smaller whiting, some small flounder, and pompano are being caught off the pier. Recently there was also a run of small spadefish, but kings and Spanish have not been around since May.
Nearshore: Captain Smiley reports that lots of sharks (Atlantic sharpnose, blacktip) as well as kings and Spanish have been caught.

Beaufort Inshore (Updated August 18)

Inshore: Bay Street Outfitters (843-524-5250) reports that redfish tailing action has been strong, and when good tailing tides coincide with the cooler morning water temperatures it will get even better. Redfish are also chasing shrimp and they can be caught sight-fishing on low tide as well as around structure in the creeks. Tarpon are present and feeding on mullet and menhaden around artificial reefs and rips, and flounder will eat shrimp. Trout fishing has been pretty slow with the heat but it’s worth keeping your eyes open for tripletail in the rivers. Hunting Island Pier: (843-838-7437) reports that whiting, croaker, sharks and stringrays have comprised the main catch lately, with the occasional flounder mixed in.

Edisto Island (Updated July 11)

Inshore: Captain Ron Davis Jr. (843-513-0143) reports that when you can locate redfish on the flats or in the creeks the bite has been good, although numbers of bigger fish are still down. 8-10 inch fish are abundant and with the creeks full of shrimp, live shrimp are tough to beat. Trout fishing is good with live shrimp fished 3-5 feet under a popping cork, and flounder fishing is above average with mud minnows and finger mullet fished on the bottom. Sheepshead fishing is good on fiddler crabs around structure.
Nearshore: Just off the beaches anglers can catch Spanish mackerel by following the birds and casting spoons or trolling, and at local hotspots tarpon are around in pretty good numbers. They will eat blue crabs and mullet.

Greater Murrells Inlet (Updated August 16)

Inshore: Perry’s Bait Tackle (843-651-2895) in Murrells Inlet and Captain J of Fishful Thinking Guide Service (843-902-0356) report that flounder catches have slowed, but mullet are picking up some fish in the shallows early and late. Smaller redfish are also feeding on mullet (with bigger fish hard to come by), and some nice-sized trout are eating shrimp during the day as well as lures early and late. A lot of black drum beneath the slot are being picked up.
Surf, pier and jetty: Perry’s reports that weakfish have started to show up off the ledges around Surfside Beach and whiting, croaker and bluefish are also being caught.
Nearshore: Kings and mackerels have gotten scarce but spadefish are prolific around the nearshore reefs.

Hilton Head (Updated August 18)

Redfish: Fair to good. Captain Dan “Fishin’ Coach” Utley (843-368-2126) reports that concurrent with the arrival of bait-sized shrimp fishing has gotten pretty good, and his boat is catching lots of small redfish to go with a decent number of slot-sized and above fish. The best pattern continues to be working the smaller creeks with cut mullet and mud minnows.
Trout: Slow to fair. Water clarity issues have not made for great trout fishing, but when you can find high, clear water they will eat shrimp.
Tarpon: Fair. Tarpon are in the area and they will eat menhaden and mullet. Fishing a few feet under the surface has been better than bottom fishing.