Saltwater Fishing Trends - September 30, 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 September 30)

Inshore: Captain J.R. Waits of Fish Call Charters (843-509-7337) reports that the creeks are full of shrimp and schools of finger mullet, and a mixed bag of flounder, trout and bluefish can be caught. The hottest thing going in the creeks has been the redfish, which are eating finger mullet very well. Captain Jess Haynes of Redfish Charters (843-368-1413) reports the bull red drum bite has been very strong. Fishing bottom near rips and structure using cut mullet is the ticket. A few tarpon are around so have a live mullet or menhaden ready. The flats equally have been on fire. With cooling water temperatures and an abundance of shrimp, the fish are eager to eat. This clearing water makes sight fishing them a lot easier. Haynes uses 1/8-ounce jig heads with white Gulp shrimp. Now is the time to throw a Pro Sizzle top water lure near grass lines and oyster beds. Imitating a distressed bait makes for exciting bites. Haynes reports catching a decent amount of trout using popping corks with shrimp and mud minnows.
Folly Beach Pier (843-762-9516) reports that the fishing has picked up a little in the past week, and they caught a 4 ½ pound black drum among other notable catches. A large number of bull drum are also being caught off the pier, including one angler who caught a 38- and 40-inch fish on Wednesday.

Little River/North Myrtle Beach (Updated September 28)

Inshore: Captain Patrick "Smiley" Kelly (843-361-7445) reports that bull red drum in the 30-40 inch range continue to be caught on live menhaden and finger mullet in the Inlet. Inshore there continues to be a pretty consistent bite for trout, smaller and slot-sized redfish, and flounder, with all three species eating finger mullet, shrimp and Gulp! baits. Black drum are feeding well on crabs and shrimp, and Spanish mackerel and bluefish are also being caught on mullet fished in the inlets and off the beaches.
Cherry Grove Pier (843-249-1625) reports that fishing has been excellent off the pier, and the first king mackerel caught since last May have been landed in the past week. In fact, 31 ½ (after a shark bite) of them have been landed off the pier since last Thursday! Fish caught off Cherry Grove Pier took 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 5th in last weekend’s Grand Strand king mackerel tournament. Additionally, bull red drum, some nice bluefish and Spanish, whiting, croaker and small black drum have been caught.

Beaufort (Updated September 30)

Inshore: Bay Street Outfitters (843-524-5250) reports that when tides allow redfish continue to tail and feed well on a variety of baits fished weedless, and they are eating shrimp and cut mullet on most tides. Trout fishing is pretty good with shrimp under a popping cork or jigheads and grubs, and flounder fishing is strong with mud minnows. Jack crevalle and ladyfish can be caught on topwater lures.
Hunting Island Pier (843-838-7437) reports that fishing is a little slow but croaker, whiting, pinfish, occasional flounder, and sharks have all been caught off the pier.

Edisto Island (Updated September 30)

Captain Ron Davis Jr. (843-513-0143) reports that water temperatures bumped up a little this week and fish remain in a late summer pattern. The next cool snap should kick off a better fall bite.
Inshore: Redfish continue to feed well on the river flats and up the creeks on live shrimp fished under a cork or on a weedless jighead or flutter hook. On the flats good numbers of eating-sized black drum are mixed in with the redfish catch, and in the creeks reds are also taking cut mullet. Trout fishing is good with live shrimp fished 4-5 feet under a popping cork in the rivers close to the ocean, and flounder fishing is also good in the same areas on live shrimp, mullet or mud minnows. Sheepshead are feeding on fiddler crabs fished around structure.
Surf zone: The tarpon bite is very good around sandbars at the mouths of inlets, with fish eating live mullet or menhaden fished under a float. Whiting are abundant and bluefish and ladyfish are also common.
Nearshore: Just offshore at The Rocks bull red drum fishing slowed down this week, but when temperatures drop fish should again be caught on menhaden and mullet. At the reefs Spanish mackerel are still feeding very well. Anglers can catch them by trolling Clarks Spoons or casting at diving birds with small, heavy spoons.

Greater Murrells Inlet (Updated September 30)

Inshore: Perry's Bait Tackle (843-651-2895) in Murrells Inlet and Captain J of Fishful Thinking Guide Service (843-902-0356) report that black drum continue to be caught on shrimp and crabs, and trout are taking topwater lures. Small redfish are also being caught while flounder fishing has been mediocre.
Surf, pier and jetty: Bull red drum are still biting well on menhaden, mullet and blue crabs, and with the mullet run still on bluefish and Spanish are definitely around. In addition to whiting and croaker some spots are starting to show up as well as pompano.
Nearshore: No new report due to weather.

Hilton Head (Updated September 29)

Inshore: Good. Captain Dan "Fishin' Coach" Utley (843-368-2126) reports that inshore redfishing is still basically in a summer pattern, and on lower stages of the tide fish will take a variety of baits. Trout fishing dropped off somewhat this week, while flounder can be gigged in very shallow water. Bull red drum in ever-increasing numbers have moved into the area, and they will take cut mullet and menhaden. Late-season tarpon are also still around.