Lots of big black drum around Rockport

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McPartland 1

Capt. Jack McPartland (361-290-6302) reports redfish and black drum has been good in the Rockport area.

“The big blacks are here, the big monster blacks, the catch and release blacks,” says McPartland. “Usually I have some customers who want to catch the blacks because they have never caught a fish that big on light tackle. We catch a couple then either go redfishing or try to find some smaller black drum for eating.”

He is fishing the ICW using a heavy weight, putting the bait on the bottom. Dead shrimp and sea lice work for bait.

The redfish are all over the flats. “Every place I checked I found reds on them. Corpus Christi toward Part Aransas and Redfish Bay, they are all holding redfish.”

A couple of his favorite places are Shamrock Flats in Corpus Christi Bay; Mustang and Estes Flats behind Port Aransas; in Redfish Bay Outside Dagger and Inside Daggers.

“What bait I’m using for the redfish no one can get yet. The last few days I have killed them on menhaden, but menhaden won’t start showing up for another month. Last year we went out and caught the menhaden, vacuum packed and froze the menhaden. I have 100 lbs in my freezer. I use them in January and February when nobody else has them.” Without menhaden stick with live and cut mullet for the reds, and dead shrimp or sea lice for the blacks.”

Flounder action is starting to pick up. “They are coming back from their offshore spawn and are starting to show up on the flats. Best bait is mud minnows. You pretty much rig them up just like you would live mullet.” For live bait McPartland uses either a # 4 or 5 Kahle hook; circle hooks for dead or cut bait. “Circle hooks are a lot bigger and in a couple casts you will wear a hole in the live bait and they will come off.”

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