|A Gulf Coast favorite, Redfish can be caught from Texas to the Carolinas. Redfish thrive in the salty, mangrove estuaries of the 10,000 Islands and Everglades National Park. Known for hard fighting, drag screaming pulls, redfish rank near the top of all targeted species in Southwest Florida.
The aggressive feeding habits of redfish make them an excellent target for anglers using flies, lures, or live baits. Redfish can tolerate a wide range of water temperatures which means they are active throughout the year.
A subtle presentation with a bucktail jig or soft plastic shrimp leads to a tight line. When the redfish are schooling on the outside points, multiple hookups come fast and furious. Shallow running crankbaits are deadly for redfish along oyster bars. They also will attack a topwater lure with a vengeance although the hookup ratio is not real high.
Redfish are ideal fly targets in the Southwest Florida. They can be found cruising the edges of oyster bars at low tide. In very shallow water, redfish will tip down to feed and expose their tail above the surface. This tailing action is a great time to lay the fly gently down in front of the fish. Shrimp and crab imitations, seaducers, clouser minnows and other crustacean flies are the top producers for redfish.
Live baits are very effective for redfish. Baitfish are plentiful from the spring to the fall and redfish will gorge themselves on the helpless schools that wash in and out with the tides. During the cooler months, redfish are targeted with shrimp in the deeper holes of the 10,000 Islands. Their sense of smell makes them especially vulnerable to a crushed shrimp on the bottom.
Redfish use the mangroves of the 10,000 Islands and Everglades National Park as their playground. With a never ending supply of crabs and shrimp along with baitfish to feed on, these hard fighters are always seeking their next meal.