They like to be in and along the edge of a channel or cut, because that is where the tidal currents are more concentrated and push more bait past the redfish. If you see a heron on a flat, there will be a redfish nearby. When fishing docks for big bull redfish, I will adjust the number of split shots to keep my bait on the bottom and under the dock.
A number of factors affect redfish and where they live and travel. Many products featured on this site were editorially chosen. Want to see our reels in person? The flounder will usually bury itself on the bottom, awaiting its prey.
I will pole a kayak, Gheenoe, or skiff onto shallow flats (12-18" of water), and look for signs of redfish. I like to have a longer rod when fishing passes because often times you're drifting very fast and need to cast a bait a good distance to get it in the right zone to get the bite.
This depends on the size of the fish and the structure I am fishing.
When I fish the mangroves for slot and over slot redfish, I throw 4000s due to extra drag it offers and the need to pull fish away from the mangroves. When the tide gets low and changes, many anglers put the rods away and go fish elsewhere. You can vent the fish and nurse him on the surface before you release him, but odds are not in his favor to live through an offshore catch. Reel Size: 3000 to 8000 Spinning Reel. . When fishing potholes for redfish, I will also throw pinfish with cut tails. When fishing docks, I will bump up to 65# braided line. These are the three most used live baits for fishing for redfish in Florida, and these baits are almost guaranteed to catch you more fish. I am a little stuck in my ways. White Bait, Pinfish, and Shrimp are my go-to baits when it comes to catching big redfish fishing Florida's various estuaries.
The reason I like 7'6" rods versus a 7' is due to the extra distance you can get on your casts. For small white bait (2-3") I usually use smaller 1/0 size circle hooks to avoid affecting the way the bait swims. My recommendation is Infinity 100% Fluorocarbon Leader, but Seaguar and Yo-Zuri also work well).
The shade of mangroves keeps the water temps cooler, and can keep the redfish chewing during the heat of the day. The reason I like 7'6" rods versus a 7' is due to the extra distance you can get on your casts. However, I have also had luck early in the morning on warmer winter days in a little bit deeper water.
With their freight-train like runs, beautiful color, and the many ways in which you can catch redfish, it's no suprise that anglers love to chase them. The question we're looking to answer is how to catch redfish (Red Drum) on live bait in the areas they like to frequent. If I'm fishing the flats, I'll back off the drag a little bit and use 15# 100% Fluorocarbon Leader.
If I'm expecting to catch larger redfish or if I'm fishing heavier structure, I'll use a larger reel with a little stronger line. .
For medium size white bait (3-4"), I use a 2/0 size hook. The reason I bump up to 5/0 and 6/0 size hooks when fishing passes and docks is that those redfish are usually larger. When fishing creeks for redfish, I'll throw an Osprey 3000 Spinning Reel with 15# braid. I like to have a longer rod when fishing passes because often times you're drifting very fast and need to cast a bait a good distance to get it in the right zone to get the bite. If I'm expecting to catch larger bull redfish, I will bump up to a 4000 size fishing reel with 20# braid. 1/0 to 3/0 J-hook. But this is an ideal time to find redfish. Shorter rods offer more power when fishing in close quarters. The idea is that the redfish will look up to where it heard the pop, and then will see a free floating shrimp that it will hopefully eat! Redfish migrate.
When using an Osprey 3000 Spinning Reel, I use 15# braided fishing line. To break down this method of how to catch redfish with live bait, we're going to separate this article into three main sections.
Pinfish are also a good alternative for fishing flats and mangroves for redfish, but are more effective when fishing deeper water (like under docks and deeper mangrove shorelines) due to the pinfish's tendency to swim to the bottom. Stay tuned as I will be breaking down how to catch redfish on artificial baits in my next article. I also want to add that you will want to use Fluorocarbon leader over using straight braided line. Reds may be on the back side of it on one tide and move to the other side of it when the tide changes direction. When fishing shorelines on mid to high tides for big redfish, one of the most effective baits is a live white bait, also known as a pilchard.
But the question we're looking to answer in this article is not where to catch redfish. If the tide is picking up and the bait is not on the bottom, I will add extra split shots.
These are big breeder fish that congregate on these reefs all winter.
If I'm expecting to catch larger redfish or if I'm fishing heavier structure, I'll use a larger reel with a little stronger line.
So if their habits put them in a location once, it is likely they will be in that location in a similar situation again – but there are no guarantees!.
If I'm targeting over slot or bull redfish, I will bump up to 25# leader. Reproduction in whole or in part without permission is prohibited.
When fishing the mangroves for redfish with pinfish, I'll bump up to 25# and 30# 100% Fluorocarbon Leader. 25# is the max size leader I will use when fishing for redfish with shrimp. If there is a good bit of structure nearby that the fish could break me off on, I'll bump up to 25# fluorocarbon leader. My go-to is a good 7'6" Medium Action Rod, either a. .
Being able to cast further is a huge benefit, and often times makes all the difference.
I highly recommend using a 100% Fluorocarbon Leader when fishing for redfish. When the tide gets low and changes, many anglers put the rods away and go fish elsewhere. Consider going a little later in the day when the temperature starts to warm, especially during those bird blue sky winter days. For medium pinfish (3-4"), I use a 2/0 hook.