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By Capt. Chuck Uzzle
For the Record 

Overall bite continues to improve


Last updated 2/20/2024 at 7:50pm

The loud noises you have been hearing from your neighbors garage more than likely have been the sounds of fishing tackle emerging from winter hibernation. The combination of warmer weather and better water conditions have many anglers scurrying to knock the dust off their boats and head for the water. Both freshwater and saltwater anglers alike have benefitted lately from the conditions and the bite has improved in both places. If the current forecast holds true it looks like we could have some really nice days in store for the next week or so and that should do nothing but make the bite even better.

The folks on both Sam Rayburn and Toledo Bend are enjoying some better than average fishing right now, especially for February. Both lakes are in good shape as far as water levels and they are still slightly on the rise. The water color is a little off due to what's left of the runoff but it's getting better. The warmer temperatures should push a few more fish up shallow but the best bite is in that area of 5-10 feet of water on the outside grass line. Classic spring patterns such as spinnerbaits in flooded brush and crankbaits out deeper are holding their own and producing fish. Some of the better fish are being caught on Carolina rigs or jigs in a little deeper water so you have several options to choose from. Provided we don't have another big winter storm event it shouldn't be long before we really see those fish get up shallow and start to spawn.

The bass fishermen aren't the only ones on the lakes taking advantage of the bite, the white perch fishermen have been doing really well themselves. The most consistent bite has been around deeper structure with shiners but a few good reports from some folks fishing shallower with jigs have been surfacing as well. Locally the white perch have been showing up in good numbers on the Sabine and Neches rivers for the folks who know where to look. It's amazing how good that bite can be once you locate those fish and that's exactly why those places are sworn to secrecy.

Over on the saltwater side there is a decent speckled trout bite on the south end in deeper water. The ship channel and jetties are both holding some fish right now and they have been fairly consistent. Incoming tides bringing better water in have been the best bet for anglers throwing swim baits or soft plastics near shell or other structure. The outgoing tide farther up the lake has kick started a redfish bite in the afternoons as the bait and warmer water empties out of the marshes. Rattling corks with soft plastics, swimbaits and topwater plugs have been good options for this program. 

So far I haven't heard of or seen any really big trout yet this year from either Sabine or Calcasieu but it has to happen eventually. Both lakes have improved overall during the last year or so and it's just a matter of time before one of those really big fish shows up and puts a charge in the local fishing world. The folks that I know of that hunt these big fish religiously have been catching a few decent fish on Corkies and Mirrordine's with an occasional topwater fish thrown in for good measure. They continue to believe that the big fish will show up eventually. All I know is that you can't catch them if you don't go.

On a side note I read recently about how the biased left wing media has refused to identify the folks involved in the shooting at the Superbowl parade in Kansas City citing the fact that those who were arrested were minors. If my memory serves me correctly the same media had no problem identifying Kyle Rittenhouse, who was 17, during the Kenosha Wisconsin riots. In fact they plastered his face on every media platform out there because he fit the narrative that the gun control advocates want you to believe. The current administration that continues to cater to things like illegal immigrants and funding Ukraine while leaving American citizens to foot the bill and do without would love nothing more than to pass as many gun control laws as they possibly can. Hopefully during this next election the American people will finally get tired of being set aside, like they have been for the last 3 years, and put some elected officials in office who will truly put America first.


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