Spring’s Coastal Transitions

Spring’s Coastal Transitions

Matching the hatch plus where one fishes are just a couple of adjustments successful coastal anglers will make this month.

Story and photography by Danno Wise

Along the Texas Coast, March is time of new hope and new beginnings. This is particularly true this year, which saw the coast experience a hard freeze for the second time in the last few years.

March means the threat of cold weather is, for the most part, past. Spring may not officially start until the third week of the third month, but the sunshine and warmer weather usually arrives at the beginning of the month, bringing with anticipation for warmer days and good fishing on behalf of inshore anglers.

Spring’s warmer weather and warmer water also welcomes new life to Texas’ inshore bays. As March gets underway, shrimp, crab and various baitfish already have or will soon release a new batch of younglings. When this happens, predators such as speckled trout, redfish and flounder will shift their focus from large, hard to catch adults to the young, naïve hatchlings populating the flats.

This transition doesn’t happen all at once. Spawning activity of these various species is staggered throughout the spring and early summer. However, March marks the start of a three month run of hatchlings in our bays. During this time, there will always be some sort of recently hatched prey items for bigger fish to feed on.

So, while the sunshine and warmer weather will have anglers raring to go, there are a few adjustments they should make in order to be consistently successful throughout the spring season. For starters, this is a time when it is important for anglers to ‘match the hatch’ in both size and type of baits and lures thrown. For the most part, downsizing lures, baits and flies is essential.

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