Today’s fishing report is switching from catching fish to fish surviving the freeze.

The Galveston area is being hit with some of the coldest weather in years. Low temperatures are in the mid-20-degree range and, while that is not unusual for January, the issue to be concerned about is that it is coming at a time when the water levels are low and fish are sluggish.

Already we are seeing fish that are normally in tropical areas this time of year, showing up either floating or sluggish. Jason Hayley, who works at the Texas City Port, sent pictures of a snook in a stunned condition swimming just below the surface of the water.

Snook, like tarpon, are not common to the Galveston area in the winter and likely will be vulnerable during freezing conditions.

The very strong northerly winds, a wind direction that pushes water out of the bays, is coming at a time when water levels are already low from earlier cold fronts this month.

A note from Capt. Mike Williams of Tarpon Express Guide Service summarizes the magnitude of the low water by saying “I proclaim the Galveston afternoon tide of Jan. 16 to be the very worst tide of the year to go fishing anywhere in the Galveston Bay Complex or surf.”

Unfortunately, Williams’ prediction is not limited to fishing but also to a potentially lethal low tide for fish survival.

The fast moving front came on top of a window of fair weather Monday that likely lured fish from their save havens to shallower waters in search of food.

Betsy Hatherill sent in a picture of a big flounder she caught Monday under what she described as a prefrontal bite.

Let keep our fingers crossed for the survival of trout and other fish, as the freezing temperatures on top of very low water levels could take their toll.

Capt. Joe Kent is a columnist for The Daily News. Report your catch to reel.report@galvnews.com or call 409-683-5273.

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