February is winding down, and fortunately it has been a warmer month than what we experienced in January. Still, we are behind where we should be on the fishing scene.

The unusually cold winter delayed our normal pattern of fishing and practically all areas of the life cycle of marine life have been affected. While not directly related to fishing, our crop of crawfish is not of the size that they should be for this late in February, as the cold weather in January delayed their movement.

Crabs likely will show the same pattern; however, I do expect March to be the month where we start to see considerable improvement in practically all aspects of fishing.

The water temperature has been climbing; however, Monday’s cold front likely will set that trend back for a short time.

With longer periods of sunlight becoming more noticeable each day, look for the bay waters to hit the magic 70-degree mark soon.

If there is much action on the larger black drum, we are not getting reports of it. In fact Maurice Foster, an avid black drum fishermen during the annual run, told me that he feels that where we are today could be compared to action in late January and early February in most years.

Hopefully we will see the big brutes in the 50-pound range start showing in large numbers soon.

One sign that improvement might be on the way came Monday when several shrimp boats were working not far off the beach front. This is typically when we start seeing bait migrating back and the shrimpers and their catches are good indicators of when this is taking place.

When the migration starts, it is almost always a sign that good fishing is not far behind.

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

(1) comment

Natalie Malphrus

Lots of small bait fish and a few trout on the underwater fish lights last night in my canal on the south side of Tiki Island. First bait fish seen all winter.

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