Another surge of winter weather is upon us, and it appears that this weekend will be a good one for Christmas shopping or anything else besides fishing. While the temperatures are not forecast to approach freezing levels on the Texas Coast, it still is quite uncomfortable to be on the water.

There is a benefit to this in that it will start getting fish acclimated to cold water. This is important in preparing them for possible freezes.

Many of you recall December of 1983 when warm weather prevailed all the way up to the arrival of a true blue norther. That cold front hit trout and other fish totally unprepared to deal with the sudden cold weather and caused even more fatalities by trapping trout in shallow bodies of water from which they could not escape.

Sudden winds at near gale-force strength quickly emptied the back bays where many trout were feeding. Following that, a huge drop in temperature occurred which resulted in a record freeze that lasted for several days.

If the fish had become used to colder water and had been in their wintertime pattern, the fish kill would not have been so prolific.

Each time we have a hard freeze along the Texas Coast there are fatalities among the trout stocks. Other fish that are vulnerable to freezing conditions are forage fish and mangrove or gray snapper.

Hopefully next week we will see more moderate weather set in and fishing will resume. A number of anglers have not given up on flounder, so we might see action pick up on the flat fish.

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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