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Features : Fishing Report Last Updated: Feb 13, 2013 - 10:09:33 AM

Warmer than usual February weather provides excellent fishing conditions
By Greg Peralta
Feb 13, 2013 - 10:07:20 AM

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Between bad weather and my skiff in the shop, fishing last week was pretty much a bust. When I finally did get out, the water temperature was a bit of a surprise. In February, it is very unusual for the water to approach the 60 degree mark. However, that is exactly what I found in a few small creeks and shallow sun warmed flats. In these areas, I also found schools of finger mullet being chased by hungry Redfish.   Large numbers of baitfish and such aggressive feeding behavior are highly unusual in February. This oddity also makes for some unusually good fishing.  
After observing the February phenomenon for several minutes, I moved the skiff into casting range and staked out. In this situation, long casts with a soft landing lure are essential.  As such, I picked up a rod already rigged with a Z-Man PaddlerZ Bad Shad (that looks like a finger mullet).  Even with a soft landing lure, a cast into the middle of feeding fish will spook them. So it pays to observe the situation and develop of good sense of location. My first cast was well beyond the feeding activity and I let the current sweep the lure into the Redfish. A quick twitch of the lure followed by a long pause was rewarded with a solid hook up.  The action was non-stop until the incoming tide allowed the fish to disperse into the Spartina.  
With high tide approaching, I left the shallows to seek Trout in deeper water. Rather than blind casting to likely locations, I slowly moved around (watching my depth finder) until a school of fish was found.  Once located, dropping a MinnowZ Bad Shad on a quarter ounce jig to the school and retrieving it with an erratic hopping motion produced some surprisingly large Trout.  
While recovering my skiff at the boat landing, gnats were everywhere and Robins were hopping around on the ground. If the warm weather continues, everything will be biting including gnats and mosquitos.  So pick up some bug spray, call a friend and enjoy some hot February fishing.
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