Posted By Kris/ In Castaway Lodge Hunting / Wednesday, March 18, 2015

New Growth Signals Change

Castaway Lodge Seadrift Report
By Capt. Kris Kelley

Sponsored by: Mercury Marine; Air Ranger Airboats; Haynie Bay Boats; Baysport Marine Victoria; Castaway Rods; JL Marine; Pure Fishing; Corrosion X; and, Bob's Machine Shop.

The smell of high octane and the lope of American Muscle echoing through the air here in March means getting shallow with flats fish by airboat and shallow running tunnel cats. Swarming schools of Texas Bones grazing on sand worms and "mowing the lawn" on anything that suits their fancy. Texas top tier skinny water predators are on the prowl.

Mud/grass continues to be a focus working bait on schooling fish aggressively or defensively as the day develops. Add wind and the fishing gets pretty aggressive. Some of the slick-offs of late have led to a much more defensive tone. The playbook varies day to day but the results speak for themselves.

Trips have been productive and we've got to thank the many new and existing guests for the visits. I had the pleasure of fishing Jeff Taylor with his son and friends recently. Jeff and I go back a long way, back to the Prairie goose hunting days outside Katy. I mentored him coming up in the business and he was a great kid. Jeff moved on to be one of Houston's successful home builders but he still keeps cutting waterfowl on the prairies for fun now. It was a special day fishing with his son that I'd never met, age 12, and his spitting image. I guess that's what you call the "circle of life".

Environmental Snapback (Looks Encouraging)

With the scalding salinity of the 09 drought and then again in 11 we have seen a retracement in shallow back lake grass beds. These shallows have been slicked off to nothing but mud bottoms during that time. Well it looks like things may be beginning to heal a bit as I've surveyed some extreme shallow reaches and I'm seeing some re-growth extending into previously barren parts of lakes. So the relative importance is "no grass, no fish" and vice versa in those lakes. Obviously we've been getting a lot of rain but not a lot of runoff down the rivers. Venues farther up the food chain are still anxiously trapping any water that would make it our way down the Guadalupe and San Antonio Rivers. So the main benefits to us right now must be coming via local rainfall and close-in runoff.

Water is a big issue in the State and lots of folks are jockeying for it's control. We've seen Rice Farmers starved and cut-off; we have certainly been starved here on the coast. Hopefully we continue to reverse the drought cycle and take some of the pressure off. One thing that can't be underestated is the importance of fresh water flows to the bays.

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Capt. Kris Kelley
Castaway Lodge
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