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Let the professionals show you how

012619Fishing
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Here is Mike Sweeney with a giant crappie on the Chowan River.

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By Mike Sweeney
Columnist

Saturday, January 26, 2019

One of the main perks to this job is you get to meet a lot of people who share the same passion for the sport of fishing.

They come from all walks of life and most are regular people who all enjoy angling and everything that goes with it but some of the people I meet actually work in the fishing industry.

These include game wardens, commercial fisherman, charter boat captains and guides.

Every one of these people have a certain knowledge about fishing and I love to hear their stories and incorporate that into my fishing arsenal.

This past week I got to go out with one of your local guides, Captain Terry Payne who fishes mainly the Chowan above Edenton for catfish, striper and crappie.

He has been on the crappie bite lately and invited me out on one of his off days.

Yea that’s right a guy who fishes for a living goes fishing on his off day so don’t judge.

The whole day on the water we talked about fishing like water temps, baits, species and other topics two old anglers would talk about.

He proceeded to school me on the art of slow trolling for crappie with colors choices, boat speed and trolling depths.

It was nice to see how other hard core guys work their magic and learn how to make it work for me when I go out.

The guides who work our waters know more about fishing their waters than almost anyone because they fish it almost every day.

This means that they follow the movement and patterns of the fish all year long and can make the right adjustment when needed to make their clients happy.

So even if you are a seasoned angler who is looking for another way to find fish you need to take a guide trip with one of your local pros.

Trust me you will have a great time and you might even learn a thing or two.

What’s biting, where...

The offshore report is looking up with not only better weather but the Bluefin tuna have begun to show up on the docks.

We have had fish come back with numbers like 400 to 500 pounds.

That is a lot of sushi for sure.

The yellowfin have also been active with some fish coming back over 60 pounds.

If you ever wanted to get you a big tuna now is the time.

On the beaches it has been slow mainly because a lack of anglers.

I am sure with this cold snap there has been some red fish around but with nobody fishing for them we have almost nothing to report.

The beaches are open even with the government shutdown so get to the sand and find me some fish.

Locally we have had great crappie action in the creeks with slow trolled lures on spider rigs paying off for most anglers.

Keep the boat in about 10 to 12 feet of water and run different color jigs till you get a bite then see which one works best.

Make multiple passes in the same area that you first got a strike because these fish are schooling right now so when you catch one there will be others.

The striper bite has been better since the cold weather moved in with schools of fish moving up and down the rivers marked by flocks of birds. Keep an eye out when trolling and look for this action to mark the fish for you.

If you like to troll the bridges they seem to be tighter to the structure than usual so try to bump the pilings with the lure when you troll and it should bring a strike.

If anyone gets out this week shoot me a report at fishingwithmike921@yahoo.com or hit me up on Facebook at Fishing with Mike.

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