Where is the Best Place to Catch Flounder?
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Rocks and/or jetties are found in almost every inlet on the Atlantic coast. They provide the break areas in tidal currents where flounder can position themselves for ambush feeding. If you have a trolling motor, the rocks that line the jetties heading out into the ocean are an excellent place to try the waters on a slack tide. On a slack tide the fish will hug the rocks and sit on the bottom.
Any cut or inlet up and down the US East Coast that goes to the ocean from a bay or estuary will have similar situations, and all of these tactics, or slight variations of them, can be used to catch these elusive doormats.
The docks attract flounder because docks attract a number of marine plants and animals. Oysters and other shell animals cling to the dock pilings and docks, and they provide for plant life and small animals to cling to them. It is a real estuary and mini eco system.
The docks provide cover and shade protection for small fish from predator fish. This is really an abundant food supply for the flounder and other fish. The pilings provide relief from fast moving tides for the flounder. The flounder wants to conserve energy and uses little energy for catching his meal. Important: the flounder will always position just behind the pilings facing the current.
There are three choices for boat position, and any of them will work if you pay attention to the current.
-Anchor: Parallel to the Dock
With this method, you will cast your bait across the current and allow it to sink down as the current moves it. This works for the outside edge pilings, those closed to the deeper water. Cast to the most up-current piling and let your bait move its way close to the bottom, passing the pilings as it goes down
-Anchor Up: Current from the Dock
The current will be headed directly away from the stern of the boat toward the pilings of the dock. Let your bait go down between two pilings and let the current take it in back under the dock. You will get more strikes with this method.
-Anchor Down: Current from the Dock
This position is one of the better ones for artificial lures. Cast up current and work your bait between the pilings close to the bottom all the way back to the boat. Your bait is moving more naturally with the current. Artificial baits that are worked against the current are not natural and consequently draw fewer strikes.
Avoid dropping anchor where you plan to fish. Use a pole to hold your boat if possible.
Wait a few minutes before fishing. Let the flounder adjust to your being there. In small creeks, use poles or trolling motor. The splash of your lure can spook fish. Let your jig land softly.
No current—no fish. The tide must be moving to catch fish.