Finding schools of baitfish, like these under attack from predators, is the key to keeping up with the movements of old drum. Stay on the fish
160 Views - Posted: July 15 at 7:00 am

The Pamlico Sound is the largest saltwater lagoon along the eastern seaboard and the second-largest in the United States. With thousands of square miles of water available, the brigade of adult red drum has endless places to travel. But a few tips can help fishermen make their trips more productive.

Most old drum caught under popping corks wind up with the hook in the corner of their mouths, not deep in their throats. Popping cork rig is better conservation measure
123 Views - Posted: July 15 at 7:00 am

Over the past 20 years, the old drum fishery in the Pamlico Sound has grown to epic proportions. The heavy fishing pressure requires the fishery to be managed correctly, and the popping cork rig is a big help in reducing catch-and-release mortality, which typically arises from deep-hooking, stress from prolonged battles or improper handling when caught.

North Carolina and South Carolina manage flounder with different creel limits and minimum sizes. Changing regulations
167 Views - Posted: July 15 at 7:00 am

Many bordering states have some sort of reciprocal agreement for fishermen plying border waters, but North Carolina and South Carolina do not, possibly because of the significant differences in the way several species are regulated.

A community live-bait tank is an unusual feature on Ocean Crest Pier. OCP has survived coastal troubles through the years
60 Views - Posted: July 15 at 7:00 am

Ocean Crest Pier was one of North Carolina’s last-built ocean fishing platforms, with construction finished in 1968 by Warren Calloway, a World War II veteran. He added a motel in 1972 that his wife operated.

Ocean Crest is one of two piers remaining on Oak Island; Long Beach Pier was closed in 2006. Oak Island’s pier history
84 Views - Posted: July 15 at 7:00 am

Oak Island was once home to three piers: Yaupon, Ocean Crest and Long Beach.

Each was an outstanding king mackerel platform, in part because of the nutrient-rich water pushing out of the mouth of the Cape Fear River attracts baitfish and predators alike.

Big expanses of lily pads offer bass a great amount of shad. Amphibian modifications
54 Views - Posted: July 15 at 7:00 am

Frog baits account for some of the most-exciting strikes you’ll see in the pads. Most work well right out of the package, but a few tweaks can help sell the ruse.

Above: A small topwater plug like this Spook Junior is a perfect tool for drawing strikes for hybrid and spotted bass feeding at the surface on small baitfish. Opportunities on top
83 Views - Posted: July 15 at 7:00 am

Conventional fishing wisdom says that topwater baits should be retired shortly after sunrise, not to be picked up again until shortly before sunset.  While this is a good rule of thumb, guide Craig Price always has a topwater plug at the ready when he’s fishing Lake Norman.

Power-jigging with an Alabama Rig drew a strike from this Lake Norman hybrid bass for guide Craig Price. Strike out for a reaction
101 Views - Posted: July 15 at 7:00 am

Whether you call it power-jigging, speed-jigging, or speed-reeling, the technique has been proven effective at catching numerous offshore saltwater species, striped bass and now, hybrid bass. Guide Craig Price, who adapted the idea from striped bass fisherman on large southeastern reservoirs, knew it would be a hit with hybrids.

Downriggers are lethal tools to get baits down to depths where they can be trolled through the strike zones of different fish species. The lowdown on downriggers
54 Views - Posted: July 15 at 7:00 am

Trolling open, deep water is a lethal tactic for a number of different species of fish, but problems develop in trying to place a bait at a specified depth on line that ultimately ends up in the hands of the angler at the surface. 

A light Texas-rig and a plastic worm is a definite ticket to catching Randleman’s summer bass. Go light for treetop worm fishing
93 Views - Posted: July 15 at 7:00 am

Using soft-plastic lures such as worms and lizards is an effective technique for hauling bass from submerged wooden structure in reservoirs, but heavy weights don’t work well when fish are suspended in the upper reaches of the water column, where shad often prefer to hang out.

Guide Joel Richardson fishes around one of Randleman Reservoir’s many laydown trees that have been cut and cabled to their stumps. Find Randleman’s bass hotels
63 Views - Posted: July 15 at 7:00 am

Fishermen who once fished flooded trees on either side of the narrow New Hope Creek channel in Jordan Lake will remember how those spots concentrated largemouths.

Summer is a great and important time to reduce local populations of feral hogs. Fire up feral hog-trapping efforts
82 Views - Posted: July 15 at 7:00 am

The feral hog explosion continues, and for landowners in the Carolinas, swine invasion is far less than divine. Wild hogs have been around since they were released by the Spanish five centuries ago, and even though the sausage and chops are quite tasty on the dinner table, their destructive nature is devastating to wildlife habitat. Summer is an ideal time to reduce the population by increasing trapping efforts.