I am lucky enough to be able to fish year round on Long Island and SW Florida but fluking is without a doubt my favorite and I anticipate fluke season every summer.
How To Fish For Fluke With Light Tackle and Gulp
I approach fluke fishing with the passion of the most die hard bass anglers. I never took pleasure in fishing for fluke with heavy sinkers, rods & line so I started to try out soft plastics and jigheads on light take on about 12 years back. I had good success however things altered to the much better when Berkley presented the Gulp baits. I now out fish anyone who comes on my boat and fishes with bait and I have a lot more fun landing these fish on light deal with.
A 6 foot to 6 1/2 foot medium light to medium action rod with a 2000 to 3000 size reel spooled with 10 lb test braid and 2 feet of flourocarbon leader will work under most conditions when you can use a 1/4 to 1 oz jighead or bucktail. Baitcasting combinations likewise work well. A heavier rod will be required for bucktails and jigheads over 1 oz. I carry 5 rod and reel combos that cover whatever from 1/4 oz to 4 oz jigheads.
Finding the fish
Fluke will bury themselves in the mud or sand with only their eyes exposed dealing with into the tide ready to ambush a their prey. You will typically discover the fluke stacked up around structure. Find drop offs, holes, sandbars or any other irregular bottom with your fishfinder. Position yourself uptide of the structure and drift over it. A drift anchor is really useful, it slows down your drift and assists elimitate the effects of the wind. The longer you stay over the structure the more success you will have.
Methods for catching fluke
I typically begin with the lightest jig. I will connect on a 1/2 oz C&H Alien Jig with a loop knot and I put on a 4 inch Berkley Gulp Swimming Mulett. I will drift over the structure and send the jig down. Attempt to keep the jig as vertical to the bottom as possable and bounce the jig 2 to 4 inches off the bottom. When the line scopes out and you can’t hold the bottom reel in and drop it pull back. After you drifted over the structure and captured a few fish there do not continue to wander. Move the boat back over the exact same structure due to the fact that there is probably more fish there.
Fluke generally toss up their stomach contents when you bring them to the surface. Inspect this extremely carefully, if they’re tossing up shrimp or crabs switch to a plain leadhead with a Berkley Gulp Shrimp, Ghost Shrimp, or Peeler crab. When there are unclean water conditions I comprised my own jig. I use a 3/4 oz Sworming Hornet jig with a Strike King Perfect Skirt and I use a larger Gulp like a Ripple Mullet or the 5 inch Swimming Mullet. The flash of the willow blade on the Sworming Hornet jig combined with the Perfect Skirt and the bigger Gulp produces a larger profile, more fragrance and more vibation. I basically stick with 3 colors of Gulp white, chatreuse and pink.
When the tide is ripping to hard or the wind is truly gusting I have to go to heavier jigs. When using the much heavier jigs I add a dropshot hook 12 inches above the jighead. Among the rods I use for bucktails from 1 to 2 ounces has a VMC 1/0 spinshot hook that I put a 4 inch swimming mullet on it. I had great success with the dropshot as a high hook. I composed a blog for another site in 2015 and I got extremely slammed for using Spinshot hook. Believe me it works, the fluke gets hooked in the corner of the mouth and its sharp teeth never touch the line.
24 inch fluke caught on the Spinshot Hook
The other set up is for bucktails from 2 to 4 ounces. I tie a bucktail teaser dropshot design with a palomar knot 12 inches above the bucktail jig. I put a 4 inch Swimming Mullet on the teaser and use a 5 or 6 inch swimming mullet on the bucktail jig.
Bait stores and anglers that are set in their methods declare that you can’t capture big fluke using light take on, jigheads and Gulp baits couldn’t be more incorrect. I now capture more and bigger fluke over the last few years.
Light take on fluking with Gulp and jigheads is a blast, you wouldn’t believe the rod flexing reel shouting fight you get. It likewise saves you loan on gas since your not going to the bait store prior to each journey and from waisted bait that was defrosted and can’t be re-frozen.