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Its warming up get out your fishing poles
Donny Branch
Donny Branch - photo by Photo provided.

Hello, my friends. Tight Line Jr. here.

Well, I have looked around and there’s not a whole lot happening in our area these days. But spring is near and I can hear the fish starting to move around in the water.

The water temperature at Gray’s Reef is still only 52 degrees, which means it is about 48 up in the creeks and rivers.

Recently, I was able to gather some fishing reports from the southern Atlantic region and around the Gulf Coast.

I heard that down around Key West, Fla., there have been reports of 40-pound permits and lots of cobia. One boat reportedly landed 12 cobia and one of them weighed a whopping 50 pounds. Wow, what fun that must have been!

They say the king fish are always good down South around this time of year, and the boats are hauling in tuna, dolphin, trout, bluefish and sailfish.

It certainly sounds like it may be time to take a fishing trip to the Keys.

I recently talked to a buddy of mine who lives in Texas. He keeps me up to date on the fishing situation around Galveston Bay. The last weekend in January, one boat offshore reportedly landed 51 vermillion snapper and an amberjack. Inshore, two 25-inch spottail were caught using live shrimp as bait. My friend told me seven 23-inch trout were caught using bone-colored artificial bait. I might have to get me one of those.

My friend also mentioned another bait called "chicken on a chain." Maybe Bass Pro has that. I will check and let y’all know.

In our neck of the woods, Gil and Garrett Sikes caught a mess of crappie and white perch in Lake George a few weekends ago. John and Rayburn at Yellow Bluff Marina told me Lawrence Beasley recently caught a nice mess of sheepshead.

Now here is a tasty recipe you might like to try:

Broiled tuna with

orange butter


2 pounds of tuna filets (fresh or frozen)

3/4 tsp of sea salt

½ tsp of cracked pepper

3 tbsp orange juice concentrate

3 tbsp butter

Tony Chachere’s creole seasoning to taste

Orange slices and parsley for garnish


Place fish in a single layer in a well-oiled shallow casserole dish. Sprinkle sea salt, cracked pepper and a little bit of Tony Chachere’s creole seasoning over the fish.

Combine the orange juice and butter and pour it over the fish. Broil six to eight minutes. Turn the fish and baste it with orange butter. Toss on some parmesan cheese if you have it and cook until crispy.

Hope you like it.

If you’re looking for bait, John and Rayburn at Yellow Bluff have fiddlers and frozen shrimp. Chef Joe Maley at the Sunbury Crab Company and Marina has frozen shrimp, squid and cigar minnows. Big Rudy at the Sunbury Country Store has frozen shrimp and finger mullet.

Until next time, remember what Ole Tight line always said. Get out there and go fishing and, if you do, always remember to keep a tight line. I say hit the docks, keep a sharp eye and watch that cork go down. Happy sailing, my friends, and keep an eye to the sky. Now get out there and wet a hook. It is good for the soul.


Your buddy,

Tight Line Jr.

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