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Fish & Game: Finding winter redfish at Shell Beach

Rain couldn't keep Don Dubuc from finding reds, but you have to know where to look and how to catch them

SHELL BEACH, La. — Given the rainy Thursday weather forecast, there weren't very many boats on the water.  But an early window of opportunity along with trusty rain suits was just enough for us to make a haul.

When you're fishing this time of the year in the winter, it's like a roller coaster -warm, cold, wind, rain, clear. You have to go to know and today we found out: redfish.

"Wintertime redfishing, you're going to want to find somewhere close to a deeper hole, shells on the bottom that holds heat and if you can find some moving water and some bait you'll be doing great," said Capt. Jonathan Sanchez of Reel Excitement Charters.

Sanchez says you can throw plastic lures or leave them home since wintertime redfishing is basic stuff.

"Basic way to get redfish - you can throw a straight jighead on the bottom  or you can go under a popping cork, two/three feet depending on the depth you're in."

Even though you're using dead bait you like a jighead. Why do you like fishing with a jighead?

"Especially in the wintertime when it's cold, they're on the bottom, they're going to be rooting down on the bottom and if you don't have a jighead on the bottom, it'll float up the tide will take it out. The jighead keeps it right in their face they have to eat it," he said.

I thought it was a little unusual today that we found redfish in mixed sizes. Sometimes they're like cookie cutter redfish, but we ran the whole gamut.

"Some days it's just like that," Sanchez said. "The last time I was there we didn't have any small ones, they were all big. You never know."