Flounder Gigging | The Fish
In case you are totally new to fishing, Flounder is a flat-like fish species found at the bottom of shallow waters along the coast. These fish are characterized by their brown top with small white flecks and a white bottom. The species is known as ambush fish because they wait for their prey to come to them rather than going after it. Flounder are popular among seafood lovers for their very light/white meat. Female flounder reach sexual maturity when they are 14 ¾” long, meanwhile, males reach maturity at about 12”. Males typically die around 3 years after reaching maturity. In Alabama, Juvenile females can be harvested at 12”. Because females can be harvested before maturity many are not given a chance to participate in the annual spawning run each year in November. Therefore, this practice has lead to a decrease in overall population.
Flounder Gigging | The Technique
Flounder Gigging is often done in the dark of the night on a skiff equipped with a trolling motor, water illuminating lights (either above water or underwater), and a gig in hand. The best time of the year to go is September through November when the fall migration brings in the flounder. Word for the wise: Pick a night with little to no wind! The calmer the water the easier it is to spot your fish. Keep in mind that you’re looking for a brownish oval shape. So, when you spot it, aim your gig at your target and aim for center mass. Once you hit your target, you can get your fish off by using the following techniques: quickly scoop it with the gig and toss it in the boat (or on the beach if gigging by walking); or use your hand to reach under the fish as it is still gigged into the sand. Don’t jerk your gig straight out of the water or you will lose your fish.
Flounder Gigging | New Regulations
One golden rule for anglers is to ensure that each fish gets to spawn at least once in its lifetime before it reaches a size that is allowed to be kept. Stricter limits have been pushed for by some of the most prominent local fishing guides. This isn’t just for flounder but also for Trout and redfish. Due to the declining populations, new regulations will probably raise the legal size for flounder to a 15 inches minimum as opposed to the current 12 inches minimum. As an avid sportsman myself I do believe that these new regulations are in order but it is so hard to measure fish underwater at night. When fishing with a gig you do not have the option of catch & release.
Flounder Gigging with Intercoastal Safaris
Our trips allow for 4 anglers but only 2 plus your guide can be on the front at a time trading out through out the trip. During this 4 hour trip you’ll see flounder, crabs, mullets, stingrays, and more! Call our office today and speak with Stephen Lee to get your trip booked today and click here for more information.