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Winter Flathead Fishing the Shallows to Catch More and Bigger Fish

Winter Flathead Fishing the Shallows to Catch More and Bigger Fish

Winter fishing can be a little different than the warmer water months. Water temperatures are slightly lower and fish can be more sluggish or slow to bite. This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t go out and fish the sand flats for flatheads though.

Often we can see large flathead lying in wait in the shallows. No matter how many times or what lures thrown near them they just don’t respond the way we want. Often they won’t strike the lure and they’ll move away.

Some tides are better than others. Slow biting flatties can be a result of the wrong tides or wrong time of day. They may just be uninterested in the lure. A midday high tide on the flats will help the water warm up a little and get fish more active this time of the year. Try fishing both sides of the high tide.

When flathead won’t strike your soft plastic lure because they are hungry they may hit it out of annoyance. Try casting several times near the fish and up current to let the tide carry it close to them. Try not to bump them with the lure. Sometimes repeated casts will annoy them and they will hit the lure even if they aren’t hungry.

Flathead will often only move a short distance from where they were first seen. If they won’t strike or they swim away, wait 15 minutes and return to the same spot. If you want to try another lure come back after changing out. Perhaps move from a soft plastic to a diving Super Shrimp.

Cooler water temperatures can lead to fewer overall flatties. However, cooler temperatures can increase your chances of catching a big flathead. That metery flathead perhaps? Bigger fish need more food and tend to feed more than smaller fish with slower metabolisms.

For best results in the winter for flathead a few tips are key. Cast past your target fish so you don’t spook it. Try repeated casts near the fish. If repeated casts don’t work come back in 15 minutes with another type of lure. Flatties are big lazy ambush predators and don’t move around as much as we probably think. Stick to it and be patient but persistent.

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