Santee Cooper Cats vs Cold Front

Discussion in 'SOUTH CAROLINA LAKES / RESERVOIRS' started by blackwaterkatz, Dec 16, 2007.

  1. blackwaterkatz

    blackwaterkatz Active Member

    Messages:
    3,659
    State:
    Andrews, SC
    How about some opinions:
    The water temps have warmed up recently to near 60. Forecast is for temps in the upper 20's over the next few nights. Will it chill down the water and run 'em deeper, or will we continue to catch them in shallow water? I caught some in 8-10 ft of water yesterday, although the bigger fish were in 15-25 ft, mostly. I'm off work until the end of the year, and want to catch a few more, preferably in Roundhill's range of 50+. :wink:
    The water temp has to drop a lot for the bait fish to ball up; they were plentiful, but scattered yesterday. Wherever I found bait and structure, I found catfish, all were holding bottom.
     
  2. roundhill

    roundhill New Member

    Messages:
    810
    State:
    kings mtn
    tommy stay with the shallow water till it gos to about 52 then on warm days if its been warm for three days the will move back in sometimes i have cought them in 15ft when the water was in the 45dg range be couse the shallow water warms fast in the sun
     

  3. MUDHOLE KID

    MUDHOLE KID New Member

    Messages:
    1,178
    State:
    Anderson,S.C.
    I'm gonna take a stab and say if I was catching my better fish in deeper water I would stay with deeper water. I don't see them moving in out like the smaller fish. That's what I would do and I may not catch a fish but I'd do it anyway. I like deeper water anyway. I know that someone out there is a shallow water fisherman and they'll fish shallow water first so go with your gut my friend:wink:
     
  4. krowbar

    krowbar New Member

    Messages:
    664
    State:
    South Caro
    That's some great info guys. Hope this rain will help a little bit. Not too sure of shallow or deeper my self. Hardest part is finding the fish that particularly day. Good Luck and hope to see you on the lake when I can get a chance.:wink:
     
  5. rivercatsc

    rivercatsc New Member

    Messages:
    1,990
    State:
    South Caro
    I was marking alot of fish in the deeper water but never even got a bite in the deep. I think the fish are staging in the deeper water and just moving up into the warmer shallow water to feed. I never got on any big fish but maybe this week.
     
  6. monticelloJCR

    monticelloJCR New Member

    Messages:
    12
    State:
    South Carolina, Monticello
    Hey fellas!! I'm kinda new to reply although i've been reading for some time!! lots of good info! I agree with rivercatsc the fish i have been catchin have been coming into the shallows to feed ( 8-10 feet). Thanks SC Backwoods for those shad!! the blues love em'.
     
  7. chrisblue

    chrisblue New Member

    Messages:
    1,345
    State:
    SC
    Thats a 1.5 million dollar question.:smile2:

    My experience on Moultrie is about the same as Roundhill's.I was catchin them at the beginning of febuary this year in 2 to 8 foot of water.First thing in the mornin the temp would be 46 to 48 degrees and I would catch big fish but only one or two every 2 or 3 spots.By the end of the day after the sun has warmed the shallows all day it would bring the temp up to around 50 to 53 or so.I would go back and fish the same spots (mussel beds) that I fished earlier that mornin and barely get all the rods in the water before drag would be peelin off of one.They make a big migration to the shallows in the afternoon/evening after the water has warmed all day.They will leave just as quick as they come in though.

    I think that some of the blues make the shallows their permanent home no matter what time of the year though.Theres always food that they dont have to chase (mussels and snails) in shallow water.Not to mention that theres thousands and thousands of acres of 1.5 to 10 foot of water in the Santee system so I'm sure some fish have no choice but to stay shallow.

    This is just my experiences and thoughts on it and thats all, that dang sure dont mean its right.
     
  8. blackwaterkatz

    blackwaterkatz Active Member

    Messages:
    3,659
    State:
    Andrews, SC
    Very well put, Chris. Thanks to all for your feedback. :0a31:
    One thing I've wondered about is the effect on mussels as the water level drops and exposes what was once the shallow flats. There are zillions of shells lying around there now. I wonder if the mussels migrate to deeper water, and if not, how deep do they normally live. Is the same heavy supply of mussels available as before, considering the reduction of bottom acreage, and if not, will the fish forage even more for bait fish? :baffle:
     
  9. chrisblue

    chrisblue New Member

    Messages:
    1,345
    State:
    SC
    Thats gone be real interesting to find out next year if the water does come back up.All the mussels that where there are now dead unless they do move so will they (catfish) still comeback if the mussels are not there? Or will the new vegetation attract more life into the shallows and still get them to come back anyway?

    We need a biologists on this site.:smile2:
     
  10. jim

    jim New Member

    Messages:
    2,579
    State:
    Jacksonville NC
    Generally the drawdown of an older age reservoir has a positive impact on the fishing DEPENDING on how long the drawdown lasts.Some states are actually manipulating their older reservoirs this way to encourage the growth of new vegetation in the shallows,which provides cover,nutrients and attracts all kinds of fish and prey when the water is brought back up.I suspect the mussells will have had time to follow the water as it fell slowly enough over the course of the summer and fall.Right now I would suspect that the old rules are out the window.From my perspective(what do I know?:smile2:) the fish will be extremely concentrated due to the low water.There are only so many good resting and feeding places left in the deeper water and those will be dominated by bigger fish.I think they will tend to remain there and go shallow if a good feeding oportunity presents itself.The lakes are ten feet down right now.WIth an average depth of 12 ft that means lots of the traditional shallow water opportunities have dried up.Pardon the pun:roll_eyes:WHat I'm worried about is a massive effect if the temps go down hard for an extended period,and the oxygen level is depleted.This could be a very hard winter on the baitfish populations ,which will mean a short term feeding frenzy but may cause harmful longterm damage.Tommy I'll be off starting the 22 of Dec.Can you launch a boat from Short Stay and get out ok?Let me know when you are going and if Ron is down there.We can get together and fish a little .Have the Menhaden come in yet?:big_smile:
     
  11. blackwaterkatz

    blackwaterkatz Active Member

    Messages:
    3,659
    State:
    Andrews, SC
    Jim, I launched on Saturday, and it was pretty good. Deep enough at the ramp to launch, but there is a shallow bar just beyond the end of the ramp that requires tilting the engine up for a short distance, then it's ok. It looks like Richard has intent to extend the ramp a little more if necessary, if the water continues to fall. I'm not sure what Ron's plans are, but I will be somewhat involved with family stuff, but still intend to try and work in a trip. Maybe we can hook up during that time. Saturday doesn't look too bad right now. I may try them tomorrow with my youngest grandson.
    Haven't checked the menhaden myself, but I hear there is plenty of bait over by the dam, and scattered across the lake.

    Thanks for the input above. There's an awful lot of knowledge floating around the BOC...and most of it doesn't smell bad, either :wink:.
     
  12. roundhill

    roundhill New Member

    Messages:
    810
    State:
    kings mtn
    jim tommy i will be down thursday prob stay all next wk see you soon we need to catch a big one or three:roll_eyes::smile2::eek:oooh:
     
  13. flatheadhunterx

    flatheadhunterx Active Member

    Messages:
    1,374
    State:
    South Carolina
    I was at hartwell a couple weeks ago looking for some large mussels around the sandy banks and I didnt find any big ones out of the water most of what I got were 1 to 2 ft out in the water. they had trails leading to where they were from dry land all the way into the water that lead me straight to them. looked like they dug a trench when they moved. but dont know about little ones cause all I fould were huge. shells prob 8 inches long and 4 to 5 wide.