Also Called: Red Drum, Red Bass, Spot Tail, Channel Bass, Tropical Sea Bass
The color of copper on top with silver-gray bellies, the beautiful Redfish native to Hilton Head are one of the most popular species for catching and eating. They are native to inshore waters and an excellent target for all anglers.
Redfish are abundant in Hilton Head year-round. If you want to chase bulls (larger adults, 10+ pounds), springtime is best. Bulls tend to move into warmer waters offshore during the winter and return in the spring.
With a mild, sweet flavor similar to Black Drum and Red Snapper, Redfish is delicious and a popular catch for family dinner. They are most flavorful below 23 inches in length. The meat gets mushy as they grow larger than that, and they are more likely to be worm-ridden.
Look for adults and juveniles (puppy drum) throughout Hilton Head’s inshore waters. They like to feed along the sandy and soft bottom of the shallows, at the edge of marsh grasses, and around natural and manmade structures such as rocks, docks and bridges.
Shallow coastal bays
Bait: The Redfish will respond to a hook baited with its natural food supply - Shrimp, crab, minnows, etc.
Approach: The closer to the natural and artificial objects they congregate around (e.g. sea grass, fallen trees, dock or bridge supports, etc.), the better. If your hook doesn’t get caught from time to time, you’re not close enough.
Tackle: Hilton Head Fishing Charters will provide all the tackle and gear you will need to ensure a successful and productive experience targeting Redfish.
You can keep up to 3 Redfish per person per day, no less than 15 inches in tail length and no more than 23 inches in tail length.