Freshwater Rain and Thunderstorms: How it Effects Bay Fishing
As we transition from Summer to Fall, the cooling temperatures trigger a major migration of fish moving from the bays to the offshore. This time of year marks some of the best fishing all year round, because anglers can set up at passes and canals where fish must travel on their way out.
On the contrary, temperature changes can inversely impact fish in the form of changing weather patterns. This time of year has the greatest risk factor for hurricanes, tropical storms, thunderstorms, and general rain events. While each of these effect the bay in their own way, they all have one commonality: down pour of freshwater into our saltwater bays.
Immediately Following Heavy Rain
Immediately following and during a heavy down pour, fishing success will spike as fish come to the surface to feed on the organic matter that is stirred up. The best places to fish will be at spillways where the runoff meets the bay waters. The water will naturally be more stirred up and water visibility will tend to be very poor.
Days After Heavy Rain
Days following a heavy down pour, bay fishing becomes very difficult for anglers as they travel to their most trusted spots and often come up empty handed. As the water settles, the more dense saltwater will be on the bottom while the less dense freshwater runoff in the bays will be on top. This leaves most fish in deeper waters in days following heavy rain. In severe rain events, the bay fish can even be distressed enough that they run offshore.
How to Catch Fish After Rain?
Due to changing salinity levels, the fish will be running to deeper waters in the bay or they may even run offshore until the bay waters equalize. The best way to target fish days after a rain event is to target their exit passages. The jetty's in your local bay, the exit passage where the gulf meets the bay, is a good place to fish during these times. Other good places to fish are the surf, which is the gulf side of the land that separates the bay and gulf. These areas are known for smaller sharks, large trout, redfish, and other fish you commonly see in the bays.