Flounder Gigging

Night Stalker Guide Service - Rockport, Texas

 

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For those of you that are new to the idea of flounder gigging, let me explain what it is all about. Flounder are bottom hugging fish that spend most of their lifes laying in ambush of their prey. They typically are found in shallow areas at night, were they come to feed on small fish and shrimp. One of the most effective ways to get flounder is to use a powerful light at night to illuminate the bottom in shallow water so the flounder can be seen. Once the flounder is located, you stab the flounder with a specially designed spear (called a gig) and lift him into the boat. Yes, this may sound difficult, but I assure you anyone can do it. For more on how to gig a flounder, watch the instructional videos here. Typically the flounder will stay put as we approach the fish, and very rarely will they move more than 20 feet. Each person is allowed to gig 5 fish. Gigging trips typically last 5-6 hours and we leave at sunset.

Here is what a Flounder will look like when you are trying to gig it at night under the lights of my boat.
The Flounder lays on the bottom with his dark side up while he is totally camouflaged from most fish. He waits in ambush until a shrimp or fish passes over him, striking it with amazing speed, then settles back down on the bottom to enjoy his meal.

 
Flounder will "bury" themselves under the mud or sand so that they will not be seen by their prey. The underwater lights on my flounder boat illuminate these "buried" fish
In this picture, there are two flounder laying next to each other. Flounder are social fish, and are often found in groups. Sometimes there can be as many as 5 flounder within view at one time.
Some flounder will slowly swim away from the boat when approached, making them an easy target to gig.
 

Flounder can change their color depending on the color of the bottom they are laying on. They often will blend in so well that it takes keen eyes to spot them.

In this picture one of my customers has just gigged an average flounder and is about to take it off the gig with my specially made flounder remover box. 

 

 

 

Flounder are members of the family Bothidae, also called flatfish, or just flounder.

DESCRIPTION : Flounder have a laterally compressed body (fish lies on its side rather than on the abdomen) and always looks up. The flounder is capable of changing its color pattern to match the bottom color, ranging from blackish-brown to light- gray or a mottled coloring. The down side is white.

HABITAT :
The southern flounder is the most abundant flatfish in Texas waters. They stay in mostly shallow water during warm months and then migrate through cuts and passes to the Gulf to spawn during the fall and winter. The flounder is an ambush feeder and will wait patiently for something to eat that comes by its ambush spot. Running tidal water in small cuts or rocky areas are excellent places to find flounder. They sometimes bury themselves under sand or silt as they wait for food to enter their area. Prime fishing season is during the "flounder run" in the fall. Gigging is a popular method for taking flounder at night. This is done by wading with a bright light and "gigging" or spearing the fish with a (multi pronged) gig as it lays waiting for its dinner. Special flat bottom boats, with an air motor and bright lights, are also used for gigging flounder.

DIET : Young flounder feed on crustaceans, older flounder eat mostly fish.

REGULATIONS: In Texas, flounder must be 14 inches long to keep, and each person may keep 5 fish per day. Fishing guides are not allowed to keep fish while on a chartered trip. (ex. A guide and 3 clients may only keep 15 flounder per day.)

 

 

 

Call me at 361-727-0045 for trips.

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