BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - South Mississippi anglers face good and bad news heading into the second week of August. The bad news lies within the two words no angler likes – neap tide. And it comes at a time when fishing for speckled trout has been slow.
The good news is other inshore species like ground mullet and white trout remain solid.
The weekend begins Friday with an early afternoon high tide around the Biloxi Point Cadet area at 12:44 pm and a low tide at 8:39 pm with a range of 1.5 feet.
On Saturday, high tide is set for 1:23 pm and a low tide at 8:06 pm with a range of 1.2 feet.
That leads into Sunday's neap tide featuring two different tidal movements. The first high tide is set for 3:45 am with a low tide at 10:37 am and a range near one foot. The tide then shifts around with a high tide at 11:50 pm and a low tide at 6:43 pm and a range of less than a foot.
"Fishing has been slow and I really have no answer as to why," said Pat Kuluz of Biloxi Harbor Fuel and Bait. "That's surprisingly because bait shrimp [live] is holding up and the salinity is good.
"Three weeks ago, it wasn't unusual to see a 22, 24 or a 25-inch trout. I haven't seen anything like that this past week. All we're seeing now is average trout, Where did the big fish go? I have no answer."
One factor in the decline in overall numbers of large trout is a direct result of several species of sharks invading the inshore waters. But white trout and ground mullet are still being caught on dead shrimp inside Deer Island in Biloxi and the Mississippi Department of Marine Resources reefs.
"Be prepared to lose a lot of tackle with the sharks," he said. "I've had fishermen tell me sharks have run them out of the water near the Naval Home in Gulfport while they were wading. These sharks range between 13-and-15 inches up to three-feet long.
"Fishing will get better. Maybe it starts to get better this weekend."