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Capt. Brant's Fishing Report


 

 

 

 
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Last Updated - 10/15/2017 06:07:26 PM

START 1) 45.60 - Clearly Hooked     2) 44.00 - Team Grip Flip     3) 43.05 - Fish Hard Gear     4) 43.00 - Outta Line     5) 42.10 - Reel Methods     6) 41.05 - Open Wide     7) 39.45 - Shockwave     8) 39.35 - Beeracuda     9) 37.80 - Conference Call     10) 37.30 - Wilm Auto/King Hunter     11) 37.10 - Karma Bites     12) 36.85 - Four Sons     13) 36.20 - Lil John/Reel em up     14) 36.00 - Sea P.A.     15) 35.50 - OIFC     16) 35.15 - O D Bank     17) 34.80 - Max'd Out     18) 34.55 - On Point     19) 34.35 - King Carnivore     20) 34.35 - All In/AM    FINISH

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"A Tip to Remember" | OIFC.com- 36' | 02/06/08
 

Here's something I toyed with the other day. I was out with Amy and Barrett doing a bit of Sea Bass fishing, but mostly running the 36 with its new power to get some time on it. Anyway, I had some of the artificial squid strips and we were using them and catching some Sea Bass, mostly small with a few keepers-- seems finding legal 12" Sea Bass these days is pretty darn tough. Anyway, Barrett decided to switch over to cut Sea Bass since the "real" stuff normally works better. His first drop he caught a Spiny Dogfish- a major Winter nuissance. By then I had put some on my line, figuring it would work better. I caught a Dogfish. We had not caught a single one until we switched to cut bait. We then started experimenting using the artificial vs. the real cut bait. What we found was that when you arrive to a spot if you use the artificial only, you will pretty much only catch Bass. As soon as you use cut bait, the Dogfish will get wind and get all stirred up and then will not only eat the cut bait but also the artificial squid. Thus, we went back to only the artificial and didn't have to deal with the Dogfish anymore. Interesting I thought. The Dogfish are a major nuissance during the cold weather months of Jan-March. They are supposedly caught commercially and I think are alot of the fish and chips served overseas, but I'm not sure. Anyway, I've never tried one, but I think they are protected or something like that. Maybe someone out there knows more about their table fare and whether you can even keep them ???
- Capt. Brant McMullan
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"A Tip to Remember" | It Works- 27' | 02/06/08
 

Keep a package of "GULP" squid flavored cut bait in the boat for a quick hop nearshore for black bass no refridgeration needed; no spoiled bait forgotten in the boat. Perfect for getting those first few for cut bait or for a few live baits for the GrouperSnapper offshore. The ultimate in convience.
- OIFC Staff- Don Coley
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"Tips to fish by" | It Works- 27' | 02/06/08
 

Working at the OIFC has afforded me the unique opportunity to see what products the charter captains use to help maintain their boats.The following are just some of the products they use and I have tried myself and give them the "RB" stamp of approval. First, and one of my favorites is Aluma Guard. This is a spray marine Aluminum protectant. IT REALLY WORKS. Just one application removes saltwater spots snd dullness and protects all metals on your boat. I use it every time I clean my boats. The second is Plexus. You spray this on plexiglass and it removes all scratches and swirls. I couldn't believe how well it worked on my flats boat which had a terribly scratched windshield. Last, but not least I wash my boats with OrPine wash and wax. No matter the brand , it is very important for the life of your gelcoat to use a boat wash, not a dish detergant or even a car wash soap. As a cheap commercial, I might add that we sell all these products at the OIFC, where we sell the best and use what we sell!
- First Mate- Rickey Beck
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"The Fisherman?s Cure to February Cabin Fever" | OIFC.com- 36' | 02/06/08
 

Historically February is a most difficult time for the saltwater angler who calls coastal Carolina home. At one time it was more than just February that Carolina fishermen had resided to sitting by the fireplace with the only type of fishing taking place was that done from the couch. Whereas before, the arrival of Thanksgiving meant packing up the fishing gear and going into a fishing hibernation for the winter in recent years the discovery of the giant bluefin tuna and striped bass fisheries within close distances from shore have expanded the fishing season into the months of December and January. So, through exploration and discovery Carolina fishermen have been able to eliminate over half of the wintertime blues. Now we are left to deal with February. By this time the bluefin have passed by our coast for the most part on their annual migration and the striped bass fishing is on the decline and to top it off the typical weather forecast dances around gail force wind conditions and small craft advisories. There are two options the Carolina saltwater fisherman can take from this point. First, for the fisherman or woman who fished hard all summer and fall and kept it right up for the bluefin and striped bass season February presents a great opportunity to analyze, regroup and repair the previous year?s equipment. But for those who opted out of the bluefin and striper game and thusly has all of their equipment in perfect working order and is chomping at the bit to hit the high seas there is salvation on the horizon in the form of the black sea bass. Black sea bass are bottom feeding schooling fish that congregate into tight pods in late winter and range in size from 1 to 3 lbs. Despite their relatively small size, they make up for it in quantity, fight and table fare. When the right weather forecast presents itself for a near-shore fishing trip in February, black sea bass are typically prevalent in areas where there is plenty of structure for habitat in 65 to 95 feet of water. As the season progresses into March and April the sea bass will move in closer to the 40 to 60 foot range. Artificial reefs and known rocks and ledges are always a good bet to find plenty of black bass action, but to find the monster bass, also referred to as ?blue heads or knot heads?, searching for the less known areas of structures that are likely to be fished less will yield better catches of bigger fish. The actual hooking and angling of black sea bass is not rocket science. Once you arrive to the area you plan to fish pay close attention to the fish finder as you move about the area at about 8-10 mph. When you pass over a good mark of fish on your electronics hit the man overboard button and then return to the spot to set up a drift. Now in position you are ready to begin fishing. A traditional medium to light action rod and opened face reel with 20 to 30lb test line will be sufficient gear to handle the bass. On the business end a most effective and easy to make rig is the chicken rig. Simply make three separate loops in the main line by tying double granny knots. Next slip a 4 to 8oz. sinker onto the bottom loop and two 5/0 Mustad stainless steel hooks onto the other two loops. Many types of bait will work for black bass, but typically cut squid or freshly cut fish make for a good starter. With the boat at a stand still drop the rig all the way to the bottom and get ready to go to work. It usually doesn?t take very long at all for the bass to find your hook. When the fish starts to nibble on your bait do not be bashful. Set the hook like you were trying to come out of your shoes. If the fish is hooked bring him on in, but if he escapes drop the rig back to the bottom and try again. Granted February does not typically provide the Carolina saltwater angler with the prospect of catching the glory species from the deep that can be found at other times of year, but it does offer a great chance to put some excellent meat on the table and most importantly the excuse to get out of the house and cure cabin fever.
- Capt. Barrett McMullan
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"Dad Look What I Caught" | OIFC.com- 36' | 02/05/08
 

Anyone for grouper?
- Capt. Brant McMullan
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"Business Opportunity" | OIFC.com- 36' | 02/05/08
 

Here is the opportunity- The OIFC is looking for a good inshore fisherman who wants to guide kayak fishing charters from the OIFC. I think this is a fishery that could become very popular and certainly it would offer plenty of business from May-August. Anyone out there have any aspirations to be a kayak fishing guide? Email captbrant@oifishingcenter.com or call (910) 575-3474 xt 3 to discuss.
- Capt. Brant McMullan
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"Nothing is wasted I guess" | World Cat- 33' | 02/04/08
 

Despite all the bad luck (hope it's not my karma here) there is something to be learned on any fishing trip. By hanging around some of the charter boats down here and asking questions I was taught a cool new way to rig ballyhoo with circle hooks. Instead of using rigging wire, you use floss and a rigging needle to hold the chin weight in place and sew the bait's mouth shut. You thread the floss through a quarter ounce weight so it comes out as a loop. Run the bait's head through the loop and cinch the floss down behind the gill plate. When you pull it tight, the weight will slide between the gills. By looping the floss back through the eye sockets you secure the weight in place, then you loop it back through the sockets and over the top of the skull, bringing the floss behind the gill plates again to create an "X" on top of the bait's head. Then take your rigging needle and bring both strands of thread back through the bait's chin (from the bottom up) and through the nose. Wrap his beak shut and hitch the thread, then trim the tag ends and you are done. When you deploy the bait, simply run the circle hook under the "X" you created and put it in the spread. Two things make this rig very useful. First of all, there is no wire and therefore, less reason for a finicky fish to spit the bait when he eats. Also, you can make your bait swim to the side by changing the angle at which you run your hook through the "X". The bait will "chase" the point of the hook, meaning that if you run the hook through from the right side (bait's beak facing you) of the "X" he will swim to the left as you face the transom of the boat. It's a great way to keep baits out of the prop wash if you are running outboards. I'm not going to mention how many ballyhoos I butchered before I got one to swim well, but hey, it's not like we're thick into the fish down here...
- Capt. Chris Burrows
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"She Is Back !" | OIFC.com- 36' | 02/03/08
 

Welcome back to the new OIFC.com boat- formerly the Carolina Contender-- She's been out since late October as I decided to repower from my triple 225's to twin 350's.  It took a good bit of rerigging and new setup, but the boat is in the water and I ran her through Shallotte Inlet today, it felt good.  With the twin Yamaha F350's I gain 25 hp overall and lose 200 pounds as well as lose the drag of the additional lower unit.  Of course, the Yamaha F225's were retired gracefully as they eclipsed the 6000 hour mark and were still running smooth the day they were taken off- as a matter of fact, they are allready on another boat and have been fishing strong.  Anyway, I had 200 gallons of fuel on the boat and 4 people and she topped out at 54mph burning 64gph.  Cruise really is a wide range between 32 and 40mph and getting 1.2mpg on average.  I have a few tweaks to make and I think I may be able to get a little more out of her, so I'll keep you informed.  So far I'm pleased with what I see.  As a matter off fact, I think I"ll go harrass a Sea Bass tomorrow.  Oh yes, and don't forget the trip to Panama with our Travelling Fisherman group.  We leave on Friday and I'm sure looking forward to it.


- Capt. Brant McMullan
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"No luck at all, if not for bad..." | World Cat- 33' | 02/03/08
 

The wind never blew yesterday, so we ran down south to put the dredge and the dead baits out again. We trolled well to the south of Boynton Inlet, and sure enough, a sailfish came right to the dredge. I was standing on the other side of the boat when I saw the fish, and jumped over to grab the pitch rod. My left foot hit the toe rail on Mike's boat, breaking the middle toe. I tried to feed the bait back while biting my lip, but the fish never ate. No other strikes. So now it's Sunday, my toe is swollen to a point where it hurts to walk, and the Patriots aren't on for another five hours. Ouch...
- Capt. Chris Burrows
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"" | Show Time- 34' | 02/02/08
 

 


- Capt. Roger Gales
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"Sailfish/Snook 2--Team LaBonte/Burrows 0" | It Works- 27' | 02/01/08
 

Video Clip 1


Fished the back end of Sebastien Inlet today for the opening of snook season. While we didn't connect with any linesiders, we caught enough sheepsheads and sharks to keep rods bent. The water in the Indian River Lagoon is something else if you want to fish inshore. Plenty of options there. People further up the river were doing well on redfish and trout while we tried for the elusive snook. Good news is, NE wind tomorrow. Time to get some livies and fly the kite. I'll keep you posted.
- Capt. Chris Burrows
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"Sailfish/Snook 2--Team LaBonte/Burrows 0" | It Works- 27' | 02/01/08
 

Video Clip 1


Fished the back end of Sebastien Inlet today for the opening of snook season. While we didn't connect with any linesiders, we caught enough sheepsheads and sharks to keep rods bent. The water in the Indian River Lagoon is something else if you want to fish inshore. Plenty of options there. People further up the river were doing well on redfish and trout while we tried for the elusive snook. Good news is, NE wind tomorrow. Time to get some livies and fly the kite. I'll keep you posted.
- Capt. Chris Burrows
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"Let's go snookin'" | World Cat- 33' | 01/31/08
 

Video Clip 1


Well, so far the sailfish have yet to cooperate on my 2008 Florida odyssey. We have seen a grand total of two fish. Winds have been pretty strong between the southeast and southwest, and we are facing another small craft advisory tomorrow. We did head offshore (which only means a couple of hundred yards down here) for awhile today to try and catch some meat. Even that was slow--we managed one skipjack tuna. So tomorrow we're going to shift gears and head up to Sebastien for the opening of snook season. We'll see what happens and report back.
- Capt. Chris Burrows
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"Grounded again..." | World Cat- 33' | 01/26/08
 

Well, we tried it on Thursday and only saw one tailing sailfish. We didn't hear of a fish caught by the fleet all day, so I don't think it was hot for anyone. The wind picked back up on Thursday and we are currently under a small craft advisory, so we're going to wait this one out and give it a try early next week. In the meantime, Bob Newell and Ned Garber sent me a few pics of their trip to S. Florida, where they caught fish just to the north of Lake Worth Inlet. For the time being, that's what I've got. Conditions will improve and the fish will bite. By the way, good luck to Capt. B. Scott Hewett, Jeff Drake, and Michelle Evans, who are down in Key West for the Hogsbreath. The wind was forecasted to blow 30 so I hope they can make it happen somewhere close...
- Capt. Chris Burrows
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"Is today the day???" | World Cat- 33' | 01/25/08
 

Well I guess it:s time to give ole mr bluefin another chance to make his self   famous. I am taking a group from Charlotte offshore today.When I      talked to


- Capt. Roger Gales
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"Whats Going On ?" | OIFC.com- 36' | 01/22/08
 

I guess we've been kind of quiet here.  Honestly, I've been working on STUFF- from rigging the new F350's on the 36 to prep work for the 08 OIFC season to playing with the family, I'm staying busy, just not necessary doing alot of fishing right now.  Really I'm gunning to have the 36 ready in a few days to hopefully pull her out for the last couple of days of the Bluefin season.  She has caught many Bluefin under my command and I'm anxious to get back on her to see if she can remind me what it used to be like. 
You may notice over the coming weeks some changes and updates to our site.  I have big plans for the coming year(s) on our site and we start by cleaning up and organizing what we are doing so you can better access it and then we will add some really cool features for you entertainment and fishing education.  You can now get to our site more easily with our new address-- www.OIFC.com -- "OIFC" will hopefully become synonymous with the Ocean Isle Fishing Center and thus also knowledgeable fishermen ready to help you--
One thing I am doing is beginning to put feelers out for good people looking for full or part time work-- seasonal or year round.  I will be hiring all sorts of positions from charter Captains, to dock boys, to store clerks to watersports staff...  the only positions that are full are first mates-- for some reason, that position always has a line waiting for it-- I guess its the glamour of fishing for a living- anyway, if you have interest in working with us, now is the time to email me--  captbrant@oifishingcenter.com
The Bluefin bite in Morehead has been slow for the past week and it reminds me of the last two years when we started catching fish down here.  I think there are a few locals leaving from our area tomorrow and I'll let you know if I hear anything.  I honestly have to believe there are Bluefin off our beach-- maybe they will find them tomorrow-- stay tuned-  
Also, weather looks good for the weekend- come on down and give it a last shot before the season closes on Jan 31--
Also, I'll be at the Raleigh Convention Center boat show this Saturday in the Town Creek Marina/World Cat booth -- come by and say hello


- Capt. Brant McMullan
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"Ain't no change in the weather..." | World Cat- 33' | 01/22/08
 

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| Video Clip 2
So I'm safely here at the LaBontes in WPB, and it seems as if the weather has followed me down this way. Yesterday it was gusting to 40 as I was driving and I thought I was going to get blown off the bridge in Jacksonville. Nevertheless, spirits are high as this season has already been productive when conditions are favorable. The forecast is looking better for the weekend so hopefully we'll go out and make it happen. OIFC customers Michelle Evans and Jeff Drake are in Key West to fish the Hogs Breath and they're keeping their fingers crossed for the weekend weather as well. I've even heard talk that Capt. B. Scott Hewett may be down here to fish that very tournament as well. For a little while, anyway, this part of the world is OIFC south. That is, until February's Panama trip...
- Capt. Chris Burrows
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"ROAD TRIP!" | World Cat- 33' | 01/20/08
 

It's early Sunday afternoon, and the sun has just come out in Mt. Pleasant, SC, where I am sitting in a coffee shop with best friend Doug Vaughn, writing this report. It's chilly out and the wind is probably blowing 30 knots. We're going to go cheer for the Patriots in a little bit, but in the early morning hours of tomorrow, I'm headed south. I do this each year, and my mood seems to increase with each exit sign I pass on I-95 in Florida, as winter seems to fast-forward itself into spring. About 5:00 tomorrow I'm going to meet up with local legend Mike LaBonte, his wife Maria, and son Zach, who have graciously offered to host this fishing bum for the better part of the next month. And whenever the weather is right, you better believe that we're headed through Boynton Inlet on Mike's "Tequila Sunrise" to put the kites up and go sailfishing. Not only that, but there are days when we'll try to do an number on the local dolphin and wahoo, and nights where we just may go swordfising. There will be an interesting cast of characters on the boat as well as in the water. Oak Island mainstay Ray LaBonte (Mike's brother of course is going to head down in February). Albert Smith and Abel, the wily Cuban fishermen live right down the street. Hopefully Rickey's shoulder will allow him and Jeff to make the trip south. I've even hear rumors of a Capt. Drew Shytle cameo. So we'll see where it goes. I'll do everything I can to put video on the web and keep everyone in NC up to date. I talked with Tony Woodell yesterday and he said they went three for three in the morning just off of Lake Worth Inlet. All this while the first leg of S. Florida tournaments are going on. Not too shabby... I'll keep everyone posted.
- Capt. Chris Burrows
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"Lazy Day" | Stori Teller-24' | 01/19/08
 

Jeff, Chris and I went inshore fishing Tuesday, the day prior to my shoulder reconstruction surgery. It was cold but sunny and beautiful. We fished the Craven Street docks and came up with a big fat ZERO...skunk,, not even a strike!!! I think we were just too lazy to put forth effort. Fishing is like that sometimes, just enjoy the weather and friends. While just over in South Carolina, at the Jetties, a friend whose first name is Jim (sometimes a first name is all you need) caught 20 trout on mud minnows. He's supposed to bring pictures to me pictures this week as he doesn't like computers. Just goes to show that the right frame of mind and a little effort will still bring 'em home this week. Also, Barrett has got hold of a Wilderness angler kayak and is testing his back water skills. More to come on that. Chris is taking a winter break by going fishing in Florida, we hope to be getting some interesting reports from him.
- First Mate- Rickey Beck
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"Today's Report" | World Cat- 33' | 01/14/08
 

Hate to admit it, but Capt. Rogers trip this weekend didn't go well. No Bluefin, No Wahoo and had to result to bottom fishing- did decent on Grouper and Bass. It was a tough day. The Bluefin continue to show off Morehead but seem to be road blocked or slipping by us here. My nerves can't take much more as the need to hear a clicker going off is overcoming my pride to continue to fish from OIB. As soon as I go up there, they'll bite here, sure enough. Anyway- stay tuned. ** I have updated all of the 2008 tournament information. I hope we can have another great tournament year like 2007 with great fishing and great turnouts. One thing we're doing different is the September rodeo will still go on, however not as a CCA event. The OIFC will be directing and headlining and this time, we're going to give the poor old King Mackerel a break. This tournament will feature inshore Trout, Flounder and Redfish- Offshore Tuna, Dolphin and Wahoo and GROUPER- Yes, Grouper! Its time to lay off the Kings and go for something different. Septemeber is a good month for Grouper and I personally can't wait to fish the tournament myself. ** JOB OPPORTUNITIES- I am starting to look at help for the 2008 season. Everyone wants to be a mate, I know, but those positions are full. However, we are in need of charter boat Captains, store clerks, dock boys, Jet Ski/Boat Rental staff and parasail Captains, mates and staff. If you have any interest in any of these positions, you need to email captbrant@oifishingcenter.com to begin discussion and the interview process. Stay tuned for more from the OIFC
- Capt. Brant McMullan
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