Sheepshead Fishing

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Sheepshead are a popular fish to catch inshore or near shore. They usually average 1 to 2 pounds inshore and can grow up to 8 pounds and sometimes larger offshore. It is more common for anglers to target these fish inshore as they can be found in many areas throughout the bays.

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Habitat

Sheepshead are mostly found inshore around bridges, docks and piers.  The barnacle encrusted pilings hold tons of sheepshead during the high tide.  Sheepshead can also be found in the passes, along the mangrove-lined shorelines, along jetties, in the surf and offshore on the reefs and wrecks when they spawn.

How to Catch Sheepshead

Sheepshead can easily be caught with a drop shot rig or split shot rig and a fiddler crab or live shrimp for bait.  Once you find these fish, it’s fairly easy to get them to bite.  The toughest thing about sheepshead is that they will often steal your bait.  Experienced anglers put more fish in the boat by fishing with one rod while paying attention to everything little thing that they feel.  Subtle bites are common and you will definitely miss lots of fish if you aren’t paying attention.

Eating Sheepshead

Sheepshead taste very good.  Anglers fillet them and then cook them several different ways.  Frying them is probably the most popular method, but many people grill, bake and broil them.

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Sheepshead Fishing Basics

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Fishing Rigs for Sheepshead

Below are some of the popular fishing rigs for catching sheepshead with artificial lures or live bait.

  • Carolina Rig
  • Double Jig Rig
  • Drop-Shot Rig
  • Floating Rig
  • Free Lining Rig
  • Split Shot Rig
  • Three Way Swivel Rig
  • Two Hook Bottom Rig

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Live Baits for Sheepshead

Below are some of the best live baits that are used for catching sheepshead.

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