Sonny with a 3-pound, 8-ounce sheepshead
It may be chilly with the occasional drizzle, but don’t be a turkey when it comes to fishing in November. Fall fishing in Charleston has plenty to offer and, with the right conditions, anglers have been known to gobble up a variety of species.
One such fish is the black drum. Black drum are distinguished by their dull grey color and barbels below the jaw. Juveniles have vertical black stripes similar to sheepshead, but they eventually fade as they reach maturity length of 12 to 18 inches. As black drum are bottom feeders, the barbels help locate food, which consists of mollusks, crabs and shrimp. They feed along beaches and hard structures, which is why the Folly Pier is a reputable location to target black drum. The groins and pier pilings produce many bivalves upon which drum feed. In fact, black drum have been known to wipe out entire clusters of oyster beds in a short amount of time.
As far as bait setup, an angler has many choices. Shrimp and squid strips are most commonly used here on the pier. However, if you have the time and resources, a piece of blue crab will be an irresistible treat for black drum. Be sure to allow a few second’s time for the drum to consume the bait before setting the hook. Although they range greatly in size, South Carolina Department of Natural Resources (SCDNR) slot limit is 14 to 27 inches total length, with no more than five per person per day.
Folly Beach Fishing Pier