Flounder Fishing Guide - Wilmington NC Fishing Charters

A “How To” Flounder Fishing Guide

A “How To” guide on Flounder Fishing: ProFishNC Charters/ Captain Trevor Smith

-Part 1: Understanding the Flounder (habits, habitat, tendencies and evolutionary instincts and Traits)

To understand how to fish for flounder you first need to understand the flounder itself and its “evolutionary makeup”.

  • Flounder are a Demersal Fish:  A species of fish that feeds on or near the bottom of their aquatic ecosystem.  Many species of fish that fall in the demersal category live in not only the deep ocean but also the backwater esteruaries and inland bays as the flounder does.   On the flip side, the pelagic fish feed in the mid to upper water column.  Note: I have caught flounder in the mid to upper water column areas on rare occasions notating that their feeding habits are not 100 percent exclusive to the demersal zone.
  • Flounder are a Benthic Fish:  A species that requires no effort to lay on the ocean floor due to the dense nature of its body and unique genetic makeup.   Additionally and greatly assisting the flounder to fall in the benthic category is its lack of an air bladder (which adds bouyancy) and its abnormal vertical laying ability.   The absence of the flounders air bladder makes it a very unique fish that does not need to be “vented” when releasing back in deep water due to the lack of the need for decompression!
  • Flounder Vision/ Eye Migration: Most anglers know that the flounder (including all in the “flatfish species”) have both eyes on one side of its head.  Many anglers do not know the flounder started its young life looking like a normal fish.  During the larval stage of the developing young flounder, both eyes are on either side of its head; however, a metamorphic transformation occurs during this larval stage in which a migration occurs and one of its eyes moves over the fishes head to to join the opposite eye.  This evolutionary trait enhances the flounders ability to be a top demersal ambush preditor and enables the fish to have excellent vision from the sea floor.
  • Flounder are Ambush Feeders: Flounder are a very stealthy, quick and instinctive feeders that use the method of surprise to fill their stomachs.  They do this utilizing a few ingenious and advantageous evolutionary traits:  Flounder have the unique ability to change their body color depending on the color of the ocean bottom they are laying on.  For example, I have caught flounder that are almost white in pigment when fishing clear water with white sands; conversely, I have caught founder that are dark brown and some even black when fishing water tinged dark with tannins coupled with a dark muddy bottom.   Flounder have the ability to cover their bodies with sand and essentially bury themselves on the seafloor to hide and then “ambush” their pray.  Flounder do not actively chase schools of bait in the water column; instead, they lie in wait for the the instinctive moment to strike.
  • Where and How Flounder Lay on the Sea Floor:  Flounder are unique in terms of what bodies of water they lay in and what waters they can adjust to.  I have caught flounder 55 miles out in the ocean grouper fishing, in the heat of the summer in 97 degree water of the creeks and in brackish water rivers and fresh water lakes (near saltwater)!  The genetic code of a flounder is to survive in ever-changing environments of varying salinity levels, temperatures, depths and currents.  Here are the “typical” patterns of where and how flounder lay (in no specific order):
  • Offshore Flounder: If there is current, they will bury themselves with their head facing into the oncoming current.  Offshore, flounder typically lay on sandy bottoms immediately surrounding structures (artificial reefs, rocks, ledges, sunken anything) as this is where the smaller prey will be lurking.  If they are holding on a ledge in the ocean, you will typically find the flounder on the bottom deeper side of the ledge).  
  • Inshore Flounder: I find most of the feeding flounder to be in the moving water current directly in the mouth of inlets with their head facing into the direction of the water flow.  Along deep marsh banks closest to the marsh drop off (i.e. where the marsh grass meets the water in channels along the intracoastal waterway.  Laying under docks and bridges specifically when the sun is at its highest in the sky.  In the backwaters we find many flounder within the first 3 feet of a submerged oyster bar and in deep holes surrounded by shallows.  On the outskirts of any structure inshore where they have a sandy or muddy bottom to hide in with moving water flowing.   Flounder like moving water as they do most of their feeding waiting prey to find them (find moving water with any of the above mentioned elements and you will find the flounder).
  • What Flounder Eat:  I have cleaned thousand of flounder and have come to the conclusion they eat anything they can get their mouth around!  That being said, flounder are a carnivorous fish and their typical diet here on the North Carolina coast consists of all species of fish that are between 1 inch and 8 inches (depending on the size of the flounder).  They also frequently eat crabs, sea worms, shrimp, squid, and any artificial soft bait that is fished correctly in front of them.  In short, a flounders diet will change seasonally as the fish and bait migrations change (being an ambush predator that is not picky, it literally eats whatever swims or drifts by).


Topsail Beach and Wilmington Fishing Charters Report

Topsail Beach Fishing Charters Report: (Including Wilmington, Wrightsville Beach, Carolina Beach, Surf City and Figure Eight Island Fishing Charters)

Speckled Trout Fishing Charters

Speckled Trout Fishing Charters

-ProFishNC Charters/ Capt. Trevor Smith

Well folks our winter fishing season is in full swing even though the water temperatures are that which we see in spring and late fall.

Lets start with our local beaches and what we are seeing on our inshore fishing charters.   Inshore we are still catching good numbers of speckled trout; though, most are the smaller “hammer handle” variety with a few big ones mixed in the catch with many of the lager ones over 4 lbs. The speckled trout are eating Z-Man grubs and swimbaits scented with ProCure scent and artificial shrimp on popping corks along the reeds and deep banks.   The Black Drum are feeding heavy right now in the docks and pilings, we are catching most on cut shrimp; however, we are getting many of our larger ones on half of a fresh blue crab on a circle hook and Carolina rig.

Bottom-fishing Charters Topsail Beach

Bottom-fishing Charters Topsail Beach

Offshore Bottom Fishing is on Fire! This time of year we have the migration of big Black Seabass that moves in toward our shoreline within 3-5 miles of the beach. We are focusing our fishing efforts on the nearshore ledges and artificial reefs that are currently holding the bigger fish. Most of the big Black Seabass are coming on artificial jigs and cut mullet.   There are also a winter/ cold-water fish called a Tautog that moves in as well (they have migrated from the northern waters off of New York and New Jersey to winter in the Carolina waters).

In addition to fishing the saltwater, we are also fishing the Cape Fear River in Wilmington. We are currently catching lots of Striped Bass in the old Warf Docks and pilings by throwing swimbaits and grubs. The stripers are also

Cape Fear RIver Fishing Charters

Cape Fear RIver Fishing Charters

coming on the troll using divers and Rapala lures.   The big Catfish are also chewing right now further up river and are a lot of fun.. We are catching the big cats on cut shad and shrimp.

Feel free to give me a call anytime to talk fishing or to book your next fishing charter.

*Providing Complementary Dock Pickup for Fishing Charters in Figure Eight Island, Wrightsville Beach and Downtown Wilmington, NC

Tight-Lines and Good Fishing in 2016!

Capt. Trev

ProFishNC Charters/ (910) 547-0000



Gearing Up for Winter Fishing Charters

We are excited about this upcoming Winter Fishing Charters Season with three boats to serveProFishNC Charters Fishing you in 2016!

Winter fishing in NC is a great way to get your cold weather winter fishing fix.  We provide year around charters for Black Seabass, Porgies and Tautog on our offshore bottom fishing trips, Red Drum and Speckled Trout on our inshore fishing charters and Striped Bass on our Cape Fear River fishing trips.   With this unusually warm start to the winter, our fishing should be strong going through the spring fishing season.   Give Captain Trevor a call to see what your best fishing options are or to book a fishing charter.

Giving a Fishing Charter as a gift?  We provide Fishing Gift Certificates for any occasion that do not expire and can be used during any fishing season with no exclusions.  Bottom Fishing Black Seabass Wilmington NC

New for 2016 for ProFishNC Charters:  We now have a 25 footer for the 2016 fishing season that can accommodate up to 6 anglers comfortably!   We are very excited about our new larger fishing vessel options.  Also, we have expanded our corporate fishing charter options, give Captain Trevor a call for the details.


Capt. Trev Smith/ (910) 547-0000/ CaptainTrevor@ProFishNC.com


Speckled Trout Fishing Charters available in Topsail Beach

ProFishNC Charters (NC Fishing Charter Update, We are now providing our Winter Fishing Charter Rates).  Kid Fishing Charters Winter Black Seabass

Just a quick update for our Topsail Beach Fishing Charters, we are catching lots of trout right now and do have availability this upcoming week.  We are still providing Christmas Fishing Charter Gift Certificates, call Captain Trevor for details. Feel Free to give us a call anytime at (910) 547-0000 or e-mail us at ProFishNCCharters@Gmail.com.

*Note: We are providing Year Around Wilmington Fishing Charters in the Cape Fear River for Striped Bass, Red Drum, Black Drum and Speckled Trout.

We also provide Year Around Wrightsville Beach offshore fishing charters for Black Seabass (throughout the colder months they move very close to the beach) and fish Wrightsville Beach inshore fishing charters for Red Drum (although the drum are lethargic in the winter, they school up in the hundreds under the deep water docks). Topsail Beach Fishing Charters Speckled Trout Fishing

*Providing complementary Dock Pickup on our Wrightsville Beach Fishing Trips and our Figure Eight Island Fishing Charters


Captain Trevor Smith/ ProFishNC Charters

Winter Fishing Charters with ProFishNC Charters

Winter Fishing is here with great low rates and lots of options!Winter Fishing Charters

12/7/15 ProFishNC Charters: Capt Trev

Winter fishing charters provides dynamic fishing opportunities for bottom fishing nearshore.

We are kicking off our Winter Fishing Charters this month with a Fishing Charter rate of $275 for a 1/2 day UP TO 4 People on Fishing Vessel No Banannaz (December 15th through March 1st)!   You may also use this rate in fishing charter gift cards that do not expire.

We fish three different areas in the winter time fishery and each is a unique fishing charter experience.

Winter Fishing Charter Options

Topsail Beach Fishing ChartersThe first option is offshore fishing Topsail Beach, offshore fishing Wrightsville Beach, offshore fishing Carolina Beach and offshore fishing Wilmington, NC.   On our 1/2 day Offshore winter fishing charters we go in the 3 – 5 mile range bottom fishing Black Seabass, Tautog, green-eye sharks and Porgies.  Its is a little cold on the water but with the right clothing this is a winter-time fishing charter favorite!

The second option is inshore fishing Topsail Beach, Inshore Fishing Carolina Beach, Inshore Fishing Wrightsville Beach, inshore fishing Surf City and inshore fishing Wilmington, NC.  On our inshore fishing charters in the winter we use a slower approach and mainly cast dead and live shrimp, cut menhaden and cut mullet near oyster beds and under deep water docks.   We target big red drum, black drum, sheepshead and speckled trout.   We also sight-fish red drum on the flats at low tide as the red drum pull up on the mudflats to warm up and feed in the winter on the low water.

The third option is Cape Fear River Striped Bass and Red Drum Fishing in our beautiful Wilmington Striped Bass Fishing Charters downtown Wilmington stretch of the Cape Fear River.  Our Striped Bass Fishing Charters are by far the wintertime favorite as we have a unique Striped Bass Fishery with river run stripers that do not reach the ocean.   They are catch and release only; however, are a fishing experience everyone should enjoy at least once.

We also offer Year Around Corporate Fishing Charters that cater to workplace “team building” and just plain fun fishing.  We fish the corporate fishing charters in a “tournament style” where we have points for Largest Fish, First Fish, Ugliest Fish, Smallest Fish, Last Fish and Most Fish.  We are affiliated with many charter fishing companies and charter fishing captains that allow us to fish a very large number of clients at the same time.

Give us a Call Anytime to Book A Fishing Charter or just to discuss your fishing charter options.

We are still offering Christmas Fishing Charter Gift Certificates at our Winter Time Rates that we honor year around.   Call for Details!


Captain Trevor Smith/ ProFishNC Charters/ (910) 547-0000


Fall Fishing Charters are in Full Swing

Well folks, we are in the middle of our Fall Fishing Charter season and have a Fishing update for you.

Our Topsail Beach Fishing Charters have been excellent with limits of Trout and many very large flounder on almost every trip.

Our Wilmington Fishing Charters and Wrightsville Beach Fishing Charters are producing nearly the same results as our Topsail Island Fishing Charters with the exception of adding Limits of King Mackerel to our creel limits.   Last week on a few of our Carolina Beach Fishing Charters we caught over 20 King Mackerel on a 4hour 1/2 day Fishing Charter!  They are within 5 miles of the beach right now and they are feeding on anything and everything.   We caught most of our King Mackerel on a “Hank Brown Rig” tipped with a dead cigar minnow trolling at about 2 knots.

We are one of the only Full Time, Year Around Fishing Charter Companies.  Give us a call to get your Wintertime Fishing ‘Fix”.

Now is time to Book a Fishing Charter so call us today as we are already booking for our Spring Charter Fishing Season.

We are offering Fishing Charter Gift Certificates for Christmas again this year.  Feel free to call or e-mail me with the details.  (all Christmas Gift Fishing Charter Gift Certificates are at a 20% off of our normal fishing charter rates.

Tight Lines and Happy Thanksgiving!

Capt Trevor Smith/ ProFishNC Charters/ (910) 547.0000

ProFishNC Charters August Fishing Charters Report

ProFishNC Charters August Fishing Report: Captain Trevor SmithTopsail Beach Barracuda Fishing

Fishing Report for: Topsail Beach, Wrightsville Beach, Carolina Beach, Wilmington and Figure Eight Island, NC

August 26, 2015: inshore water temp 84.5: nearshore water temp @ 10 miles 83.2


Fishing is HOT, HOT for Red Drum, Flounder, Spanish Mackerel and ALL BOTTOMFISH!

Brief Charter Fishing Overview:   For all of our Beaches we fish: Wrightsville Beach Fishing Charters including Carolina Beach, Topsail Beach, Wilmington and Surf City Fishing Charters have been BIG-BLACK-SEABASSprogressively improved over the past week the Fall Fish begin to show up, namely: big over-slot red drum, Big Black Seabass, Lots of Barracudas and Sharks, Big Offshore Flounder and the Cobia migrating back south into our waters from the Pamlico Sound.

Nearshore and Offshore for Fishing Charters:  This time of year we are focusing on many species including big offshore flounder, triggerfish, grey trout the massive schools of Spanish Mackerel that are following the bait into our nearshore waters.
Our Tactics for Offshore/ Nearshore Fishing are numerous and include:

-Carolina Rigs with 6/0 Circle hooks with Live mullet for most nearshore bottomfishOFFSHORE-FLOUNDER-NC

-Light Line rigs with 4x treble hooks for big King Mackerel, Sharks, Jacks and Barracudas

-Deep Diver YoZuri Lures for high-speed F. Albacore Trolling

-Plainer Rigs with Clark Spoons for “meat-fishing Spanish Mackerel”

-Jigging with Diamond Jigs, Butterfly Jigs and “Home Made” glow Jigs

-Hank Brown rigs for dead cigar minnow trolling: For King Mackerel


Inshore Fishing Charters:This time of year the bigger flounder and drum move into feed on the massive schools of mullet and menhaden that have arrived. We are focusing on Big Flounder with large mullet drifting the inlets using Carolina rigs. Smaller flounder are being caught on jigheads with artificials (gulp shrimp) fished in the creeks and backwaters. Our Red Drum are keyed in on large Menhaden on Carolina Rigs and Diamond Jigs drifting the inlets.


Inshore Fishing Tactics:

-Carolina Rigs with 4/0 circle hooks and 30lb fluorocarbon leader

-Home-Made Jigheads I make in the winter using Glow Powder Paint and top quality Owner Hooks


-Many other artificial baits that are scented with ProCure

For our Dads and Moms, we offer Kid Friendly Fishing Charters that can be catered to for the whole family to enjoy!


Remember: For ALL our Military Service Members (both active and former) we offer a $25 off Military Discount for any fishing charter!

Give us a call and lets go fishing!



Capt. Trev

ProFishNC Charters

(910) 547-0000


ProFishNC Charters Summer Fishing Report

ProFishNC Charters Summer Fishing Report

Quick Fishing Report:Topsal Beach King Mackerel Charters

Well folks our summer fishing season has been HOT both temperature and fishing!

On our Offshore Fishing Charters we are catching Mahi Mahi, King Mackerel and Cobia trolling and Black Seabass, Flounder, Silver Snapper and a wide variety of other bottom fish when we anchor up on the ledges and reefs.

Our Inshore Fishing Charters are great as well with some days better than others during these hot summer days. We are catching most of our bigger flounder in the Topsal Beach Flounder Fishing Chartersdeeper water holes near deep docks and inlet mouths. Our Red Drum Fishing is heating up in the backwaters as well which is an “inshore fan favorite”!


Our Fall Fishing Charters are booking up especially quick this year so be sure to call us to book your fall fishing charter sooner than later.

Tight Lines!

Capt. Trevor Smith

(910) 547-0000Wrightsville Beach King Mackerel Fishing Charters



Late Spring Cobia and King Mackerel Blitz! ProFishNC Charters

ProFishNC Charters June 2nd 2015Cobia Charter Fishing

Late Spring and Early Summer Fishing Charters reports for Topsail Beach, Wrightsville Beach, Carolina Beach, Wilmington and Figure Eight Island, NC

An EPIC Cobia and King Mackerel Bite is on right now!

Lets get to it:  Our Topsail Beach Fishing Charters and Wrightsville Beach Fishing Charters have been on fire the past three weeks (of course some days have been slower than others; however, overall we have really been catching some Huge Trophy Class Fish!).

This time of year we are focusing on King Mackerel and Big Cobia on our nearshore and offshore fishing charters.  For the

Topsail Beach Mahi Mahi Fishing Charters

King Mackerel we have been focusing our fishing efforts in the 3-10 mile range and are falling for a cigar minnow trolled at a slow speed.  These “Reel Screamers” are always fun and a Fishing Charter Favorite for many of my clients.   We always use Spinning reels spooled with Power Pro Braid along with a 40lb fluorocarbon leader tied to a Hank Brown Rig.

Our Cobia Fishing has been on fire with many caught this season, most of which we are catching sight-fishing.  Cobia can be found on fixed structures and floating structures and bait-balls.   I have a few rods with 8000 class spinning reels and 80lb braid ready to fly with an eight inch curly tail grub on a jig head ready to fly at all times.  Most of our larger cobia this year were caught sight-fishing using this tactic.Wrightsville Beach Big Cobia

Inshore Fishing Charters:  Our inshore fishing charters are heating up with the red drum and flounder showing up in better numbers each day.  We have been using both artificial and live baits to tempt the Redfish and Flounder.   We fish away from the crowds in the calm secluded backwaters; which is not only better fishing, but better scenery as well.

For our Dads and Moms, we offer Kid Friendly Fishing Charters that appeal to the entire family, give me a call for the details or visit us at http://www.FishingChartersNC.com

Wrightsville Beach King Mackerel Fishing King Mackerel Fishing Charters

Our Fishing Charters are booking up incredibly quick this season with only a few summer dates still available.  Give us a call and lets go fishing!


Tight-Lines,Cobia Fishing Charters Wilmington

Capt. Trev

ProFishNC Charters

(910) 547-0000


ProFishNC Charters: Topsail Beach, Wrightsville Beach & Carolina Beach Fishing Report

ProFishNC Charters Spring Fishing Report for April 16 – 27th, Spring Fishing Techniques and Figure Eight Island Charter Fishing BonitoFishing Forecast

Spring Charter Fishing Action is ON FIRE!

Well folks, the Spring fish have arrived in HUGE NUMBERS due to the giant migration of bait that has occurred this year!  We are filling coolers with Atlantic Bonito, Spanish and King Mackerel “That we haven’t seen in over 30 years!”

Wrightsville Beach Offshore Fishing Charters including Near-Shore (Note: We Provide Offshore Fishing Charters for Wrightsville Beach, Carolina Beach, Topsail Beach, Wilmington and Figure Eight Island, NC):

If its topwater Tuna and Bonito action you want, now is the time for the top water action.  It looks like a National Geographic Special right now with the sheer volume of Bait and Predators and birds diving on Family Fishing Charters Wilmington, NCand in our near shore waters (within 5 miles of the beach).  We are both Casting and Trolling for the Bonito, F. Albacore, Spanish Mackerel and King Mackerel as all four species are feeding on the same schools of Baitfish and pushing them to the top of the water column.


Spring Nearshore Fishing Techniques:

Always Remember, the #1 Charter Fishing “Secret”… FIND THE BIRDS FEEDING

It’s no secret; however, don’t be the guy that runs past the birds (ie; the BAIT) and over shoot the fish.Figure Eight Island Fishing Charters Tuna Fishing

When trolling, I am using YoZuri Deep Divers and Williamson Divers in 4’, 5’, 7’ and 9’ sizes (best producer this week was the Yellow with silver sides 7’ Yozuri deep diver a speed of around 6kts).

Topwater Tuna/ Mackerel Fishing:  When the fish get to the top and are “getting’ down” we switch to the 7’ rods on 3000 series reels spooled up with 30 lb PowerPro tipped with 30lb YoZuri Flourocarbon and a 2oz diamond jig.

Topsail Beach Inshore Fishing Charters (Including Wrightsville Beach, Figure Eight Island, Carolina Beach and Wilmington, NC):

Our Inshore Fishing Charters are heating up as the waters warm.  Our water temp inshore is currently between 65 and 70 depending on the tide and your location inshore.Wrightsville Beach Charter Fishing Boats Tuna

Carolina Beach Inshore Fishing Charters (including Wrightsville Beach, Topsail Beach, Figure Eight Island and Wilmington, NC):

The Red and Black Drum are feeding well in the backwater esturaries and waterway docks.  We are catching the Red Drum on both artificial and natural baits right now.  I am using chunk and live baits on the deepwater docks and artificial swinbaits in the shallow backwaters.

Flounder Fishing Charters:

As many of you know Flounder Fishing is one of my favorites and I love to show folks how to boat these tasty inshore fish!  The Flounder have been feeding better this week as well with many caught in the mouths of our inlets moving into the backwaters.   A ½ – 1 oz jigheads with Berkeley Gulp NC Kids Fishing ChartersShrimp or Curley Tails will get them in the boat.  Just remember to bounce them non stop to get them to “Feel the Bait” with their Lateral Line (the organ on their skin that picks up vibrations in the sand).

Fishing Forecast:

Spring Fishing is Super Hot right now and should be through late May.   The Spanish Mackerel are moving in fast and will be the “Hot Nearshore Bite” for the next few weeks until the Cobia arrive.  You should be looking for cobia each time you leave the inlet as there have already been some caught!  Inshore fishing is getting better and better as the inshore bait moves in.  Go to your “go to” inshore spots starting now.   The Nearshore Bottomfishing is HOT and is holding Black Seabass, Flounder, Grey Trout, Porgies, Sheepshead and much more!

We fish ALL of our area beaches including Topsail Beach, Wrightsville Beach, Carolina Beach, Figure Eight Island and Wilmington, NC Fishing Charters.

Tight-Lines and don’t forget to Take a Kid Fishing!
Capt. Trev

ProFishNC Charters

(910) 547-0000