The fall fishing season is underway! Please take a moment to review the following information before your next fishing trip on Dewees Island. Remember State regulations require that a saltwater fishing license is needed when fishing in the Impoundment and to harvest oysters and clams in recreational waters.
Guidelines can be found at the following links.
- Obey all state laws regarding size and amount limits. These rules are posted on various docks around the island.
- Practice the Dewees philosophy of catch and release. If you are fishing for food, take from the sea enough for an evening’s meal. This ensures plenty of fish to catch in the future and always the freshest, best tasting fish for supper! If you have a large houseful of visitors please be considerate of other families and supplement your Impoundment catch from exterior waterways.
- If an alligator is sighted within 60 feet of your fishing activities please immediately remove your lines and relocate to another location.
Catch & Release tips:
- Keep the fish in the water as much as possible. If possible, remove the hook without removing the fish from the water.
- Always handle a fish with wet hands.
- Use non-offset circle hooks.
- Snip deeply embedded hooks and allow them to dissolve. Cut the line if the fish is hooked in the throat or stomach. Fish are much more likely to survive if deeply embedded hooks are left in place and allowed to dissolve.
- If the hook is in the jaw or lip, hold the fish gently at the base of the head just behind the gill covers and remove the hook with needle nose pliers. Be very careful not to squeeze the fish.
- Don’t drop the fish in the boat or on the dock or allow it to thrash around on the shore. Fish bruise easily, and damage to internal organs can be fatal.
- Never lift fish by the eye sockets or gills. Use both hands to support the fish’s weight evenly.
- When you catch the monster, he will be quite exhausted after a long fight. He can be revived by holding it upright in the water and gently moving it back and forth.
If you haven’t been to an oyster roast, put it on your bucket list. Shellfish abounds in the area, and the oysters are salty and large. Don’t forget to try the fish stew when you go. It is a local specialty served at most oyster roasts.
You can shellfish for you own meal too! The season runs September 16 to May 15. It is illegal to harvest shellfish between ½ hour after official sunset and ½ hour before official sunrise. To harvest any shellfish in the waters of South Carolina, including oysters, hard clams, and mussels, you must have a recreational saltwater fishing license and abide by DNR size and quantity regulations.
- Clams must be 1-inch thick
- The shells of oysters harvested on Dewees can be recycled to the island shellfish beds
- Please refer to the DNR’s website for a full run-through of shellfish harvesting guidelines.
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Thank you for your help in preserving the natural resources on Dewees Island!