Old timers will tell you when the yellow butterflies show up, so do the fish, especially spots. It signals the end of summer and the beginning of fall.
If that’s true, we should be seeing spots in our area very soon.
Walter White of Seaview Crab Company says he’s never heard that particular piece of folklore, but adds that it “is about time for the spots to show up around here.”
Since mid-August people have been coming in our markets looking for and asking about the spots. The often requested pan fish are extremely popular for large celebrations with family and friends.
“We eat them every year at our family reunion in the fall,” says Pam, a spot lover from Goldsboro.
Earlier this week two women came in the Carolina Beach market looking for spots. They opened the door and yelled from the doorway: “Do you have any spots?” When they learned we didn’t, they simply turned around and got back in their car.
It seems that when you want a spot, no other fish will do.
Never fear, they are almost here. “Typically they start running here around mid-September and keep running for about six weeks, depending on the weather,” says White.
Spots migrate along the coast during fall, heading to the Gulf for the winter. They stop along the way to feed for the journey.
Bad weather, such as a hurricane or a tropical storm, can affect where the small fish decide to stop.
“If we get a storm when they are about to run, it could push them off shore and they could skip us,” White says.
For now, the weather looks good and spots should be appearing in our waters very soon.
Catch you later.