The waterways and creeks of southeastern North Carolina are full of shrimp this time of year. Shrimp is a favorite on just about everybody’s menu and they are pretty easy to catch using a cast net.
Shrimp are bottom feeders; they crawl along the muddy bottom in search of food and nourishment. They also have a strong tail that flips backwards to propel the shrimp quickly through the water.
Shrimp have a short lifespan but have been known to live up to 20 months.
September is the best time of year to find good-sized and the best to eat shrimp. A cast net is a very simple and easy way to catch your dinner. You can find a cast net at your favorite tackle shop. They can also show you how to use it and with a little practice you’re ready.
Look for shallow water with a muddy bottom along the marsh grass or deep holes in tight creeks at low tide. You may need to make a few casts in different areas to locate them. Don’t get frustrated if you don’t find them right off but don’t be surprised when you pull in a net full in one cast.
Immediately store the shrimp with ice and cook them in 1-2 days.
Remember: You may only keep 100 shrimp per person per day. This time of year the North Carolina Marine Patrol is very aggressive about checking catches so stay within the limit.