About this time each year, we get the first invasion of shrimp and crabs into the ponds. With the mild winter, there's plenty of grass that awaits them. Reds, drum and sheepshead will be rooting them out. Look for tails on calm days.

It's a good time to break out those crab patterns like Borski's Chernobyl Crab or the Merkin. If the water is clear, stick with neutral colors like tan or olive. For murky water, use chartreuse early, then switch to a contrasting color.

This is the best month for big redears, as they are early spawners. Look for shell beds or hard bottom, and use flies that sink to the bottom, like cap spiders, briminators, tussel bugs and tungsten-bead hares ears.

Bluegill are also in play this month, especially in shallow lakes, canals and backwater areas where water is warmer. Try jitterbees in black/yellow or black/orange fished a couple feet under a strike indicator.

Crappie will be in the shallows this month. Fluff butts, mini-clousers, glass minnows and Tom Nixon Spinners should be deadly.

Bass are bedding, and that means magnum woolybuggers, SR71 buggers, Sqwirm Worms, Borgers Down and Dirty, and other bottom flies are first choice. Still, keep those poppers handy — many big bass have been caught in March on big gaudy poppers early and late.