Louisiana Speckled Trout Fishing
Speckled trout, also known as spotted seatrout, are one of the most popular and delicious game fish in Louisiana. They inhabit brackish and saltwater habitats across the state’s Gulf Coast, where they feed on shrimp, baitfish, and crustaceans. Speckled trout are fun to catch for anglers of all skill levels, as they put up a spirited fight and often strike aggressively.
In this article, we will provide some useful information on how, when, and where to catch speckled trout in Louisiana. We will also share some tips and tricks to help you land more of these amazing fish.
How to Catch Speckled Trout in Louisiana
There are many ways to catch speckled trout in Louisiana, depending on the season, location, and conditions. Here are some of the most common and effective methods:
- Popping Corks: This is a classic technique that involves using a float that makes a popping sound when jerked. The sound attracts speckled trout and other predators to the bait or lure suspended below the cork. Popping corks work well in shallow water with grass or oyster beds, where speckled trout like to ambush their prey. You can use live shrimp, artificial shrimp, or soft plastic lures as bait¹².
- Topwater Lures: This is an exciting technique that involves using a lure that floats on the surface and mimics a wounded or fleeing baitfish. The lure creates splashes and vibrations that trigger speckled trout to attack. Topwater lures work best in calm and clear water, especially early in the morning or late in the evening, when speckled trout are more active. You can use torpedo-shaped lures, walk-the-dog lures, or poppers¹².
- Carolina Rig: This is a simple technique that involves using a sliding sinker above a swivel, followed by a leader and a hook. The sinker allows the bait to reach the bottom and move freely with the current. The Carolina rig works well in deeper water with strong current, where speckled trout often hold near structure or drop-offs. You can use live shrimp, croaker, mullet, or pogies as bait¹².
- Jigging: This is a versatile technique that involves using a weighted lure with a hook that is bounced off the bottom or retrieved with jerks. The jig imitates a fleeing or dying baitfish that speckled trout can’t resist. Jigging works well in various water depths and conditions, as long as you match the size and color of the jig to the natural forage. You can use soft plastic jigs, bucktail jigs, or spoons¹².
When to Catch Speckled Trout in Louisiana
Speckled trout can be caught year-round in Louisiana, but some seasons are better than others depending on the location and weather. Here are some general guidelines:
- Spring: This is a great time to catch speckled trout in Louisiana, as they move from their winter haunts to their spawning grounds near the coast. They are hungry and aggressive, and often form large schools near marshes, islands, reefs, and rigs. You can use popping corks with live shrimp or artificial shrimp in shallow water, or topwater lures or jigs in deeper water¹⁴.
- Summer: This is another good time to catch speckled trout in Louisiana, as they continue to spawn and feed near the coast. They are still active and plentiful, but may seek cooler and deeper water during the hottest part of the day. You can use Carolina rigs with live croaker or mullet near structure or drop-offs, or jigs or spoons near oil rigs or artificial reefs¹⁴.
- Fall: This is a prime time to catch speckled trout in Louisiana, as they follow schools of baitfish into bays and lakes before moving back to their winter haunts. They are voracious and opportunistic, and often hit anything that moves near them. You can use popping corks with live shrimp or artificial shrimp in shallow water, or topwater lures or jigs in deeper water¹⁴.
- Winter: This is a challenging time to catch speckled trout in Louisiana, as they move to deeper and warmer water away from the coast. They are less active and more selective, and often require a slow and subtle presentation. You can use Carolina rigs with live shrimp or pogies near river mouths or canals, or jigs or spoons near deep holes or ledges .
Where to Catch Speckled Trout in Louisiana
Louisiana has a vast and diverse coastline that offers many excellent spots to catch speckled trout. Here are some of the most popular and productive ones:
- Hopedale: This is a top spot for speckled trout fishing in Louisiana, as it offers access to both shallow and deep water habitats. You can fish near the long rocks, where speckled trout ambush shrimp near the shore, or near the Holy Cross rig, where speckled trout feed on baitfish near the bottom. You can also look for birds that indicate the presence of schooling bait and speckled trout .
- Lake Pontchartrain Basin: This is a huge water system that dominates southeastern Louisiana, and provides a variety of brackish water habitats for speckled trout. You can fish near the bridges, where speckled trout congregate around the pilings and rubble, or near the reefs, where speckled trout find shelter and food. You can also fish near the passes, where speckled trout move in and out with the tide .
- Grand Isle: This is a barrier island in the Gulf of Mexico that offers some of the best speckled trout fishing in Louisiana. You can fish near the beaches, where speckled trout cruise along the surf zone, or near the jetties, where speckled trout hide among the rocks. You can also fish near the rigs, where speckled trout feed on the abundant forage .
- Calcasieu Lake: This is a 52,700 acre lake south of Lake Charles that offers a beautiful saltwater estuary for speckled trout. You can fish near the weirs, where speckled trout take advantage of the current and oxygen flow, or near the flats, where speckled trout roam among the grass and oysters. You can also fish near the ship channel, where speckled trout follow schools of baitfish .
- Toledo Bend Reservoir: This is a 186,000 acre reservoir that offers some of the best freshwater fishing in Louisiana, including for largemouth bass and crappie. However, it also offers some excellent opportunities for speckled trout fishing, especially near the dam area. You can fish near the spillway, where speckled trout feed on shad and other baitfish that are flushed out of the reservoir, or near the islands, where speckled trout find structure and cover .
Tips and Tricks for Speckled Trout Fishing in Louisiana
Here are some tips and tricks to help you catch more speckled trout in Louisiana:
- Match the hatch: Speckled trout are opportunistic feeders that will eat whatever is available and abundant. Therefore, you should match your bait or lure to the natural forage in your fishing area. For example, if you see shrimp jumping out of the water, use live shrimp or artificial shrimp as bait. If you see mullet swimming on the surface, use live mullet or mullet imitation lures .
- Use scent: Speckled trout have a keen sense of smell that they use to locate their prey. Therefore, you should use scent to attract them to your bait or lure. You can use natural scents such as shrimp oil or fish oil, or artificial scents such as Pro-Cure or Gulp! You can also use fresh baits that have their own natural scent .
- Use sound: Speckled trout have a good sense of hearing that they use to detect vibrations and noises in the water. Therefore, you should use sound to draw them to your bait or lure. You can use popping corks that make a popping sound when jerked, or rattling lures that make a rattling sound when retrieved. You can also use noisy topwater lures that create splashes and commotion on the surface.
Speckled trout fishing in Louisiana is a rewarding and enjoyable activity that can be done year-round and in various locations. Whether you prefer fishing in shallow or deep water, in freshwater or saltwater, with live or artificial bait, you can find speckled trout that will satisfy your fishing cravings. With the information and tips we provided in this article, you should be able to catch more speckled trout in Louisiana and have a great time doing it.
If you are ready to experience some of the best speckled trout fishing in Louisiana, book a trip with one of our experienced and friendly guides today. They will take you to the hottest spots, provide you with the best gear, and teach you the best techniques to catch speckled trout. Don’t miss this opportunity to have an unforgettable fishing adventure in the Sportsman’s Paradise!
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(4) Top spots to catch speckled trout in Louisiana. https://www.louisianasportsman.com/fishing/inshore-fishing/speckled-trout/louisianas-top-10-may-trout-hotspots/.
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