Speckeled Trout Cont...
Like Easter eggs they are easily overlooked
If you want to become a better trout fisherman, or just want to learn where to look for the trout, I am sure you will discover you have come to the right place. I hope you will take time to stick around or visit as often as you would like. I am not going anywhere except fishing and I hope you too will someday join me for a Gulfing Adventure. In the mean time read, learn, laugh and enjoy this site as you prepare for your next fishing adventure.
Trout normally remain within five miles of their birth area for their entire life. With that in mind the next time you catch a trout make a mental map in your mind to fish that spot again because whatever attracted that fish to that particular locality will draw another for the same reason. When I am searching new areas I look for several things such as water color, water depth, drop-offs, bottom structure and flowing water ways.
Let's begin with water color. I, know clear water is nice for you and me but trout seem to prefer it to be a little cloudy for camouflage from predators both in the air and in the water. Trout can be found up-stream in muddy colored water as well. If I am traveling across the water I look for drastic changes in water color. Dark green/light green, dark blue/light. Lake Pontchartrain just north of New Orleans averages 12 to 14 feet in depth and considered brackish (meaning saltwater pushing into freshwater estuaries of rivers and streams and mixing with freshwater) water. At times during the year increased fresh water run-off from the area can trap pockets of salt water and within these pockets the saltwater fish become trapped in pockets of saltwater surrounded by freshwater. The colors of these pockets can very drastically from the surround by color or shades. This does not always mean there will be fish in these pockets but if there is, they may be pretty hungry.
In the Marco Island and Naples area the waters have a greenish tint to them. Again if you are traveling across the water and notice a drastic change in the greenish tint of the watercolor it may be worth your time to cast across the contrast and drag a lure back through the area. This will work anywhere in the area even with dirty and disturbed water as well as clear or tinted waters. Some fish lurk in these shades ambushing unsuspecting passing smaller fish. Porpoise will circle a school of fish and dirty the water knowing the trapped fish will not readily travel through the dirty water and feed on the trapped and confused fish.
Trout are consistently found to be in water between three to six feet and some of the largest I have caught have been at low tide in water as shallow as one foot. When the water heats up during the summer larger fish move out of the flats and backwater areas for deeper, safer water with a temperature more suitable for them. Normally water temperatures between 68 and 76 are preferred for better bites.
If you can see the bottom and visually observe a drop in the bottom such as a ledge with a minimum of approximately one foot, this may be a good area to find trout. This one-foot drop would give trout a place to lay and wait for their next meal to swim over top of them. Another great places to find trout will be grassy bottoms especially with turtle grass or eel grass which attract shrimp and other live bait that trout prefer. Trout use this grass as camouflage when they sense danger and can sink right into the grassy haven.
Fast moving water seems to stimulate the appetite of fish. Tide movement affects the fish and there feeding habits, faster water leads to better activity on your line and the less movement less bites. Which makes since if you think about it. Fish rely on their meals to come swimming by and the faster the water the more on the menu. They also lay in wait below moving water for any food traveling by. Therefore, if you’re drifting along and observe a steam running out of the mangroves into a larger body of water try a couple of cast up that stream and allow your bait to freely float the course. Be ready because you may have the catch of the day.
Likewise I also fish the points. You may not be familiar with this term but I am sure you know what I am talking about. Picture an island or peninsula, where-ever there is a protrusion of land is a place that fish can lay and wait while being protected by depth, protected from being pushed by the current and not visible from predators on land or in the air. There may be several points but I will fish the one with the most water movement across it.
Nothing better than having a birds-eye view. One of the easiest way to find the fish is to find the birds that are eating. This can happen on the flats, bays or in open water. Spotting pelicans hitting the surface in Lake Borgne in New Orleans produced some great black drum in the 30+ inch range with each cast. Same thing in the back waters of Florida. Find the birds find the fish. The birds are chasing and picking off the bait that has rolled to the surface to avoid the large fish below dining. All you have to do is put a lure or live bait in the water and hang on.