How to Fish for Speckled Trout in Louisiana

by Jeremiah Blanchard

Spotted sea trout, more commonly known as speckled trout or specks, flourish in the brackish waters of the Louisiana coastline and in many other parts of the Gulf of Mexico. The fish spawn in the coastal estuary of lakes, marshes and rivers; eventually the fish make their way out to sea. Speckled trout are the most popular saltwater fish sought after by anglers in Louisiana. Fishermen employ their own techniques to catch specks. However, many of these techniques are universal among speckled trout anglers.

Items you will need

  • Bait (shrimp, mullet, needlefish)
  • Fishing pole
  • 20-pound test or less monofilament line
  • 6/0 to 7/0-size long shank hook
  • Fluorocarbon leader
Step 1

Select an area of coastal Louisiana that generally has plentiful speckled trout populations. Such areas to consider are near the shorelines of Venice, La., Lake Borgne and around the Breton and Chandeleur sounds.

Step 2

Choose bait depending on the size of speckled trout you wish to catch. Smaller specks generally feed on shrimp and other crustaceans. A larger trout will seek out larger fish, such as mullet, croakers, needlefish or any fish that will fit into its mouth.

Step 3

Choose a 6/0 to 7/0-size long shank hook. Tie the hook to a fluorocarbon leader. Tie the leader to the mono line. Using a mono line less than 20-pound test works well when using live baits for speck fishing.

Step 4

Set the bait onto the hook. If you are using shrimp, curl the shrimp around the hook in a natural position that you would typically find a shrimp in when it is in the water. The goal is to make the bait look like it's swimming. If you are using mullet, minnows, ballyhoo or other live fish, hook the fish so that it's still able to swim.

Step 5

Cast out the bait into the area where you suspect the specks lurk; wait for a bite. Note that speckled trout are a schooling fish. When you see one, you're sure to find many more in the same area.

Tips & Warnings

  • The preferred time of year to go speckled trout fishing is in the late spring and summer months. Fall speck fishing is plentiful, but not as much as the spring and summer months. Note that speckled trout can be fished year-round in Louisiana waters.
  • Only fish if you have a valid Louisiana fishing license.
  • Use caution when fishing on any open water.