October 16, 2020
As the saying goes, “there are plenty of fish in the sea.” But one of our favorites of those multitude of fish is definitely the speckled trout. Also known as “specks” or spotted seatrout, these inshore fish are fun to track and catch. If you’re looking for a really fun day of fishing, check out speckled trout for your consideration.
Speckled Trout are known for their many spots. From head to tail, tiny black dots litter the top part of their body, fins, and tail. They are also known for their prominent canine teeth, typically seen on their upper jaw. Males average 19 inches long, while females will average 25 inches. Larger sized trout earn the nickname “gator trout.”
Anglers from Texas to Virginia have the opportunity to catch speckled trout twelve months of the year. They are found in estuaries, bays, sounds, canals and inlets. They are a migrating species, moving from shallow to deep waters as the temperatures warm up. During the winter months they are found eating and spawning in shallow waters, while warmer weather pushes them to deeper waters. The exact timing of migration is determined by location (Texas anglers typically see this move later than North Carolina anglers).
Specks are a favorite species for Texas Gulf Coast anglers. The several bays from Laguna Madre to Galveston are filled with trout, redfish, and flounder. San Antonio Bay is one prime location for trout fishing in Texas. Wade fishing is the number one technique used in this bay, as it’s shallow enough for anglers to move closer to the schools of fish. It averages seven feet deep and has the muddy seabed that trout enjoy. Kayak fishing is another popular technique used in San Antonio Bay, and other Texas bays.
Florida’s peninsula from the Gulf of Mexico to the Atlantic Ocean is filled with speckled trout. Panhandle anglers enjoy fishing the bays and inlets for trout. From Pensacola to Apalachicola trout move in and out from nearby bays to the Gulf of Mexico. Again, winter is the best season to target them. In southwest Florida, the mangrove islands home schools of trout. Tampa, St. Petersburg, and Cape Coral are popular cities to vacation and launch your trout fishing trip.
Pamlico Sound and Albemarle Sound in North Carolina are also filled with speckled trout. While most anglers are targeting redfish in these waters, the trout show up in good numbers and are hard to resist. Pamlico Sound, in particular, is a top producer of large trout. This 3,000 square mile body of water is unusually shallow and anglers will often wade fish for trout and redfish. Anglers can also head to one of the many North Carolina piers that stretches over the Atlantic Ocean. Along with trout, you’ll find redfish, whiting, pompano, mackerel, and even sharks.
Now that you know where to go to fish for speckled trout, let’s look at getting them to the line. Again, the body of water you’re fishing and time of year will determine success rates, but here are some general tips to landing your next speckled trout.
They are known as aggressive fighters and will strike pretty much anything they come across. That’s good news for anglers looking for a productive day. While some anglers prefer live bait such as shrimp, minnows, mullets, or small croakers, artificials will get the work done as well. Popular artificials include spoons, soft plastics, surface plugs, and slow-sinking jerk baits. Suspending a twitchbait is another option. Or try adding a popping cork to the line. This will imitate the sound of food and trout are easily duped to following the sound right to you.
Once you have set the hook, keep the line tight and reel in your trophy. Most anglers will catch-and-release trout, although you can harvest them in certain areas during open season. Make sure you know the size limit and bag regulations for your state before heading out. If you need help, consider hiring a local guide who is familiar with where to fish and what you can bring home.
Whether your fishing trip is just around the corner or across the country, FishAnywhere.com can help you find the adventure of a lifetime. Your speckled trout fishing trip is just a click away. Search and book with a charter that fits your group best. You’ll create memories and have a great day fishing an exciting species… it doesn’t get much better than that!
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