For flycasters, trout take center stage this month — both the saltwater and freshwater varieties.

In the marsh, mild and calm days bring opportunities for great topwater action for speckled trout. Pencil poppers, Bob’s Banger, Bubblehead Poppers and Pete’s Perch Float Poppers are all good fly choices. 

On colder days, use a sinking fly off the bottom. Best patterns are a Deep Clouser in purple or olive, or a Coma Cocaho in sand/tan or pink.

Later this month, ponds in East Baton Rouge, Ascension and Lafayette parishes will again be stocked with “rainbeaux” trout. Nothing is exciting as hooking these colorful fish and watching them make multiple jumps. And it’s a great way to introduce youth to fly fishing.

Tackle-wise, all you need is a 5-weight outfit and a box of size 10 or 12 Woolybuggers. And maybe some size 14 Parachute Adams for those late afternoons when the trout are rising to bugs. 

Reds are a lot more opportunistic right now. A wide variety of flies will work: Whitlock Baitfish, Seaducers, Spoon flies, Borski Sliders, Charlies and Haley’s Comets.

Just be cognizant that darker colors are often more successful on cloudy or overcast days in winter. On those outings, use root-beer or copper spoon flies as opposed to gold or pearl.

Crappie will concentrate along deep structure. But these fish will sometimes be suspended several feet below the surface instead of near the bottom.

Start with a Fluff Butt or Crappie Candy suspended 4 to 5 feet under a strike indicator. If you get no bites, remove the indicator and tight-line the fly the entire length of the leader.

Best colors will be black/chartreuse, blue/white, pink/pink, and the “gray ghost” (gray/gray).