Salty water this month combined with milder temperatures have turned on speckled trout fishing out of Delacroix unlike anything the area has seen in at least three years, according to a fishing guide.
“Speckled trout fishing in Delacroix is phenomenally good,” said Capt. Jack Payne, with Sweetwater Guide Service. “This year the water is 20 parts per thousand, which is very salty.”
During winter months, trout will change their behavior according to the water temperature, he said. As the water temperature continues to cool, ranging from about 52 to 55 degrees, trout will school in deeper holes in the middle of bayous and ponds.
Payne emphasized targeting the mouths of bayous, where bait will move and schools of trout will gather.
Capt. Ron “Ahab” Broadus, with Capt. Ahab Fishing Charters, confirmed Payne’s analysis, and said he’s also catching trout and redfish further into the marsh than usual during the afternoons, when the water temperature can approach 70 degrees.
Both Payne and Broadus have been catching trout in Little Lake, Grand Lake, Oak River, Lake Batola, Skippy Lake, Bay Andrew and Bay Jack Nevette.
Live shrimp under a cork and decent tidal movement will usually produce limits of trout in Delacroix.
“I put dead shrimp 18- to 24-inches under a cork for reds, and live shrimp 36 inches at the deepest for trout,” Broadus said. “Throw on the bank for reds, and turn around and throw into the bay for trout.”
Broadus always keeps live bait onboard, but still likes to cast and retrieve artificial lures.
“There’s an old saying, the dirtier the water the darker the baits you use,” Broadus said.
His go-to artificial lures are Matrix Shad in shrimp creole and lemonhead, as well as Deadly Dudley’s opening night with a chartreuse tail.