April offers some of the best fishing of the year for both fresh and marsh species. Tough decisions ahead.

Bream will be on the beds. Early and late, popping bugs will be the ticket. During the day, cast Jitterbees, Cap Spiders, Slow Sinking Spiders, or Hares Ears suspended 3 to 4 feet under a strike indicator. Cast and twitch the float an inch or 2, then pause. Most strikes come on the pause.

Some bass will still be spawning. Work woolybuggers, leeches and streamers slowly over bedding areas. In areas where bass have spawned, popper action should be terrific.

Small crabs and shrimp will be moving into the interior marsh ponds. So now is a good time to break out a LaFleur’s Charlie, Gulf Toad or Redfish Ritalin. If heavy grass is an issue, try a bendback-style fly. 

Later this month, big speckled trout will be in the surf. Don your waders and toss out Crease Flies or Skipping Bugs. Big baitfish patterns like Whitlock’s Baitfish and Deceivers are good also.

April is caddis time on the Little Missouri River in southwest Arkansas. An Elk Hair Caddis will have to compete against swarms of the natural, but there’s plenty fish in the river to help your odds.