Speckled trout are, by far, my favorite fish, and I’ve always wondered about their demeanor when hitting a lure or bait. Do they kind of meander by, think about it and lazily mouth their prey, or do they dart in like a jaguar springing from its lair to attack before the victim can escape?
I always assumed the latter, that specks feed frenetically, reacting more than thinking, but I certainly wasn’t positive — and getting one to hit on camera can be tricky.
Believe me, I’ve tried. For a while now.
A company called GoFish Cam sent me one of their underwater cameras a few months ago, and from the moment it arrived, I couldn’t wait to put it to use. The package comes with a float that wraps around the camera, so it can function as a cork, the lens constantly peering down at the suspended bait.
The first time I used the camera, I got some footage of a sheepshead eating a live shrimp.
That was cool, but I really wanted to see a trout feeding, so I made that my goal with the GoFish Cam. That should have been simple enough, but for a while, my efforts seemed doomed.
For one thing, the float that comes with the camera is made to be gently placed in the water. Make a long cast with it, like you usually have to do to catch specks, and the camera slips through.
During a couple of successful trout trips when the camera would likely have gotten some great footage, I couldn’t get it to stay inside the float. I reported the problem to the company, and they suggested a work-around — tying the camera to the line below a plunger-style H&H cork.
I rigged it that way, and hit the water in eager anticipation of getting some eye-opening footage, but couldn’t find a really big school of trout. By the time I did — several trips later — the battery had lost its charge.
It was just one fiasco after another, but this long, tear-jerker of a story has a happy ending.
This week, I went fishing with Capt. Lane Zimmer down in Lafitte, La., and brought a fully-charged GoFish Cam along with me, hoping we might run across some good speckled trout action. Zimmer is one of the best fishermen in South Louisiana, and the action has been good near Lafitte, so I definitely liked our chances.
Sure enough, we got on a hot bait, and I swallowed hard and broke out the GoFish Cam. On the first cast, the cork quickly plunged, and I reeled in a nice-sized speckled trout. Unfortunately, however, the camera had become tangled around the line, and was pointing at the sky.
This attempt also seemed destined for failure, but the next cast also produced a fish, and this time, the camera was oriented properly. I was ecstatic!
I made several more successful casts before putting the camera away, and when I got home, I got to see what I’ve been eagerly anticipating.
Now, you can too.
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