Calcasieu’s flounder run peaks in November

Big females on the move this month

The flounder run on Calcasieu Lake starts about mid-October when the first cold front pushes in, and the big fish will show up more in November.

“That’s usually when they’ll start running,” said Capt. Brian Hachery of Louisiana Backwater Charters. “Males run in October first; they will be a little bit smaller. Typically, after the males make their run and the weather starts getting colder, the big females will start to go. This usually happens in November.

“People will come down and stay weeks at a time in their campers around Ellender Bridge, just to catch flounder. You will see a lot of RV’s parked around the area. If you don’t hear about the flounder running, you will be able to tell due to the amount of people fishing the channel.”

Where should anglers targeting flounder look?

Flounder gang up better and can be caught in numbers on an outgoing tide in cold weather.

“The ledges, the dropoffs and the channels once you get to the south end of the lake when they funnel down are where you’ll find flounder this time of year,” Hachery said. “South around the Cameron Ferry area, a few areas around the north and south side of the Cameron Ferry, the bulkheads, and around the north end of the jetties on flats produce flounder during the flounder run.”

Top lures

What are Hachery’s favorite lures?

“Typically, what people use are a normal Down South lure,” he said. “I like to use chartreuse, glow and bone diamond. Another one of my favorite lures is any color Gulp swimming mullet. I use a lot of pink, chartreuse, pearl and glow — basically, any color that will catch their attention.

“A lot of times, what I will do, if they aren’t eating my plastic very well, is catch a croaker and use that for bait.”

Outgoing tide

Hachery said the best conditions to catch flounder are when the tide goes out and the temperature drops.

“That is when they are supposed to eat,” he said. “The flounder can run right after a cold front, but they’ll typically do so a few days later. When it’s still cold, but the wind lies down and the water clears up, that’s when you will really catch them.

“It’s better if the north winds pushes the water out after a cold front, too.”

The flounder, most of the time, school good on a normal, outgoing tide.

Cold weather in November will get flounder moving in Calcasieu Lake, the smaller males first, then females.

“If it’s too much tide, the flounder will just run,” he said “You want a normal, outgoing tide, not too low of water, and decent water clarity. They’ll also bite on a dead tide during the switch.”

When asked what anglers should keep in mind while fishing the flounder run, Hachery said to pay attention to water clarity, tides, and weather.

“Temperature is critical, he said. “You never know if it will be 100 degrees or 5 degrees this time of year, so pay attention to what the weather is going to do. You want nice, semi-clean water. If it is dirty, it is harder to catch them.”

About Dora Lambert 29 Articles
Dora Lambert is an avid multi-species angler, fish tagging conservationist and outdoors writer.