Spotted Sea TroutThe Spotted Sea Trout is Florida’s most wide spread inshore game fish, often considered to be the perfect fish for both novice and expert fishermen. Their willingness to eat live baits and a wide variety of artificials puts this species at the top for most anglers.
1) Fishing from a boatFishing for trout from a boat may seem easy at times because you can stay busy with 12 to 18 inch fish all day. But if you’re looking to get the gator, pay attention to these key tips. Bigger Trout (AKA Gator Trout) are usually found in very shallow water, about 1 to 2 feet. Using weedless rigged jerk baits and top water plugs can sometimes be the only way to get these beasts to eat.
FISH TIPBig trout are not dumb so, use light leader such as 15lb and 20lb fluorocarbon. If you go out using 30lb and 40lb leader, it will keep that trophy fish picture off your wall for sure.
Some Great bait to target the larger Trout with are the Heddon Spook Jr. in a red and white or the Heddon One Knocker Spook in the Gold Belly Black Back, Mirrolure Lil John in watermelon red or pink, Paul Brown little devil in pink, DOA Jerk Shad in Green back, Black and Gold or Red and Gold. Look for shallow flats near oyster bars, shallow flats near deep sand holes, or sand holes near oyster bars and mangroves. These are great areas to target the giants. Longer casts are key to getting your trophy fish, so go with a 10lb braid. There is absolutely no reason to target these fish with 20lb line. When you use too heavy of line, you’re only hurting yourself. Heavier line doesn’t cast as well, and it grabs the wind making your cast less accurate. In this case, go small or go home. You can also target them using live bait. A small grass grunt rigged under a cork with a 2/0 circle hook can be a highly effective way to get the job done.
2) Wade FishingThe most popular time to get your wade fishing game on is late fall through the middle of the spring. The reason for this is the negative low tides. When a negative low tide occurs, it moves the fish off of the shallow flats and into sandy pot holes and channels. This makes it much easier for the shore bound angler to target these fish without having to walk a hundred miles.
FISH TIPWhen picking out a pair of waders, take into consideration that these are the only thing between your skin and ice cold winter water. So, get a good pair!
A great pair of waders that will last for a long time is the Frog Toggs Hellbender breathable stocking foot waders. Then all you need is a pair of wading shoes, and you’re off to catch some fish. Google Earth is probably the most beneficial tool to wading fishermen. It allows you to look for deep pot holes, drop offs, oyster bars, and deep channel runs. All of those places are exactly where you want to be once the tide has dropped. Use small 1/8 oz. jig heads rigged with DOA paddle tails in the black and gold, red and gold and green back, or Slayer Inc. Sinister Series stick bait in gold, watermelon red, and root beer. Bounce these jigs across the bottom slow working all angles of the area. If something is home, you will know. If not, move on to the next hole until you locate the fish. Once you have found them, it's game time. This tactic isn’t just great for Trout, but can give you an inshore slam quick on occasion.