Spring has sprung in Venice and the fish know it’s here. Trout are getting ready for the spawn and are feeding aggressively to fatten up. Behind Buras I’ll be working the shallow flats and oyster reefs between the inner marsh and the outer beaches. I like to throw a pink imitation shrimp under a “noisy” cork. The trout will be patrolling these areas looking for food so give them some. If you can find live shrimp, use them. The real thing is hard to beat. You may even pick up a few on top water early in the morning. Reds will be anywhere there is structure or grass with current. A spinner or spoon will entice a bite; If not then switch to market bait under a cork. They are there, so be patient.
Down River the bays will be dirty, so the key is to find “good” water. Watch your prop wash behind the boat. If the bottom boils up dark green, you are in business. That same pink shrimp we used up in Buras will work down in the bays. Electric chicken is good in April, so give that color a try. If the cork doesn’t produce then switch to a “swim” bait; anything that looks like a bait fish with a “wiggly” tail. Fish it slow just off the bottom with a steady retrieve.
There is a new bait out by Betts Tackle called a “Perfect Sinker”. It’s a shrimp type bait that is balanced so well that it always falls with the hook up. This shrimp is intended to be fished tight lined on or close to the bottom. Because of its balance with the hook always up, it can be fished over oysters, rocks, and even grass and cane stubble without getting fouled. If you have clean water on the bottom, this bait will be a killer. Fish it slowly, and wait for the “tap-tap”!
Reds will be close to the canes and/or along the rocks. Shallow running crank baits in red will produce enough keeper reds for the grill. If you are looking for bigger reds, then head to the rock jetties at the end of most of the passes. Bounce a 3/8oz jig head with a big piece of market bait close to the bottom. The big girls will go crazy.
Yes, April is spring. Down here in Venice the birds will be singing, frogs will be croaking, gators will be growling, and the fish will be biting!
Capt. Owen Langridge
Big “O” Charters L.L.C.
225 978 1136