The water temps are down and the red tide is subsiding. I love this month because we still have the cooler temps but there will be spurts of spring coming soon. This also is one of my favorite months to target big “Gator” trout (Speckled trout) here on the southwest coast of Florida. Their giant yellow fanged mouths make them one of the most optimized predators in our waters. They are sleek, beautifully spotted, and have a rainbow iridescent glow to them. This helps them blend into their surroundings on the grass flats and gives them a great advantage.
My number one way to target them is by top water lures like the Yo-Zuri 3DB Pencil or if there is lots of floating grass, the Monster 3X Pop-Action rigged weedless. First, it makes them easier to target them in the thick grass flats and 2nd it doesn’t get much better than watching giant trout exploding on top water lures! Sometimes it sounds like gun fire and the lure will go flying 4 ft. into the air. You then think to yourself, how in the world did that fish not get a hook into it? Hahaha! But, trout are one of the species that sometimes like to stun their prey first and come back to finish it off. Trout can be so aggressive that I’ve actually seen them eat lures while they have 3 inches of a 10-inch mullet hanging out of their mouths. This makes them loads of fun to target with artificial lures.
This is also the time of year when they start to spawn so please handle these giants with the upmost respect and care. When I’m using hard baits I always switch out the treble hooks to single hooks. Not only is it much nicer on the trout’s soft mouth, but, you get a better landing ratio once the fish is hooked with the singles. When these fish get over 20 inches they are for sure our breeding stock and the bigger ones don’t really taste good anyway. So if you want to keep a fish or two,16-19 inches perfect! Well, I hope you guys enjoy the cool weather while it last. Tight Lines and Tight Knots to all! :)