PLANNING THE TRIP OF A LIFETIME

FISH SPECIES & SEASONS

This is why we’re here and this is what it’s all about

Crawgator’s Bar & Grill inside the Venice Marina opens at 5:30 am (Wednesday through Sunday). You grab a quick breakfast and coffee (or Bloody Mary because, hey, you’re on vacation) before meeting us a the dock around 7:00 am. Where we go from here depends on you, your friends and the trip you booked— we may fly through the Southwest Pass into the Gulf at 50 mph, cruise the shoreline or quietly pole our way into the shallows. Regardless of how we get there, we’re always looking for the same thing; we’re looking for the trophy fish that have made our small corner of the world legendary.

This is where one of the planet’s most famous rivers pours into the Gulf to create a vast, nutrient-rich, marshy heaven fish love. The bays and backwaters surrounding Venice provide incredible inshore opportunities, and we’re a quick boat ride away from the deeper offshore fishing grounds that leave arms sore, ice chests packed and phones full of pictures.

All limits are set by the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries and/or the National Marine Fisheries Service. In other words, we don’t set the rules. We just fish by them.

Offshore

Yellowfin Tuna
Open year round with January through March being peak season

One of the fastest, strongest predators in the ocean. Pound-for-pound, hands down. That’s why it’s also our favorite fish to catch offshore. Among the larger tuna species, they can easily push 200 lbs. and put up long, difficult, reel-burning runs that can force any angler to break a sweat. While they’ve been known to run deep, they usually hang out above the thermocline and travel in schools with other fish of similar size. Limit three per angler.

Blackfin Tuna
Open year round

The smaller cousin of the yellowfin but don’t tell him that because he’s been known to make many reels scream. What he lacks in size he more than makes up for in fight; this fish swims at high speeds and travels in large schools, which means hooking into one could result in a lot of furious action over a short amount of time. They weigh anywhere from 10-20 lbs. but a huge 30-pounder isn’t that rare. No size or bag limits to worry about.

Wahoo
Open year round with January, February and June being peak months

The Hawaiians, who know a thing or two about fish, call this one “Ono” which means “good to eat” so that should tell you something. This highly-prized catch can reach 30+ pounds, can be found just offshore and puts up one hell of a fight on light or medium tackle. It’s extremely fast and displays plenty of power (usually on its first run). They hold bait so tight in their mouths, and run so fast, that setting a solid hook is harder than you think—tight lines are a must. While they put up a solid struggle, it’s nothing like a tuna run and battles rarely last more than 15-20 minutes (tops). Currently no size or bag limit.

Dolphin
Open year round with May, June and early July being peak months

Also known as “dorado” or “mahi-mahi” (and no, we’re not talking about the lovable mammals). This fish is almost as much fun to catch as it is to eat. They can get pretty aggressive and ticked off when hooked, which is why you’ll see them jump, flip, skip and fly across the water with acrobatic anger. That just adds to the excitement, as does their color. They display shades of bright blue, yellow and green in the water. When you finally land one in the boat, they morph into a yellowish-gold color that makes for the perfect photo. Average weight runs from 15-30 pounds but they can weigh up to 70 lbs. Currently no size or bag limit.

Red Snaper
Open year round in Louisiana waters; July 1st—July 15th in federal waters

One of the most coveted fish we catch. Some anglers love how hard they fight while others simply love how great they taste in the kitchen. How desirable are these fish? There are over 1.2 million recipes online explaining how to cook them. While we find them in shallow waters, the bigger trophies often stay hidden deep under or around structure. When red snapper are on the menu, we race out 20+ miles to fish the thousands of drilling ships, oil rigs and other large structures that dot the Louisiana coast. A 20-pound snapper isn’t uncommon and they can push 50+ pounds. Limit two fish per angler and must be over 16”.

 

Inshore

Redfish
Open year round

We won’t lie. Next to hooking into a big yellowfin far offshore, cruising the marshy coastal waters of southern Louisiana looking for tailing bull reds is our favorite type of fishing. Maybe ever. Also known as “red drum”, this fish can break rods, lines and hearts at any moment. They put up incredible fights and are found in legendary numbers around Venice. Want proof? Back in May 2017 (May 24th, to be exact), four Tripletail clients caught their limit of reds in less than an hour and caught/released another 100 more over the next two hours. That’s why we love living in the Redfish Capital of the World. We catch them in shallow duck ponds, the deeper canals and all points in between. We also catch them on light or medium tackle, with baitcasters or spinning reels, and even have several clients swear there’s nothing better in life than catching reds on a fly rod. Limit five fish per angler above 16” with only one allowed to be over 27”.

Speckled Trout
Open year round with April through November being peak months

Locals call them “specs” due to the round spots on their dark grey/green backs and tails. Although it’s one of the smaller gamefish we chase, don’t be fooled. These mini-torpedoes can challenge even the most experienced angler and are an absolute blast to catch. As water temperatures drop during the fall, they move into deeper bay waters or the Gulf. As temperatures warm in the spring, the fish return to the shallows of the primary and secondary flats. Usually caught in shallow water; 2 to 25 feet and weigh just a few pounds. Limit 25 fish per angler above 12” with no set limit on white trout.

Flounder
Open year round with October and November being peak months

Not the prettiest fish in the sea but they don’t care. When you taste as good as they do, you ignore the haters. That great taste is a primary reason why flounder are consistently among the top ranked fish among anglers. Found along the numerous cuts and sandy points along the coast, we’ll often catch flounder when chasing reds or speckled trout. Limit 10 per angler.