In the inshore world, some species get the bulk of the attention and are regarded as prized fish. The redfish is one of these species that gets a lot of attention, especially in the waters around Venice, Louisiana. Well-known guide and accomplished redfish tournament angler, Captain Mike Frenette fishes here regularly for them. His Redfish Lodge of Louisiana brings people from across the globe to fish for the coveted redfish, but sometimes things don’t pan out and they shift gears to other species, or his guests would prefer something different.
While it’s world-class fishing for redfish here, there are times when they switch things up to the never-fail targets as a backup plan. “As good as the fishing is, there are times when the redfish aren’t biting,” he said. “Nothing in fishing is a given and sometimes we call an audible because the tides aren’t right or the water is too hot for the redfish. The great thing about the whole Gulf Coast is that there are plenty of options and always something that is biting.”
Species in play
The rich waters of Venice and throughout the Gulf of Mexico are home to many different species and Frenette is happy to tangle with them all while fishing for fun or guiding clients.
“We let the conditions dictate what we are fishing for, but we make sure the clients always have something to pull on the other end of the line,” he said. “Tarpon, triple tail, speckled sea trout, sheepshead, and flounder are options. We also have a lot of fun with the jack crevalle and black drum. Everyone heads out in the morning with species they’d like to catch in mind, but sometimes we have to switch tactics to make the day successful and create some excitement.”
Two ways for Louisiana Tripletail
One of Frenette’s favorite targets is the tripletail, which he often chases, finding success while targeting visible structures in the water.
“The easiest and most reliable way to catch them is to fish around manmade structures, like pilings, crab trap buoys, and things like that,” he said. “They’re not just a ‘fall back’ fish. They are a great species to target and love holding tight to these structures so they can ambush their prey. We’ll either use live bait or jig artificials like the Strike King Tidal Shrimp, but you want to make sure you are staying tight to the structure.”