8 Best Flounder Fishing Spots in Louisiana

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Many anglers accidentally stumble on flounder while perusing a menu or fishing for something else. Yet these flatfish are much more common to Louisiana’s coastline than most fishermen believe.

Delicious and fun to catch, flounder can be found throughout the waters of the sportsman’s paradise.

With the right tackle, bait, and lures and knowing the best times to fish for them, flounder are easier than expected to catch. And, of course, they are delicious to eat.

In this article, we cover a few tips and tricks on angling for flounder as well as the top locations to catch these flatfish in Louisiana. If you’d like to learn more (and we think you should), check out our guide to flounder fishing at the end of this article.

Louisiana Flounder

Although nearly 20 species of flounder are found within the Gulf of Mexico, in Louisiana, any flounder you catch is almost exclusively going to be the southern flounder.

This flounder species has been found in pure freshwater 100 miles up the Mississippi River, far north of the Gulf of Mexico. However, you’re more likely to catch them in numbers in saltwater and brackish estuaries along the coast.

While male southern flounder spend the majority of their time offshore, females move inshore during the spawning season from October to December. You’re most likely to catch them in the mornings before 9 a.m. as water temperatures hit 56°F.

Southern Flounder Diets

Once southern flounders reach about 6 inches in length, they primarily feed on shrimp and fish such as croakers, mullet, and anchovies.
Depending on the location and the season, flounder diets may vary, which can help anglers determine which bait or lure is best that day.

An interesting note is that even as flounders grow larger, they feast on the same-size fish and shrimp, unlike most predators in their ecosystems that key on larger prey.

How to Find Flounder

Flounder can also be challenging to locate as they tend to scatter over wide areas. When searching for flounder, it’s important to consider three things: current, structure, and migratory habits.

Flounder are an ambush predator. Rather than chasing down prey, they use their surroundings and camouflage-like skin pattern to blend into the environment while waiting for unsuspecting baitfish or shrimp to come along.

In prime ambush locations, a concentration of flounder can be found. These locations include points with a high current, choke points and channels, and canals.

Current

Flounder prefer a strong current, as the water will bring the prey to them. Therefore, channels, inlets, and passes with strong winds or currents are excellent locations to look for flounder.

Structure

Flounder prefer submerged structures such as rock piles, trees, plants, reefs, sandbars, and mangrove root systems. A flounder will wait for unsuspecting prey to swim by its hiding spot before striking.

Migratory Habits

The time of year place a significant factor in where you are likely to find flounder.

During the summer, they migrate. During the fall and winter, they spawn.

Anglers who learn the patterns may be able to catch flounder transitioning to a new location. They typically travel in schools, making flounder easier to catch when you find them.

How to Catch Flounder

You should be set with a 7-foot medium-action fishing rod with a bait caster or a spinning reel. A 20-pound braid is the preferred mainline, while most anglers will use a 20-pound test fluorocarbon leader to attach the rig.

Most terminal rigs used to catch flounder will place your bait near the bottom. Some popular bottom-fishing setups for flounder include the Texas, Fish Finder and High/Low rigs.

Soft plastic lures, DOA Shrimp, jigheads with willow blades and Rat-L-Trap lures are popular artificial.

Some anglers like to fish for flounder with a simple cork rig, with shrimp or mullet for bait.

We go into much more detail in our full how-to guide to fishing for flounder in the Gulf and Southern Atlantic Ocean. It’s linked at the bottom of this article.

When to Catch Flounder

The best time of year to fish for flounder is from October through December during the spawning season. This is when large schools of flounder will transition between offshore and nearshore habitats.

Time of day

The hours shortly after dawn are best for catching flounder. Time your day for an early morning rising tide and work plastics in the shallows, and you’re more likely to find plenty of success.

The evening hours surrounding dusk are another great time to hit the water in search of flounder.

More Flounder Fishing Tips

Here are a few more suggestions to follow before we point you to the best fishing spots.

1: Focus on areas with high concentrations of bait, strong current, and good cover for flounder.
2: Flounder spook easily, so try not to make a splash.
3: Pay attention to seasonal movements.
4: Always target the bottom.

Best Flounder Fishing in Louisiana

Louisiana boasts an excellent flounder population for local and visiting anglers to enjoy.

The following locations are the very best places in the state to catch flounder.

Venice

Venice is the place to go if you’re looking to get an early start on flounder season.

Try the first and second spillways on the west side of Southwest Pass. Here, the strong current creates the idyllic flounder location a short ride from the launch.

While the female flounder are headed for open water to begin spawning season, anglers can get out in the middle of October and rip lips for flatfish from sun up until sometime around mid-morning.

The first spillway is about 14 miles south of the jump, a popular location for redfish and speckled trout in Venice, while the second spillway, which has a slightly slower current, is 7.4 miles further.

With the stiff current and varying water clarity and depth, anglers using jigs tipped with shrimp and fish finder rigs will have the highest chance of success in Venice.

Lake Pontchartrain

While many see Lake Pontchartrain’s fall and winter fishing as blue catfish and bull reds, the flounder fishing during the cooler months is second to none.

The I-10 hump is an excellent location to target flounders in Lake Pontchartrain. Boat anglers often anchor 20 to 30 feet off the bridge pilings, cast into the structure, and work their jig, lure, or bait out.

Another solid location is the train bridge between the north draw and north shore. Here, the shell-bottomed drop-off provides the perfect location for flounder to ambush any prey washing towards the tracks.

Anglers can also use plastics similar to what they would use to fish for speckled trout, simply targeting the lower portions of the water column and bouncing the lure off the shell or sandy bottom where the flounder are lurking.

It is not uncommon for speckled trout and flounder to be caught together at many locations throughout Lake Pontchartrain if the conditions are right.

Calcasieu Lake

North of Cameron, Calcasieu Lake is a great late summer and early fall flounder fishing location. Particularly in the Cameron ship channel, the flounder population is dense and full of large, hungry flatfish, looking to gobble up mud minnows, shrimp, and mullet.

With plenty of underwater drop-offs and ledges, the lake’s southern end funnels many of the flounder into a smaller area rich with underwater cover.

Anglers looking to maximize their time in the water should target a falling tide and a cold front, the perfect opportunity for the flounder to school up and feed.

When angling for flounder in Lake Calcasieu, anglers will often use Gulp! brand swimming mullets in a variety of colors, or DOA shrimp, for a more active approach to catching these Frisbee-shaped gamefish.

There are a select few locations where anglers can target the flounder from shore, particularly in the lake’s southernmost portion near Cameron. Bank fishing here using fish finder, Texas, and high/low rigs with mullet and shrimp can yield high results.

Lake Charles system

The marshland of Lake Charles is an excellent location for flounder throughout spring and early summer.

The Lake Charles area is one of the best places to work swimbaits in search of flounder. Anglers can target various fish species by trolling the cuts and cut-offs inside the marshes.

Constantly trolling and shifting positions throughout your time on Lake Charles in search of flounder provides some of the best opportunities for find fish. However, two tactics help you increase your chances of catching flounder at this location.

The first is paying attention to satellite imagery, looking for where water flows between two pieces of land or marsh that look like they should be connected. This indicates a strong current, likely a channel that funnels bait fish where flounder likely will lay up as an ambush site.

Staying out of these cuts or channels by anchoring your boat at the mouth and casting into these spots is a great way to hook into a flounder without spooking a whole school of them.

The second tactic is to chase birds. Flounder, like any predatory fish, are suckers for an easy meal. Schooling shrimp or minnows provide an excellent opportunity to hook into redfish and trout alongside flounder, and the birds will point the way.

No matter where you fish in the Lake Charles system, Gulp! swimbaits and DOA shrimp, both tipped with real shrimp, are excellent lures to target flounder.

Myrtle Grove Canal

Often overlooked for larger, bigger-name fishing locations such as Buras, Venice, and Empire, Myrtle Grove provide some of the best coastal fishing in southern Louisiana.

Its flounder population often goes unnoticed with a solid population of redfish and speckled trout.

The Wilkerson Canal provides access to the Gulf of Mexico and Barataria Bay and is a great starting spot.

From shore, anglers can catch everything, including sheepshead, cobia, black drum, redfish, trout, and (of course) flounder.

Even anglers who bring boats often work the shorelines of the canal, reeling in a myriad of fish without ever straying more than a mile from the dock.

Here, one of the most effective setups is often cocahoe minnows under a cork or on a fishfinder rig.

The middle of the water column allows the full gamut of fish species to strike.
Those closely targeting flounder can capitalize on the bottom of the water column using the Rat-L-Traps and plastic mullet or shrimp swimbaits tipped with shrimp.

Myrtle Grove is located south of New Orleans.

Sabine Lake and Johnson Bayou Beach

Sabine Lake yields some excellent flounder fishing during the fall during rising or slack tides.

In this large saltwater bay on the Louisiana-Texas border, anglers can rip into speckled trout, redfish, and flounder as the weather cools.

The Louisiana side of the lake provides miles of flats and marsh rich with shad, shrimp, mullet, and minnows, all of which are favorites of hungry flounder.

Locations such as Willow and Bridge bayous, Blue Buck Point, and Coffee Ground Cove make for great fishing.

Here, anglers can use cocahoe minnow jigs, finger mullet on a Texas rig, and even quarter-ounce jig heads with a plastic grub. Then, tip any of those lures with fresh shrimp to snag a monster flounder.

Additionally, nearby Madame Johnson Bayou offers some excellent shore fishing for flounder during the fall from its beach. This Cameron Parish fishing hole yields trout and redfish regularly, but during the fall, the north shore produces some excellent flounder.

Constance Beach

Probably one of the most overlooked and under-fished locations in all of Louisiana, this stretch of lonely shoreline close to the Texas border provides some of the best flounder fishing in the Southeast.

Even anglers from Texas will make the trip just to hit the water for the copious amounts of flatfish at Constance Beach, which is on the open Gulf just east of Sabine Lake.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers built rock piles along the beach to combat erosion. These rocky structures look like giant dashes in satellite images and run parallel close to the coast, providing both a break in current and a sanctuary in the rocks that attract flounder.

During the peak fall season, morning high tides have seen more than their share of anglers limit out on flounder in under two hours.

Bottom-fishing setups such as the high/low, Texas, and Carolina rigs yield plenty of flounder when the current is strong.

However, anglers looking to cover more water using swimbaits will find success with artificial shrimp and mullet lures tipped with natural shrimp.

Delacroix Island

Although fall tends to be the best time to fish for flounder, there are few locations better to target flatfish than the marshes around Delacroix Island.

With various tidal movements, cooling weather, and varying pressure systems, the passes, cuts, and cut-offs around Delacroix Island make for a premier flounder fishing hole.

Rich with mud minnows and finger mullet, the strong current makes for excellent bottom fishing for flounder.

Anglers can find some of the best fishing around Delacroix Island around jetties. Because flounder are not built to travel long distances quickly, they will often lay up in large schools out of the current behind jetties.

Similar to angling in bayous, areas with mixing tides, points, eddies, and other breaks in the current (along with schools of bait) likely mean that flounder are nearby.

Additionally, the east side of Black Bay has oyster reefs, bayous, and marsh that anglers can try. Successfully targeting flounder in Delacroix means searching for the intersection of funnels, bait, and current.

Summary

Flounder are a popular salt and brackish water gamefish in Louisiana. While this article provided some of the best locations in the state, there are plenty of lesser-known spots where flounder also can be caught.

With the right tackle and techniques, anglers can increase their chances of hooking into one of these delicious flatfish.

Catch More Flounder

For a more comprehensive look on how to angle for flounder, please see our more comprehensive guide to catching flounder in the Gulf and Southern states.