Big night bite!

Bit speckled trout do a great deal of their feeding in low-light conditions at dawn and dusk, but fishing at night may be your best chance of hooking up with a real trophy.

Try a trip after dark for specks

Fishermen catch speckled trout throughout the day. but the majority are caught early in the morning and late in the afternoon. Often overlooked by many anglers is the night bite. Trout will feed throughout the night during the summer when conditions are right.

Clear, full-moon conditions with little wind are the most advantageous for night fishing. Scout out for clear water and areas sheltered from the wind. Capt. George Beckwith will slip into the river on moon-lit nights to target gator trout lurking the shallows.

“Quiet, full-moon nights are ideal for night fishing for trout,” he said. “We slip onto flats with three foot of water casting dark-colored Zara spooks.”

Night time is the right time for bigger trout

Dark-colored topwater and sub-surface lures with rattles are preferred for night fishing, but live bait is very productive as well. Night conditions offers prime opportunities for landing a gator trout, which feed more at night than during daylight hours.

Trout are sight feeders, and the diminishing light when the sun drops below the horizon can affect that ability. Some coastal areas have a fair collection of waterfront communities with docks lining the shoreline. Many docks are lighted, attracting baitfish, shrimp, and crabs. Trout slip into these areas and ambush prey dancing in the artificially-lit waters. Few anglers are out at night, and the light pressure from boaters and anglers is also beneficial. Locate docks adjacent to deeper water on or near drop offs. These docks will be more productive.

Fishermen who target specks at night can take note of methods used by freshwater anglers to catch a creel full of crappie. Lights mounted on the boat via generator or from 12 volt sources can create a feeding frenzy.


About Jeff Burleson 1302 Articles
Jeff Burleson is a native of Lumberton, N.C., who lives in Myrtle Beach, S.C. He graduated from N.C. State University with a degree in fisheries and wildlife sciences and is a certified biologist and professional forester for Southern Palmetto Environmental Consulting.