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How to Catch Flounder - Fishermen's Best Ideas!

Hevy Dee from Texas says Flounder Catchin'
Don't know if it will help, but flounder are both scent and sight feeders. Yes, you can catch them on artificials. The water must be in decent shape and you have to let them "have the bait" for a few seconds before settin; the hook. My fave artificial baits for flounder include 1) Triple Chance spoon, gold, 1/4 oz. You cannot fish this in the wind. Has to be still or with the wind. 2) Small yellow twin-tail plastics (Any color may do but rig it on a 1/8 oz jig head, 1/4 if having difficulty casting). 3) Live shrimp and/or MudMinnows (don't know what these are called on the East Coast) will also work. Think about how a flounder strikes. She sits on the bottom waiting on an ambush. Your bait must be worked within distance and the flounder will rise up, gather the bait in their narrow, toothy mouth and will not take it in until they settle back to the bottom. I do not persue them as much these days but that is how we used to do it. Slow everything down. Their are also "runs" in the spring and fall down here. Always triggered by changes in water temp. The fall run is the best. Enough about flounder, Later.
Hevy Dee
Bobby from north carolina says flounder
When i fish for flounder i use mud minnows. the best way to get catch this type of bait is with about Floundera 4' cast net. i hook them thru the eyes the bait stays on better. i catch alot of flounder with this type of bait. the type of rig i use is simple to make. the rig looks like a bottom fishing rig. the type were the weight is at the bottom. but the line were the hooks goes is about 12" long. the best place i have found to catch alot of flounder is the inlets. be carefull when fishing and out going tide. sometimes you. the cape fear river is one place were big flounder are caught. a flounder will bite the bait and hang on for a ride. it feels like you have seaweed on your line. like dead weight. once that happens, i let a little line out then i set the hook. i use a rod with a sensitive tip, sometimes you can feel the flounder bite. alot of people around here have started using the power baits, i have not tried them. hope this helps you good luck.
Mojo from TX says Flounder
Flounder are very structure oriented fish they like to lie in the mud or sand at the bottom and attack targets of oppurtunity. Much like a freshwater large mouth bass. I fish mud minnows or finger mullet on a Carolina rig and I use soft plastics on a light jig head 1/8 to 1/4 oz. I do best with curl tail grubs. My faviorite colors are anything with chartruse but Pumpkin w/chartruse tail seems the best. Fish slowly and deliberately allowing the fish ample time to take the bait.
Good luck!
Steve from TX says
TERRY AND BUTCH are right.. flounder sit on the bottom and wait for abait fish to swim over them then attach the two best methods I have found are .. bait.. mullet shrimp or mud fish.. with a foot leader then and swivel barrel.. NEVER SNAP.. THEN A BARREL WEIGHT. 1/2 OZ. reel slowly stopping frequently or put the rod tip down left the rod with out reeling and then reel in the slack as you lower the tip the flounder can hit at any time. so dont se the hook.. click the reel into free spool and cound to 30 the reel in the slack and set the hook.. if you use a number 1 or 2 wide gap you will be realy impressed. METHOD two.. is the same bait set up with out the weight. then from the barrel swivel.. tie another leader twice as long as the first with the bait.. and attach a flounder pounder or shrimp tail jig with 1/4 oz lead head,, and fish the same way or consistant retrieve slowely thought slowly.. be ready to give slack.. the following colors are the ones I have found to be most effective. not in any order.. rootbeer with fire tail.. white with fire tail.. chartrouse with fire tail.. strawberry with white tail.. GREAT LUCK AND GOOOOOD EATING..
Saltfisher from SC says flounder
I am no expert on flounder but i have caught a few. if you have ever worm fished for bass------that is how a flounder bites--------i use a carolina rig ( 1/4 or 1/2 oz weight--a swivel--about 12-18 in leader and a circle hook-----use live shrimp, mullet or mud minnows for bait.-------cast out and slowly drag baits across bottom--whe a flounder hits*-------the bait stops-there is usally no pulling back or runing off--whenever i feel the bait stop--i wait a min and see if anything pulls back--if it does then set the hook ---i fish areas about 3 ft deep with lots of structure around--i lose a lot of rigs but also catch a lot of flounder------i have also caught a lot of them around rock piles----i have found that low tide areas seem to be better than flooded areas of high tide-
good luck
steve from n.j says go to the experts
I"m not trying to be smart but flounder are a rather simple fish since you are from pa i guess the flatties you will be fishing for would be the same as in n.j. either pick up a copy of the fisherman mag,to see wher they are getting them and where .or you can go on one or two trips on a head boat and see what they do .we have allways had luck with a minnie and astrip of squid .even bucktail jigged of the bottom work .while on the drift you want to either stick the rod in the rod holder and let the motion of the boat jig your bait or you can jig it by hand ,you definately want to on the drift witch usualy will work wher you see a whole fleet of boats doing the same....good luck !
Specktackler from TEXAS says Flounder
Capt. Skip James and Joe "The Jettyman" Persohn out of Sabine Pass, are two of the best flounder guides on the gulf coast. They use small curl-tail grubs in white or chart. on an 1/8 oz. jig head. The secret is to tip the jig with a peeled, fresh dead, shrimp tail. Fish with light line 8 or 10 lb. test on light spinning tackle. Fish very slow and count to five before seting the hook. Be patient.
A Davis from DE says Flounder Catching Fool!
I have three words for you: Patience, patience, patience. While, as everyone has said, flounder are relatively simple fish, they require some finesse to catch consistently. Finding the fish is your firsttask. Drifting in channels in the early to late spring usually produces good catches. Later, as the water warms, they often roam the shallows, even right up on the surf in some places. Drifting is usually the most effective means of catching fish, though I have caught flounder casting from an anchored boat, and with a dead line from an anchored boat. I have even caught them on light tackle walking in the surf. If you catch a fish or two on a drift or have several bites, retrace that drift. If you are fishing where there are flounder feeding, you're still not guaranteed of sucess. This is when your skills and equipment is important. Use a sensitive rod, but one with enough backbone to lift the fish off the bottom. I use non-stretch line like Dacron or braid to increase sensitivity and eliminate stretch on the hook set. Always be aware of what you feel at the other end of the line, just a heavy weight may mean you have a flounder "sucking " on your bait. Flounder are not often "bangers" like trout or rock. Their bite is often little more than "tap/tap, tap/tap" You may even just recognize th at there was something different about that particular piece of bottom. NEVER set the hook on a flounder immediately! If you are drifting, let out line to keep the bait in the fish's face. If you are casting, let your line go dead. You will KNOW when to set the hook. It is almost (but not quite) like worm fishing for bass . My best advice is to find a partner in the area who already knows how and where to catch good numbers of flounder. Ask around at bait & tackle shops. Then learn first hand.
Gary from New York says Flounder
To confuse things here in New York we have both flounder and Fluke, the basic difference is that Fluke species are much more predatory, grow larger up here to 10-15 lbs. on occasion, take artificials, caught mostly at the drift,have a nice simple set of teeth and are caught in the warmer months May until October the opposite description describes the flounder. All the posts have really hit the nail on the head with these fish and how and when to get them. The fellow from Deleware I thought covered the bases perfectly. Like all fishing first zero in on their habitat , shore , rocks, embankments, inlets, shallows and the like. When you know where they are likely to be that will then tell you the type of bait to use. In most cases, these flatfish are after small baitfish waiting for them to swim by. I have seen them in an aquarium all you see sticking up is a pair of eyes and they camoflage beautifully. The way they bite is exactly the tap tap type and then they hold on or hang on the line. When you slowly lift the rod tip you feel the weight and some additonal taps Dropping back works for me whether I am fishing in a shallow bay or in 50' in the ocean, the last few years we are having an excellent run of flatfish off the beach. The only problem with a wind you need 6-8 oz of lead to hold bottom this greatly impacts your hookups. Don't forget the net these fish do a fair amount of head shaking particularly as they get near the boat or you. They are sluggish fighters(you can't change nature and body composition)Up were in Long Island there resurgence has literally put party/charter boats and bait dealers back in business) but they keep you occupied and well fed.
Charles from NC says One best bait.
I don't specifically fish for flounder anymore, but I have for many years before now. The best bait I have ever used or seen is live shrimp. I have seen so many times, a bunch of folks will be fishing (not catching), and somebody comes up with a bucket of live shrimp and immediately starts catching fish. Usually if they won't bite live shrimp, they ain't "hongry". I found that using a bait feeder technique works best on flounder. If you are drifting in a boat, keep the line in your hooked finger (to feel) and if you feel anything at all, release it and watch the line. Give him enough line to hang himself and use your fishing wits to figure out when to hook-set. Play all bumps like a flounder. Better to look stupid hook-setting an air flounder than miss a 7 pounder. If you are bank fishing, allow the bait to move, either with the current or just drag it very slowly across the bottom. All else I said above remains the same if you feel a bump. You are in a good state for flounder fishing. Good luck and good fishing,
Thomas from Texas says:
Welcome to the art (or sport) of flounder fishing! You're probably doing everything right except waiting long enough to set the hook. When you feel them messing with your bait, hold everything right there. Let that rascal chew on it. Give hime as much slack as he wants. Every now and then check for tautness but dont pull the bait away. After you feel him swim off (only about 10-15 ft) and settle down then count to 30. Now set the hook and hopefuly she will be hooked. If you drag it to your feet or your boat and then it gets off, jig around in the spot it let go. It will probably still be there and bite again. This is true for live or artificial baits.
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From the Texas Parks and Wildlife Dept. web site.....

How to Catch Flounder

Flounder are taken by rod and reel or by gig. When fishing with rod and reel, light tackle offers both the greatestsport and best chance for catching flounder. Both artificial lures and natural bait can be used. Over barren bottoms,leaded plastic worms (worm jigs) are often very effective. In heavily vegetated areas, shallow-running spoons arebest. Flounder prefer live to dead bait. Live shrimp retrieved slowly along the bottom often produce excellent results.Killifish (referred to locally as mud minnows) fished in a similar fashion, is good bait. These fish can often be takenin large numbers with the cast or minnow seine. Although many are taken by rod and reel, "floundering" or gigging offers the best challenge for this species. Theflounder is vulnerable to this technique because it often enters the shallows at night to feed. Both the skills of theangler and the hunter are called for here. Lanterns are used in searching for flounder and gigs ranging from single-pronged to modified hay forks are used tospear the fish. The anglers wade quietly along the shallows looking for flounder. Once the flounder is within the lightfrom the lantern, normally it will not move, affording the fisher a chance to "gig" the fish. Although this sounds like asure-fire method, many fish are missed because they go undetected until they swim away or because of inaccurategigging by an overanxious angler. The more sophisticated flounder fisher may mount his lanterns (or battery-powered lamps) on the front of aflat-bottomed skiff. The skiff is then poled through the water in search of fish or is pushed by a small air motor.Floundering from a boat is much easier than wading. It allows the angler to cover more area and search bottomsthat are too soft for wading.

When and Where to Catch...

Although flounder can be taken by rod and reel in almost any portion of the bay, it is more often productive to fisharound jetties or oyster reefs that extend from shore into the bay. Flounder do not swim continuously so they tendto accumulate in such places in their search for food. During the fall, when flounder are moving to the Gulf forspawning, the best catches are made in the channels and passes leading to the Gulf. During the spring, wadinganglers work the edges of channels, such as the Intracoastal Waterway, as the fish are moving back into the bays. Floundering is best during the migration from October to December. Hundreds of lanterns can often be seen inand around the pass areas during this period, as the fishers wade through the shallows in search of fish. During the spring and summer the best catches with gigs are made in the back bays. Areas with cord grass(Spartina alterniflora) along the shoreline are good producers, and a bottom that is slightly silty or muddy generallyis better than a hard sand bottom. The mouths of small bayous and sloughs often yield flounder. Since water clarity is very important to the success of any floundering trip, floundering should be done on calmnights. When fishing on windy nights, anglers should try to work small protected bays and shorelines. The best catches are made during an incoming tide and on dark nights as opposed to moonlit nights. However, donot hesitate to flounder on an outgoing tide. During a falling tide trying farther offshore in water one to two feetdeep or around offshore sandbars is often more productive. Avoid nights when the tides are abnormally high. Stingrays also frequent the shallows at night. They are flat and can sometimes be mistaken for a flounder orstepped on by the unwary. The inexperienced flounder fisher should make certain of what he has gigged beforeretrieving it. If in doubt, simply hold the creature on the bottom with the gig and wait for the water to settle beforeatte mpting to retrieve your catch. A multi-pronged gig is helpful in such cases, because the catch can be liftedunassisted from the bottom.

Preparation and Eating...

The flounder's reputation as table fare is unsurpassed in Texas. Remember that the quality of any seafood is largelydependent on how it is handled between capture and preparation. Remove the viscera and gills from the flounderand place the fish on ice as soon as possible. Cleaning beyond this point depends on how the fish will be cooked. Flounder can be prepared in many ways. Broiling the fish with butter, lemon juice and favorite seasoning ispopular. They also may be baked or fried. The gourmet likes his flounder stuffed with crabmeat

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