There’s nothing new about the notable crossover between largemouth bass fishing and coastal fishing for redfish and speckled trout, but if there’s one thing saltwater anglers can take from their freshwater counterparts, it’s diversity.
Visit the takeoff for practically any bass tournament and the average angler will have at least a half-dozen different baits tied onto the rods laying across their deck. By the end of a tournament day, it’s not surprising for a pile of 10-15 rods to all have seen some action.
Depth, water clarity, forage matching, sun angles, fish disposition—the list goes on. Many factors combine to create multiple scenarios requiring multiple looks.
On the inshore saltwater scene, such bait diversity is far less commonplace, but Louisiana Delta guide Capt. David Iverson said coastal anglers will do themselves a favor by taking off the blinders and fishing the conditions.
In short: keep a selection of artificials handy and don’t get locked into a particular technique.
“When you’re in an area where you think there are some fish, you can’t just assume that you’ve got the bait they want,” Iverson said. “You need to be ready to throw some different baits.
“If someone starts catching fish and you have several people in the boat, somebody needs to start throwing something else. You can’t assume, even if you’re catching them pretty well, that what you’re throwing is the ultimate bait.”
For redfish, Iverson will keep a YUM Mud Minnow on a Bomber Saltwater Grade Shad Head jig for casting, but he’ll also rig this same bait under a Bomber Paradise Popper XTreme cork rig for a pop-and-chug presentation.
Notably, if the reds start nipping at his cork, Iverson takes this as a sign that the fish are ready for a topwater presentation. Slinging a Heddon Saltwater Spook or a Bomber Saltwater Grade Badonk-A-Donk topwater can turn that exuberance into a bent rod.
If the fish won’t hit a topwater—but Iverson sees them pushing water and chasing baitfish—he might shift gears and throw a gold spoon or a Bomber Redfish Rouser spinnerbait.
Options are the key to covering the playing field and converting more of your opportunities into catches.