The redfish is a special species. Also known as the red drum, puppy drum, spottail bass or red, it is commonly found in the Atlantic along the Gulf of Mexico, and Venice, Lousiana is known as the Redfish capital!

So how do we catch them? We first need to understand where they live, the best baits to catch them with, and the proper methods to use.

Where They Live

Redfish thrive in the marsh and coastal waters of South Louisiana where they can be fished year round. Depending on the season, they can be found anywhere from oyster bars, creeks, rivers, or even deep canals can serve as a habitat for these fish. The smaller fish are known to school a lot more than the bigger fish, so you have a better chance of catching them. Texas, Florida, and Louisiana are the top three places to find this special breed of fish.


Redfish are not elaborate eaters, but they can be caught with bait. Bait used can either be natural or artificial. Natural bait includes shrimp, mullet or mud minnows. Artificial bait includes plugs and jigs. However, the best artificial bait for Reds will resemble minnows and live shrimp.

How To Catch Them

Redfish usually rely on their sense of sight, smell, and hearing to catch food for themselves. As mentioned before, they are often found in schools together for the purpose of easy breeding. By using cut baits (the natural baits mentioned above) you have the advantage of attracting redfish as the cut bait does not swim away, allowing the redfish to use its senses to locate the bait.

You must be careful though, as birds like gulls and terns are interested in catching redfish as well and may get them before you do. Ensure you do not use cut bait when such diving birds are around.

You can use a boat to fish for them in shallow water. A normal hook or a circle hook can be used, but you must set the hook properly. You have to leave the rod in the holder with a loosened drag as this is the key to using cut bait properly.

If you do not have a boat or are unsure of how to properly catch Redfish, you can contact a professional Redfish charter in Venice, Lousiana.

Whether you wish to fish for them in the Gulf of Mexico, Louisiana or Texas, understanding their habitat and using the methods highlighted above will give you a much better chance of hunting down this special class of fish.