Flounder Fishing Tips

By Andy Whitcomb

Nov 04, 2020

Flounder are ambush predators lurking near the bottom. Their fall relocation can mean a great fishing opportunity. 

Flounder are one of those strange looking flat fish like halibut, sole, or turbot. If you look up the verb form of the word, one might think this fish would be clumsy and struggle to swim, but that is not the case. It is a very efficient ambush predator, capable of using its entire surface area to bend a rod. All lists of flounder fishing tips involve incorporating their main habitat location: the bottom.

Fall fishing can be one of the better times regarding when to fish for flounder because this normally inshore fish begins to migrate to deeper water in cooler months. One might think that heavy weights or lures would be required for deeper water but most flounder fishing tips from experts suggest using weights that are “just heavy enough” to reach the bottom in whatever the current conditions of, well, the current. Too heavy, and you risk snagging, not feeling the bite, or not working the lure effectively. A cast or two and you should know if you are feeling contact with the bottom or if you need to upgrade your weight.

During warmer months, shore anglers will be able to find good flounder fishing in shallow estuaries and bays, with bridges and piers being a good place to start. Kayak anglers will have an advantage over shore anglers in the fall because vertical jigging is one of the best answers for how to fish for flounder. The kayak is a handy vessel for covering deeper water and setting up a good drift with a bouncing vertical jig or bait.

Flounder fishing rigs for bait, especially live bait, should include a circle hook and again, a weight just heavy enough to get it down and hold it there. A swivel above the bait will help minimize line twist complications. Medium sized fishing combos with 10-12 pound line should be sufficient because they don’t reach the massive sizes of their pacific cousin, the halibut.

When you are picking up your fishing license and trying to pick up additional hot local flounder fishing tips or lures, be sure to pick up the state regulations too because seasons and limits vary greatly. For example, Texas regulations show a limit of 5 flounder over 15” until November 1, when it drops to 2. North Carolina flounder fishing season, however, closed October 15th, and New Jersey’s season ended in September.

Andy Whitcomb
Andy Whitcomb
Andy is an outdoor writer (http://www.justkeepreeling.com/) and stressed-out Dad has contributed over 380 blogs to takemefishing.org since 2011. Born in Florida, but raised on banks of Oklahoma farm ponds, he now chases pike, smallmouth bass, and steelhead in Pennsylvania. After earning a B.S. in Zoology from OSU, he worked in fish hatcheries and as a fisheries research technician at OSU, Iowa State, and Michigan State.