Texas Beach Sport Fish – What You Need to Know

If you’re looking to catch a big one on the Texas coast, you’ll want to know a little bit about the different types of fish that call the Gulf home. In this blog post, we’ll give you the lowdown on some of the most popular Texas beach sport fish, what they look like, and how to catch them.

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Whether you’re a Texas native or visiting our great state, you may be wondering what kind of fish you can catch while spending time at our beaches. With more than 3,000 miles of coastline, Texas offers a wide variety of beaches and fishing opportunities.

Before heading to the beach, be sure to check the Texas Coastal Fisheries Division’s weekly Fishing Report for the latest updates on where to find fish and what’s biting. The report includes information on red tide and other environmental conditions that may affect your fishing trip.

Now let’s take a look at some of the most popular sport fish found in Texas waters.

-Red Drum: Also known as redfish or channel bass, red drum are one of the most popular game fish in Texas. They can be found in both salt and fresh water and are known for their fighting ability and delicious taste. Red drum must be at least 18 inches to keep, and the daily bag limit is 5 fish per person.

-Speckled Trout: Speckled trout are a favorite among Texas anglers and can be caught in both salt and fresh water. These fish are often found near reefs, drop-offs, and other structures in bays and coastal waterways. The minimum size limit for speckled trout is 15 inches, with a daily bag limit of 5 fish per person.

-Black Bass: There are three types of black bass found in Texas waters – largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, and Guadalupe bass. Largemouth bass are the most popular among anglers, and can be found in lakes and rivers across the state. Smallmouth bass tend to be found in clearer water with rocky substrates along river banks and ledges. Guadalupe bass are only found in Central Texas rivers and streams. Black bass must be at least 14 inches to keep, with a daily bag limit of 5 fish per person (only 1 fish over 24 inches).

Other popular sport fish that can be caught off Texas beaches include flounder, sand trout, whiting, croaker, red snapper (in federal waters), kingfish (in federal waters), Spanish mackerel (in federal waters), sheepshead, drum (black/red), jack crevalle, tarpon (in federal waters), sharks (in federal waters), rays (in federal waters), gafftop sail catfish, barracuda (in federal waters), dolphin (mahi mahi) (in federal waters), wahoo (in federal waters), tuna (in federal waters), marlin (in federal waters). For more information on sport fishing in Texas, visit http://www.tpwd

Beach Sport Fish in Texas

If you love to fish, you’re in luck because Texas has some of the best fishing spots in the country. But before you go, there are a few things you should know. In this article, we’ll give you the lowdown on Texas beach sport fish.


Sheepshead are a schooling fish that thrive in nearshore coastal waters with hard substrates like oyster reefs, jetties, and shipwrecks. They have 5 to 7 vertical black stripes running down their sides, which give them a hunting-like appearance and their nickname “convict fish.” These bars are most visible on young sheepshead. As they age, the lines tend to fade and their bodies become a bluish-grey color. Their bellies are usually white. Adult sheepshead range from 12 to 20 inches long and can weigh up to 10 pounds.

Sheepshead spawn in spring and early summer. The male uses his mouth to create a small nest in the crevices of hard substrate where the female will lay her eggs. After hatching, Larvae drift in the plankton for around two weeks before they settle out on bottom substrate as juveniles.

Sheepshead are opportunistic feeders that feast on crabs, shrimp, mollusks, and small fishes. Look for sheepshead around areas with lots of hiding spots like wrecks, docks, jetties, and reefs. They are most active during the day but will feed at night if given the opportunity.

The Texas record for heaviest sheepshead caught on rod & reel is 9 pounds 4 ounces, caught at Galveston in 1987.


Flounder is a popular food fish found in shallow coastal waters. It is a member of the family Pleuronectidae and is closely related to soles and turbots. The name “flounder” comes from an Old English word meaning “swimmer” or “flowrider”.

Flounder are flattened fish, with both the left and right sides of the body being equally developed. They can vary in color, but are usually light brown or greenish-brown, with dark spots. They have both eyes on the same side of the head (right side up when swimming) and their mouths are located at the bottom of the head.

Flounder are found in all U.S. coastal waters and can grow to over two feet in length. The largest flounder ever caught weighed in at 24 pounds!

Flounder are bottom-dwellers and use their camouflage skills to ambush prey. Their diet consists mainly of small fish, shrimp, crabs, squid, and other invertebrates.

Flounder are a popular game fish and are considered excellent table fare. They can be caught by hook and line, gigged, or netted. When fishing for flounder, live bait is often used as they are attracted to movement. Common baits include shrimp, minnows, and crabs.

If you’re lucky enough to catch a flounder (or two), be sure to check out our delicious Recipes section for some great ideas on how to prepare your catch!


Redfish, also called red drums, are one of the most popular fish to catch in Texas. They’re fun to catch and good to eat. You can find redfish in the surf, near piers, jetties and in the bay. They like to eat crabs and shrimp.

In Texas, the bag limit for redfish is five per day per person. The minimum size limit is 18 inches. That means the fish must measure at least 18 inches from tip of nose to fork of tail.

Speckled Trout

Speckled trout, also known as spotted seatrout, is a common name for a group of five closely related species of fish in the family Sciaenidae. The five species are found in the waters off the coasts of Florida, Texas and Mexico. The name “speckled trout” is used most often in reference to the cynoscion nebulosus, which is the most common and widespread of the five species. The other four species are Cynoscion arenarius (sand seatrout or sand trout), Cynoscion nothus (spotted Weakfish), Cynoscion virescens (silver seatrout) and Cynoscion regalis (weakfish).

The speckled trout is a popular game fish due to its tasty flesh and its willingness to bite on bait and lures. These fish can be found in bays, estuaries, lagoons and nearshore waters along the Gulf Coast. They are most commonly found in water that is less than 20 feet deep, but they have been known to inhabit waters up to 200 feet deep. Speckled trout typically weigh between one and four pounds, but fish over 20 pounds have been caught.

The best time to fish for speckled trout is during the fall and winter months when they are moving into deeper water to spawn. The peak season for speckled trout fishing generally runs from October through December. During this time of year, these fish can be caught using a variety of techniques including live bait fishing, lure fishing and fly fishing.

Black Drum

Black drum (Pogonias cromis) are usually olive-gray to black on the back, sides, and upper half of the tail. The belly is white. Young fish often have 5-9 horizontal dark brown or black stripes on their sides. These stripes may fade as the fish matures. Black drum have two barbels (whisker-like feelers) on the lower jaw and a chin with very small scales.

The heavy, muscular body of black drum is disk-shaped and slightly compressed. The terminal (end) mouth has thick lips but no barbels. Black drum have a weak swim bladder that can make a croaking noise when the fish is pulled from deep water or brought to the surface too quickly. Drum can live for 50 years or more and reach weights in excess of 100 pounds, but fish over 30 pounds are considered rare these days due to intensive fishing pressure.

Tips for Catching Beach Sport Fish

Texas beach sport fish are some of the most popular fish to catch. They’re also some of the most challenging. If you’re new to fishing, or just looking to brush up on your skills, here are a few tips to help you catch beach sport fish.

The Right Bait

Many anglers don’t realize that the type of bait you use can make a big difference in whether or not you catch fish. The wrong bait won’t attract fish, and even if it does, they may not bite. Some fish are attracted to live bait, while others prefer artificial lures. And, different types of fish like different kinds of bait. For example, redfish love shrimp, while sea trout prefer mullet.

When choosing bait, it’s important to consider the type of fish you’re trying to catch and what they like to eat. If you’re not sure what kind of bait to use, ask a local fishing guide or someone at the tackle shop. They’ll be able to give you some good advice on what works in the area.

The Right Equipment

Whether you are just getting started or are an experienced angler, you need the right equipment to be successful in catching beach sport fish. Here are some tips to help you get started:

-Choose a rod and reel that match the type of fish you plan on catching. For example, if you want to catch smaller fish, choose a light rod and reel. If you are targeting larger fish, go with a heavier rod and reel.
-Pick the right bait. Again, this depends on the type of fish you plan on catching. Some common baits used for catching beach sport fish include shrimp, crabs, squid, and cut bait.
-You will also need some basic tackle, including hooks, sinkers, leaders, and line.

With the right equipment in hand, you will be well on your way to enjoying a successful day of fishing at the beach!

The Right Location

Before you can start catching fish, you need to know where to find them. In general, fish will be closest to the shore in areas where there is a drop-off in the depth of the water. You can often find these areas by looking for seagrass beds, sand bars, or other submerged structures that create changes in the depth of the water. These areas provide shelter and food for fish, making them ideal spots for fishing.

In addition to looking for changes in the depth of the water, you should also pay attention to tide levels. Fish are more active during periods of high tide, so this is a good time to try your luck. You should also be aware of any currents that may be present in the area you’re fishing. Fish tend to congregate in areas where there is little currents, so this is another good indicator of where you might find them.


In conclusion, there are many different types of fish that can be caught while fishing in Texas. Each type of fish has its own set of challenges and rewards. By understanding the different types of fish, you can better plan your fishing trips and maximize your chances of success.

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