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South Padre Island

Photo via Flickr

Redfish, marlin, tuna, and wahoo. South Padre has every type of fishing you could ask for.

Located at the southern tip of Texas on the border with Mexico, South Padre Island is a barrier island for Texas’s west coast, meaning that there are good options for inshore and deep sea fishing. The small strip of land protects an inlet, which is teeming with redfish, flounder and trout. A few miles offshore, an angler can motor out into the Gulf and hook into marlin, sailfish, and tuna. If the fish aren’t biting in one area, you can simply pull up anchor and cruise to find a new species.

The fishing season in South Padre Island is year round, with the average winter low at around 52 degrees. The sub-tropical climate causes many fish to stick around all year, especially the redfish and seatrout. Bigger billfish like the marlin and sailfish are migratory, but are caught frequently in the waters off South Padre Island.

Basic Info
  • 68° 52° Dec-Feb
  • 80° 67° Mar-May
  • 90° 77° Jun-Aug
  • 84° 69° Sep-Nov
Gulf Of Mexico, Laguna Madre
Fishing license info here: here

The Catch

Top fish species to target in South Padre Island

Black Drum

A saltwater fish similar to the related Red Drum (or Redfish). Typically 5-30 lbs but can't be much larger.


Flounder are a group of flatfish species. They are demersal fish found at the bottom of oceans around the world; some species will also enter estuaries.


With a spear like bill and big rigid dorsal fin, the Marlin is a prized sport fish. Think Old Man and the Sea.


Reddish color along the back and white on the belly, Redfish are known for the distinct eyespot on their tail.


Color dark blue on top, brown-blue laterally and silvery white underbelly. First dorsal fin greatly enlarged in the form of a sail with many black spots.

Sea Trout

Plentiful and good eating in the saltwater marshes of the South. Known for their spots, the sea trout is often called a speckled or spotted trout.


Wahoo are steel blue on their top side and pale blue on their underside. Also known for a series of blackish-blue vertical bars on their sides.

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