Lake Pontchartrain Fishing


Among the many species of fish that inhabit Lake Pontchartrain, the monster speckled trout is a favorite catch among fishermen. Five to twelve pound speckled trout are very common catches at Lake Pontchartrain.

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Lake Pontchartrain contains more than 100 documented species of fish. Sciaenids populate mostly in the saltier eastern regions of Lake Pontchartrain. Centrarchids are more commonly found in freshwater streams and swamps that drain into the lake.

Recreational Fishing Fees

License Type Resident Non-Resident
Basic Fishing Season $9.50 $60.00
Saltwater license (Basic Fishing required) $5.50 $30.00
Basic fish trip – 1 day $5.00
Saltwater trip – 1 day $17.50
Hook and line (cane pole) $2.50
Charter passenger license (3-day) $5.50
Charter skiff (3-day) $30.00
La sportsman’s paradise license3 $100.00
Senior fish/hunt $5.00
Non-resident student Basic fishing5 $9.50
Nr student saltwater fishing (Basic Fishing required) $5.50
Resident disabled Basic fishing $2.50
Resident disabled saltwater $2.50
Offshore landing permit FREE FREE

Fishing Limits

Black Bass (Largemouth & Spotted)

Lake Pontchartrain Large Mouth Bass

Location Size Limit Bag and Possession Limit
All state waters EXCEPT LA-TX boundary waters No size limits 10 daily, of any size EXCEPT

Stripped Bass

Lake Pontchartrain Stripped Bass

Location Size Limit Bag and Possession Limit
All state waters EXCEPT LA-TX boundary waters No size limits 5 daily, No more than two over 30″ total length

White Bass

Lake Pontchartrain White Bass

Location Size Limit Bag and Possession Limit
All state waters EXCEPT LA-TX boundary waters No size limits 50 daily EXCEPT no more than 25 daily at Toledo Bend Reservoir

Fishing Term Definitions

  1. Angle: to fish with rod, fishing pole or hook and line, with or without a reel.
  2. Bag Limit/Creel Limit: the maximum number of a species permitted to be taken by one person in any one day.
  3. Bait Seine: a net measuring no more than 30 feet in length with a mesh size not exceeding 1/4-inch mesh bar, 1/2-inch meshstretched, and operated solely on foot and solely by hand, without any mechanical device, pulley or mechanical assistance whatsoever.
  4. Bait Species: all species of fish and other aquatic life utilized for bait.
  5. Bandit Gear: vertical hook-and-line gear with rods attached to a vessel and with line retrieved with rods and with line retrieved by manual, electric or hydraulic reels. (Use prohibited in state waters)
  6. Bona Fide Resident: A. any person who has resided in this state continuously during the 12 months immediately prior to the date on which he applies for any license and who has manifested his intent to remain in this state by establishing Louisiana as his legal domicile, as demonstrated by compliance with all of the following, as applicable.
    • If registered to vote, he is registered to vote in Louisiana.
    • If licensed to drive a motor vehicle, he is in possession of a valid Louisiana driver’s license.
    • If owning a motor vehicle located within Louisiana, he is in possession of a valid Louisiana registration for that vehicle.
    • If earning an income, he has filed a Louisiana state income tax return and has complied with state income tax laws and regulations.

    B. any person who possesses a resident license from any other state shall not qualify for a resident license in Louisiana.

  7. Can: a metal container of not more than 55-gallon capacity which is set for the purpose of taking fish.
  8. Cast Net: a light circular net of vegetable or synthetic materials that is weighted around its perimeter and is thrown by hand over the water.
  9. Crab Dropnet: any device constructed with vegetable, synthetic, or metal fibers and without flues or throat, attached to a wire frame that forms a net basket and is used for the purpose of taking crabs. This device shall be operated solely by hand and fished in a stationary, passive manner.
  10. Crab Trap: a cube-shaped, device constructed of wire, no larger than 30 inches on any side, and with either a bait box or materials providing cover or shelter for peeler crabs. The entrance funnels must extend no further than seven inches into the inside of the trap, with the openings to the entrance funnels on the vertical wall of the trap such that the horizontal diameter of each opening is at least one and one-half times the vertical diameter of the opening.
  11. Crawfish Net: any device constructed with vegetable or synthetic material without flues or throats attached to a wire frame that forms a net basket and is used for the purpose of taking crawfish.
  12. Crawfish Trap: any device constructed of coated wire with the opening of the throats
    or flues not exceeding 2 inches and which is used for the express purpose of taking
    crawfish.
  13. Dip Net: a net, usually a deep mesh bag of vegetable or synthetic materials, on a fixed frame not to exceed three feet in diameter attached to a handle that is held and worked solely by hand by no more than one individual, and without any mechanical assistance.