Most of the investigations on communication strategies have been carried out in English as a Foreign Language (EFL) contexts. More limited research exists in Content and Language Integrated Learning (CLIL), and has mainly focused on the use of previously known languages. Thus, there is a need of studies that tackle other strategies such as target language (TL)-based strategies. This paper analyses the use of TL-based strategies and previous language-based strategies in an oral narration task and its correlation with general proficiency and knowledge of receptive vocabulary in two different age/proficiency CLIL groups of third language (L3) English learners. Results indicate that proficiency does not have a big impact on the use of these strategies. As regards the distribution of strategies, holistic strategies (i.e., TL-based strategies) are the most used, a finding ascribed to the overriding effect of CLIL. With respect to correlation analyses, although previously known language-based strategies do seem to align with the level of proficiency and receptive vocabulary, this does not apply to the use of TL-based strategies. Additionally, the use of TL-based strategies does not imply a lower use of prior linguistic experience, which is still relevant in these CLIL learners to scaffold L3 production.