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Delaware Bay Fishing Report 9-5-17

<b>Port Elizabeth</b>

News was scarce because of rough weather most of last week through the weekend, said Sharon from <b>The Girls Place Bait & Tackle</b>. But a couple of anglers said a few striped bass 28 inches, the legal minimum size, were boated on Delaware Bay toward Fortescue. Nothing was heard about summer flounder or other catches like croakers and kingfish because of the weather or wind and rain. Crabbing seemed to give up fairly steady catches, and customers often crabbed. Weather became beautiful Monday in clear skies and pleasant temperatures, but wind still blew. That probably roughed up seas, at least in the ocean. Baits stocked still include shedder crabs. Fewer and fewer shedders will become available this month, because crabs stop shedding once weather cools. Customers can telephone to reserve shedders to ensure a supply, including once the crabs become scarcer. The Girls Place, located on Route 47, just after Route 55 ends, carries a large supply of bait and tackle, and is the long, one-story, yellow building on the right. It’s on the way to the bay.


Crabbing was good last week at <b>Beaver Dam Boat Rentals</b> but slower toward the weekend because the full moon was coming, Linda said. Crabs were shedding, and the full moon often triggers that. Crabs won’t eat while shedding, making them difficult to trap. But not all crabs shed at once. Crabbing was slow Sunday, and the shop was closed Saturday because of weather. Wind blew 15 or 20 knots Sunday, “adding insult to injury,” she said. Calmer wind was forecast. Shedding only lasts days, and should be over by this coming weekend. No customers fished in past days, but white perch and small striped bass swam the creek. Customers fish and crab from rental boats towed down Oranokin Creek, running past the shop. Rental kayaks and canoes are also available to paddle the scenic creek. Crabbing from the rental boats will now be available at 6:30 a.m. Saturdays and Sundays, after being available at 6 a.m. daily previously. The change in schedule is made after Labor Day each year. The later start to crabbing in the day is simply because days become light later this time of season. Visit <a href="" target="_blank">Beaver Dam’s website</a>. A few rental boats are available for the new celebration of Delaware Bay named <a href="" target="_blank">Crabs and All That Jazz</a> on Saturday, Sept. 16. It’ll replace the similar Bay Days celebration that used to take place but does no longer. Crabs and All That Jazz will include a crabbing contest, a Crab-Venger Hunt, live music, a food truck and, at the end of the day, a dinner featuring the crabs caught. Click the link to visit the event’s website for more info. Participants in the crabbing contest can donate their crabs for the dinner, and that’s encouraged. But if they’d rather keep the crabs they caught, they can do that and pay for the dinner. Otherwise, the dinner is included.


One trip fished between weather last week on the <b>Salt Talk</b>, Capt. Howard said. Weather on the outing was still windy. So the trip fished close to shore, but caught. Croakers, bluefish and weakfish were angled. A few of the croakers were big enough to keep. The blues, eight or 10 of them, were the usual cocktail size that school the bay this season. The weaks were 14 to 17 inches. One throwback summer flounder was also hooked and released. The fish on the trip had moved from where they were previously. But the trip found them. Trips aboard ran into no spots this season, Howard said when asked. He heard about a few spots landed from Fortescue Creek. The Salt Talk used to be a party boat from Fortescue. Howard sold that vessel, and the new Salt Talk is a charter boat for up to four passengers.

<b>Cape May</b>

Delaware Bay’s flounder fishing seemed hit or miss last week, but boaters working depth changes caught them decently, said Nick from <b>Hands Too Bait & Tackle</b>. Ledges near Miah Maull seemed to give up some. When boaters last had the weather to sail the ocean, they scooped good catches of flounder from reefs. Flounder, lots of shorts, but a few keepers were still boated from the back bay along the Intracoastal Waterway and in Cape May Harbor. Flounder season would close beginning Wednesday this week. Croakers maybe 10 to 12 inches were nipped from Delaware Bay’s surf in town. Weakfish were sporadically banked from the surf at Cape May Point. Mullet from peanuts to 8 or 9 inches began to migrate the surf and attracted bluefish. Sometimes kingfish were bloodwormed in the surf. Flounder were eased from the surf at times. Good-sized sheepshead were angled in the back bay along structure like old bridges and old pilings. They might’ve also been picked along surf jetties but more so from the bay. Blackfish snapped along jetties and wrecks.

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