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New Jersey Inshore Saltwater Fishing Report 6-19-17

<b>Keyport</b>

Daily, open-boat trips for sea bass will switch to ling, cod and winter flounder beginning today with the <b>Down Deep Fleet</b>, Capt. Mario said. That’s because sea bass season closed today, and he thanks anglers who fished aboard for a fantastic sea bass season on the Down Deep. That’s one of the company’s two boats, each accommodating up to 15 passengers. Charters for ling, cod and flounder are also available on the vessel. The Down Deep Bull, the other boat, is fluke fishing on open trips daily, and charters are available for the angling. The fluking will now concentrate on fishing the ocean at rocky bottom. A 10-pound 1-ounce fluke was smashed aboard yesterday. Most of the trip’s anglers bagged a couple of the summer flounder, and the high hook bagged three. Join the Short Notice List on <a href="http://downdeepsportfishing.com" target="_blank">Down Deep’s website</a> to be kept informed about special open trips. Look for the link underneath the Contact link.

Fluke fishing was pretty good on the <b>Vitamin Sea</b>, Capt. Frank wrote in an email. Good conditions created good fluking, like always. The fish were found at every drop, and some drops produced bigger fluke, and some gave up mostly throwbacks. The trips fished relatively shallow, and the fish will seek deeper, cooler water as the water warms. The fishing aboard will follow them, like it’s done many years, “consistently putting together good catches,” he said. Charters are fishing, and one space is available for an open-boat trip Tuesday morning for fluke. Spaces are available on the trips Wednesday afternoon, Saturday morning and afternoon and Sunday morning. Telephone to reserve. See daily reports and photos on <a href=" https://www.facebook.com/vitaminseafishing/" target="_blank">Vitamin Sea’s Facebook page</a>. Frank looks forward to seeing you aboard! he said.

<b>Leonardo</b>

Fog prevented Keith Apgar’s charter from fluke fishing at the channels Saturday with <b>Sour Kraut Sportfishing</b>, Capt. Joe said. Safety from ship traffic is a concern then. The angling was a slow pick of the fish to 3 pounds. Small bluefish and some skates and sand sharks also bit. “They were very entertained,” Joe said. Jerome Schram’s charter last week aboard limited out on striped bass to 46 pounds on the ocean in the evening on trolled bunker spoons. Sour Kraut will keep striped bass fishing as long as enough are around. Joe’s looking forward to serious shark fishing in the next weeks. A buddy’s trip lost a big thresher shark and released plenty of blue sharks at the Mudhole. Joe also heard about mako sharks caught this weekend.

<b>Atlantic Highlands</b>

The party boat <b>Atlantic Star</b> fluke fished on Sandy Hook Bay and Flynn’s Knoll, and more throwbacks bit on some days than others, Capt. Tom said. Mostly throwbacks hit, and the fishing was the same as before. Sometimes Tom would find a few fish and move the boat, looking for better, and that ended up a mistake, because more fluke were hooked at the original place. Forecasts called for strong southerly wind and some rain, but the boat was fortunate to have the bay to fish, because southerly doesn’t affect the bay like other places. Forecast rain often hasn’t fallen, too. Trips are fluke fishing 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and 1:30 to 6 p.m. daily.

An 8-pound 12-ounce fluke won the pool on a charter Saturday with the Recreational Fishing Alliance on the <b>Fishermen</b>, a report said on the party boat’s website. The ocean held a huge swell, and weather was foggy with some rain. But that failed to dampen the spirits of the anglers. A fluke just heavier than 7 pounds was second-biggest, and some good-sized were boxed. The angler who won the pool, Jeff Criswell from Flanders, also whacked a 5-pounder. A couple of anglers bagged two or one fluke, and some landed a bunch of throwbacks. The captain was surprised any of the fish were caught in the swell. That was the most recent report at press time, and trips are fishing for fluke 7:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. daily and 3:30 to 9 p.m. every Tuesday through Sunday, and for striped bass 3:30 to 9 p.m. every Monday.

<b>Neptune</b>

Sea bass season closed today, and the fishing was good on most days when <b>Last Lady Fishing Charters</b> sailed for them, Capt. Ralph wrote in an email. Trips will now fish for bottom-fish, blues and striped bass. The Hitzel charter on Saturday evening nailed a bunch of blues and a 31-inch striper. Earlier that day, the Callahan charter locked up good sea bassing until south wind came up. Charters are available daily, and an individual-reservation trip will sail for cod 2 a.m. July 12, fishing 30 to 60 miles from shore. Individual-reservation trips will fish inshore wrecks, up to 30 miles from shore, 6 a.m. July 10 and 17. Individual-reservation trips that sail every Tuesday for fluke and sea bass will begin July 11. Two sea bass will be the bag limit in July and August. Kids under 12 sail free on the Tuesday trips when accompanied by an adult host, limited to one kid per adult. 

<b>Belmar</b>

Sea bass season closed today, and fluke will now become a focus, Bob from <b>Fisherman’s Den</b> wrote in an email. “Hope it can be as successful,” he said, and sea bass fishing was reportedly exceptional. Most anglers could limit out. Shark River’s fluking improved somewhat in the past week, “but still has a long way to go,” he said. Some impressive fluke were claimed from the river at the L Street pier. Shrilly Williams from Lakewood’s 6-pound 10-ouncer was largest. The store’s rental boats are available for fluking on the river. Party boats on the ocean will target fluke full-time now, after many of the trips sea bassed. For surf anglers, striped bass and blues could be banked. The stripers were sometimes clammed or plugged at night.

Fishing for striped bass was hit or miss on the ocean, but was outstanding when it hit with <b>Parker Pete’s Fishing Charters</b>, Capt. Pete said. Then big stripers 40 pounds and larger were crushed. A 51 was biggest aboard, and the angling was excellent in afternoons. Sometimes the fishing turned on in mornings. Trips will begin to focus on fluke in July on the ocean. That angling will kick in within the next couple of weeks, Pete thinks, when the water warms a little. He’s excited, including because sand eels are schooling. This is the first time they’ve been this thick since Hurricane Sandy. Whiting were even hooked this weekend during sea bass fishing aboard. Pete last saw whiting in 1991, and the life in the water seemed to bode well for fluking. Parker Pete’s is a bucktail boat, fishing rough bottom, targeting trophy fluke. Dates are available for fluking this summer, and reserve them while they are. Sea bass will also be able to spice up the catch during fluking in summer, when two sea bass becomes the bag limit in July and August. Don’t have enough anglers for a charter? Contact Parker Pete’s about individual spaces available with charters who want more anglers. Sign up for the email blast on <a href=" http://www.parkerpetefishing.com/" target="_blank">Parker Pete’s website</a> to be kept informed about the spaces.

A few bluefish were hooked per drift Saturday on the <b>Miss Belmar Princess</b>, and the fishing was tough in fog and a swell, an email said from the party boat. Seeing birds working the water to find the blues was difficult in the fog, and the fish didn’t want to bite in the weather or swell. On Sunday’s trip, a good number of sea bass, a few keeper fluke and a couple of throwback stripers were swung in. Plenty of fish were seen and marked, “but we did not catch what we saw,” it said.  Saturday afternoon’s trip lit into very good sea bass fishing, quite a few ling and a couple of fluke. Sunday afternoon’s trip was weathered out.  Trips are fishing for striped bass and blues 7:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. daily and for fluke and other bottom-fish 4:30 to 8:30 p.m. daily. The afternoon trips also watch whales and porpoises and catch the sunset on the ride home.

A couple of drifts served up fairly steady action with blues 2 to 8 pounds Friday on the <b>Golden Eagle</b>, the party boat’s website said. Some striped bass were also bagged, and all the trip’s fish were taken on Run Off hammered jigs and crocs. On Saturday aboard, fishing was tough, but a few blues 2 to 5 pounds were managed. Weather was cold, drizzly and foggy, though was supposed to be sunny and 80 degrees. On Sunday’s trip, fishing was better. Blues 2 to 6 pounds, a few sea bass and a few striped bass were angled, all on the Runoff jigs and crocs. Saturday afternoon’s trip pasted a great catch of keeper and throwback sea bass. A fish was caught or the bait was lost every time a line was dropped into the water. Trips are fishing for striped bass and blues 7:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. daily. Fishing and sunset cruises on Friday began sailing 4:30 to 8:30 p.m. daily.

<b>Brielle</b>

Ocean fluke fishing was picking up finally, said Alex from <b>The Reel Seat</b>. He heard about a 12-pound 2-ouncer heaved in during the past week. Manasquan River’s fluking was spotty, or some good-sized could be landed, but anglers needed to put in time. Friends were limiting out in the back of the river, but putting in time. Alex on a trip scored a few bites and a 5-pounder. Blues 2 to 4 pounds swam the river, getting hooked on popper lures or other lures. Schoolie striped bass were in the mix in the river at the mouth of Point Pleasant Canal, swiping bucktails or rubber shads. Sea bass season closed today and was good. Plenty of the fish were boated at ocean wrecks, reefs and rock piles on clams and diamond jigs, if anglers wanted fun with the jigs. Striped bass fishing was slow on the ocean. If a trip trolled for them in a morning with spoons, a bite would probably be scored within a couple of hours. Shark fishing on the ocean seemed a little tough but caught a few mako, blue and thresher sharks. Not much was heard about tuna fishing because of rough seas in past days. Surf fishing was mostly dead. A few sharks like sand tigers and big rays were beached farther south.  Be aware about shark species that must be released, including sand tigers. A few schoolie stripers held in the surf locally.

<b>Point Pleasant Beach</b>

Southern canyons are being flooded with warm, beautiful, blue water for tuna fishing, and <b>Mushin Sportfishing</b> is docked in Cape May to take advantage on charters and open-boat trips. The year’s first trip for the fish overnighted Friday to Saturday, Capt. Alan wrote in an email. The boat arrived on the fishing grounds Friday evening. A bunch of sharks including a mako were fought aboard that night. Ten gallons of calamari were also reeled in. In the morning, a 125-pound bigeye tuna, numerous bluefin tuna to 100 pounds and some yellowfin tuna to 40 pounds were trolled. A limit of over and under bluefins was kept, and the rest of the bluefins were released. Boats fishing inshore lumps also landed some bluefins 100 pounds and heavier, and Mushin will also take advantage of that angling. Charters and a limited number of open-boat trips are available into July. The crew expects the fishing to remain strong and expects more and more billfish to arrive in coming weeks. Telephone for availability.

Strong south windy, a choppy ocean and fast drifting made putting a catch together tough during fluking this weekend on the <b>Gambler</b>, a report said on the party boat’s website. A few fluke and sea bass to heavier than 3 pounds were clocked, but the angling wasn’t good. On nighttime trips, bluefishing improved. Three- to 5-pounders were jigged at rocky bottom, where the fish fed on small sand eels. No striped bass turned up during the nighttime fishing. The boat is fluke fishing 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and 2 to 6:30 p.m. daily and striped bass fishing 7:30 p.m. to 12:30 a.m. Thursdays through Saturdays. Check out <a href=" http://www.gamblerfishing.net/reports.php" target="_blank">Shark in the Dark Trips</a> that will sail 7:30 p.m. to 12:30 a.m. July 9 and 16, limited to 25 anglers per trip, reservations required. Sign up soon.

On the <b>Norma-K III</b>, fluke fishing on the ocean was picky the last few days in south wind, a report said on the party boat’s website. When conditions are right, throwbacks and a keeper here and there are being pulled in, and the angling is expected to improve when the wind changes. Fluke are there, and the fishing’s a matter of when they want to bite. Saturday night’s trip did pick away at 2- to 4-pound blues on jigs, after bluefishing was slow previously. Plenty were read, “so it’s a start,” the report said. Trips are fluke fishing 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and 2 to 6:30 p.m. daily and are bluefishing 7:30 p.m. to 1 a.m. every Friday and Saturday. A trip was supposed to fish for ling and cod Sunday night during the same hours but was weathered out. Another is slated for this coming Sunday.

<b>Point Pleasant</b>

The <b>Tin Knocker</b> competed Sunday in the Brett T. Bailey Mako Rodeo, Capt. John said. The fishing aboard bagged a 306-pound thresher shark and released eight blue sharks and two brown sharks. The water was 65 degrees, clear and blue where the boat fished, and Tin Knocker will mostly shark fish the next two weeks, and will begin fishing for tuna at offshore canyons afterward. Bluefin and bigeye tuna are currently biting at canyons. Trips are also still striped bass fishing on the ocean aboard, if anglers want.

<b>Seaside Heights</b>

A pick of striped bass, bluefish and fluke came from the surf, a report said on <b>The Dock Outfitters</b>’ website. Ten-pound stripers were clammed from shore Friday from Ortley Beach to Island Beach State Park. Blues were bunker-chunked in the mix. For fluke in the surf, fish a bucktail with Gulp, and keep moving to find them. Fluke swam Barnegat Bay at all usual spots. Not a ton, but a good pick. Crabbing began to improve on the bay, and one of the store’s rental boats returned with 30 keepers to 6 inches from the water. Crabbing from the dock was a “work in progress, though,” the report said.  The Dock Outfitters, located on Barnegat Bay, blocks from the ocean surf, features a bait and tackle shop, a café, a dock for fishing and crabbing, boat rentals and jet-ski rentals. 

<b>Barnegat Light</b>

A charter pitched aboard some keeper fluke and a good number of keeper sea bass Thursday on the <b>Miss Barnegat Light</b> on the ocean, a report said on the party boat’s website. The angling seemed to be improving. Daily, open-boat trips resumed Friday on the ocean, and cool water from south wind and a swell made fishing tough. “We had some fish each day but not enough,” it said. Trips are fishing for fluke 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. daily, now that sea bass season closed today.

A trip Friday was supposed to bluefish on the <b>Super Chic</b>, Capt. Ted said. But no blues were around in an ocean swell, so the trip wreck-fished for sea bass on the ocean. The conditions, including strong current, were tough, but the trip caught okay. Sea bass fishing was good Saturday and Sunday at wrecks on the ocean aboard. Maybe a dozen ling were mixed in Saturday, and only a few were Sunday. A shark trip will sail this coming Saturday on the boat. A trip the next day aboard will probably bluefish, maybe fluke fish. No striped bass were really around in the ocean locally. The angling seemed finished for the season, Ted thought.

<b>Sea Isle City</b>

A family aboard Thursday decked four keeper summer flounder to 21 inches and a bunch of throwbacks from the back bay, said Capt. Joe Hughes from <b>Jersey Cape Guide Service</b> and <b>Sea Isle Bait & Tackle</b>. Another family Saturday with kids wanted to fish for sharks. So they did, tackling sand sharks from the bay. They also flounder fished, reeling in a keeper and a bunch of throwbacks. Windy weather kept the boat from fishing Sunday. Striped bass fishing, including with popper lures and flies, is good on the bay during high tides in evenings. In the warm weather, those conditions, coinciding later this week, become especially important. Joe expects to fish for inshore sharks this week. Those are species like blacktips and browns that are hooked on bait or flies and released. Some of the sharks, including the browns, are required to be let go. Tuna fishing for yellowfins and bluefins became good at Poorman’s Canyon. Big boats that could take the seas lately trolled the fish. Keep up with Joe’s fishing on <a href="http://captainjoehughes.blogspot.com/" target="_blank">Jersey Cape’s Blog</a>.

<b>Avalon</b>

<b>Fins and Feathers Outfitters</b> will next fish Saturday and Sunday, maybe for summer flounder on northern Delaware Bay toward Miah Maull, Capt. Jim said. Black drum fishing was probably winding down on the bay. But a buddy totaled three of the drum last Monday. Another friend boated flounder including two keepers on the back bay at Sea Isle City in only a couple of hours Wednesday or Thursday. Fins is also flounder fishing on the back bay.  Jim’s <a href="http://www.sjlodge.com/" target="_blank">lodge near Salmon River</a> in upstate New York is offering a discount in summer, but only on Airbnb. Fishing is available, including on Lake Ontario, with local guides. Guests often drive quadrunners that season in the local area.

<b>Cape May</b>

Wind kept a shark trip from sailing Sunday on the <b>Prime Time II</b>, Capt. Steve said. A number of trips were weathered out recently aboard. But this is time for sharks on the boat, and Steve knew about actually some sizable mako sharks caught. A few thresher sharks were landed, but threshers seemed scarcer than usual so far. A boat from the docks trolled a bluefin tuna, three yellowfin tuna and two bigeye tuna at Poorman’s Canyon at night on an overnight trip. The bluefins and yellowfins weighed 60 to 80 pounds, and the bigeyes weighed 80, small for bigeyes, not 200 pounds like they can be. Summer flounder trips will begin on the Prime Time soon on the ocean. Steve hadn’t really spoken with anybody who fished for them there yet. Flounder bit in the back bay. Nothing was heard about flounder from Delaware Bay. Black drum were hauled from Delaware Bay last week. Steve knew that a few trips sailed for them this weekend, but was yet to hear results.

Sea bass fishing was wrapped up and limited out on every trip with <b>Fishin’ Fever Sportfishing</b>, Capt. Tom said. Sea bass season closed today, and the year’s first summer flounder trip sailed Saturday aboard. The angling is beginning to pick up on the ocean and was decent on the trip, fishing the ocean. Nine keepers 20 to 23 inches, sizable, and a bunch of throwbacks were pumped in. Plenty of sharks including makos are biting. Tom heard about makos to 300 pounds this past week. Farther from shore, tuna fishing began to go very well. A great run of bluefin, yellowfin and bigeye tuna was underway at the canyons. Inshore tuna fishing will pick up in the next couple of days, Tom believes. The inshore hills are loaded with sand eels. Sand eels are schooling everywhere from 6 miles from shore to 40 or 50 fathoms.

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