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New Jersey Inshore Saltwater Fishing Report 7-20-17


Better fluke fishing than before began to be mentioned, actually, said Rich from <b>Dockside Bait & Tackle</b>. Customers talked about boating more keepers than previously, and many fished the Triangle on Raritan Bay. Reports rolled in from east of Coney Island and the ocean at Ambrose Channel. From Princes Bay, the word tumbling back was about not great fluking but some decent catches. Bluefishing could be strong in the bay, when anglers ran into the fish. Cocktail blues and fluke gave up phenomenal fishing from the pier down the road. Okay fishing for bluefin tuna was honked at places like the Bacardi wreck at mid-range. A trip today was supposed to depart for yellowfin tuna fishing at the canyons all the way offshore. Bait stocked includes killies, fresh bunker daily, fresh clams and all frozen like spearing and the different squids. Dockside, located on Smith Creek, a tributary of the Arthur Kill, north of Outerbridge Crossing, is accessible from the water at the fuel dock and from land. The fuel dock is open 6 a.m. to 8 p.m.


Very good fluke fishing began to be mopped from the ocean the last couple of days with the <b>Down Deep Fleet</b>, Capt. Mario said. Lots of 3- to 5-pounders got whipped, and Mario thinks the angling is going to be good, because it’s the ocean rough bottom, he said. Open-boat trips are fishing for them daily. Don’t miss out on a special, marathon, open trip for fluke and sea bass 5 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday, and a few spots are left. On Down  Deep’s other boat, open trips are bottom-fishing daily. Excellent porgy catches were scooped up, with sea bass mixed in. Charters are available for either fishing, and each of the company’s two boats, both 40 feet, can accommodate up to 15 passengers. Join the Short Notice List on <a href="" target="_blank">Down Deep’s website</a> to be kept informed about special open trips. Look for the link underneath “Contact.”

Fluke fishing was a roller coaster, but some anglers limited out on each trip on the <b>Vitamin Sea</b>, Capt. Frank wrote in an email. They managed to do that, and the fishing was good on one day, a grind the next at the same spot. No doubt, talent matters in consistently catching fluke. Anglers who limited worked hard on every drift of the boat, and didn’t just “drag bottom.” Water warmed significantly, and that should be good for fluking. Excellent porgy fishing, almost non-stop catches, including many double-headers, was pounded aboard. No shortage of porgies, for sure. Charters and open-boat trips are fishing, and are full the rest of the week. Spaces are available on open trips Monday, Wednesday and Saturday, July 29. Telephone to reserve. 


Catches of fluke picked up a little, according to anglers from the marina, said Capt. Joe from <b>Sour Kraut Sportfishing</b>. They talked about more throwbacks and a few more keepers than before. Those he spoke with told him mostly about Raritan Bay, but the ocean’s fluking reportedly improved, too. Porgies, actually, were most of the news. They really chewed, and limits of sea bass could be made.

<b>Atlantic Highlands</b>

Big fluke Tuesday! a report said on the party boat <b>Fishermen</b>’s website. Finally, a day to write about! it said. Fluke 9.9 pounds, 8.8 pounds, 7.7 pounds, 7.1 pounds, 6 pounds, 5.1 pounds and 4 pounds were among the catch aboard that day. The 9.9-pounder was the biggest aboard this season. The fishing began with a bang, catching fluke and sea bass, in the morning. It was short-lived, but every fluke angler lives for a day like this, it said. Three of the fish totaled more than 25 pounds. Doesn’t get better. John Froelich, “on his first trip this season,” the report said, jigged five good-sized keepers. He kept only his limit, and weather was very hot, “but a nice day on the water!” it said. On Monday’s trip, some anglers caught fluke well, and some caught not so well. Rocco Farina hadn’t missed a birthday trip aboard since 1995, and landed a couple of beauties, winning the pool with a 5-pounder. A couple of anglers limited out. Bring extra tackle for rigs lost on sticky bottom. Sharks would bite if sticky bottom weren’t fished, and that’s the way it’s been this season. The boat is fishing for fluke 7:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. daily. However, charters are booked this Friday and Saturday mornings, so no open-boat trips will fish then.

More keeper fluke than usual and not a lot of throwbacks were aced on Tuesday morning’s trip on the party boat <b>Atlantic Star</b>, Capt. Tom said. The afternoon’s trip didn’t fish as well, and the boat’s drift was lost. Just a few keepers and not many shorts were angled on Wednesday’s trips. Trips have been fishing Sandy Hook Bay and Flynn’s Knoll, and are sailing for fluke 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and 1:30 to 6 p.m. daily.

Rivers probably fished best for fluke, but the angling picked up a bit in Raritan Bay and the ocean, said Johnny O. from <b>Fisherman’s Den North</b>. Fluke catches were heard about from the rocks in the ocean off Monmouth Beach. Lots of rigs will be lost in the rocks, but good-sized fluke live there. Fluke were reported from deep water in the ocean. One was weighed-in from Ambrose Channel in the deep. Again, the angling seemed to be improving. Only one of the store’s rental boats sailed for fluke on the bay today, and the trip returned in 2 hours, because of the heat! Before today, none of the boats was skunked in past days. They returned with one or two keepers apiece, and hooked throwbacks, including lots more than before. Porgies were bailed, including on the bay. “Jumping through hoops,” he said, and fluke boats even brought clams to fish for porgies. A 5-pound 4-ounce porgy was brought to the shop that reportedly could’ve been a world record, but the angler ate the fish! He didn’t know.


From <b>Twin Lights Marina</b>, Justina Forsyth boated a 19-1/2-inch fluke near Sandy Hook on a killie Friday, Marion wrote in an email. Ian Proctor decked fluke and sea bass near Shrewsbury Rocks on Tuesday. Twin Lights, located on Shrewsbury River near Raritan Bay and the ocean, with no bridges before them, includes a marina with boat slips, dry storage, a fuel dock, and a combined bait and tackle shop and ship’s store. The fuel dock is available 24 hours a day with a credit card. Baits stocked include all for offshore.


Overall, fishing was good, Capt. Ralph from <b>Last Lady Fishing Charters</b> wrote in an email. Fluking picked up on the ocean aboard, and the weekly, individual-reservation trip for fluke and sea bass Tuesday hooked the fish most of the day. Good fishing, and all anglers left with fillets. A 4.6-pound fluke won the pool, and a 4-pounder was next-biggest. The trips are fishing every Tuesday, and kids under 12 sail free on those outings, limited to one per adult host. An individual-reservation, inshore-wreck-fishing trip Monday fished terrific, like usual lately. A load of ling, including quite a few big, were pasted, and sea bass and cod were pitched aboard. A healthy-sized lobster was the exotic catch of the day. More of the wreck trips will sail Aug. 2 and 21. Individual-reservation trips for cod will run at 2 a.m. Aug. 9 and 30, and the last trip, covered in a previous report here, smoked big cod and pollock. Individual-rez trips for blues and porgies will be scheduled when those fish move in better. Sunday, July 30, is available for charter. Some weekend dates and weekdays are available in August for charters


On the ocean, fluke fishing improved for <b>Parker Pete’s Fishing Charters</b>, Capt. Pete said. That always depends on conditions, but the angling was much better this week than before. Some larger fluke – they were fat fish – were axed, and on most trips, anglers aboard who fished bucktails often limited out and caught extra legal-sized.  They kept no more than a quota, and almost all anglers limited on one of the On the Water Seminars on Tuesday aboard. The seminars teach bucktailing in a non-threatening environment. The fishing should only become better, Pete thinks. The water’s warming to a better temperature, and the ocean settled this week, and unsettled water seemed to affect the angling previously. The boat’s water-temperature gauge was on the blink, but Pete heard the ocean was in the high 60 to low 70 degrees, and it’s definitely warming. 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="" target="_blank">Parker Pete’s website</a> to be kept informed about the spaces. Some of those are available next week on, if Pete remembered, Monday, Tuesday and Thursday.

Bluefish became scarce, so trips switched to bottom-fishing for sea bass, ling and fluke beginning Monday on the <b>Golden Eagle</b>, a report said on the party boat’s website. The angling was good, and sometimes was super for sea bass. Ling and fluke were in the mix, and all anglers limited on sea bass and released more on today’s trip. The boat is fishing 7:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. daily. Fishing and sunset cruises are running 4:30 to 8:30 p.m. daily.

Shark River’s fluke anglers caught, not great, but some of the fish, including keepers, said Jessie from <b>Fisherman’s Den</b>.  On the ocean, some of Belmar’s party boats got info fluke on some days, not so much on others. A lot depended on the drift of the boat that day. Bluefish disappeared in past days, and the port’s party boats that fished for them switched to bottom-fishing for catches including sea bass, fluke and porgies. No striped bass were weighed-in lately. Big rays roamed the surf. One was reported in Shark River.

<b>Point Pleasant Beach</b>

Fishing for fluke on the ocean’s been improving on the <b>Gambler</b>, a report said on the party boat’s website. The number of keepers landed – up to 6 ½ pounds, averaging 3 to 4 pounds – was increasing, and sea bass to 3 ½ pounds added to catches. A usual array of throwbacks bit, helping provide plenty of action.  A wreck-fishing trip Thursday night tied into ling, decent catches, and the high hook bagged 15 good-sized. No squid showed up, but squid were jigged on the previous one of the trips, and can show up any time. A <a href="" target="_blank">Shark in the Dark Trip</a> was successful Sunday night, the report said. Two sand tigers to heavier than 300 pounds were released, and a few other sharks were hooked.  <a href="" target="_blank">Watch a video</a>. Trips are fishing for fluke 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and 2 to 6:30 p.m. daily. The boat is bluefishing 7:30 p.m. to 12:30 a.m. Fridays and Saturdays and wreck-fishing 7:30 p.m. to 12:30 p.m. Thursdays. The wreck trips are shooting for ling, cod, winter flounder and whatever lurks around wrecks and rocks. More of the Shark in the Dark Trips are slated for 7:30 p.m. to 12:30 a.m. the next two Sundays, July 23 and 30. They’re limited to 25 anglers per trip, reservations required. Sign up soon.

Excellent porgy catches were bailed the past five or six days or since Friday on the party boat <b>Dauntless</b> on the ocean, Capt. Butch said. Anglers totaled 15, 20 or more apiece. Almost all limited out on a trip a couple of days ago. Some sea bass and a few fluke have been mixed in. Small weakfish were even caught. Triggerfish were pulled up the last few days, too. Trips fished shallow in 30 to 60 feet of water. Water near the beach was 69 or 70 degrees. Just excellent fishing, and grab a pole and come down, he said. The boat had been ling fishing, but many boats targeted ling, so the fishing slowed, or at least slowed in that area. Trips would probably have to sail too far to angle ling now. The Dauntless is bottom-fishing 7:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. daily. Bluefish trips will also sail at night, if the bluefishing turns on. If it hadn’t by now, it might not before the end of August, when the boat would sail for them. But if the blues show before the end of that month, trips will jump on them.

<b>Toms River</b>

How was fluking on Barnegat Bay? Some were around, said Mario from <b>Murphy’s Hook House</b> in Toms River. A buddy boated a couple, nothing major, between the BI and BB markers this week. The fish swam there and toward Barnegat Lighthouse for anglers. Not much was reported about fluke from the ocean. Results depended on who reported. One angler would score well, and another would score none. Hit and miss. For fluking in the surf, if anglers kept moving and hit holes, they caught okay. Bucktails worked, and Jetty Ghost Mullnets, a jig, kicked behind. Rig the jig with a teaser 1 ½ feet above. The Mullnet is made for stripers and blues, and casts like a rocket. Nothing was heard about blowfish in back waters, except about tiny. Nobody targeted blowfish who was known about. Nobody mentioned blackfish, though one of the tautog became the bag limit beginning Monday. Plenty of snapper blues schooled the Toms River.  Crabbing was very good. Murphy’s, located on Route 37, also owns <b>Go Fish Bait & Tackle</b> on Fischer Boulevard in Toms River.

<b>Seaside Heights</b>

If you’re new to surf-fishing and never saw a cownosed ray with a wing span 3 feet or wider, now’s the time, a report said on <b>The Dock Outfitters</b>’ website. “Rays on parade” swam from the surf to past the first wave at Island Beach State Park on Tuesday. Singles, twos and threes lazily flapped wings, pushing south with the tide. Sharking was good in the park’s surf at night for sand tigers that must be let go by law. The rays also bit at night in the surf. Surf anglers mostly cried “pick, pick, pick,” but fluke and small bluefish seemed interested in hitting at times. Small baitfish ran the surf.  On Barnegat Bay, crabbing was good on boats, especially a little south of the shop. But crabbing was decent from the shore, and weeding through undersized was the only issue. 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>Forked River</b>

Barnegat Bay’s fluke fishing fared okay south of the BI marker, at the research buoy between the BI and BB markers, and at Double Creek Channel, said Kyle from <b>Grizz’s Forked River Bait & Tackle</b>. The ocean’s fluking caught iffy. A couple of good reports came from Garden State Reef North on the ocean, and a couple of horrible came from there, like reports of three fluke all day in a trip. Iffy fluking was mustered from the Tires, but sea bass were nabbed there. Bluefish 4 to 8 pounds were fought at Barnegat Inlet, and a few showed up in the surf. A 5-1/2-pound weakfish was weighed from the mouth of Oyster Creek, and that was the only weak known about. A couple of anglers blowfished on the bay but hooked none. Blowfish were found in crab traps a month ago. The season’s first fresh spearing were stocked during the weekend, and 20 pounds sold out on Sunday morning. They might be stocked this weekend, but that couldn’t be promised. Frozen local and Canadian spearing and all other frozen bait is stocked. Killies are carried.

<b>Barnegat Light</b>

A few better days and a few slower were copped on trips for fluke and sea bass on the ocean on the <b>Miss Barnegat Light</b>, a report said on the party boat’s website. The fish are there – “just have to get them biting,” it said. The catch included a few sea bass and porgies on most days, and trips are sailing for fluke and sea bass 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. daily. Sunset cruises are running at 5:30 p.m. daily, and moonlight cruises are steaming at 8:30 p.m. August 6, 7 and 8. Watch the Atlantic City Air Show on August 23 on the water aboard, lunch included.

For those working Barnegat Bay, fluke fishing was alright, kind of slow, but certain charter captains claimed decent catches in 3- to 4-foot shallows toward High Bar Harbor, said Dan from <b>Bobbie’s Boat Rentals</b>. The fish were also located in the shallows around Double Creek Channel. One of the rental-boat trips picked up four keeper fluke at the 30-foot hole off the shop. The only weakfish Dan saw was a 7-1/2-pounder someone heaved in while fluking the bay. Dan subdued three bluefish 4 to 5 pounds from Barnegat Inlet’s north jetty. Lots of bird play was seen on the bay, but Dan saw no blues from that or elsewhere. One blackfish could be bagged per angler, per day, beginning Monday. Lots more blackfish were spearfished along the inlet’s rocks than were caught on hook and line. But the fishing was decent on hook and line. Crabbing was good at Clam Island. Clamming was very good at the island.  Killies, fresh bunker and green crags are stocked. Bobbie’s features a complete bait and tackle shop, a fuel dock and boat and kayak rentals. The boats are used for fishing, crabbing, clamming and pleasure.


The back bay’s fishing was very good for summer flounder, said Jay from <b>Absecon Bay Sportsman Center</b>. Many anglers hooked a load of throwbacks. Anglers weeded through them for keepers, but two anglers on a boat could usually limit out on three apiece. The fishing was hit and miss. A buddy limited one evening this week. He landed no keepers the next evening at the same spot. He went back the next, and caught again. One blackfish became the bag limit beginning Monday, and blackfishing was great in back waters that day. A buddy was throwing back 6- and 7-pounders on the opener. The tops of tides fished best for flounder, and baitfish in the bay included spearing and peanut bunker that schooled thick. Jay saw them at Meadow Cut while fishing. A couple of spots were just caught in Absecon Creek. Those are the season’s first reported from the store. Ocean flounder fishing was beat. Two buddies who predominantly fish the ocean competed in the Sunshine Tournament on July 8, managing one flounder while fishing ocean reefs, and the fish was freezing. A buddy who’s a diver was seeing no flounder in the ocean. Sharking for browns, required to be released, was excellent on the ocean. On Mullica River, a few weakfish were angled. Those targeting them on anchor picked them. White perch fishing was solid in the river. Curt who works at the shop, a perch angler, loaded a cooler full of good-sized during the weekend. Good fishing for yellowfin tuna was smacked at Massey’s Canyon and the Hot Dog. Jay knows someone whose trip nailed one less than the trip’s six-angler limit at Massey’s on Wednesday on the chunk. Light leaders like 30 pounds were often fished on the chunk on trips. The fish can become leader-shy when anglers begin chunking. The fish have also been trolled. Good catches of bluefin tuna were also around inshore. Crabbing was good. Live spots from Maryland are stocked. Minnows and green crabs are in. No shedder crabs were available for the moment. The shop raises them for bait and soft-shell crabs for eating. Maybe the new moon in the next couple of days will trigger crabs to shed and make them available. Crabs often shed on new and full moons.


Kingfish swam all over Brigantine’s surf, said Capt. Andy from <b>Riptide Bait & Tackle</b>. Dunk bloodworms for them, and the water was warm, but bloods out-fished Fishbites artificial worms. Fishbites usually begin to work when the water warms. Brown sharks, sand tiger sharks and butterfly rays haunted the surf. Both shark species must be released by law. Tons of summer flounder carpeted the back bay, but finding a keeper was tough. The store is loaded with bloodworms. Andy was asked whether kingfish heads were stocked for the surf sharking that he mentioned in a previous report. The heads are carried when available, and no reliable supply is on tap.

<b>Atlantic City</b>

A couple of blackfish were weighed-in since one blackfish could be kept beginning Monday, said Noel from <b>One Stop Bait & Tackle</b>. Blackfish season was closed previously, and the tautog were tugged in from along nearby, jetty-lined Absecon Inlet that customers fish on foot. Triggerfish were also angled that hugged the rocks, and green crabs, clams and shrimp were fished for the blacks and triggers. Mostly summer flounder were seen from the inlet and adjacent surf. An angler had just sent a photo of a 25-incher from a jetty off the Flagship in the inlet today. Fish minnows and squid for the flatfish. Weakfish, not as many as earlier this year, were sometimes clocked while anglers flounder fished off the rocks. They were good-sized, and kingfish were sometimes bloodwormed from jetties near the Flagship. If you don’t catch fish now, hang it up! Noel said. Baitfish in the water included plenty of peanut bunker, a few spearing and some small, 2-1/2-inch mullet. A couple of baitfish were seen that appeared to be ballyhoos, though those are a southern species. Water was warm. The store will hold a Trigger Happy Tournament for triggerfish beginning Saturday for three weeks. Entry is free, and sign up at the store. First through third places will win a custom T-shirt, and first will also win $75. Second will also win $25. All baits mentioned and more, a large supply, including fresh bunker, are stocked. “You name it, I got it,” Noel said!


Back-bay fishing for summer flounder wasn’t bad on the party boat <b>Keeper</b>, Capt. John said. No complaints, he said, and the fish were still biting. Lots of small hit, but some keepers were landed. The water was hot and a little dirty, but the fish still fed. Sea robins and sand sharks were also hooked. The flounder grabbed minnows and mackerel provided aboard and Gulps that anglers brought. Many peanut bunker and silversides schooled. John netted peanuts for the first time this season to carry aboard to liveline for flounder in past days. They were small but grew just big enough. Trips are sailing for flounder 8 a.m. to 12 noon and 1 to 5 p.m. daily. The rate is only $30 for adults, $25 for seniors and $20 for kids, because the fishing is near port, and the pontoon boat is economical on fuel. Plus, rental rods are free.


The <b>Stray Cat</b> fished the ocean the past couple of days, and summer flounder were squirrelly, Capt. Mike said, but a few sizable sea bass were sacked, plenty of bluefish were trolled, and Spanish mackerel and mahi mahi were mixed in on the troll aboard. The blues and the other trolled fish pushed somewhat farther from shore than before, schooling 13 to 15 miles out. Each trip is trolling first then sea bass fishing. They’re also flounder fishing a bit. Got to try for the flounder, and you never know, he said. The reason flounder were reluctant to bite was unknown. Plenty of bait schooled including sand eels, butterfish and squid. Get a group together and come down, Mike said. All who are tuna fishing seem to be catching. Onesies, twosies, he said, and the fish seem everywhere. The ocean is gray-green, not clear, until off 20 or 30 miles. Open-boat trips for tuna are available late this month and in early August. Saturday, August 12, and a couple of Sundays are yet to be booked for charters.

<b>Ocean City</b>

Lots of throwback summer flounder were snatched from the back bay, but flounder fishing was good there, said John from <b>Fin-Atics</b>. One in 10 of the bay’s flounder was a keeper, but 4- and 5-pound keepers were checked-in every week. So if anglers put in the time or effort, they could score. The fishing was good off Kennedy Park and at Ship’s Channel. Boaters sometimes flounder fished the ocean and began to tackle some good-sized at Ocean City and Great Egg reefs. Surf fishing for kingfish was very good. Ocean perch were hooked from 14Th Street Pier and sometimes from the surf. They were great bait to liveline for brown sharks that began to move all around the surf, mostly at night. Release browns by law. Yellowfin tuna were chunked at Massey’s Canyon, with bluefin tuna mixed in. An 87-pound bluefin was checked-in that was from a trip that also caught an 18-pound mahi mahi. Weather warmed, and customers began to fish for tuna and other big game more often.

<b>Sea Isle City</b>

In the surf, pretty good kingfishing got beaned, said Mike from <b>Sea Isle Bait & Tackle</b>. That was probably the best fishing, and brown and duskie sharks, required to be released, sometimes chomped in the surf. The back bay’s summer flounder fishing actually improved this week over last week. Lots were throwbacks, but some were keepers, sizable. High tides in evenings were ideal for fishing for small striped bass in the bay this week, and the fish were tied into. Ocean flounder fishing was lousy in past days. But a ton of brown, dusky and spinner sharks swarmed the ocean. Mike took his kid fishing for them, and that was so much fun. One of the sharks must’ve weighed 125 pounds and smoked the reel. Sounded like tuna were hung at the Hot Dog and Massey’s Canyon, mostly on the chunk. Sounded like tuna were mostly trolled at Wilmington and Spencer canyons.

A couple of inshore shark trips fished in past days with Capt. Joe Hughes from <b>Jersey Cape Guide Service</b>, affiliated with <b>Sea Isle Bait & Tackle</b>, he said. One of the trips released nine of the fish to 125 pounds including spinners, duskies and browns. The other let go five spinners, duskies and browns to 100 pounds. The angling’s been great, and a summer flounder trip this week boated a keeper and 60 or 70 throwbacks. The fishing turned up lots of action, but not a lot of big. Joe might fish for striped bass with popper lures or popper flies on the bay late this week. High tides at dusk will be ideal, and that angling’s been on, during the last couple of times those tides happened. The tides occur every two weeks. Joe was yet to check whether mahi mahi appeared for the season on the ocean close to shore. But the water is 76 to 78 degrees, the right temperature, and he wouldn’t be surprised if they’re in. Fishing for them was super last summer on the boat.  Keep up with Joe’s fishing on <a href="" target="_blank">Jersey Cape’s Blog</a>.


Fewer summer flounder seemed to be flung from the back bay than before, said Mike from <b>Canal Side Boat Rentals</b>. Fishing for them was strong, and not a lot were keepers. But whether the fewer catches was because catches somewhat slowed or fewer anglers fished in stifling heat was unknown. A buddy reeled in a 31-inch striped bass from the bay that bit a minnow on a flounder rig in early morning on the tide. A few baby sea bass, not a lot, were around that swim the bay in summer. The season was early for more. Mike saw no weakfish. Crabbing was very good. Low tides coming in, like the third hour, crabbed best. Tides were especially low currently, and could be difficult for navigation. Canal Side rents boats for fishing, crabbing and pleasure and kayaks. <b>***<i>Get a $5 discount</i>***</b> on a rental boat if you mention Fishing Reports Now. A large supply of bait is stocked, including minnows for flounder. Fishing and crabbing tackle and gear is on hand. Live crabs for eating are $20, $25, $30 and $35 per dozen for four different sizes, from small to large, respectively. The price depends on the market. Cooked crabs are $5 per dozen additional. Those are New Jersey crabs. The store also brings in crabs from Maryland on weekends sometimes, in case Jersey crabs become scarce. The Maryland crabs are No. 1’s, the biggest size, and are $40 to $50 per dozen cooked, depending on size. If customers are there soon after the Marylands arrive, the crabs are available live. Otherwise, the shop cooks them. Live and steamed clams and cooked and uncooked shrimp are on hand. Customers enjoy the food at tented picnic tables on the water at the store, or enjoy them at their own location. Wine from Natali Vineyards in Cape May Court House will be available if New Jersey approves the shop for that.

<b>Cape May</b>

A charter went 3 for 6 on yellowfin tuna and also boated two mahi mahi at the Hot Dog on Tuesday on the <b>Heavy Hitter</b>, Capt. George said. All the fish were chunked, and one of the tuna that was lost was jigged along bottom but pulled the hook. All the fish were hooked on 40-pound leaders, except one was taken on 60-pound. Most anglers fished light leaders in this area. Sometimes heavier could be fished in early morning before too much light. The trip’s fish were hooked throughout the day in the 80-degree, bluish-green, “so-so looking” water. Lots of bait schooled, and a whale stayed near the boat, foraging. Another tuna trip was headed out today on the boat. Telephone if interested in the fishing.

With <b>Fishin’ Fever Sportfishing</b>, anglers picked away at summer flounder on the ocean, eight to 10 keepers per trip, among action with shorts and a few sea bass, Capt. Tom said. Tuna fishing sounded good for yellowfins and bluefins mixed together inshore, in 20 to 30 fathoms, on the chunk and troll. Charters and open-boat trips are flounder fishing and tuna fishing.

Summer flounder, good catches including some limits, were swung from the ocean a few days on the party boat <b>Porgy IV</b>, Capt. Paul said. But he didn’t want to sugar coat, he said, and the last couple of days fished slower, were tough. The fishing was inconsistent, but on Monday’s trip, Carl Keehfus from Villas limited out on flounder to 6 pounds, and so did George Schmidt from Magnolia, and George’s 6-pounder was slightly heavier, winning the pool. Casey Garselik from Salem fished aboard last Thursday and Friday, limiting both days, winning the pool on one of the trips. A bunch of flounder including some good-sized and a couple of limits were iced on Sunday’s trip. Haig Panossian on the outing bagged two of the fish to 6 pounds. Trips are fishing for flounder at 8 a.m. daily.

Boating for summer flounder was pretty good on the back bay and a little tough on the ocean, said Nick from <b>Hands Too Bait & Tackle</b>. But ocean anglers who worked the structure at reefs caught fairly well. Any reef that was best to fish was difficult to say, and the boaters just tried for a good drift of the boat and productive structure. Delaware Bay seemed to begin tossing up flounder, including at 20-Foot Slough, 60-Foot Slough and at different depth changes off Reed’s Beach and all around.  Boating off Cape May Channel off Cape May Point, where Delaware Bay and the ocean meet, usually produces kingfish, croakers, weakfish and flounder this time of year. Nick tells anglers that if none are hooked, push off farther from shore and fish different rips at the Cape May Rips to look for the fish. In the surf, weakfish seemed to be beached at Cape May Point. An angler who fished a rental-rod from the shop banked a couple on salted clams. Bloodworms, squid strips and shedder crabs are often fished for them. Croakers and kingfish nipped in the surf. Sometimes flounder did. Brown and sand tiger sharks stalked the surf, and boating produced bigger ones on Delaware Bay. Both sharks are required to be released. Blackfish, sheepshead and triggerfish snapped along surf jetties and inshore wrecks. Fish green crabs and shedder crabs for them along the jetty rocks. Inshore tuna fishing seemed to be turning on for 50- or 60-pound yellowfins at spots like the Hot Dog, Tea Cup and Massey’s Canyon on chunks and 6- to 8-ounce jigs. Mahi mahi and white marlin were trolled. Crabbing was excellent, and crabs were shedding currently, and that can slow crabbing, because crabs won’t eat while shedding. But that only lasts days. Baits stocked include minnows, bloodworms, shedder crabs, green crabs and all for offshore like sardines, butterfish and ballyhoos.

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