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Offseason Fishing Report 3-21-17


Migrating striped bass were expected to slip into Delaware Bay this week, heading to Delaware River to spawn, online reports said. The bay was rough last week from the nor’easter last Tuesday, and windy weather lingered into the weekend. Little was heard about anybody on the water. But a Philadelphia tackle shop reported that the year’s first couple of larger stripers were landed from the river this weekend. Those included a 24-pounder downstream from Tacony-Palmyra Bridge. The same store reported rumors that the year’s first few shad were angled from the river farther upstream at Yardley and Lambertville before the storm, but emphasized that those were only rumors. In other news, Delaware’s summer flounder regulations were set for the year: a four-fish bag limit with a 17-inch minimum size and no closed season. The only difference from last year is that 16 inches was the minimum size. The federal government has voted for a 19-inch minimum size and three-flounder limit for New Jersey this year, but Jersey has vowed to fight that.


Oregon Inlet

Seas were 7 to 12 feet yesterday, and were rough throughout last week in strong wind since the storm last Tuesday, said Denise MacNamara from <b>Oregon Inlet Fishing Center</b>. That kept boats from fishing for bluefin tuna the entire week. Two boats set out for the fish this morning, though, and results would be heard. The fleet last fished two Fridays ago and “enjoyed some serious battles with the blue-fin … landing a couple,” a report said on the marina’s website. One trip fought an estimated 600-pounder that broke off on a spinning rod. The storm Tuesday was the big nor’easter that slammed the entire East Coast. The rough weather since was typical for March, Denise guessed, she said. Visit Website.



Trips began to fish farther offshore in deeper water sometimes, but fished closer in, too, for a variety of catches, said Capt. Bruce Andersen from Captain Easy Charters. Angling was good aboard this past week, and one of the trips that fished deeper sailed Sunday for swordfish, bagging a 90-pounder, releasing a 50-pounder and scoring a couple of other bites. That was daytime swordfishing, not swordfishing at night that’s common. To catch during daytime, the trip fished along bottom in 1,500 feet of water for the light-sensitive fish. The trip also did a little mahi mahi fishing in the area, catching the dolphin. A few more mahi began to show up than before, from closer to shore to farther. Closer to port, trips tackled a few amberjacks at the Islamorada Hump, an underwater mound 11 miles out. Sizable bull sharks fed on the a.j.’s and could also be fought. Even closer to land, trips piled up lots of yellowtail snappers at the reef, a few miles from port. Lots of king mackerel gathered just offshore of the reef that some trips took advantage of. A few sailfish still roamed that area, and a few mahi held there, that trips could get after. Every day fished a little different, but a mix of these catches was on tap. Call: 305-451-9578 or 305-360-2120. Visit Website.

Some of the traveling charters to the Florida Keys fished the bay near Islamorada during the weekend with Capt. Joe Hughes from Jersey Cape Guide Service from Sea Isle City, N.J., he said.  Fishing Friday through Sunday with Darrel Cooper and two friends, the trips pasted at least 20 species. The anglers landed three permits, a bonefish, lemon sharks, bonnethead sharks, barracudas, snappers including mangroves and muttons, jacks and more. They also jumped three tarpon, and the fishing was phenomenal, Joe said. Earlier in winter, fishing wasn’t as good in the Everglades as in the bay near Islamorada. Whether that changed was unknown, and Joe had no reason to leave the water near Islamorada currently, because that angling caught. Weather was a little breezy at times, and more of the trips will fish next weekend. The trips, fishing mostly on weekends, sail every Christmas to Easter.  See the traveling charters’ page on Jersey Cape’s website. 

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