Sat., Dec. 15, 2018
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Delaware Bay Fishing Report 7-10-18

<b>Port Elizabeth</b>

Kingfishing improved along the ocean surf, so kings might begin to be reported boated from southern Delaware Bay, said Sharon from <b>Girls Place Bait & Tackle</b>. The fish would likely be found in the southern bay before spreading north in the bay. She knew about trips that were going to try for kings in the bay because the population grew in the surf. Kingfish are late, and arrived earlier last year. They usually turn up in late May or in June. But weather was different this year, and water seemed cooler this spring. Not many reports were heard about fishing for summer flounder on the bay. Weather was fiercely hot last week, maybe causing fewer anglers to fish for them. Weather became cooler by the weekend, but few reports rolled in yet from those days. Surely flounder swam the bay, and how many were keeper-sized was the question. Keepers at other areas might’ve become less abundant because anglers bagged a number of them already. Some of the best flounder fishing was reported from the back bay near Avalon. Crabbing kept improving all the time. Shedder crabs were no problem to stock for bait, and that seemed a good sign for crabbing. Minnows, a favorite flounder bait, were stocked steadily, after the baitfish were scarce earlier this year. Bloodworms were carried regularly. The worms and clams are baits for kings. So are shedder crabs. If surf-fishing for kings, the bloods and clams might stand up better to being cast than shedders. The crabs can fall apart a bit. But shedders are still good bait in the surf. Sharon often places a piece of bloodworm over top a piece of shedder, both because that can help keep the crab on the hook, but also because that’s a good combo to attract kings and nearly any fish. 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.

<b>Newport</b>

Crabbers averaged probably two to three dozen keepers per trip at <b>Beaver Dam Boat Rentals</b>, Linda said. The blueclaws included healthy-sized – “no real busters,” she said, but 6- and 6-1/2-inchers. Hand-lining caught much better than traps, and the store’s crew is happy to teach hand-lining. Good catches of white perch were made from the creek at the beginning of last week, but that slowed recently. The reasons couldn’t be known, but maybe that was because of extremely low tides. The new moon is coming in the next day or so, and that can cause extreme tides. Wear light-colored clothing, because dark clothing attracts greenheads. Greenheads weren’t “swarming,” but were there, and Linda expects most to disappear within the next couple of weeks. Customers crab and fish from rental boats towed up Oranokin Creek, running past the shop. Beaver Dam stocks everything needed for crabbing, from bait, traps and nets to snacks, drinks and suntan lotion. Customers can rent or buy supplies like traps and nets, or can bring their own. Rental kayaks and canoes are available to paddle the scenic creek. Call ahead to reserve the boat, kayak or canoe rentals, not necessarily because they’ll be booked otherwise, but so the crew can “pamper” you, Linda said. The rentals do become booked sometimes, though. Visit <a href=" http://www.crabulousnj.com/Home_Page.php" target="_blank">Beaver Dam’s website</a>.

<b>Fortescue</b>

A few summer flounder are showing up in the bay, said Capt. Howard from the <b>Salt Talk</b>. A trip Sunday aboard bagged four among throwbacks landed and small bluefish reeled in. “Not a bad day at all,” he said. Quite a few flounder were docked Saturday at Fortescue. Howard saw catches including nine, seven and four per boat. His trip fished near the wreck buoy, where flounder were hooked throughout last week.  The bluefish on the trip were hooked along bottom on the flounder rigs when schools swam through. Sometimes pods of fish were seen splashing along the surface, but Howard couldn’t tell whether they were bunker alone or blues chasing bunker. Seas were choppy that day, making splashes difficult to see. Howard saw and heard about no other fish like weakfish and kingfish from the bay. The Salt Talk used to be a Fortescue party boat. Howard sold that vessel, and the new Salt Talk is a charter boat for up to four passengers. 

<b>Cape May</b>

A couple of trips reported better summer flounder fishing on the southern bay than before, said Nick from <b>Hands Too Bait & Tackle</b>. That’s closer to Cape May, and previously he heard about most of the catches from the northern bay. The usual summertime mix of kingfish, croakers, small weakfish and flounder should be swimming Cape May Channel, off Cape May Lighthouse at the confluence of Delaware Bay and the ocean. Sharks usually haunt those waters, too. Sharks were beached from Cape May’s surf. The surf in town is located both along the bay and the ocean. Most shark species in these areas are required to be released. Anglers fish for them with fresh bunker or frozen mackerel on a big hook on steel leaders. Circle hooks are required. The surf-fishing for sharks is best during low light or early morning, evening and nighttime. But sometimes the sharks along the beach bite during daytime. Kingfishing was slow in the surf. A couple of reports mentioned kings and croakers from the beach, but too few to say that was fishing to do. A good number of triggerfish began to hover along Cape May Inlet’s jetties. Any cut bait including clams, squid or shrimp on small hooks can attract them.

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