Sat., Oct. 20, 2018
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New Jersey Inshore Saltwater Fishing Report 10-4-18

<b>Keyport</b>

When conditions made tides right, striped bass fishing was good aboard, said Capt. Mario from the <b>Down Deep Fleet</b>. The trips eeled the bass, and he didn’t say where, but everybody’s been fishing on Hudson River. A 36-pounder was biggest aboard so far from the fishing, and every trip landed a 20- to 25-pounder or two. Open-boat trips are fishing for them daily. On Down Deep’s other boat, open trips will fish for sea bass daily beginning Monday, opening day of sea bass season. Charters are available for up to 15 passengers. Both boats feature a galley and a roomy cockpit.

The next fishing was going to sail today for striped bass with <b>Manicsportfishing</b>, Capt. Greg said. The fishing, with eels on Hudson River in strong current, has been great. Twenty-five to 35-pounders have been biting. Spaces are available for open-boat trips Friday and Sunday. A charter canceled for Sunday, making spaces available. Saturday is booked. A sea bass trip will fish Monday, opening day of sea bass season. Weekends are almost full this month, but November is wide open.

The <b>Vitamin Sea</b> underwent maintenance and is ready to resume fishing for striped bass, Capt. Frank wrote in an email. Bluefish are mixed in with the stripers, and trips aboard have been eeling the bass and “will be ready to start jigging as soon as the migrating fish begin to arrive,” he wrote. Bottom-fishing is also available for good catches of mostly porgies, triggerfish and blackfish. Charters are available, including for later this fall for stripers or blackfish. Weekends are still available. Open-boat trips for stripers are available 6 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday through Monday. Friday is sold out. Telephone to reserve. Get and bring a bonus tag to bag an extra striper.

<b>Leonardo</b>

Bottom-fishing toggled in porgies, triggerfish and blackfish, said Capt. Joe from <b>Sour Kraut Sportfishing</b>. Lots of sea bass filled the water, and the season for them opens Monday. The number of false albacore kept increasing in the ocean. Fun on light tackle. From offshore, he kept hearing about plenty of mahi mahi at the canyons and pots.

<b>Atlantic Highlands</b>

Bluefish 5 or 6 pounds blitzed the surf at Monmouth Beach, said Jay from <b>Julian’s Bait & Tackle</b>. Throwback stripers were eased from the surf, and sometimes false albacore stormed into the water. Porgy fishing was good, and blackfish were picked up from Sandy Hook Reef and Romer Shoal. Blackfish probably chomped along bridges. Spearing schooled all over. Many people still crabbed, like at Red Bank. Fresh clams are stocked that are scarce. Can’t find them? Julian’s has them. Baits stocked also include green crabs and eels.

Good porgy fishing was boated, said Johnny O. from <b>Fisherman’s Den North</b>. Striped bass fishing near the Statue of Liberty sounded dead today. The bass were eeled there lately. Tackle including Mojos was arriving for the migration of striped bass that will slam the coast before long. A big shipment of tackle arrived for sea bass and blackfish, like sea bass jigs. Sea bass season will begin Monday. Fresh clams are scarce for sea bass bait. Frozen clams are stocked, and sea bass will grab frozen squid that are also carried. Surf anglers picked false albacore that raced into the water occasionally.

Anglers pounded jumbo porgies yesterday on the <b>Fishermen</b>, a report said on the party boat’s website. The trip fished a new area, but fishing aboard had already been great. Fall fishing at its finest, it said. On the trip, current ran hard the first half-hour, causing anglers to fish 10 ounces of weight to hold. The current slowed, and the bite got hot. Double-headers of some beautiful porgies were waxed around the boat. The season’s first couple of weakfish were angled on Monday’s trip. That trip’s catch also included plenty of porgies, bluefish, blowfish and out-of-season sea bass that were released. The Fishermen is fishing for porgies7:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. daily.

The twice-daily trips for porgies landed good catches on the party boat <b>Atlantic Star</b>, Capt. Tom said. The catches yesterday were really good. On the morning’s trip, current ran a little strongly at first, but when it mellowed, the angling kicked in. The afternoon’s trip fished even better. Some trips are fishing better than others, and that can depend on current and weather. When weather or current forced trips to fish closer to port, the fish could be smaller than the big that made up the catch otherwise, farther out. The fish were on the move, migrating out. Even on a slow day, the anglers who catch the least on trips might total 10 or 15 porgies. Everybody left with dinner from trips. A couple of blackfish were pulled in on trips. Tom was telling anglers who wanted blackfish to catch porgies first, until they had enough, then go for blackfish. Some good-sized sea bass bit and were released. Sea bass season opens Monday, and beginning then, trips will fish for sea bass, porgies and blackfish. Porgies and sea bass bite in the same areas. Blackfish aren’t always at those spots. The porgy fishing’s been good. It’s as simple as that, he said. Good as you want, and trips are sailing for them 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and 1:30 to 6 p.m. daily. Beginning Monday, the trips will fish for sea bass, porgies and blackfish.

<b>Long Branch</b>

In the surf, anglers picked away at small striped bass, mostly on rubber shads, bucktails or Daiwa SP Minnows, said Mike from <b>TAK Waterman Surf n Fish</b>. Bluefish 4 to 6 pounds blitzed the surf a couple of times. Sometimes false albacore were slammed in the surf on Hogie soft-plastic lures on jigs. TAK Waterman is a shop for fishing, especially surf-fishing, surfing and paddle-boarding. The shop also produces the TAK Waterman line of clothing for watersports including these and beach-going. The name is from Lake Takanasee.

<b>Neptune</b>

The boat was supposed to be splashed back in the water yesterday, ready for fall to winter fishing, Capt. Ralph from <b>Last Lady Fishing Charters</b> wrote beforehand. It previously was in dry dock for seasonal maintenance and a Coast Guard inspection. An individual-reservation trip for sea bass is full Monday, opening day of sea bass season. Another with spaces available is set for Oct. 21. Time to talk about blackfish: An individual-reservation trip for the tautog will sail Nov. 16, when the bag limit is increased to five from the current limit of one. Room is available. Bluefish trips are currently available.

<b>Belmar</b>

The surf turned out an uptick in throwback striped bass catches, Bob from <b>Fisherman’s Den</b> wrote in an email. Baitfish thinned out in rivers, so they must’ve been flushing into the surf and ocean. That should heat up surf fishing. Rivers were loaded with small stripers and a few keepers. Blackfishing was great along Shark River Inlet. Many of the tog were shorts, but the bite was fast and furious, and some were keepers or good-sized. Anthony Petillo from Manasquan took a 5-pounder, and Jack Kruger from Neptune drummed up a 4-pound 9-ouncer. Time to fish the surf and back waters, Bob said. On Belmar’s party and charter boats on the ocean, fishing for bluefish and false albacore was terrific. Bottom-fishing scooped up porgies and limits of one blackfish per angler on the vessels.

A trip for tuna will fish Sunday on the <b>Katie H</b>, Capt. Mike said. Weather looks favorable, and the trip will fish mid-range. Nothing good was heard about tuna all the way offshore. Not a lot was heard about mid-range either, but maybe the trip will run into some. The last trip did, covered in a previous report here. Mahi mahi should be able to be caught – they were around. Mike looks forward to sea bass season opening Monday. The boat will bottom-fish for catches like them, ling and porgies.

Capt. Pete from <b>Parker Pete’s Fishing Charters</b> hopes to fish on a couple of trips for sea bass once sea bass season opens Monday, he said. He took advantage of the fair weather recently to do maintenance on the boat before the fishing schedule gets crazy this fall. Pete expects the striped bass migration to arrive by the third weekend of this month in the local ocean. Trips aboard each year get all over them. He knew boaters who were already looking for the bass.

Fishing for sea bass will begin Monday on the party boat <b>Big Mohawk</b> on daily trips 6 a.m. to 3 p.m., Capt. Chris said. That day and Tuesday, the first two days of sea bass season, are sold out. Space is available beginning Wednesday. Room is available Saturday and Sunday for two trips for bonito and false albacore at 6:30 a.m., limited to 17 people per trip.

Lights-out bluefishing was smoked Tuesday for 2- to 6-pounders on the <b>Miss Belmar Princess</b> east of the inlet, an email said from the party boat. An angler won the pool with one of six false albacore he beat. On Wednesday’s trip, also east of the inlet, numerous anglers limited out on 3- to 6-pound blues, and some bonito were socked. The fishing began slower, picking at shots, and improved throughout the outing. Trips are fishing 7:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. daily.

Great day of fishing for bluefish and a good mix of false albacore today on the <b>Golden Eagle</b>, a report said on the party boat’s website. On Wednesday’s trip, bluefishing for 3- to 6-pounders was a little slower than lately. On Tuesday’s trip, bluefishing was super for 3- to 8-pounders, and anglers who wanted albies could whip plenty. Some landed double digits. Several porgies were plundered, and some large sea bass were released. But sea bass season will open Monday. These trips are fishing 7:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. daily except when tuna trips are running. Trips are bluefishing 7:30 p.m. to 2 a.m. Saturdays. A trip Sunday to Monday found slow tuna fishing, a couple of bites, but excellent mahi mahi fishing.  See the <a href=" https://www.goldeneaglefishing.com/tunafish" target="_blank">tuna schedule</a> online.

<b>Brielle</b>

A few small striped bass were picked from the surf, said John from <b>The Reel Seat</b>. Bluefish maybe 2 to 4 pounds were heard about from the surf farther south toward the Lavallette and Seaside area. Not many showed up closer to Brielle. False albacore sometimes shot into the surf locally, and more of a concentration seemed farther north. Lots were fought at Sandy Hook. Out-of-season fluke nibbled in the surf. A few did in Manasquan River. A few reports rolled in about striped bass angled from the river. A few blowfish and small kingfish hit in Barnegat Bay near Mantoloking Bridge. The store’s owner hooked some. Blowfishing was better farther south in the bay toward the BI and BB markers. Boats including party boats caught blues 2 to 4 pounds, a few bigger, not many, on the ocean. The trips also tied into a few false albacore and bonito. The bonito seemed small. John fished on a party boat, and an angler reeled in a fish that the angler thought was a mackerel. It was a bonito. John on the trip iced a dozen ling and a couple of winter flounder, and released an out-of-season fluke and a couple of out-of-season sea bass. The ling fishing was a little slow on the outing. Mahi mahi seemed to push a little deeper and farther from shore. Fishing for them became a little spotty there. Not many mahi remained inshore. Farther off, canyon fishing was spotty. Some mahi were boated there, but not the absurd number like earlier this year, and not like the absurd number of white marlin that swam the canyons this summer.

<b>Point Pleasant Beach</b>

<b>***Update, Friday, 10/5:***</b> A few yellowfin tuna and a couple of longfin tuna were axed on a 36-hour trip that returned late yesterday on the <b>Gambler</b>, a report said on the party boat’s website. Mahi mahi, big Pollock, large white hake, blue sharks, a big bull shark, small, undersized bluefin tuna that were released in big schools that smashed anglers’ baits, almaco jacks, little tunny and big squid were also landed. Seldom a dull moment, the report said. First on the trip, the captain spotted a huge weed line halfway out, and stopped the boat. Mahi and almacos were reeled in. Afterward, the trip made a drift at a wreck in 250 feet of water. Big pollock and large white hake were cranked in. Then the trip fished at pot gear, pasting a good mess of mahi. Before sundown, the boat was set up to fish near the eastern edge of Hudson Canyon at a good temperature break. At night, mahi, blue sharks and big squid were angled in the chum slick. Just before sunrise, the big schools of undersized bluefins raced through, pouncing on baits, keeping anglers busy. The bluefins were let go. Some fun mayhem. After the sun raised, the yellowfins, 50-pounders, and longfins, 30- to 40-pounders, were picked. Late that day, a report came in about yellowfins and little tunny inshore. The boat was run there, and the bull shark and a few little tunny were wrestled in. No yellowfins were seen at that spot. On the trip, Edwin Ortiz caught a 40-pound longfin, six mahi 8 to 10 pounds, two 20-pound pollock and two-dozen huge squid. The crew looks forward to the next trip.  See the <a href=" http://www.gamblerfishing.net/offshoretrips.php" target="_blank">tuna schedule</a> on Gambler’s website. Daily striped bass trips will begin on Nov. 1.

Pretty good, Capt. Butch said about bottom-fishing on the party boat <b>Dauntless</b>. Pretty steady, and porgies made up most of the catch. A few bluefish were clocked, and quite a few blackfish began to snap, though most of the blackfish were undersized. Plenty of out-of-season sea bass were around, and trips will be able to keep them beginning Monday, opening day of sea bass season. Butch was trying to avoid sea bass, but won’t beginning that day. Lots of out-of-season fluke had been biting, but not in the past five or six days. Trips fished in 30 to 60 feet of water. The water surface was 69 to 71 degrees on the grounds. The temperature was dropping, and that’s good for the fishing, so long as it doesn’t drop too much. Trips are bottom-fishing 7:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. daily.

Porgies and a few good-sized blackfish gave up decent action during the weekend on the <b>Norma-K III</b>, a report said on the party boat’s website. All anglers left with dinner. Friday night’s trip picked blues, and Saturday night’s trip scored much better, a good number of blues, 3- to 6-pounders. An 18-pounder won Friday night’s pool. “Hopefully they keep on coming!” the report said about bluefish. Trips were going to be docked the rest of this week, so maintenance could be done on the boat to be ready for sea bass season that begins Monday.

<b>Toms River</b>

Small bluefish and throwback striped bass were plucked from the surf, said Mario from <b>Hook House Bait & Tackle</b>. Mullet caught best for bait anglers. Anglers who threw lures connected on metal and swimming plugs. Blowfishing was good on Barnegat Bay near the BI and BB markers. Snapper blues now schooled more around the mouth of the Toms River or in the bay there than farther up the river. A few weakfish were around. Some showed up at Ocean Gate last week. A buddy hooked weaks in the bay toward Barnegat Inlet. Hook House, located on Route 37, also owns <b>Go Fish Bait & Tackle</b> on Fischer Boulevard. 

<b>Seaside Heights</b>

Solid fishing for small bluefish was cracked from the surf, a report said on <b>The Dock Outfitters</b>’ website. Dunk mullet for them. Add to that striped bass from small to occasional keepers beached from the surf at first light and last light. The bass swiped small swimming plugs and small paddletails. From the dock, a few throwback stripers were whipped on bunker or mullet. Crabbers had difficulty trapping four or five keepers. 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, and, in season, boat and jet-ski rentals. A few boats were still available last weekend.

<b>Forked River</b>

Plenty of blowfish hovered in Barnegat Bay near the research buoy or a little farther south in 6 to 10 feet of water, said Mike from <b>Grizz’s Bait & Tackle</b>. Small bluefish and small striped bass swam the bay near Barnegat Inlet. Most tossed soft-plastics who fished for them. A few customers fished the surf, faring okay on small blues and small stripers on mullet. No keeper stripers were heard about. Customers fished the ocean Sunday, heading for catches like mahi mahi. None reported results yet. All baits are stocked for inshore to offshore. Offshore baits include, for example, pre-cut butterfish, whole butters and sardines.

<b>Barnegat Light</b>

Lot of blowfish, said Vince Sr. from <b>Bobbie’s Boat Rentals</b>. Anglers were all boating them from Barnegat Bay, and chum logs and clams and squid were stocked for them. Some boaters were weakfishing on the bay, and anglers can order live grass shrimp for that from the shop. Out-of-season fluke still bit in the bay. Mostly blackfish were reeled up along Barnegat Inlet’s rocks. Vince saw a sheepshead from there today. Customers headed for bonito on the ocean yesterday, and some left to fish ocean wrecks to see where sea bass might be for the opening of sea bass season Monday. Crabbing wasn’t exceptional. Nobody clammed the bay, but plenty of clams are there. Green crabs and minnows are stocked. Live spots will be carried later this season for striped bass. 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.

<b>Barnegat</b>

<b>***Update, Friday, 10/5:***</b> An email from Capt. Dave DeGennaro from the <b>Hi Flier</b>: “We are still chumming with live grass shrimp for weakfish. Every day the size changes, they range from 12 to 19 inches. Once they get to be 15 inches or bigger they zip some drag off of our six pound spinning outfits. In the mix, and dominating the slick, are a million snapper blues, some that are approaching the one pound mark now. Also, silver perch, sand sharks, out-of-season and short anyway fluke, and more. It is steady, sometimes constant action. A test of endurance to fish through the body of snapper blues. We are using little 1/16 oz jigs tipped with shrimp as our best weakie catcher right now. Sailing Open Boat or Charter Sun, Oct 7 and Mon, Oct 8 Shrimping Trips 8AM to 1PM on Sun and 9AM to 2PM on Mon (it's a tide thing). $125 person, 4 people max on Open Boats, all fish are shared. $500 for the whole boat if you charter. From here in we will only be sailing on Sat, Sun, and Mon's through the rest of 2018. I am launching the Philadelphia Fishing Show, Feb 22-24, 2019 at the Greater Philadelphia Expo center in Oaks, PA. I am committing all of my time to coordinating this event. If you are looking to book a striper date with us we will only have these three days available each week and some are already booked. Just a heads up. Hope to see you at the show!!”

<b>Absecon</b>

Capt. Dave from <b>Absecon Bay Sportsman Center</b>’s been running striped bass charters, Curt from the shop said. Lots of medium-sized were reeled in, including a couple of keepers and some slots. Dave has bonus tags so an angler can bag an extra striper, a slot. There was good action, and he had been fishing in Mullica River. Today he moved to the Intracoastal Waterway near Absecon and a little north. Curt guessed the river’s bass were smaller than Dave wanted. The trips fished with Gulps and live peanut bunker. Curt wasn’t asked the type of Gulps, but Dave usually fishes Gulp Nemesis for the bass. Curt heard about decent-sized weakfish found off jetties at night and in mornings, and about weakfish from the mouth of the Mullica. Shedder crabs or live peanuts could hook weaks. He saw a couple of big sheepshead that were caught. Anglers could locate a limit of one blackfish at places like bridges. Blackfish were around. Sea bass season opens Monday, and a fairly good population of them seemed to swim the ocean. Triggerfish remained at ocean reefs. Baitfish in back waters currently included lots of peanut bunker. Mullet in the back seemed to move to near Absecon Inlet. Mullet schooled the ocean. So did a few adult bunker. Baits stocked include live spots, mullet, eels and green crabs. A few shedder crabs were carried sometimes. Call ahead to confirm. The supply was dropping off for the season. Crabbing began to slow down, but people still crabbed, for sure.

<b>Brigantine</b>

Rich Passarella moved into first and second place in the bluefish division of the Fall Riptide Surf Fishing Derby with a 1-pound 4.2-ouncer and a 1-pound 2.6-ouncer, said Andy from <b>Riptide Bait & Tackle</b>. Blues and more blues swam the surf. Andy saw no kingfish from the surf lately. The derby, underway until Dec. 23, awards $500, $300 and $150 for the three heaviest stripers and $300, $200 and $100 for the three heaviest blues. Entry is $25 and includes a permit that allows Brigantine’s entire front beach to be driven, if you also have a Brigantine permit. Without the tournament permit, not all the beach can be driven. The annual Brigantine Elks striper tournament for surf anglers and boaters, benefitting a veterans’ fund, will be held Nov. 16-18.

<b>Atlantic City</b>

Anglers Mohawked cocktail blues from the surf to Absecon Inlet to the back bay near the inlet, said Noel from <b>One Stop Bait & Tackle</b>. If they fished a Sabiki rig, they hooked three or four at once. They also fished Snapper Zappers, spoons, bunker, fresh mullet and any usual tackle or bait for blues. Customers fish on foot from the surf to the inlet and bay near the inlet. They fish the surf beside the inlet. The fishing was on and cracking. This is the time to be here, he said. Kingfish and spots, a lot of spots, were bloodwormed from the surf. Blackfish gathered along the jetty-lined inlet’s rocks. One in 30 was a keeper, but there was a ton of action. The anglers occasionally tugged in striped bass and weakfish. All baits, the full supply, are stocked, including fresh, shucked clams, bloodworms, green crabs, eels and minnows. Fresh clams are in short supply throughout the coast, but the shop’s got plenty. A vending machine dispenses bait, a little of everything, round the clock.

<b>Longport</b>

On the <b>Stray Cat</b>, sea bass fishing will launch Monday, opening day of sea bass season, Capt. Mike said. Three or four anglers are already signed up, and room is available for five or six more, for an open-boat trip Saturday that will beat up bluefish and target weakfish, porgies or whatever will bite on the ocean. Stray Cat’s already been loading up on that type of angling, written about previously here. Monday’s trip is sold out for sea bass. A few spots are left for Wednesday, and Friday of next week is full.

<b>Ocean City</b>

Seas made fishing the surf tough for weeks, said Ed from <b>Fin-Atics</b>. But bluefish from 10 inches to larger schooled all over from the surf to the back bay. Those who braved the surf also winged a few kingfish and pompano. A few striped bass were talked about from along bridges at night. Boaters had little reason to fish the ocean, because species there were either out-of-season or not in yet. But sea bass season will open Monday, and boaters will get after them there. No customers seemed to fish offshore for tuna or other big game.

<b>Sea Isle City</b>

Fishing was similar to last week, said Mike from <b>Sea Isle Bait & Tackle</b>. Abundant bluefish 2 to 3 pounds, occasionally 5 pounds and occasionally snappers, tumbled around, mostly in Townsend’s Inlet, but some in the surf and back bay. Some striped bass, mostly schoolies, have bitten among them. Every year, stripers from the bay move to the surf to forage on mullet that migrated there. Anglers always think that’s the start of stripers that will continue to swim the surf in fall. But the stripers always move back to the bay after the mullet depart. Some kingfish and pompano still roamed the surf. A few better-sized stripers were hooked at night under lights at bridges or docks. Cast Bass Assassins to them. Blackfishing was fairly good at structure like docks near Townsend’s Inlet. At the inlet, the sea wall to the base of the bridge is closed for construction the rest of the season. That’s one of the most popular places locally for blackfishing. Some fished for blackfish at Corson’s Inlet, and that fishes slower than Townsend’s. A few trips were known to fish offshore last weekend at the canyons and a little inshore, catching mahi mahi, sometimes 30 in an outing. Closer to shore, mahi, bluefish and bonito were boated. Mike saw two cobia that were caught during the weekend. Sea bass season will open Monday. Crabbing was excellent.

Bluefish swarmed around, said Capt. Joe Hughes from <b>Jersey Cape Guide Service</b>, affiliated with <b>Sea Isle Bait & Tackle</b>. So that was cool, he said, and striped bass bit in the back bay. High tides at dusk were ideal for that currently. Sea bass season will open Monday, and he’ll fish for them on the ocean. That might not happen until after mid-October, when his traveling charters to Montauk wrap up. More of the Montauk trips, targeting the migrations of stripers, blues and false albacore each year for one month beginning in mid-September, will fish this weekend. When those trips wrap up, trips aboard often fight albies from Sea Isle, until fishing the migrations of large stripers and blues from the port. See the <a href="http://www.captainjoehughes.com/page3.html" target="_blank">traveling charters webpage</a> on Jersey Cape’s website. Keep up with Joe’s fishing on <a href="http://captainjoehughes.blogspot.com/" target="_blank">Jersey Cape’s Blog</a>.

<b>Cape May</b>

Fishing for sea bass will start Monday, opening day of sea bass season, on the party boat <b>Porgy IV</b>, Capt. Paul said. Fishing’s been docked aboard since the boat sailed for summer flounder daily until flounder season closed 1 ½ weeks ago. The frequency of the sea bass trips, departing at 8 a.m., will depend on demand, but the outings will fish daily if possible. The sea bass bag and size limits will be 10 fish at 12 ½ inches through Oct. 31 and 15 fish at 13 inches through the rest of the year.

Charters will run for sea bass on the <b>Heavy Hitter</b> on the ocean once sea bass season opens Monday, Capt. George said. Bluefish and bonito remained at 5-Fathom Bank that could be trolled aboard. A friend tied into them. Little was heard about tuna recently. Lots of mahi mahi swam offshore waters. A few wahoos, not many, were still in. When the striped bass migration arrives later this season, charters will get after them from Atlantic City. The boat will be docked at a slip there, because that’s been closer to the best fishing for them lately.

Bluefish to 25 inches, decent-sized, showed up in inlets and the back bay, said Nick from <b>Hands Too Bait & Tackle</b>. Fishing went well for them on mullet or lures. Blues mostly to 18 inches and throwback striped bass bit in the surf on mullet or lures. That was from the ocean to Delaware Bay, and Cape May is at the confluence. On the Delaware Bay side, spots, kingfish, a few croakers and maybe still pompano probably continued to be around like before in the surf. A few weakfish loitered the bay’s surf. Fishing for blackfish and triggerfish along surf jetties was a little slow, but a few gathered there. Blackfish and triggers swam fairly abundant at inshore wrecks. Sea bass season will open Monday, and trips will fish for them often at small inshore wrecks and at spots like Cape May Reef. Lots of mahi mahi seemed to hold along pot buoys – they were loaded with them – from 20 miles from shore to farther out. Fishing pressure was down, so the mahi were plentiful, he guessed. White marlin fishing seemed to turn back on and be pretty good at Washington Canyon this week. Crabbing was excellent on the back bay.

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