Mon., April 23, 2018
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New Jersey Inshore Saltwater Fishing Report 2-12-18

<b>Belmar</b>

One of Belmar’s party boats fished the other day, landing a few cod and pollock and three keeper blackfish, said Bob from <b>Fisherman’s Den</b>. The catch seemed fair, Bob guessed, compared with slower fishing previously. Weather needs to be perfect on the right day of the week to attract enough customers to sail. When fishing’s good, anglers show up no matter. Customers are waiting for winter flounder season to open beginning March 1 to fish Shark River. The store’s rental boats will be available for that angling. The store is open in mornings until 12 noon or 1 p.m.  

<b>Brielle</b>

Fishing sailed Saturday on the <b>Jamaica II</b> for the first time in a couple of weeks, the party boat’s Facebook page said. “Rain held off for us today,” it said. Rain was forecast for that afternoon through Sunday. Cod, ling and pollock were picked. “Nothing special but better than it’s been for sure,” it said. The high hook bagged three cod and a pollock. Fourteen-hour trips are sailing for cod every Saturday, and 12-hour trips are fishing the Mudhole every Sunday and Wednesday for a variety of catches like these.

A local party boat fished near Block Island on a trip, said Alex from <b>The Reel Seat</b>. Forty or 50 cod and 150 ling were bagged, and 50 throwback cod were released. Some boats targeted blackfish, but not many of the tautog bit. Not worth mentioning, he said. The store will set up four tables at Surf Day on Saturday at Brookdale Community College in Lincroft. The shop will also have booths at the Berkeley Striper Club’s fishing flea market March 4 in Toms River, Asbury Park Fishing Club’s fishing flea market March 11 at Convention Hall and the Saltwater Fishing Expo March 16 to 18 in Edison. Dave Arbeitman, the shop’s owner, will give a presentation about tilefishing at the Saltwater Sportsman Seminar Feb. 24 in Linwood near Atlantic City.

<b>Toms River</b>

Here’s a start to the fishing season. Killies, shiners and, if available, bloodworms will be stocked beginning next week at <b>Murphy’s Hook House</b>, the shop’s Facebook page said. The store currently is open for no steady hours, but was open Saturday morning. Mario from the store heard nothing about fishing, he said in a phone at the shop that morning. The seasons will open beginning March 1 for striped bass in rivers and bays and for winter flounder throughout New Jersey. Customers will target both in Oyster Creek and the Toms River. The creek is the warm-water discharge for the Forked River power plant. Currently, anglers might target white perch in the river or creek and release any stripers or flounder hooked there.

<b>Absecon</b>

A couple of customers stopped by Saturday morning at <b>Absecon Bay Sportsman Center</b>, Capt. Dave from the store said when he gave this report then. But he’d heard nothing about fishing, and was hoping to by the end of the day. On that morning, sun shined, and weather was warming. Although rain was forecast for that afternoon and Sunday, weather was warming recently. Customers bought bloodworms from the store to fish for white perch on brackish rivers like the Mullica. A season’s second flat of the worms was stocked, and so were a few live grass shrimp for the angling. Dave was mostly getting ready for the opening of striped bass season beginning March 1 in bays and rivers. The shop is open for no set hours this season until opening daily starting that day. But currently Dave is usually at the store throughout the business day. Telephone ahead to confirm. 

<b>Longport</b>

Open-boat trips will fish Saturday through Monday, Presidents’ Day, on the <b>Stray Cat</b>, weather permitting, Capt. Mike said. The trips will fish for catches like cod, blackfish and big bergals. This will be bites, a day out, he said. Not looking to set the world on fire. Twenty-eight-mile wreck should hold some fish. The ocean became especially cold this winter, because of the cold snap around the first of the year. The basin became frozen solid during that time, unbelievable. Maybe angling was beginning to perk up, somewhat.

<b>Sea Isle City</b>

Traveling trips to the Florida Keys will fish this weekend aboard, said Capt. Joe Hughes from <b>Jersey Cape Guide Service</b> and <b>Sea Isle Bait & Tackle</b>. He runs charters to the islands annually from Christmas to Easter. This weekend’s fishing might shoot for tarpon and permits. That angling was good in recent years. Snappers, speckled sea trout and redfish are also possible catches. Sight-fishing for sharks on the flats is also popular on the outings. Anglers often arrive on a Friday evening, fish all day Saturday and part of Sunday, return during that evening, and be back to work Monday morning. Or they can make a different schedule. Joe can arrange flights and accommodations if anglers want. Once striped bass season opens starting March 1 in rivers and bays in New Jersey, Joe is often one of the first captains to hook the fish. He fishes for them at places like creek mouths on the back bay on outgoing tides. Creeks are warmer than the bay this season, and the warmer water flowing into the bay can attract fish. Afternoons on sunny days, when water’s warmest, can fish best. He casts Clouser Minnow flies or soft-plastic lures, working them slowly along bottom. See the <a href=" http://www.captainjoehughes.com/page3.html" target="_blank">traveling charters webpage</a> on Jersey Cape’s website. 

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