Sat., Oct. 20, 2018
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New Jersey Inshore Saltwater Fishing Report 7-26-18

<b>Sewaren</b>

Fluke had been boated on trips from <b>Dockside Bait & Tackle</b>, Linda said. But weather kept the trips docked in past days. The fish were taken on Raritan Bay including at the Triangle. Porgy fishing was good when anglers last sailed for them. Weather was improving now. All baits are stocked. Dockside, located on Smith Creek, a tributary of the Arthur Kill, is accessible from land and water at the fuel dock. The fuel dock is open 6 a.m. to 8 p.m.

<b>Keyport</b>

Weather kept the <b>Vitamin Sea</b> in port throughout the week, Capt. Frank wrote in an email. All the south wind probably blew bait and therefore fluke into the boat’s waters, at least. Charters and open-boat trips are fishing. Spaces are available for two open trips for fluke on Saturday, the final available this month. Weather looks good. Telephone to reserve.

Open-boat trips or charters for fluke are available Friday and Sunday with <b>Manicsportfishing</b>, after fishing was weathered out this week, Manic’s Facebook page said. Saturday had been available but is now booked. Don’t wait until the last minute to book, because this will be a packed weekend. Everything is included: Gulps, bucktails, other tackle, poles and fish cleaning. Clams will be carried aboard for the option to also fish for porgies and sea bass.

Fishing last sailed on Thursday with the <b>Down Deep Fleet</b> because of weather, Capt. Mario said. Trips will resume Friday through Sunday. Porgy fishing was excellent on open-boat trips sailing for them at 6 a.m. daily and 2 p.m. Saturdays, when the angling last sailed. Down Deep’s other boat is now concentrating on fishing the ocean for fluke, after that angling fished the bay previously. Open trips are slated to do that at 6 a.m. daily. Charters are available for either fishing for up to 15 passengers. Both boats feature plenty of room and full galleys. Sign up for the Short Notice List on <a href="http://downdeepsportfishing.com" target="_blank">Down Deep’s website</a> to be kept informed about special trips sailing with just a little notice. Look for the link under Contact.

<b>Atlantic Highlands</b>

Yesterday afternoon’s twice-daily fluke trip fished on the party boat <b>Atlantic Star</b>, and Capt. Tom hoped both trips fished today, he said. Weather was supposed to straighten up a little today and be better Friday and throughout the weekend. The fishing is the same as before. Lots of fluke were hooked, and a few were keepers. Trips this week fished the bay, and rough weather lately was no reason not to join the angling. Southeast wind actually caused the boat to drift well for fluking on the bay. Neither wind nor rain prevented the angling. Both of Tuesday’s trips fished, and neither of Monday’s did. The crew is shaping up to sail on every trip. Just a few anglers showed up for yesterday afternoon’s trip, but the trip sailed. All customers are catching fluke. Not all catch a keeper. The boat had anglers yesterday that were tickled with the number of fluke they reeled in. If a guy brings his girl, he said, and they land a mess of fluke and maybe a keeper or two, that’s something. They’re happy. Trips are fishing for fluke 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and 1:30 to 6 p.m. daily.

The <b>Fishermen</b>’s daily fluke trips were expected to fish again today, after being docked in the weather, a report said on the party boat’s website. The trips are fishing the ocean, and seas were too rough to sail there in past days. Trips are fluking 7:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. daily. However, the boat is chartered this Friday and Saturday, so no open-boat trips will fish those days.

News was scarce after rain fell in past days, said Ron from <b>Julian’s Bait & Tackle</b>. He and friends had been knocking fluke dead from the bay’s surf from South Amboy to locally. That slowed in the weather, or at least keepers seemed to disappear. They had been banking keepers 20 to 25 inches. Porgy fishing was good. Someone brought in a bucket of them hooked along the Navy Pier. Bluefin tuna were fought, when trips last sailed for them. Peanut bunker are growing larger rapidly. Fresh peanuts are stocked.

Three of the party boats from Atlantic Highlands sailed today, said Johnny O. from <b>Fisherman’s Den North</b>. They seemed to catch lots of throwback fluke, a few keepers. One of the boats fished for porgies, so porgies must still be in, Johnny figured. None of the store’s rental boats fished today. But when two or three anglers fluked on one of the rentals, they usually returned with at least two keepers. The ratio seemed about 1 keeper for every 10 throwbacks. A couple of fluke were dragged from Sandy Hook’s surf today, Johnny heard. “Being patient,” he said. All baits, the full variety, are stocked.

<b>Highlands</b>

<b>Fin-Taz-Tic Sportfishing</b> is expected to start back up fluke fishing this weekend, Capt. Pete wrote in an email. Been a good season for the flatfish aboard. Give a call if you’re looking to get out, and see if some big fluke can be found after this rough weather.

<b>Long Branch</b>

Mike from <b>TAK Waterman Surf n Fish</b> and friends had been scooping up good surf-fishing for fluke, he said. But seas lately became 4 to 8 feet every day in the surf. Pretty crazy. They hit the fluke on a ½- or ¾-ounce bucktail with a Gulp with a teaser with a Gulp, looking for small ditches along sand bars to cast to. Quite a few fluke gathered along the ditch edges. Striped bass 18 to 24 inches, not big but a healthy number, had been banked from the surf in early mornings and at dusk on white Tsunami shads before the seas became unfishable. Mike fished on a trip last week that cast lures and jigged for bluefin tuna 60 or 70 miles from shore. The trip hooked none, but saw one of the fish about 150 pounds swim past. He knew about a couple of the tuna broken off on other boats during the trip. A buddy on one of the trips hooked one of the tuna on a cast stick bait, but the bluefin broke off the leader. Mike’s trip did no trolling for the fish, and the friends he fished with like to cast for the tuna, not troll. Lots of bait and life filled the water. Mike also fished for largemouth bass at a lake in Monmouth County last week. The angling, on chatter baits, was good, and he landed 3- to 4-pounders and jumped off probably a 5- or 6-pounder. Although the ocean was too rough for fishing in past days, that was good for surfing. Surfers were stopping by the shop, and the store specializes in fishing, surfing, stand-up paddle-boarding and the TAK Waterman line of outdoor clothing for all of these water sports and beach-going. TAK stands for nearby Lake Takanasee. Part of the idea for the shop was that when the surf was too rough for fishing, surfing would be on, like it was now.

<b>Neptune</b>

Wind is forecast to blow only 5 to 15 m.p.h. beginning Friday, finally! Capt. Ralph from <b>Last Lady Fishing Charters</b> wrote in an email. “We will be back on the water …,” he wrote. Only one spot is left for an individual-reservation trip Sunday for porgies and triggerfish. Individual-reservation trips will fish for: big ling and big sea bass mid-range Aug. 5; and cod offshore at 2 a.m. Friday, Aug. 24. Individual-reservation trips are fishing for fluke and sea bass every Tuesday, and kids under 12 sail free on those outings, limited to one per adult host. Choice dates are available for charters on weekends and weekdays.

<b>Belmar</b>

This stretch of weather was brutal, said Capt. Pete from <b>Parker Pete’s Fishing Charters</b>. But that happens – you’ll lose a week of fishing sometimes. He hopes to resume fluking on the ocean Friday aboard. He hoped that the northeast wind and now the full moon only helped the fishing. More fluke should move in, he thinks. The next weeks should be the time for monster fluke. August is usually a month for that, and the angling might last late into September, so long as no hurricane or tropical storm chases the fish out. The run might be late this year, he thinks. Plenty of afternoon trips are still available. A couple of Sundays remain in August, if he remembered correctly. Don’t have enough anglers for a charter? Book an individual spot with a charter who wants more anglers. Sign up for the email blast on <a href=" http://www.parkerpetefishing.com/" target="_blank">Parker Pete’s website</a> to be kept informed about the spaces.

Weather was clearing, and this afternoon’s trip should kick fishing back off on the <b>Miss Belmar Princess</b>, an email said from the party boat. Trips most recently plucked bottom-fish like sea bass from the ocean, reported previously here. Trips are fishing 7:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. and 4:30 to 8:30 p.m. daily.

The <b>Golden Eagle</b>’s fishing was maybe going to get the weather to start back up today, a report said on the party boat’s website. Friday looked most possible, and the weekend looked calm. Recent trips angled sea bass and other bottom-fish on the ocean, covered in previous reports here. Trips are fishing 7:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. and 4:30 to 8:30 p.m. daily.

<b>Brielle</b>

Some of the only fishing was for fluke on Barnegat Bay near Mantoloking Bridge and on Manasquan River, because of weather, said Bob from <b>The Reel Seat</b>. But not many of those trips fished. Small striped bass bit at night along the river’s bridges and Mantoloking Bridge. The surf pounded, was dirty and unfishable. No beach, only a drop-off, was left at some places. The last offshore trips were heard about from Friday. The fishing was good, but all to the north, like at Atlantis Canyon. The Jenny Lee on a trip last Thursday to Friday reportedly caught a couple of yellowfins, a bigeye and a mahi mahi and had a big marlin swim the trolling spread. The Canyon Runner reportedly whacked lots of bigeye tuna and yellowfin tuna.

<b>Point Pleasant Beach</b>

Bottom-fishing sailed Tuesday, took a butt-kicking from seas, but caught on the party boat <b>Dauntless</b>, Capt. Butch said. Good catches of sea bass, though two is the bag limit per angler, one porgy, a few ling and a couple of fluke came in. The boat is targeting porgies, when porgies bite, sea bass and triggerfish. Trips also fished during the weekend, catching well. Porgy fishing wasn’t great, because the water was clear. Bottom could be seen, and when that happens, porgies are under the boat when the vessel arrives, but depart because they can see the boat. The ocean won’t be clear now, because of weather. Trips fished in depths from 20 feet to 120. The water was 69 degrees on Tuesday’s trip and 68 to 72 on previous trips. Forecasts look better currently. Butch took a look at the ocean last evening, and seas were much calmer than during that morning. So come down and fish! he said. The crew gets ready to head out every day on bottom-fishing trips from 7:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. 

The <b>Norma-K III</b> was supposed to get back out today, after being weathered out a few days, a report said on the party boat’s website. Weather looks great for the weekend, too. Trips are fishing for fluke 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and 2 to 6:30 p.m. daily. Bluefish trips are running 7:30 p.m. to 1 a.m. Fridays and Saturdays. Moonlight and fireworks cruises are sailing at 8 p.m. Thursdays, returning when the fireworks end.

<b>Toms River</b>

Snapper bluefish and crabs were the only catches heard about in the weather, said Mario from <b>Hook House Bait & Tackle</b>. Snappers schooled back waters like the Toms River. Crabbing was super on both sides of the Toms and both sides of Barnegat Bay. That included at Island Heights, Ocean Gate and Good Luck Point. Nobody seemed to boat in the weather. Nothing was reported about surf fishing. The surf was probably too rough. Hook House, located on Route 37, also owns <b>Go Fish Bait & Tackle</b> on Fischer Boulevard in Toms River.

<b>Seaside Heights</b>

Despite seas and weather, fluke fishing was good in the surf, a report said today on <b>The Dock Outfitters</b>’ website. Conditions for the fishing should keep improving in forecasts for better weather the next several days. Killies and squid strips are among fluke baits stocked. Crabbing was fantastic, and plenty of snapper blues schooled. Customers crab from the dock and the store’s rental boats. Snappers can school along the dock. 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 boat and jet-ski rentals.

<b>Forked River</b>

Rain poured the past couple of days, said Johnell from <b>Grizz’s Bait & Tackle</b>. Anglers began to fish again today, including for fluke on Barnegat Bay. She’d hear results. Crabbing was good. All baits, the full supply, are stocked, including killies. That includes all offshore baits.

<b>Barnegat Light</b>

Boaters began to fish today after rain in previous days, said Vince Jr. from <b>Bobbie’s Boat Rentals</b>. They hooked lots of fluke from Barnegat Bay, mostly around Double Creek Channel. They also fished right off the shop, off the Dike, for fluke. Most fluke were throwbacks, of course, and the keeper ratio was like 1 in 10 or 15. He heard his season’s first report about weakfish from the bay today. Some were angled at Meyer’s Hole. Anglers can order live grass shrimp from the shop for weakfishing. When boaters last had the seas and weather to fish the ocean, fluke fishing was okay at the Tires. Bluefish popped up along Barnegat Inlet sometimes. Back in the bay, crabbing was getting better. Crabbing starts later here than along the mainland, because of colder water from the inlet. Clamming was great on the bay. 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>Miss Barnegat Light</b> fished Tuesday after winds and seas canceled the trips two days, a report said on the party boat’s Facebook page. A large swell on the ocean, where the boat is fishing, didn’t help, but a handful of fluke were landed. The fishing should only get better as seas improve. Trips are fishing for fluke and sea bass 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. daily. Sunset cruises are running every evening.

<b>Barnegat</b>

<b>***Update, Saturday, 7/28:***</b> An edited email from Capt. Dave DeGennaro from the <b>Hi Flier</b>: “Looks like the weather is finally going to stabilize for a few days anyway. Sunday and Monday are showing very little or no storm activity. The wind is coming around to an easterly direction with mild velocity. It looks like we could get out to Barnegat Ridge on Sunday at least, and maybe farther, in search of bonita and sharks. Sharks are mostly duskies, browns, spinners and Atlantic sharpnose. Anywhere from 20 to 150 pounds. All catch-and-release species. If we get into the bonita, they go in the cooler. They’re delicious. Any way you prepare tuna, you can prepare bonita, including sashimi. Monday is even nicer, so I’m looking to get out to the mid-range, 50/60-mile grounds in search of tuna. Open-boat or charter either day. Sunday's Barnegat Ridge bonita/shark trip is 6 a.m. to 1 p.m. Monday's mid-range tuna trip is 4 a.m. to 4 p.m. (usually later). Four people max on either trip. Reservations are required. All fish are shared. If you want to charter the boat on Monday to fish closer like Barnegat Ridge or inshore, you can do that, as well.  When you charter the whole boat, you call the shots. Just know that you will be doing me a dis-service if I can't get out to the blue water once in a while!”

<b>Absecon</b>

Wind stopped blowing today, Capt. Dave from <b>Absecon Bay Sportsman Center</b> said this morning. Not much was reported about fishing because of weather in past days. A few trips fished Mullica River, dialing up good white perch catches. Summer flounder were picked from bays when trips fished between wind. Especially good reports about flounder came from Great Bay last week near the old Coast Guard Station and the Rutgers research area. Lots of fish, lots of throwbacks, but some really nice keepers in the mix. Nothing was reported about fishing the ocean for flounder or any fish in a while. Many peanut bunker were seen in Absecon Creek at the shop this morning. This was the first time in a while when wind was calm enough and didn’t ripple the water to see baitfish in the creek. Dave’s been seeing much baitfish when catching minnows. If the bait’s in, fish should be. A few live spots were still stocked from Maryland, and another load is supposed to arrive today or tomorrow, if trips had the weather to catch them. Crabbing is turned on, and this should be a good weekend for crabbing. Commercial crabbers also reported the best catches in some time.

<b>Brigantine</b>

Rays, some kingfish and brown sharks swam the surf, said Capt. Andy from <b>Riptide Bait & Tackle</b>. Seas calmed a little in the surf since the weather. In the Hooked on Fishing, Not on Drugs Tournament for kids Saturday in Brigantine’s surf, the 125 entrants beached a striped bass, a summer flounder and a bunch of snapper blues. The surf was a little rough that day, and now was calmer. Bloodworms, minnows and all frozen baits are stocked.

<b>Atlantic City</b>

One angler hooked six weakfish today from the T-jetty while trying for kingfish, said Noel from <b>One Stop Bait & Tackle</b>. One weakfish per angler is the bag limit per day, but plenty of weaks chewed, including along the T during daytime and off Harrah’s at night. Bloodworms will hook them. Kingfish sometimes nibbled in the surf. Another angler cranked in three weaks today from the T, but they were smaller. The T is the jetty on the ocean end of Absecon Inlet in Atlantic City. Customers mostly fish on foot from the surf beside the inlet to along the inlet itself to the back bay behind the inlet. They lit into good-sized summer flounder at all those places. Triggerfish bit along the jetties, including in the inlet. The inlet is lined with jetties. Snapper bluefish, small ones, schooled thick. Off the sea wall was a place for them in past days. A good variety of fish, a little of everything, was around. One blackfish will be able to be kept per angler, per day beginning Wednesday. Anglers will hunt them along the jetties, and green crabs are already stocked for the tautog. Fresh mullet from local waters are stocked that are smaller than minnows. Peanut bunker schooled. Tons of spearing swam. Lots of life filled the water. The complete supply of baits is stocked. Minnows are only $8 per pint. A bait vending machine dispenses frozen bait round the clock. A little of everything.

<b>Margate</b>

Wind dirtied the back bay, though not as much as Capt. John from the party boat <b>Keeper</b> expected, he said. When trips sailed between rough forecasts, the dirty water seemed to affect the boat’s fishing for summer flounder. Fewer keepers bit than before, among undersized flounder released. But he hoped that cleared up now. The trips could’ve sailed, but sometimes forecasts kept anglers from showing up to go. Yet the weather wasn’t bad, like when rain was predicted the other morning, but sun actually shined. He shaped up to sail every day. Trips are fishing 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.

<b>Longport</b>

Capt. Mike from the <b>Stray Cat</b> was going to resume the boat’s fishing today, he said. Weather looked like it was going to improve. Trips are trolling bluefish and caches like bonito and little tunny on the ocean. That action’s been great, sometimes four fish hooked at once. Trips are also concentrating on a combo of summer flounder and sea bass on the ocean. Farther from shore, trips are running for tuna.

<b>Ocean City</b>

Seas and dirty water made surf-fishing no good, said Thomas from <b>Fin-Atics</b>. That’ll probably improve and be ideal by Friday or Saturday.  Previously, the shop reported brown sharks, required to be released, fought from the surf, and sometimes kingfish. When the sharks were populous, the kings seemed scarcer, and vice versa. There was a moment this season when the surf cooled, seeming to make sharks leave for warmer water. Kings became more abundant then. Triggerfish began to bite along bridges on clams and various crabs, the store’s Facebook page said in a report today. Thomas heard about no keeper summer flounder but lots of throwbacks in the back bay in past days. The Facebook page said occasional keepers came from the bay. Small snapper blues schooled the bay, Thomas said. He heard nothing about fishing the ocean for flounder or anything because of seas.

<b>Sea Isle City</b>

Summer flounder were still seen that were bagged from the back bay, said Mike from <b>Sea Isle Bait & Tackle</b>. Nobody was known to fish the ocean, including for flounder, because of a swell. Striped bass were played on the bay at night. In the surf, some good catches of kingfish were made, when seas were calm enough. Small bluefish scurried around the surf. Sharks were fought from the surf at night. Crabbing was excellent, probably the best catches going.

Seas were a little bumpy but not bad, and a trip today with two anglers released seven sharks on the ocean aboard, said Capt. Joe Hughes from <b>Jersey Cape Guide Service</b>, affiliated with <b>Sea Isle Bait & Tackle</b>. They were five duskies, one sandbar and one brown. All of those species are required to be let go, and this was one of the inshore shark trips aboard that catch and release. Five of the sharks weighed in the 100-pound range. They were quality fish, all hooked on bait. Jersey Cape also fly-rods for inshore sharks. Another one of the trips fished Monday, releasing a half-dozen sharks, a similar variety, on bait. Those were big, too. No trips fished Tuesday and Wednesday because of weather. High tides at dusk were ideal early this week for striped bass fishing on the back bay with popper-lures or popper-flies. But Joe missed out on the angling because of the weather. Those tides happen every other week, and the fishing is another specialty aboard. Summer flounder fishing’s good, and Jersey Cape will begin to transition to fishing for them on the ocean, after flounder fishing on the bay previously this season. The ocean fishing picks up as the water warms. Keep up with Joe’s fishing on <a href="http://captainjoehughes.blogspot.com/" target="_blank">Jersey Cape’s Blog</a>.

<b>Wildwood</b>

After several days of rain prevented trips, not much could be reported, said Mike from <b>Canal Side Boat Rentals</b>. Weather was improving now, and lots of summer flounder, mostly throwbacks, blanketed the back bay. A couple of bluefish were reeled from the bay here and there. Crabbing on the bay was pretty much the same as before. Trips averaged maybe a dozen keepers. A buddy reeled a keeper striped bass from the bay the other night. No weakfish were abundant, but Mike knew a couple of anglers who hooked some from the bay. He wasn’t asked, but those were probably sharpies in the know. Huge sandtiger sharks hit in the surf. They’re required to be released, and Mike’s never seem them bite a hook during daytime, only at night. The sharks seem pretty docile toward humans, but look nasty, with gnarly teeth. Big cownosed rays grabbed baits in the surf. 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, including minnows, is stocked. So is fishing and crabbing tackle and gear. Crabs for eating are in supply that the store sells live, cooked or chilled. Prices are about $20 to $30 per dozen, depending on size. Shrimp and steamed clams, littlenecks, are also in for eating. Customers enjoy the food at tented picnic tables on the water at the store, or enjoy them at their own location. Bottles of wine from Natali Vineyards in Cape May Court House are sold at the store. The state last fishing season approved that.

<b>Cape May</b>

The <b>Heavy Hitter</b> will probably be able to fish this weekend, Capt. George thought. None of the fleet probably fished in past days. Today was even supposed to be windy. Trolling for bluefish and bonito at 5-Fathom Bank, angling that’s been good, is scheduled for the weekend aboard. The boat is also tuna fishing.

Because of the number of phone calls from anglers, fishing for summer flounder looked like it’d resume today on the party boat <b>Porgy IV</b> on the ocean, Capt. Paul said. The trips last sailed on Friday. A few of the flatfish were bagged on that outing at the Old Grounds. Lots of action from shorts, and 20 or 22 keepers. A.J. Kirdschny from Wilmington won the pool and limited out, and did the same on a previous trip recently, and those were his only trips ever on the vessel. So Paul hoped to get the ball rolling again today. Forecasts seem better throughout the weekend, too. He couldn’t know how seas would look today, and where the fish might be, after the weather. Trips are fishing for summer flounder at 8 a.m. daily.

Cape May’s party boats might’ve fished today, said Nick from <b>Hands Too Bait & Tackle</b>. They tried sometimes during the week, but forecasts made customers too scarce for the trips to sail. Anglers looking for bigger summer flounder will finally be able to fish the ocean at places like Reef 11, the Old Grounds and the Del-Jersey-Land Reef. Seas were calming. Lots of small striped bass bit along sod banks and bridges in evenings on soft-plastic and top-water lures, and at marinas on bait. On Delaware Bay, boaters had been sailing to buoy 19 for flounder. Water seemed clearer there near the shipping channel. A mix of flounder, weakfish and croakers bit near Brandywine in the bay. The surf was rough, making kingfishing tough there. But kings could be boated at spots like Cape May Channel and McCrae’s Shoal. One blackfish will be able to be kept per angler, per day beginning Wednesday. Anglers targeting sheepshead in the bay, like along bridges or jetties, will also be able to shoot for blackfish. The most recent tuna reports, before the rough seas, were about bluefins, good-sized to like 100 pounds, and a few yellowfins in 20 to 30 fathoms, like at the Hot Dog and Massey’s Canyon. The bluefins were chunked and jigged. Minnows and bloodworms are stocked. Fresh clams should arrive. Nick hopes to stock green crabs this weekend for Wednesday’s blackfish opener. All offshore baits are carried.

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