Sat., Dec. 15, 2018
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New Jersey Inshore Saltwater Fishing Report 8-13-18

<b>Keyport</b>

High hooks landed six legal-sized fluke apiece, and the fishing, on the ocean, was picking up with the <b>Down Deep Fleet</b>, Capt. Mario said. The fish weighed up to 6 ½ pounds, and the anglers kept no more than a limit of three each. Open-boat trips are sailing for the fishing at 6 a.m. daily. On Down Deep’s other boat, fishing plowed porgies, sea bass and triggerfish, good catches, and that angling is sailing open-boat at 6 a.m. daily and 2 p.m. Saturdays. Charters are available for either fishing for up to 15 passengers. Both boats feature full galleys and plenty of fishing room for comfort.

Lots of fluke were bombed Thursday through Sunday, and keepers mixed in well, on the <b>Vitamin Sea</b>, Capt. Frank wrote in an email. Fifteen keepers to 5 pounds were taken on a trip Sunday, and the keeper ratio varied each day. The trips fished deep channels, shallow edges and rough bottom, so come prepared to fish any of those. Jigs caught better than bait. Charters are fishing, and one spot is available for an open-boat trip Wednesday. Open trips are available Friday through Sunday, unless those times become chartered. Capt. Craig, “the master fluke man,” Frank wrote, will run those trips. Contact Frank to reserve, or call Craig: 973-713-4312.  

Capt. Greg from <b>Manicsportfishing</b> ran charters from the Florida Keys in past days for another company, he said. The trips angled mahi mahi, blackfin tuna and reef fish. He’s now returning to Jersey and resuming charters and open-boat trips for fluke, sea bass, porgies and ling in mornings and afternoons.

<b>Atlantic Highlands</b>

Anglers on the <b>Fishermen</b> had to get the lead out – had to fish heavier weight than before – in strong current and a fast drift of the vessel Saturday, a report said on the party boat’s website. That made fishing tough, but some good-sized fluke and large sea bass were managed. On Sunday’s trip, fishing wasn’t the good fluking the boat had recently, but some good-sized keepers and shorts and a few sea bass gave up action. The hot hand and his son totaled five keepers and a bunch of shorts. Forecasts sometimes called for chances of storms, but the trips sailed. Trips are fluking 7:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. daily.

Fishing for fluke was mostly similar to before on the party boat <b>Atlantic Star</b>, copping good action with throwbacks and catching some keepers, Capt. Tom said. The new moon caused strong current, making anglers fish heavier weight to hold bottom. Sunday afternoon’s trip hung more keepers than in a while. Trips fished Raritan Bay and the ocean at the channels, and throwbacks gave up great action no matter where was fished. All anglers caught fluke on trips, and some landed keepers. Fewer fluke were keepers than Tom wanted, but the fishing was good. Forecasts for possible storms sometimes kept anglers from showing up, especially on Saturday. But all trips sailed, and no weather happened to prevent that. Don’t let forecasts stop you from joining trips. Bait seemed to catch as well as Spros or other jigs or bucktails. Gulps with spearing or killies on hooks on fluke rigs caught as well as anything. The boat has rental-rodders who land as many fluke as anglers who bring their own rods. The vessel has kids who pull in as many as adults do.  Trips are fishing for fluke 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and 1:30 to 6 p.m. daily.

<b>Neptune</b>

Bonito, bluefish, fluke, sea bass and red hake were decked Sunday with <b>Last Lady Fishing Charters</b>, Capt. Ralph wrote in an email. When conditions are right, fluke fishing’s only becoming better. One of the charter’s anglers landed eight legal-sized, keeping only a limit.  Another only fished for sea bass, providing the group with plenty of fillets. Individual-reservation trips will fish for: triggerfish and porgies Sunday; cod Aug. 24; and multi species of bottom-fish Aug. 26. Individual-reservation trips are fishing for fluke every Tuesday, and kids under 12 sail free on those outings, limited to one per adult host.

<b>Belmar</b>

Fluke fishing was very good on the ocean with <b>Parker Pete’s Fishing Charters</b>, Capt. Pete said. That included yesterday, when the fish weighed almost up to 9 pounds. The fishing’s been providing some good-sized, and lots of action. Bucktails caught best, and first-time bucktailers even scored well. A trip Saturday competed in the Friendly Sons of the Shillelagh Fluke Tournament, not catching huge fluke, but sizable, averaging 3 and 4 pounds, and lots. The keepers didn’t need to be measured.  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.

Capt. Mike from <b>Celtic Stoirm Charters</b> ran a trip on a friend’s boat that first fished for sea bass and then for fluke on the ocean, he said. The fishing limited out on sea bass and then picked up two keeper fluke among 30 throwbacks, a typical ratio. He’ll do more fishing for fluke and sea bass this week. Offshore fishing for tuna slowed, but anglers are looking for a rebound.  

On the <b>Miss Belmar Princess</b>, Saturday’s trip first looked for bluefish tight to the beach, an email said from the party boat. Only a few bit, so the trip pushed farther out and caught sea bass at rocky bottom and mussel beds. Then the trip sailed farther from shore and fought chub mackerel, an excellent number. Weather was wet and windy, but the day’s fishing turned out great. Sunday’s trip first fished for mackerel, tying into an excellent catch of them and some sea bass and ling. Then the trip fished for blues, picking away at 2- to 3-pounders. Awesome day of fishing in beautiful weather. Trips are fishing 7:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. and 4:30 to 8:30 p.m. daily.

Lots of chub mackerel and some sea bass were pounded Saturday on the <b>Golden Eagle</b>, a report said on the party boat’s website. Ling, pollock, fluke and even mahi mahi were also swung in. On Sunday’s trip, lots of mackerel and some ling, sea bass and bluefish were mugged. Lots of fish to take home, and plenty of action. Trips are fishing 7:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. and 4:30 to 8:30 p.m. daily.

Fishing was good, Bob from <b>Fisherman’s Den</b> wrote in an email. Fluke served up steady catches. Up to 9-pounders were tackled. Surf fishing was exciting. Small bluefish, small striped bass, Spanish mackerel, fluke and huge rays were beached. Bait, mostly rainfish, attracted them there and in inlets and the ocean close to shore. Bob banked two of the rays one morning that tested his tackle. It passed, he said! Grab a rod and enjoy any of this fishing. Storms or forecasts for storms sometimes kept anglers from fishing. Forecasts could be “just as bad.”

<b>Brielle</b>

Fishing for bluefin tuna, yellowfin tuna and some mahi mahi was pretty good at Chicken Canyon, said Alex from <b>The Reel Seat</b>. The fish were trolled on spreader bars and Joe Shutes or usual tackle. Closer to shore, fluke fishing was fairly good at reefs including Axel Carlson and Sea Girt and rock piles farther north. If fluke trips fished rough bottom, they could usually limit out on two sea bass per angler, too. A bunch of Spanish mackerel, bonito and 1- to 2-pound bluefish swam from Manasquan Inlet to the surf and in the ocean along the coast, up and down. Catching them from the surf was different than usual, but the fish were beached. That was a matter of right place, right time, but early mornings and evenings seemed best. In Manasquan River, fluke fishing was a little slow, or lots of the fish were small, probably 1 in 10 or 12 a keeper. Bluefish 1 to 2 pounds, plenty to keep anglers occupied, schooled the river, biting plugs or bucktails. The river’s striped bass fishing was slow but gave up small at night on bucktails or sandworms sometimes.

<b>Point Pleasant Beach</b>

An overnight trip Friday to Saturday first looked for tuna mid-range aboard, <b>Mushin Sportfishing</b>’s Facebook page said. Lots of life was there, but no tuna bit. The trip pushed offshore to the canyons, and great life was seen, including squid that the anglers caught for bait. In the morning, a dozen yellowfin tuna were trolled. Those were apparently decent-sized, because the page called them “nice.” A day trip last Monday first fished for bluefins. One was hooked on the troll, putting up a stubborn fight. Turned out that a shark was attacking the tuna, but the tuna was landed. With a bitten-off tail! Then another was jigged. Next, the anglers wanted to fish for tilefish and mahi mahi, and the trip caught those in deeper water, farther from shore. Then the outing trolled a little while at a canyon, where the fleet caught yellowfin tuna and bigeye tuna earlier that day, in the morning. None bit, but when the trip had to head home, the fleet began to hook some again. Charters and open-boat trips are fishing.

Good action with keeper and throwback fluke was socked on morning trips Friday through Sunday on the <b>Norma-K III</b>, a report said on the party boat’s website. Afternoon trips fished slower, for some reason, but Sunday afternoon’s fished decent. Pool-winning fluke weighed about 6 pounds, and the crew looks forward to another week of good fluking. On Friday night’s trip, fishing began slowly but lit into good catches of chub mackerel by the end. Saturday night’s trip fished much better, for some bluefish 2 to 3 pounds and lots of mackerel. Much fun on light tackle. 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>Seaside Heights</b>

Baitfish swam abundant in the surf, a report said on <b>The Dock Outfitters</b>’ website. They included adult bunker, rainfish and now sand eels. Fluke, bluefish that ranged in size from snappers to cocktails, and small striped bass fed on them. This was light-tackle fishing, and the fluke were mostly throwbacks that were weeded through for an occasional keeper. False albacore should shoot into the surf before long. In Barnegat Bay, crabbing was okay, sorting through throwbacks for 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 boat and jet-ski rentals.

<b>Barnegat Light</b>

The <b>Miss Barnegat Light</b>’s fishing for fluke and sea bass on the ocean was good early last week, slowed late in the week but picked up on Sunday, a report said on the party boat’s website. Saturday’s fishing was tough. Good numbers of fluke are biting, but, like everywhere, many are undersized. Bucktails with pink or chartreuse Gulps are taking the bigger. More small bluefish and more chub mackerel are mixing in than before.  Trips are fishing for fluke and sea bass 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. daily. Sunset cruises are running every evening.

Trips bottom-fished on the ocean on the <b>Super Chic</b>, Capt. Ted said. Sea bass catches were decent during the angling, limiting out. Fluke catches during the fishing were fairly good at the beginning of last week and slower at the end of the week, for no apparent reason. When that angling was slower, just not many fluke bit, not many seemed around, and those that did bite were mostly throwbacks. Chub mackerel swam plentiful during the trips. Bonito are around, and a previous trip tangled with a bunch, covered in a previous report here. One of these latest trips, on Saturday, looked for them, and none popped up. Still, bonito seem around, and apparently just moved. More trips will bottom-fish this week, and a tuna trip is set for Sunday.

<b>Longport</b>

Bonito, mahi mahi and little tunny were trolled on the <b>Stray Cat</b> on the ocean, Capt. Mike said. Needlefish were also hooked, and king mackerel, apparently, bit off lines. Good fishing, including for the mahi. A healthy number of the dolphin were in, and Mike will try to schedule open-boat trips for them in September, if the water stays warm or not many storms drop the temperature. No bluefish hit that did previously during the trolling. Bunker showed up recently, so maybe the blues chased them, closer to shore. One trip bottom-fished, cranking up a good catch of sea bass. Summer flounder were scarce locally during bottom-fishing this year. Trips were supposed to fish for tuna offshore today and tomorrow. The trips will probably fish Wilmington Canyon, Mike thought. 

<b>Sea Isle City</b>

An inshore trip for mahi mahi trolled four or five of the fish to 12 pounds Friday with one angler aboard, said Capt. Joe Hughes from <b>Jersey Cape Guide Service</b> and <b>Sea Isle Bait & Tackle</b>. Was great, he said, and a couple of trips fished for summer flounder on the back bay and the ocean in past days. The ocean trip also reeled in sea bass. An inshore shark trip fished Thursday morning with a father and son. Lack of wind failed to drift the boat, slowing the angling. But a brown shark and a big ray were released. Browns are required to be let go, but the sharking is catch-and-release anyway.  Joe did no fishing for striped bass on the back bay, because other fishing filled the schedule. But high tides at dusk last week were ideal for the fishing, with popper lures and popper flies. That’s a specialty aboard in summer, and those tides happen every other week. Annual traveling charters to Montauk, the legendary port, will fish the migrations of striped bass, bluefish and false albacore soon: from September to mid-October. 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>Avalon</b>

Several trips fished for summer flounder on the back bay, Wildwood Reef, Townsend’s Reef and the ocean close to shore in the past week aboard, said Capt. Jim from <b>Fins and Feathers Outfitters</b>.  A few small flounder were around. Tons of dolphin were run into on the ocean among half-mile-long schools of bunker.  Water temperatures varied greatly from 66 degrees to 76 on the ocean and 84 on the bay.  A friend fished on a tuna charter from Cape May that landed more than 30 small yellowfins and limited out on bluefins. That’s a large number, and the yellowfins and bluefins were mixed together. Jim’s <a href="http://www.sjlodge.com/" target="_blank">lodge</a> in upstate New York is booked on weekends through Labor Day, but has openings on weekends afterward, and also has openings on weekdays throughout all of this time. Salmon fishing on nearby Salmon River usually begins on Labor Day weekend and lasts through the third week of October. At first, the fish migrate into the lower river. Then they spread throughout. A discount is available for the lodge, but only on Airbnb.

<b>Cape May</b>

Plenty of bluefish, occasional Spanish mackerel and, at times, bonito were trolled at 5-Fathom Bank on the <b>Heavy Hitter</b>, Capt. George said. Bonito were hooked including on yesterday’s trip, and the trolling was great including for 4-hour trips. These were good family trips, too. If interested, give a call. On another trip, the anglers just wanted to bend rods, and reeled in a load of croakers and kingfish on Delaware Bay. The fish weren’t large, and small weakfish, a couple of keepers, were also reeled up. Slack tide gave up the catches, and the bites slowed when current built. Another trip bottom-fished on the ocean, pitching aboard sea bass.

Trips fished for tuna and summer flounder this past week with <b>Fishin’ Fever Sportfishing</b>, Capt. Tom said. A tuna trip Wednesday drilled eight yellowfins and a 107-pound bluefin on the troll. Another on Thursday whacked 11 yellowfins to 70 pounds while trolling. The two trips fished in 30 fathoms, and tuna were mostly yellowfins there, and Tom was surprised any bluefins were around, because the water was warm at 79 to 84 degrees. The flounder trips, on the ocean, hit 12 keepers and a load of throwbacks Tuesday and nine keepers to 7 pounds Saturday. Toms wasn’t asked whether throwbacks were also landed on the second trip, but it’s assumed they were. Charters and open-boat trips are sailing. 

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