Sat., Dec. 15, 2018
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New Jersey Inshore Saltwater Fishing Report 8-27-18

<b>Keyport</b>

Fantastic porgy fishing was pummeled with the <b>Down Deep Fleet</b>, Capt. Mario said. During the angling yesterday, “forget about it,” he said! Crazy fishing, and many of the porgies have been large, including jumbos. None was even a throwback recently. Sea bass and triggerfish were mixed in. On the company’s other boat, fluke fishing on the ocean was good. High hooks landed three to five legal-sized apiece, keeping no more than a limit of three. The biggest fluke weighed 7 pounds recently. Open-boat trips are fishing for porgies at 6 a.m. daily and 2 p.m. this Saturday. The Saturday afternoon trips have been running every week and will be discontinued after this weekend, because the sun is setting too early. On the other boat, open trips are fluking at 6 a.m. daily. Open marathon fluke trips, running longer than usual, will sometimes sail, and 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 that. Look for the link under Contact. Charters are available for up to 15 passengers, and both boats feature full galleys and roomy cockpits.

Fluke fishing was great, Capt. Frank from the <b>Vitamin Sea</b> wrote in an email. Trips aboard now fished rough bottom in the ocean, and the keeper ratio was better on some days than others. Angler skill mattered, and sometimes the boat limited out, and sometimes only a half-dozen keepers were decked. Fifty to more than 80 throwbacks were let go on each trip. Jigs caught better than bait, but bait also caught. Knucklehead sea bass were mixed in. Fluke season will close in about three weeks. Charters are fishing, and a few spaces are available on open-boat trips for fluke Tuesday, Friday and Sunday. Fall striped bass charters are beginning to book up. Reserve now to get the dates you want.

<b>Leonardo</b>

With <b>Sour Kraut Sportfishing</b>, porgies, limits of sea bass and really good triggerfishing was smashed, Capt. Joe said. Fluking’s been okay, and lots of throwbacks bit. Better-sized chomped at the channels and rocky areas including Shrewsbury Rocks. Fluke seemed to be staging, gathering at those grounds in the ocean, to migrate offshore later this season. They’re biting in patches in those areas. Then nothing. Then another patch. That’s usually a sign that they’re staging. They’re grouping up. Joe knew people who were fishing for tuna yesterday, when he gave this report. He waited to hear results. <b>***Update, Tuesday, 8/28:***</b> Many white marlin were raised at Hudson Canyon, Joe wrote in an email. A few small yellowfin tuna bit at the canyon, but trips had to work for them. Joe was apparently at Prince Edward Island when he wrote the email. He was going to fish for giant bluefin tuna. Many bluefins were being landed, and they averaged 800 pounds. Wow! He saw one that weighed 789 dressed. Charters for the bluefins are catch-and-release. Anglers with a permit can keep one per year. He hopes to send photos of the fishing he’ll do for the bluefins.

<b>Atlantic Highlands</b>

A 7.9-pounder won the pool on today’s fluke trip on the <b>Fishermen</b>, a report said on the party boat’s website. Conditions failed to drift the boat at first, so anglers who jigged caught best. Bigger fluke began the catches, and one that weighed heavier than 6 pounds was the first fluke landed. The 7.9 was caught toward the end of the trip. The hot hand reeled in more than 20 fluke including two heavier than 4 pounds apiece. Several anglers boxed two good-sized keepers apiece. Current became way too fast eventually, but by then it was time for the trip to return to port. Trips are fishing for fluke 7:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. daily.

Fluking was some of the best of the season Saturday on the party boat <b>Atlantic Star</b>, Capt. Tom said. Some of the season’s most keepers were beaten, and plenty of throwbacks bit. That was at the channels, and the afternoon’s trip also fished there. More throwbacks than usual hit, but not a lot of keepers did. Sunday morning’s trip returned to the channels, but the full-moon current ripped, everybody’s lines tangled, and fluking was horrible. Throwbacks and a few keepers were picked up, and the trip moved to the bay. A few more throwbacks were angled. Sunday afternoon’s trip began fishing down the ocean beach. But wind increased, so the trip moved to the bay. A few keepers and some throwbacks were managed. The change in fishing was amazing from Saturday to Sunday. Trips are fishing for fluke 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and 1:30 to 6 p.m. daily.

<b>Neptune</b>

A cod trip was a success Friday with <b>Last Lady Fishing Charters</b>, Capt. Ralph wrote in an email! Last Lady is one of the only boats, if not the only, that targets cod each summer from New Jersey, and more than 11 cod were bagged, and some throwbacks were released, on the outing. The trip also stopped for ling and boated a load in a short time. Cod charters are available, and that was an individual-reservation trip. On Saturday, Dave Esposito’s annual charter, this time with a group of 14, pasted many ling, six winter flounder and limited out on sea bass. Great guys, Ralph wrote. A multi-species, individual-rez trip Sunday really did beat multi-species, catching a 40-inch mahi mahi, the boat’s limit of good-sized sea bass, plenty of ling, some big flounder and a 20-inch, keeper fluke. Was interesting that the fluke came from 135 feet of water. Individual-reservation trips are fishing for fluke every Tuesday, and kids under 12 sail free on those outings, limited to one per adult host. Individual-reservation trips will also fluke on the Sundays of Sept. 2, 9 and 16 and on Saturday, Sept. 22, the final day of fluke season. Charters are available, and Last Lady fishes year-round.

<b>Belmar</b>

Several fluke weighing in the double-digits were checked-in from Shark River – the river! – and the ocean at <b>Fisherman’s Den</b> this past week, Bob from the store wrote in an email. Fluking was “king” during the week, he said. The largest from the river was Tom Clayton from Wall’s 12-pound 8-ouncer. Actually, that was caught in Shark River Inlet. Sue Mihail from Newton weighed-in a 10-pounder and a 7-pounder, nailing both on the river from one of the shop’s rental boats. Raymond McCraney from Fords brought in a 10-pound 8-ouncer from the ocean. Livelined snapper blues were best bait to hook big fluke. So if you go fluking at a place with snappers like the river, bring a snapper rig like a Snapper Popper to catch the small blues for bait but also to eat some. Larger blues 2 to 4 pounds swarmed all over the surf and most rivers. Rivers and the ocean were lively with fish. Go fishing before the late season’s tropical storms begin to change things. 

Great fishing for chub mackerel, some fluke and even some mahi mahi was blasted today on the <b>Miss Belmar Princess</b>, an email said from the party boat. On a trip last evening, weather deteriorated unexpectedly, making fishing tough. Better angling is expected this evening in better weather. Trips are fishing 7:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. and 4:30 to 8:30 p.m. daily.

An excellent catch of sea bass was smoked today on the <b>Golden Eagle</b>, a report said on the party boat’s website. Bluefish and fluke were also pitched aboard, and chub mackerel were seen. But the anglers were happy with sea bass, so the trip stayed with that angling. Trips are fishing 7:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. and 4:30 to 8:30 p.m. daily.

Crazy sea bass fishing and four keeper fluke were belted Saturday on the <b>Katie H</b>, Capt. Mike said. Throwback fluke were released, and the sea bass fishing limited out in about one drift. The sea bassing’s getting better and better, and 7 in 10 were keepers. Mike looks forward to Oct. 8, when 10 sea bass will become the bag limit. Two is the limit currently, and sea bass season will close beginning in September through Oct. 7. A tuna trip was supposed to sail at 4 a.m. today aboard. The trip was maybe going to fish mid-range first, then head all the way offshore. Mike first was going to speak with anglers who fished for tuna yesterday.

Angling for fluke on the ocean was tough during the weekend, but because of the groups, said Capt. Pete from <b>Parker Pete’s Fishing Charters</b>. The trips couldn’t fish the rough bottom where fluking’s been good aboard. The anglers caught a bunch of sea bass. The fluking is good for anglers who can fish the sticky bottom. Spaces are available for trips Saturday and Sunday on this Labor Day weekend. Check it out: Spaces are available for fluke seminars aboard with the tackle company KTS Customs on Sept. 12, 16 and 19. All anglers will receive two bucktails and three ball jigs from KTS and a bag of Gulps. Finally, don’t have enough anglers for a charter? Book an individual space 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.

<b>Brielle</b>

The keeper fluke in Manasquan River usually jumped on bucktails with Gulps from the Railroad Bridge to Manasquan Inlet, said Alex from <b>The Reel Seat</b>. Numerous fluke were boated at local reefs on the ocean, also mostly on bucktails with Gulps. Sea bass were also socked at the reefs. A ton of mahi mahi gathered mid-range at buoys and flags. No Spanish mackerel were heard about in past days that gathered close to shore before last week’s winds and seas. Bonito caught were still reported, but fewer than before the weather. Tuna fishing was terrible at Chicken Canyon on Saturday. Alex waited to hear about the fishing on Sunday, when he gave this report. The Chicken produced before the weather. Tuna were picked at Hudson Canyon on Saturday, nothing great. 

The following report was posted as an update Saturday and is being re-posted in case anybody missed it: A whopping three fluke heavier than 10 pounds apiece were bombed this past week on the party boat <b>Jamaica II</b>, Capt. Ryan wrote in an email (Saturday). The biggest, Kathleen Wojclya from Toms River’s 10.8-pounder, was iced on (Friday) afternoon’s trip. The other two were Ron Rogers from Toms River’s 10.3-pounder and Carl Shimkus from Philly’s 10.1-pounder. Excellent fluking, on the ocean, was lambasted during the week aboard, and the fluke were big. Many weighed 5 to 8 pounds. On one trip, fluke 6.1 to 6.9 pounds were the first three fish that Ray Bryant from South Orange caught. “Now that’s some great fluking,” Ryan wrote. Bryant is 84, btw. That 10.8-pounder, the biggest aboard the week’s trips, was caught on a rental rod with the bait provided on the boat: a Gulp swimming mullet. The Gulps are provided so everybody has a chance to catch, not just the regulars, Ryan wrote. Trips are fishing for fluke and sea bass 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 2 to 6:30 p.m. Tuesdays through Saturdays and 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Mondays. Super Fluke Marathons will sail 6 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Sept. 3, 10 and 17. Jumbo fluke! Capt. Ryan wrote.

<b>Point Pleasant Beach</b>

When conditions are right, fishing picks right away at decent-sized fluke and some sea bass on the ocean on the <b>Norma K III</b>, a report said on the party boat’s website. That’s the way it was throughout the weekend, and the fishing was super on this morning’s trip for keepers and plenty of throwbacks to keep anglers busy. Bucktails with Gulps caught best, but bait hooked some fluke, too, on that trip. A 7-pound fluke won the pool. On nighttime trips, bluefish are beginning to show up. Friday night’s trip tackled excellent fishing for chub mackerel and a few 1- to 2-pound blues. Saturday night’s trip picked away at 2- to 4-pound blues a while, and the fish were marked terrific. The fishing did slow down, and the trip headed farther from shore and hit the macks well and some bonito. Big blues should show up anytime. 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.

The following report was posted Saturday as an update and is being re-posted in case some readers missed it: Fluke trips, on the ocean, fished up and down on the <b>Gambler</b>, a report said Friday on the party boat’s website. When the boat drifts well for the angling, good catches are made. Sea bass are in the mix. On (Friday) morning’s trip, not a ton of fluke gave up action, but some good-sized were sacked, up to 5 pounds, and a few anglers limited out. A 7.8-pounder is in the lead for the monthly pool. That fish could easily be beaten, the report said. “We’ve been catching (fluke) on squid/spearing combos as well as Gulp,” it said. On a trip Thursday night, wreck-fishing was slow. Mixed sizes of ling and some sea bass, chub mackerel and squid were swung in, “but not like (a couple of weeks ago),” it said. “We tried some deeper wrecks.” Next Thursday night’s trip will look in new areas. Sizable mahi mahi swam around the boat on the last few night trips but failed to be hooked. “… they have been shy …,” the report said. But the captain guesses that if anglers were ready to toss a live squid to them, the mahi couldn’t resist. Friday night’s trip was going to look for multi species and be ready to catch bluefish, the mackerel and sea bass. Trips are fishing for fluke 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and 2 to 6:30 p.m. daily. Wreck-fishing trips are sailing 7:30 p.m. to 12:30 p.m. Thursdays. Nighttime trips are also sailing every Friday and Saturday during those hours. Check with the boat to find out what those trips will sail for. A Shark in the Dark Trip was supposed to fish Sunday.

<b>Point Pleasant</b>

The <b>Tin Knocker</b> fished for tuna mid-shore Saturday, trolling six yellowfins, Capt. John said. That was on plastics, and a 50-pounder was the biggest. The rest weighed 35 to 40 pounds.

<b>Toms River</b>

If surf anglers move around, fluke fishing can be good, said Mario from <b>Hook House Bait & Tackle</b>. You work through throwbacks for keepers. Fish a bucktail with a teaser. Sharks were fought from the surf at night. Brown sharks, required to be released, were heard about recently. Striped bass lit up Manasquan River yesterday. Most were throwbacks, but one angler released a 28-inch keeper. A boater in the ocean off Barnegat Inlet hooked bluefish 2 to 4 pounds, one after another. The blues seemed to chase adult bunker, but they spit up peanut bunker. Snapper blues were played on the Toms River. Crabbing on the river picked through lots of shorts for a keeper. Lots of blowfish gathered in Barnegat Bay between the BI and BB markers. Hook House, located on Route 37, also owns <b>Go Fish Bait & Tackle</b> on Fischer Boulevard in Toms River.

<b>Forked River</b>

Barnegat Bay harbored excellent blowfishing, said Mike from <b>Grizz’s Bait & Tackle</b>. Between the BI and BB markers gave them up, and the bigger seemed to hold in 10 feet of water or deeper. Shallower seemed to attract only small. Fluke came from the bay from the 30 can “and up,” he said. The back of the bay was kind of washed up for fluke. Snapper bluefish swam abundant in the bay. Fluking was good on the ocean. A couple of customers found the fish off the Seaside Pipe in 60 feet of water. The Tires and Garden State Reef produced some. Not much was heard about fishing for tuna or other big game. The fishing was slow, he suspected, because of warm water, like happens this time of year. But mahi mahi fishing was wonderful 18 miles from shore or farther. Crabbing was decent. All baits are stocked for inshore and offshore.

<b>Seaside Heights</b>

Surf anglers beached fluke from small to keeper-sized on well-placed bucktails with Gulps, a report said on <b>The Dock Outfitters</b>’ website. Don’t want to walk and cast? Fish the surf for cocktail blues. They’ll bite a small piece of bunker or mullet on a high-low rig on a sand-spiked rod. 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>

Fluke fishing on the ocean’s been really good the last three or four days, said Capt. Ted from the <b>Super Chic</b>. Lots of throwbacks bit, like always these days, but the keeper ratio improved. This was in 45 to 60 feet of water. A trip Saturday aboard trolled four bigeye tuna at Spencer Canyon, 85 miles from port. That was at a piece of clear, blue water. Five white marlin also shot into the trolling spread but never became hooked. Lots of billfish swam the area. Not a lot of life was seen, except usual life like a few pilot whales. A trip Sunday fished closer to shore, 50 miles from port, and jigged an 80-pound yellowfin tuna and trolled a good-sized mahi mahi and a couple of skipjacks. That water was a clear blue/green and held lots of whales and porpoises.

Fishing was good on most days aboard, and the number of keepers caught was a little better yesterday, a report said on the party boat <b>Miss Barnegat Light</b>’s Facebook page. Trips are fishing for fluke and sea bass on the ocean. Best bait changes every day. On one day, chartreuse Gulps work. On another, white does. On another, spearing with squid is best. Fluke season will close beginning Sept. 23. Get your last licks in. The trips are sailing 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. daily. Sunset cruises are also running every evening.

<b>Longport</b>

Inshore trolling smoked a good catch including three mahi mahi, including a 15-pounder, and some bluefish and bonito Saturday on the <b>Stray Cat</b>, Capt. Mike said. The trip also bottom-fished for sea bass, bagging 17. On a trip Sunday, summer flounder fishing was slow, and strong current from the full moon affected the angling. One 4-pound keeper was decked, among 70 throwbacks. The inshore trolling was also slow that day, maybe because of the moon current. Charters are available Wednesday through Friday. Afterward, the next trip available is an open-boat on Tuesday of next week. That’s the day after Labor Day, and an open-boat schedule will then resume that sails every Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday. Fewer open trips, sometimes none, sail in summer before Labor Day. Sea bass trips will begin on Oct. 8, when the bag limit is hiked to 10. Those trips will fish deep, 140-foot water.

<b>Sea Isle City</b>

On a trip with three anglers Sunday aboard, one mahi mahi was landed on a fly, another broke off on a fly and two or three were trolled, said Capt. Joe Hughes from <b>Jersey Cape Guide Service</b> and <b>Sea Isle Bait & Tackle</b>. That was an inshore trip for mahi, and the angling’s been good. On upcoming trips, Joe will “ride this wave” of mahi, he expects. The angling usually lasts another week or two, but one never knows. A storm could end it earlier, or the fishing could last longer. But don’t delay. Get on them. The previous several trips aboard scored the mahi, too, reported in an update posted here Saturday. The mahi trips fish with bait, cast bucktails or flies or on the troll. Looking ahead, annual traveling charters to Montauk will fish the migrations of striped bass, bluefish and false albacore from mid-September to mid-October. It’s not too early to reserve trips that fish the striper migration from New Jersey in November and December. It’s not too early to reserve traveling charters that fish the Florida Keys in winter, for that matter. 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>

Anglers have been picking away at summer flounder on the ocean with <b>Fishin’ Fever Sportfishing</b>, Capt. Tom said. Lots of throwbacks – lots – have been biting. Anglers just have to sort through them to land the keepers. The fishing was decent yesterday aboard, bagging fluke to 7 pounds. A tilefish trip the other day loaded up aboard. A mess of golden tiles, a large number, to 27 pounds, including six that weighed more than 20 pounds, were pasted. Seven bluelines tiles were also waxed. A wahoo was lost on the way in, when the trip high-speed trolled for them. Very good white marlin fishing was going on currently. Fishin’ Fever will fish for tuna and marlin through October. Tilefish trips will keep sailing, and some special trips will tilefish in the morning and deep-drop for swordfish during daytime. That’s in deep water to catch the light-sensitive swords along bottom, and Fishin’ Fever is one of the only boats, if not the only, from this area that does daytime swordfishing. That angling is popular in the south, like in Florida, but Tom is pioneering the fishing here. Charters and open-boat trips are fishing.

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