If this last two weeks is any indication of the amazing bluefish bite we have been experiencing it will definitely go down as the summer of the bluefish. In no way am I discounting the real good fluke action when you catch the right tide or the continuation of summer stripers. I was out every day except July 4 and on two of those days out I ran double trips. Most of the time was spent battling bluefish, and I mean battling. Most time we get into them we are getting several fish over 10 pounds. Have had a few in the 13-14 pound range and then some in the 2-3 pound class. There is a certain unknown with every hook-up as to the size or how long the fight will last. Been using mostly spinning gear in the 12-15 pound range for some drag screaming light tackle fun. Still tossing BKDs mostly but at times we have had good action with poppers. On Thursday I had the bite going for both of my trips during the time of 11 AM to 8 PM. The only time the blues stopped biting was when some porpoise swam by. Can you blame them? Most of the forage is still sandeels but I did see some Spanish Sardines getting picked off. The time spent fluking I have had the best success on the ebb. When fluking the outgoing during afternoon southerlies backing down into the wind and current has been a must to maintain the proper drift speed. A little extra work for da Captain, but it is what it takes to keep the rods bent.
On the nature side of things: just like the timing of a precision clock the fall bird migration started this week. Small flocks of shorebirds (mostly short-billed dowitchers and smaller sandpiper species) have been seen flying south down Barnegat Bay. These birds just left their breeding grounds way up north, like the tundra or locales at a little lower latitude. They left their young to fend for themselves as they head south to the southern hemisphere. This is what is great about the marvels of nature. While these birds are flying to the southern hemisphere we now have off our coast pelagic birds like petrels and shearwaters, that are wintering here in the northern hemisphere after leaving their breeding grounds in the southern hemisphere. So we have some species going one way while other species are going in the complete opposite direction. Now I’m even confused Not all that uncommon in nature. Keep that in mind when I talk about flat fish next week.
Already looking at a busy schedule this week but have plenty of slots open so contact me as soon as you can.
Screaming drags, Capt. Alex 609-548-2511