May closed out on a high note with a great final stretch. We can’t help looking back on the fun fishing that went down this past month. From striped bass, bluefish, sea bass and fluke to tuna, fishing is and has been very good. With new species adding to the mix, the stage is set for a great June.
Jump into June on the right foot. Get out and enjoy fishing!
Here is the Fishing LBI Fishing Report Update for the local waters of Long Beach Island courtesy of Fishermans Headquarters. Since 1962 The One Stop Saltwater Bait & Tackle Store.
LBI Surf Fishing Report Update
It has been said (by numerous customers) and we would have to agree May 2019 was one of the best months of surf fishing on the beaches of Long Beach Island in a very long time. Fortunately good fishing continues with both striped bass and bluefish.
On Friday Jesse Wilson sent in this photo with a short report, “I caught this 35″ striped bass off the surf on a bunker chunk.”
Thursday our friend Pete from Comanche Surfcasting released (43# on Boga Grip – Fish Lipping Device With Scale) a hefty linesider off the LBI surf on a Chicken Scratch Daiwa SP Minnow lure. The day before (Wednesday) Todd Luber got into the blues, “I put a beat down on the bluefish up to 12 lbs. The north end surf was lit up. At times it was every cast on poppers. I was forced to leave because of the weather.”
Another bluefish report came in from Jack Keating who said, “The gators made an appearance on the LBI surf!”
Clarence Malone stopped in for some fishing guidance and how tos. He talked with store staffer Mike Frezza and got set up right. Clarence let us know, “I had a blast! Tell Frezza THANKS for the knot tying lesson this morning. There was lots of action. I released a baby sand tiger shark (see below on new arrivals), bluefish as well as skates and dogfish.”
Shop regular Paul Bandini gave us heads up, “Phenomenal two days of fishing off the surf. Perfect conditions for bluefish and bass. Southeast wind. Some whitewater. Clean and green. Big bluefish yesterday afternoon. Today, bass in the wash before first light. This afternoon, numerous blues up to 15 pounds. Nonstop action for about 2 hours before the top of the tide. Big bass mixed in. Landed one bass about 20 pounds. Dropped another. Both blues and bass were all over the green tailed AVA 17.
Steve George shared he got his first keeper fluke of the year yesterday.
This week we saw the arrival of a few new species; sheepshead, sandbar shark aka brown sharks and a baby sand tiger shark. The first reported sheepshead came in from angler and spear fisherman Brian Coen. The brown shark report came in from a customer who was drifting for fluke in Little Egg Inlet. The baby sand tiger report was provided by Clarence Malone (listed above).
There’s also some nice weakfish but not a bunch. Here’s a photo of Cam with a beauty!
The Long Beach Island surf water temperatures are in the mid to upper 50’s and that means surf sharking season is quickly approaching. With small sharks already in the area the larger fish have to be here too.
Big Game Fishing Mid-Shore
Speaking of sharks the mid-shore sharking grounds are prime and ready for chum. June is the best time when big makos are ready for business. We’ve already heard of numerous makos and threshers that were recently caught. A couple makos were caught by tuna anglers on the troll. Gear Up & Go Go Go!
As previously reported the mid shore bluefin tuna action is off the charts! It continues on!!! It’s great to see so many customers in the shop raving on the good times. Some are into good top water while others are trolling. It seems the Chatter Side Tracker Spreader Bars are the ticket. Soon the Hoo Magic Trolling Lures by Magictail will be killing it for the mainstream. Until now they are in development catching a ton of fish for the field test crew.
All the action is going down on the mid-shore grounds from 15-30 miles off of Barnegat Inlet. The area is stacked up with lots of life; sand eels and squid. Whale and big Albies are easting with bluefin in the mix. Friday morning was again very good with some boats smoking the bluefin casting lures.
Sea Bass Fishing
It has been great!!! Captain Mark Finelli from Laura Sportfishing said that the sea bass fishing right now is at an all time high. He reported, “Fishing is phenomenal! Limiting out is an understatements. It doesn’t do it justice.”
Captain Sammy on the Mary M IV reported, “It’s great fishing! We havn’t missed a day since the season opened and we have had full boat limits on all but two trips. One day recently we managed 290 sea bass and over 150 ling.”
Mike Snape geared up at the shop and headed out on Saturday. He reported back, “We had a great day! Caught our four man limit on a wrecks not far from Barnegat Light.”
Striped bass trolling was spotty this week but some quality fish were caught. The snag and drop bite has been non existent (locally, but some word about some good days in Monmouth County). Even the bait boats are struggling to find bait. Some years early June puts out great striped bass fishing along the beaches so we still have expectations of another couple weeks of good fishing. June’s new moon is Sunday June 2nd. History proves this is a big fish time.
Crabbing is picking up and fluke fishing in areas is strong. Still lots of bluefish in the bay with some larger class reported today. Plenty of Lots of small bass in the bay.
Swag and crew took the cake today fishing The Bass River Classic. Here’s the boyz with their tournament winning spread!
Rob Vallone and his father Carl were out on the bay a few days ago hunting fluke. Carl got a 22″ fish on a pink shine gulp.
Grey Colston is finding fish on the bayside docks at night.
Fish Head Charters Report
With the great run of weather I’ve had a great time fishing everyday.
Today Saturday June 1 – I took advantage of the calm conditions and took a ride offshore in search of extra large false albacore on the fly rod. We found the tuna is the same spot we left them last night (see report below) unfortunately the albies were not on top where we were. We searched around for a couple hours and headed back in.
Friday May 30 – I had a great morning charter with Erik Hawrylo and friend Matthew. We got out early and found fish almost right away. The morning was full of light tackle action with mostly bluefish but a couple linesiders were in the day’s mix. I would have to say the highlight of the trip was an epic battle with a gator bluefish. Matt did a great job with patience and execution to play the fish boat side. After the morning charter I got some things done at the shop (work) when I got the call], “There’s one spot for a tuna trip. Boat is leaving at 2pm.” I can never turn down a trip aboard the Reel Innovation with Captain Jeff and crew. We got out to the grounds and were right away covered up with extra large albies. Weeded through we finally managed to get a bite from a 42″ bluefin tuna. It hit a Chatter Side Tracker Spreader Bar. We fished to sunset looking for a big one but the bite never came. I got home late but all I could think of was big albies busting on top. I had to head back in my boat in the morning. (report directly above)
Thursday – Got out early and had fish fish on both of my first two casts. Thinking it was game on I fished the fly for a half hour without a touch. Went back to the bucktail and was back tight again. All together only one bluefish, two handfuls of bass up to 14 lbs. Was a great day fishing solo in the fog.
Wednesday – I was out with Paul and Matt aboard the Pal’O Mine. We got into good fishing early with striped bass and then went on the troll off IBSP. Some good fish marks but little bait through out the day. Not a touch.
Tuesday – I had Eric and Bob Dodds aboard for a beautiful morning that was surprisingly empty compared to Sunday and Monday’s trips. Literally no one out for the first few hours. We had a great time catching bass and blues. After getting our fill we switched gears and took a look for a bigger class of fish. We took a look and tried but no luck.