Here we are in mid June with a lot happening on the fishing front. As we transition out of spring and into the summer season some things fade but new opportunities arise.
Anglers continue to enjoy striped bass and bluefish with still some quality fish around. Recent reports of the occasional twenty pound class bass this week. Blues have mostly faded in size but 8-10+ pound are not uncommon. Black drum are still here and any day (if not already) kingfish will be on the beach.
Jake Lapp from PA caught a 34″ striped bass on bunker mid-island this week. He also had blues in the mix. He said fishing was best 2 hours before high tide. Another customer who pick up some live eels and fresh bunker reported no bass or blues, but he did have a couple dog fish and two sand tiger sharks.
It’s prime time fluke fishing season. Reports from the north and south end both themed on plentiful shorts. Tomorrow is the JCAA Fluke Tournament so it will be interesting to see what comes in. Yesterday (Thursday) we got in a big delivery of Gulp so we are stocked up for the foreseeable future. All Of The Top Catching Gulp Styles & Colors Are In Stock Now. Keep an eye out from some new colors from Gulp with summer as we expect to have some soon.
Dan D. got out last night with Back Attach Sportfishing for some back bay action with Captain Dan Piazza and first mate Jacob Bowles. The crew reports they had bass and blues all night and even got a surprise six fat fluke up to 18 inches. “We had to work a little bit to get them last night after that storm but we found some.”
It’s that time… The water is warm and they have arrived. Shark and rays are here and will only make their presence more known over the coming weeks. Big rays, sand bar sharks and sand tigers are cruising the local waters. Chunking any meaty baits like bunker, bluefish, and carcasses will get them.
Just Beneath The Surface
Just Beneath The Surface continues on with the third season this summer. Episode 1 premiers on Friday June 21 at Ship Bottom Brewery in Beach Haven. I can’t wait to see it as a good portion features toothy critters. Last year the production crew jumped aboard Fish Head Charters and we had a really fun night on the bay ghetto sharking. Be sure to check it out!
Big Game Fishing
When the weather allows the tuna and sharks are waiting on the mid-shore and offshore grounds.
Here’s a report from the crew aboard the Waterproof from Wednesday June 12th, “Back at it with Tom Kelly and crew. Mother Nature gave us a small window for a day trip, so we took advantage. Got to the grounds around 4am. Day started off really slow but eventually we found some bites. Landed a 250lb bluefin around 9 am. Caught a few mahi and finally had some yellowfin bites early afternoon. Picked away at yellowfin, keeping nine and releasing about a dozen. About 4pm got a good bite and boated a 130lb big eye. Set back and shortly after got a good bite on our smallest outfit, 20 class reel. Two hours and 47 minutes later we pulled a 260lb bigeye through the door. With the boxes stuffed, we pointed home with a happy crew and harvest.”
Artificial Reef Pot Survey
The Division will be conducting an Artificial Reef Pot Survey at the Little Egg, Sea Girt and Manasquan Reefs. Watch out for high flyers! Pots will be deployed the last week of June through July, possibly into August. High flyers will be deployed throughout the reef sites. Please avoid them as best as possible.
LBI Spring 2019 Recap
This past May and so far this June the inshore ocean water were above average. This has helped a variety of things and could be one of many factors that made this spring’s surf fishing on the beach of LBI one of the best in many years. Another factory is the lack of near shore bunker pods. While this has hurt boat anglers hunting striped bass it has helped the surf guys. Some years migrating fish move into the area and stay with the bunker schools for weeks. Unless persistent westerlies set up, the game takes place in 30-50′ of water. However with the lack of bunker schools inshore/near shore the transiting fish are forced to look close to the beach for food. This spring was unique, some might say odd. The lack of bunker schools/pods left striped bass very scattered but one thing that did stand out was the abundance of really big fish that were caught. From May 5th to the 21st some very big fish) were consistently taken on the troll. The lack of middle aged fish in the 18-28lb class was very concerning.