The inshore, offshore and back bays offer good fishing right now. Long Beach Island and the surrounding waters have a lot going on with the warm and clean tropic waters. Here’s the Fishing LBI Fishing Report Update for Thursday July 22, 2021.
Fluke Fishing LBI NJ
Mid to late July is a phenomenal time to fluke fish the waters of Long Beach Island. Fluke fishing is good off the surf/jetty and at the reef sites, wrecks and even some open bottom areas. Some spots have a lot of sea robins but there’s quality fluke to be had.
Berkley Gulp is one of the tried and true methods to out catch the fleet but it must be fished properly for best results. We’ve found over the years fishing jigs, the lightest possible for the given conditions, is most effective. Rigging up with a teaser above or trailing helps improve catch however some sharpies opt to fish a single jig for two reasons. One, it allows for fishing the absolute lightest weight for the conditions at hand. Two, it reduces the chances of hanging up on snags.
On The Surf
Yes there was a white marlin spotted and documented on the Jersey Shore Surf! Here’s a arial view short clip.
Now is a great time of year to fish the surf and cool off from the summer heat. There’s a few different edible options to catch; fluke, kingfish, blues and Spanish mackerel. There also a very slim chance (but a chance) at catching a striped bass (@mkesinn sent in a photo of a small striped bass he caught off the surf today), weakfish (@daniellistor sent in a photo of a nice weakfish that was caught on a bunker chunk of the LBI surf last night), black drum (recently caught by local angler Andy), bonita, croaker, spot, pomano and some bigger chrondo critters (more on that below). It’s best to set up for your target species and then search down a good looking piece of beach structure. [For more info on reading the beach check out Surf Fishing 101 Part 1 – At 07:00 there’s a section on Finding A Spot To Fish “Reading The Beach”].
Chrondo Critters – Sharks & Rays
The abundance of chrondo critters, rays and shark continue. [Rays, skates and sharks belong to the class Chondrichthyes. In Greek, chrondro means cartilage fish.
We’ve got some really big rays.. rough tail, southern rays, butterfly rays and cow nose rays. There’s also a verity of sharks calling our waters home; sand bar, sand tiger, spinner, black tip among others. All anglers must know the laws! For the specifics always use the proper resource. Page 12/17/18 of the NJ Marine Digest details Sharks.
Recent weather (aside from Wednesday’s afternoon squall) has allowed for a lot of boats to get out and access the tuna grounds. Whether it’s mid-shore or offshore anglers are catching.
The mid-shore grounds (lumps, ridges and wrecks) in the 15-50 mile range has been very good. Bluefin and yellowfin are in range for small boat anglers. Some days have been a parking lot scene so this report should come as breaking news to most.
By far the jig bite has been best using slender pencil style sand eel jigs like the Chatter’s or Nomand’s Streaker jig. A fair amount of boats have focused on chunking with butterfish and sardines to raise quality tuna too.
On a recent trip out we got a small mahi. Other reports of mahi seem to be on the uptrend. Hopefully these beautiful and sometimes finicky fish will be more abundant this summer. Just a heads up bluefish are making their yellow eyes known in some areas. At times they are a nuisance, destroying trolling rigs and breaking off assist hooks and jigs.
Small boat anglers looking to get out on those perfect summer weather days to expand their horizons should take a look at Captain David D’s (from Hi Flier Sport Fishing) blog post from last year, Fishing the Barnegat Ridge.
2021 NJ Cobia Regulations
The NJ recreational cobia regulations for 2021 have changed to one fish per vessel per trip with a minimum size of 37 inches with no seasonal restriction. These changes have been made to comply with the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission fishery management plan for Cobia. We first reported the news on March 4th right after the NJ Fisheries Meeting. For more information on other details from the meeting check out the blog post NJ Marine Fisheries Meeting March 4th.