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LBI Fishing Report 10/30/23

Saturday was a flash back to summer with sunny warm weather which made a gem of a weekend! But there is a big temperature swing coming this week with the first freeze expected Wednesday night. Waning down from the Hunter’s Moon (full moon Saturday 10/28/23) and the cold snap in combination have us looking forward to shifting gear out of early spring fishing and into prime time fall run action here on Long Beach Island.

The Halloween time frame has great opportunities for saltwater anglers. Striped bass, tog, albies, bluefish, sea bass, porgy and still some weakfish and triggerfish. The back bay has plenty of striped bass from schoolies, up to slot and a couple over slot range. Light tackle approach with lures as well as live bait will catch them. Tog info is detailed below. Albies are popping up on patchy small bait pods along the inshore waters. Some of the deeper water reef and wreck sites have some fun sea bass action but not like it was a few weeks ago. Porgy are in the mix there too. Better sea bass fishing is had for those pushing further offshore. Some anglers fishing for sea bass are catching a couple triggerfish. One angler reported catching sea bass and porgy good on clam at a wreck in 80-90′ of water with some blues, triggerfish and blowfish. There’s a few weakfish still around.

Tony Butch reported, “Caught 10+ species today which doesn’t include any striped bass.” He had a fun day with tight lines and drag pulling albies and bending the rod bottom fishing.

October has been a great month for fishing. As far as striped bass fishing out front, the fishing is better north of BI than south. It has been lights out fishing for Monmouth County anglers. This past week there has been a slow slide south. There have been some very good bites in northern Ocean County. Boats fishing out of Barnegat Inlet are catching on live bait, lures and trolling (mojos, spoons, umbrella rigs).

We have had some classy striped bass caught on the shores on LBI but nothing like up north. The next four to six weeks will be LBI’s best shot at prime time fall fishing on LBI. We are looking forward to it!

Andrea Powell caught and released a big striped bass enjoying the weather fishing the LBI surf Saturday. She reported, “11am to 6pm… All for one bite and a good fight.”

Blackfish / Tautog Fishing Report

The land based tog bite remains strong. Reports from the reef and wrecks are starting up too. On November 16 it opens up to a 5 fish bag limit. Until then it remains a one fish bag at 15″. For more info on NJ Saltwater Recreational Fishing Regulations…..

LBI Fishing Report 10/25/23

Phantastic striped bass fishing this past week and it continued yesterday. There’s a quality class of fish out front feeding on the bunker pods. The back bay also has plenty of striped bass action too. Tog fishing has been good. Day or night, now’s a great time to go fishing here on Long Beach Island. Here’s a fishing report video from yesterday around noon time…

LBI Fishing Report 10/16/23

The mid month new moon and cooling temperatures have the fish biting in the Long Beach Island waters. There’s good fishing in the bay, inlet, surf and ocean.

In the past couple weeks the suds have seen a big uptick in kingfish and spot in the surf. To me this means two things…

ONE: The way water temperatures are dropping and these two know it is time to move out. On their way anglers fishing the surf are hooking up. The bay temp made its first fall temp breakdown below 60º mark on October 15 and this weekend’s low down to 56º. The fall progression is underway!

TWO: The population of classy striped bass in the area is few. When the posse shows up in full force the kings are usually gone or bait. Be on the look out for these guys to move on and dogfish to arrive. Over the years the doggies arrive on or around the same time as the fall’s most abundant period of striped bass.

Here’s the Fishing LBI fishing report update from the Long Beach Island Area on Monday October 16, 2023

Long Beach Island Surf Fishing Report

The LBI Surf Fishing Classic had a great first week with weigh in activity almost everyday. To date kingfish and tog make up most of the weigh ins with the addition of eight striped bass and no bluefish. For more info check out the live results.

On the LBI surf there are a few striped bass with more coming. Today we heard our first local land based catch over 40”. The report came in from Jeff, a local angler who puts a lot of time in. He caught and released a 46″ striped bass in the morning. Late in the day Richard Rasiul weighed in a 28.25″ 7.82# striped bass. Bobby Capri reported catching a mid 30” range fish recently too.

The Merchantville Fishing Club’s ASAC surf fishing tournament was held on the North Beach and Harvey Cedars beaches this past weekend. The event was full of action with small fish on the surf making for an active day. Greg O’Connell shared, “It was a beautiful day on the beach with a mix of kingfish, bluefish and hickory shad scored.” There were also a lot of spot caught, some short striped bass and out of season fluke.

Anglers looking for blues should fish bunker, mullet or lures. Kingfish and spot are best targeted with small hook baited with live bloodworm, FishBites and/or DynaBait. Hickory shad are fun to target with small metal and a teaser. Striped bass love eel, clam, bunker, mullet or any lures that match the hatch.

FYI this morning we got heads up from our bunker boat… “lots of small bunker off the north end surf.”

Long Beach Island Bayside Fishing Report

Barnegat Bay, Manahawkin Bay and Great Bay have awesome early fall fishing opportunities. The blowfish are still here but those days are winding down. Striped bass fishing is good throughout the bayside waters during day and night. Schoolies in the open bay flats, ICW, sod banks, docks/lights and bridges. Crabbing is also going strong.

“Aloha! My brother Steve Gross and I fished around the island a few times last week while I was in town. We found lots of small to slot size bass on poppers, swimmers, and a few on bucktails. The Shimano reel I picked up for my rod was Slingshot was A+! Great to see you guys at the shop. Wish I could stick around through November! Back to Hawaii. Tight lines…” ~Moose

Barnegat Inlet Fishing Report

The inlet is and has been on fire with tautog. Fish live crabs on a jig or rig and enjoy the hot action. There’s striped bass at the inlet too.

Central NJ & Ocean Co. Inshore Fishing Report

Classy striped bass are moving into our area and the next 4-6+ weeks will be a great time to hunt striped bass fishing live bait as well as trolling the near shore waters. Also on tap; sea bass, tog and albies.

Capt Cole aboard the Morning Wood out of Barnegat Light has been having a blast catching and releasing classy striped bass. He reported the fishing has been great but he is running up the beach aways. Action is hot on metal lips, spoons, paddletails and of course live bait.

NJ Offshore Fishing Report

The big game bite is great when weather allows. We’ve heard some great yellowfin, bluefin, bigeye and wahoo reports. This is also a great time for sword fishing. Store staffer Danny V. reported a fun trip recently aboard the Miss Barnegat Light. He said that he broke off a big eye after a long battle on light leader chunking but they boated a few and had good fishing. He is looking forward to heading back out on the Red Sled later this week.

NJ Saltwater Fishing Regulations, Seasons, Size & Bag Limit Laws

If you don’t know, let it go! So know before you go! Here’s a detailed overview of the New Jersey Recreational Fishing Regulations, Season, Size & Bag Limit Laws for recreational anglers listed by species with the open seasons, minimum size limits and bag limits. This way you know!

Updated: February 23, 2024

Saltwater Fishing in New Jersey does not require a fishing license however all anglers must participate in the Free NJ Saltwater Recreational Registry Program – Join &/or Renew Now!

2024 NJ Recreational Fishing Regulations, Seasons, Size & Bag Limit Laws

EXPECT THE 2024 UPDATED REGULATIONS ON OR ABOUT 3/7/24: For more info about what’s coming check out this short blog.

Click To Here To Download Printable PDF Version
Click On The Below Image To Open In New Tab

All attempts made to ensure accuracy; however, fishery rules are subject to change. The data conveniently complied above was derived from the NJ Fish & Wildlife and NOAA Fisheries.

How To Properly Measure a Fish

To obey fisheries laws it is very important that anglers know how to properly measure a fish. A fish is always (unless the state or federal law states otherwise) measured flat in a straight line, using a bump board under the fish with the mouth closed measuring the overall length to the end of the tail. When measuring Black Sea Bass always exclude the tail filament. Pursing (lightly squeezing) the tail is acceptable and proper. It is especially important with Striped Bass!

With the current slot limits with summer flounder and striped bass it is very important that anglers carry a bump board because a tape measure doesn’t always allow for the easiest measuring. Best The Gator Grip Aluminum Bump Boards are awesome!

There are situations/species that call for different measurements.

  • In the case of tuna, Curved Fork Length which is measured over the top of the fish by following the curve of the fish’s body from the tip of the ja to the inside fork of the tail.
  • In the case of billfish, Lower-Jaw Fork Length which is measured in a straight line from the tip of the lower jaw to the inside fork of the tail.
  • In the case of sharks, Fork Length which is measured in a straight line from the snout to the inside fork of the tail.

Proper Handling & Releasing Of Fish

Responsible fishing practices are very important as recreational anglers we all must fish with respect and respect the resource. Land fish as quickly as possible to prevent exhaustion. When applicable use a rubber mesh net to land. Handle with care and never touch gills. Be prepared with de-hooking device for quick hook removal. Always work with care to minimize injury. For best chance of survival, deep hook situations may require cutting the leader close to the hook. When releasing, be sure to revive the fish first. Always use circle hooks (non offset, non stainless) when using live or dead baits. Consider pinching hook barbs and replacing treble hooks with inline hooks on lures. It is the angler’s responsibility to reduce mortality!

Need Help Identifying Species?

Shark Identification Chart

Identification of Atlantic Tunas

Commonly Confused Mackerel & Tuna Species

Herring & Shad Identification Tips

LBI Fishing Report – Early October Is Offering Good Fishing – 10/10/23

Last year at this time we had a big influx of big striped bass. It didn’t repeat but we did have some good fishing. One look at the live results of the LBI Surf Fishing Classic shows that this year’s tournament kicked off strong with striped bass, tog and kingfish. There are blues around but none entered into the tournament yet. Here’s the Long Beach Island Fishing Report video report for Tuesday October 10, 2023.

There’s small to medium sized swell in the 2-3′ range breaking on the sand bars of LBI this late morning at the low tide (11am). The new moon is this weekend (Saturday) marks a milestone in this fall’s progression. With the moon and also weather/temperatures this week and next should be the switch to the fall run we have all been waiting for.

But before we get ahead of ourselves let’s look at what we have going down right NOW!

We had two striped bass weighed in recently by Jack Smith (8.74#) and Ethan Kazmierski (9.28#) on live eels. Steve Taylor geared up at the shop and reported back that he caught a striper (10.94#) on frozen mullet. At the time of this post, Steve is in the lead with the largest striped bass in the LBI Surf Fishing Classic which kicked off on Saturday October 10 and Runs until December 10th.

The kingfish action trickles on, while not epic there are occasionally good reports. Tim Smith shared a photo of a nice one he caught on clam.

Tog fishing is FIRING on all cylinders! It has been good for a couple weeks and it continues. Live green crabs and/or sand fleas fished on a jig or rig will produce bites and nice keeper fish are on tap.

Albies are in the area and were cracking yesterday in the wind.

The bunker podded up in the wind too. Finally we got a fresh bunker delivery yesterday. It was our first in two, possibly three weeks. Further offshore sea bass fishing is good with porgies in the mix too.

October is a great month to be fishing on and around Long Beach Island… Let’s go fishing!

LBI Fishing Report 10/3/23

What a beautiful day here on Long Beach Island… light winds, warm, sunny and some swell in the water. Be on the look out for the residual fetch from the exiting but slow moving low pressure system which gave us the prolonged sour weather. Also Tropical Storm Rina and TS Philippe will add energy this week and Philippe is looking to keep southeast swell on our beaches into and through the weekend. Here’s the Long Beach Island Fishing Report update for Tuesday October 3, 2023.

Update: October 4, 2023 – Another beautiful day in the neighborhood! Repeat of yesterday… not a cloud in the sky, light winds and some motion in the ocean. Surf on the beaches is in the 3-4’ range with a long period lully-ness to it with calm surface conditions. The reports off the beach are stuck in transition as the water temperatures begins to creep lower and spark the fall run in a few weeks. On the surf small blues, out of season fluke, occasional kingfish, whiting, croaker make up the most common mix. Right now the best fishing for land based anglers is tog at Barnegat Inlet. There are some resident striped bass in the bay, inlet with a slim possible pick in the suds. There’s blowfish and weakfish in the bay too. With the ocean conditions allowing sea bass is a great option which is now open to a 10 fish bag limit for the month of October. Also further offshore the yellowfin and bluefin tuna fishing as well as sword bite is right back to where it left off before the extended blow. Let’s go fishing!!!

LBI Fishing Report 9/28/23

The blow that keeps on blowing has most anglers sidelined hoping one day it lets up. But some are grinding rough conditions in foul weather skins and catching a few fish.

Tog is offering the most consistent action for land based anglers fishing the rocks at Barnegat Inlet. It should be good unless dirty water puts a damper on things. All of October will offer up good land based tog fishing.

Right now there’s also resident striped bass making their presence know. It has been happening for a couple weeks now (we shared info on it all along) and it will continue right into the fall run when migratory fish show up to the area. This is usually mid to late October but only time will tell!

Here’s an early fall fishing report in the late September time frame detailing what’s up fishing wise on Long Beach Island. This fishing report is brought to you by Capt Greg Cudnik at Fisherman’s Headquarters.

LBI Fishing Report 9/22/23 – Last Report Of Summer

The complex and numerous weather events as of late are tell tale symbols the season are changing. What a coincidence this Nor’East blow times up with the beginning of Autumn for a nice festive feel. Here on LBI will get lots of wind which has already starred today, lasting all day Saturday in the 30-40kt range, finally subsiding Sunday afternoon. This weather s from Ophelia (low pressure, tropical storm, depression) brewing up and moving up the coast. Saturday will be a soaker and more rain is expected Sunday and Monday. Forecasts are calling for the wind to kick back up Monday afternoon and through early next week with east-north-east wind in the 20-30kt range. Then dry Nor’east sets up Tuesday, fading Wednesday into Thursday. Through this whole time expect coastal flooding, big surf and beach erosion.

Final Days Of Fluke Fishing

What a great way to close out the last stretch of NJ Summer Flounder Season. NOT! It officially ends Wednesday Sept 27th. It’s a bummer since the fluke fishing has been fairly good in the bay, inlet, ocean and surf. Store staffer Frankie had good fluke fishing yesterday on the mid-island surf. Yesterday we also had a nice fluke weighed in by Jim Griffth who caught it fishing the Barnegat Inlet.

Variety Of Options For Late September

Once the weather clears and things settle down angler fishing the Long Beach Island will have a variety of options. There should be a little of everything with no one standout. I expect the following species to be on tap… fluke, blues, striped bass, weakfish, blowfish, spot, tog, triggerfish, sheepshead, Spanish mackerel, false albacore as well as the many other offshore pelagics.

Tautog is the best bet right now for consistent bite. The Barnegat Inlet has been consistent. I can’t say that there are alot of quality fish but the quantity of fish make for a lot of fun. There are a few keepers to be had. This fishery should be doable (maybe not Saturday) fishing the bayside areas on the north end in the leeward areas.

The fall mullet run is on! Currently mullet are moving. I say them in the surf yesterday (Thursday). It started around (give or take a few days) the new moon on Sept 14th. Usually the mid-September moon flips the mullet switch on and this year it was right on schedule. Depending how the moon phases lines up, it can be earlier or later in the month. It’s that time of year where the days get shorter, weather gets cooler and the water temperatures begin to fall from their summertime peak highs. Also jump starting the run, a big swell and northerly / north east blow like we last Friday. My fingers are crossed the weather coming from Ophelia does mess up things. We will have to wait and see. Let’s hope the run is a good one and last into and through our next moon (full on 9/29) and well into October. That would really spice up the early October surf fishing sessions!

Cocktail blues (bluefish) have hung around all summer. Some may see as a nuisance after loosing baits and tackle to bite offs. Others appreciate their presence and welcome the active tight-line fun especially on light tackle. Anglers are catching blues casting lures (plugs and metal) as well as fishing mullet on a classing mullet rig or chunking.

September Striped Bass

The resident stripers have really become more active since the last moon (9/14) offering great light tackle fun for anglers fishing the backwaters of Long Beach Island.

Fish Heads Alumni Dan D. has been having a blast light tackle fishing the sunset sessions. Below is one catch photo from Thursday evening. Another striped bass report came in yesterday from John W. He caught a 27″ striped bass fishing the surf with mullet.

Here’s a recent video report which wasn’t shared yet on the fishing report blog. To get new video release notifications be sure to subscribe to the Fisherman’s Headquarters YouTube page now.

Labor Day Weekend Fishing Report

Hope y’all are enjoying this awesome Labor Day Weekend! Here’s the fishing report update for the Long Beach Island area brought to you by Capt Greg here at Fishermans Headquarters.

This LBI fishing report video recorded and posted on Saturday Sept 2nd

Long Beach Island Surf & Jetty Fishing Report

On the LBI surf there’s a variety of species on tap but not one phenomenal bite. The most consistent and dependable goes to fluke. All summer has been good and we expect the next few weeks to continue. The cocktail bluefish action rolls on steady too. For the past week or so false albacore, Spanish mackerel and bonito have been around, cruising the inlet and surf chasing small bait.

Randy Edwards reported fun fishing today. He said “Deadly Dick lures as well as epoxy jigs.”

Sheepshead and tog carry on at the inlet with a good chew on crabs.

Now is a great time to be fluke fishing the inlet, ocean and surf. With the warm surf and ocean temperatures (low 70º’s) the bite is active.

Surf Info: The swell is still pumping and tomorrow Tuesday looks to be another day of strong long period surf, then fading mid to late week.

4×4 Beach Access Info: Holgate opened on schedule September 1st but the tip/end remains closed due to late season nesting.  As per the Feds it could be open soon if not already. The various towns front beaches will be opening soon, later this month. It’s time to take the beaches back!

In The Bay

In the bay, blowfish and spot are picking at baits on the west side of the bay off Barnegat and Waretown as well as Middle Grounds and the ICW on LBI’s middle and south end. There’s also weakfish here too. Lots of bait moving… mullet and peanuts as well as smaller ones like spearing, bay anchovies and micro bait.

Summer bass action offers fun in the early and late parts of the day. Captain Dan D aboard Hog Moon Sportfishing reported great action over the weekend after the boat traffic diminished.

The 3rd Annual Beat The Fleet Fluke Tournament

Saturday was the 3rd Annual Beat The Fleet fluke fishing tournament which is held out of The Boat Yard on the LBI Causeway with morning check in and gun shot starts out of Barnegat Light and Beach Haven.  There were 21 boats and 8 single anglers on the Mary M private charter. 

First Place – 11.90# Flat-U-Lence with first place single fish calcutta at 8.5# as well as heaviest Sea Robin at 1.2#. Second Place – 11.30# Misdrift Third Place – 11.1# Stinky Box, also won second place for single fish calcutta Fourth Place – 9.95# Flounder Wetspot, also won heaviest slot and tied for heaviest combined slots Fifth Place – 9.3# Reel Seduction

Other Calcutta Winners – Gigabyte 2 slot weight tie
Female Angler – Kiersten Holloway aboard the Misdrift
Youth Angler 11 and under – Grey aboard The 5 Ruhls
Youth Angler 12-16 – Andrew aboard the All Gas, No Action
Be sure to get in on this great event next year!

69th Annual LBI Surf Fishing Classic

The 69th Annual LBI Surf Fishing Classic Kicks off on October 7th. Be sure to get in on the fun 9 weeks of surf fishing action! Also save the date… Opening day surf fishing seminar takes place on October 7th from 9-11am at the Ship Bottom Fire House