Mayday…Mayday…TUNA!! Hi Flier Open Boat

We are running a short notice Open Boat Tuna trip tomorrow, Wed June 19. Just received some intel on where to try. Lots of life, whales, bait. Good reports on both yellowfin and bluefin. The weather was the deciding factor to run. No storm activity and light winds. This will be mostly a trolling trip. Hunting and searching for whales and life. I will have the jigging and popping rods with us, but honestly it is not our strong suit. I am bringing bait to try and drift if the activity is intense and the rods are not going off. While we are drifting with a few bait rods out, you can jig or pop.

4AM to 4PM. $450 person, 4 people max, all fish are shared. We need all four spots filled to sail.

Thank you,

Dave

Dave DeGennaro

Hi Flier Sportfishing

732.330.5674 cell

hiflier.com

LBI Fishing Report Update 6/17/24

We hope all the rad dads and fishy fathers had a awesome weekend and an even better Father’s Day. Let’s keep the dream alive and rock all summer long!

I mentioned and showed it on the last video report and it has remained… we have beautiful CLEAN & CLEAR waters in the surf along the beaches of LBI. Father’s Day was a good one. A little breezy late morning and afternoon but it was a fresh northerly sea breeze with no flies and no humidity. It laid down later in the afternoon for the Blessing Of The Fleet.

Here’s the updated fishing report for the Long Beach Island area on Monday June 17, 2024.

LBI Surf Fishing Report

Striped bass surf reports have slowed down significantly as the month of June ticks on. We did get word from Michael Wolfschmidt who enjoyed Father’s Day on the beach. He caught a 31″ bass off the mid-island surf on salted clam.

Fluke fishing on the surf is and has been consistently good. That’s mostly due to the waters temperatures staying mildly warm and clean. There’s still some schools of blues racing through. If looking for blues in the suds, most of the time one or more feisty terns will tip you off to where the small bait is which both the terns and blues are chasing. While I was filming today’s report video there was a small but goo bird play with what looked like blues and bonita busting through.

With the warm “summer” surf be on the look out for kingfish in the suds for the next couple months. Also some whiting! They look like a kingfish but they don’t have the stripes. Whiting are also called a sea mullet by the boys down on the OBX. Here’s a photo of one caught this past weekend by Dan Schmechel.

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Also in the surf, dogfish are eating meaty boats and pulling line as well as rays and some toothy critters.

LBI Bayside Waters & Inlets

Blues and fluke are two primaries at the inlet right now as well as striped bass and weakfish at the right times. Also there’s out of season tog at the rocks. The “Bucket Guy” Dave reported catching a nice fluke fishing the south end inlet on Sunday. On a trip he had a nice weakfish.

In the bay fluke fishing which isn’t great is one of the most popular targerts. There’s a good showing of bluefish in a range of size. Also savvy anglers are catching striped bass and weakies. Some sheepshead arrived last week and should stick around all summer. We look forward to this species for the next couple months.

Bottom Fishing Report

The final days of the 2024 Spring Black Sea Bass fishing season are here with this Wednesday June 19th being the last day. Come July 1 through August 31 there is a “bycatch” one fish bag limit at 12.5″ season. For a detailed listing of the NJ Fishing Regulations check out here.

The first bonita report came in last week (Wednesday) from Tony Butch while sea bass fishing. As time as went on, we have heard a few more and some that far off the beach.

Ocean fluke fishing for some isn’t bad. The way I see it there’s a nice body of fluke along the inshore coastal waters and along the surf. Some of these fluke are moving into the bay. Fingers are crossed with have a good open bottom and fluke wreck fishing summer season. Here’s a photo of Ian Medford with a good one from a recent ocean fluke fishing trip aboard LBI Sportfishing with Captain Jon Kelly.

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Offshore Fishing Report

The Beach Haven Marlin Tuna Club’s Tuna Open was this past week. The 4th Annual offshore fishing tournament has grown fast and is becoming one of the best spring offshore fishing events in the region. This year 78 boats fished and caught some good fish… 5 bluefin over 100#, 8 big eye over 100# and 11 yellowfin over 70#! It seems each year bigger fish are hitting the scales. There would have been some big bluefin however the larger class fish is closed right now. Congrats to all the anglers who scored a payday. Brendan Graham reported, “All four species of tuna were weighed in (bluefin, big eye, yellowfin, longfin) and that’s what it’s all about.”

LBI Fishing Report 6/12/24

The surf temp on LBI is warm in the mid 60’s and the water is gin clear. Most of the big bass/drum spring run is behind us but there’s good “summertime” fishing. Right now anglers fishing LBI are catching fluke and blues. There are striped bass still around and there will be residents all summer. A few weakfish are here with most coming up as surprise bycatch. However some anglers are targeting them and catching in the surf and bay. The bay has great crabbing and clamming right now. Mid-shore and offshore sea bass, shark and tuna make for a well rounded spread of opportunities. Now’s the time to enjoy before the crazy peak summer traffic!

Hi Flier Open Boat Trips

Bluefish are still holding up strong on the west side of the bay. Casting topwater lures at surfacing fish under birds has provided most of the action. 

As soon as you find a few terns picking and diving it’s been great action on light spinning gear. Throwing lures at the inlet jetty is also producing blues with a few stripers in the mix. We will be floating sandworms into the jetty to try and increase our odds for a bass but you have to fish through the blackfish to get them. We are starting to catch some fluke on the channel edges and back bay, as well. When the ocean is calm we can also run out a few miles to the reef for sea bass.

The water temp hit a high of 74 degrees in the back bay over the weekend which would explain this big Houndfish that crashed Dennis Cornfield’s topwater lure while we were catching blues. He missed the lure and got snagged which made for a dicey release boatside. If you hook one of these giant needlefish, they average 3 feet plus around here, be careful, they have a lot of sharp teeth. 

Running Open Boat or Charter: Wed June 12, Thurs June 13, and Fri June 14, 7AM to 1PM. $200 person. 4 people max. All fish are shared.

Pics:

Paul Levasseur of Clifton Heights PA with topwater Blue

Dennis Cornfield of Glenside PA snagged Houndfish

Thank you,

Dave

Dave DeGennaro

Hi Flier Sportfishing

732.330.5674 cell

hiflier.com

LBI Fishing Report June 5, 2024

June has started off with great weather and the same great fishing from May rolls on. Striped bass, bluefish, fluke and weakfish are here making right now a great time to try for a grand slam! Sea bass fishing on the wrecks and reefs has improved and ocean fluke fishing is warming up. As we approach summer, the warmer water species are showing up. The cow nose rays arrived this past week. We also heard of the area’s first cobia and sheepshead. They are here!

Here’s my latest fishing report video from Monday…

Hi Flier Open Boat Stripers, Blues, Sea Bass, and Fluke

Sailing Tues June 4, Wed June 5, Thurs June 6, and Fri June 7. Open Boat or Charter. We can target stripers, blues, fluke, and sea bass. We could start at the inlet jetty to try for stripers and blues and then head offshore a few miles to fish for sea bass. After that we have the option to cast topwater lures in the back bay for blues or drift the channels for fluke. 7AM to 2PM. $200 person. 4 people max. All fish are shared.

Hope to see you on board!

Dave

Dave DeGennaro

Hi Flier Sportfishing

732.330.5674 cell

hiflier.com

LBI Fishing Report 5/30/24

There’s beautiful weather in the neighborhood and a lot of different opportunities for saltwater anglers fishing the waters of LBI from the beach or boat. There really isn’t one stand out; however, there is a great variety. Here’s the Fishing LBI Fishing Report Update for Thursday May 30, 2024. Directly below is my latest video report. Enjoy!

On tap near shore and from shore, bluefish, striped bass, fluke, drum, weakfish, with some more kingfish, blowfish and spot showing up. Bottom fishing the offshore wrecks producing sea bass, ling and hake. Further offshore the tuna bite has been slow but tile fishing has been great with good size golden and blueline.

Bluefish Fishing Report

Right now in terms of catching the best bet is blues. We have bluefish ranging from 1-3#, up to and over 10#. They are around and making their presence known offering some strong drag pulling fun and others frustration re-rigging. The blues are biting off lures and rigs of anglers bass and drum fishing the surf with clam as well as jig and rigs of anglers fishing for fluke in the surf/inlet/bay.

Here’s father and son Brian Pollock (L) and Hudson (R) with a pair amongst MANY bluefish they caught fishing aboard Fish Head Charters Wednesday May 29. The team also caught five striped bass up to 32″ on Rapala X-Rap lures.

Fluke Fishing Report

So far it seems the best fluke fishing for both catch consistency and size has been off the surf and inlet. The month of May hasn’t offered up a banner fluke fishing season kick off. But there are some good catches by anglers putting in the time and working for it. We recently had a 6# fluke weighed in from Alex who was fishing the surf, photo below right. Randy Edwards reported good fluke action a few days back, photo below left. We also have heard a couple good size fluke were caught by anglers fishing live spot for striped bass and a few nice ones speared.

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But based on a conversations with a commercial fisherman friend, “There is a body of fluke moving.” He said they are a little late this year so my fingers are crossed things pick up soon.

Striped Bass Fishing Report

Off the surf right now the striped bass action is slower than it was but there are still plenty of fish present. Based on previous years trends we expect action for the first half of June and possibly into July. That all depends on water temperature and bait. Here’s recent catch photo of Greg Davis who caught this bass plugging off the surf. Greg’s report is just one of many from customers the past few days.

How’s this for a catch!!!???!!! Sloane Endick caught this monster striped bass while fishing the surf for fluke with pink shine Gulp!

Black Drum Report

The epic black drum bite has dwindled off the May full moon. There was a one to two week stretch in mid April (leading up to the full moon 4/23) when in the Barnegat Bay in rhythm with black drum. Then we saw another really good 7 day stretch with lots of black drum on the LBI surf waxing into May full moon 5/23. Both of these periods offered the area some historic black drum action! The hot bite dropped off after the moons in both occasions and since only a couple here and there were caught. If you are looking for a big black drum it’s safe to say, “you should of been here yesterday” but there’s no harm in trying. All of June and even occasionally in the summer months (July and August) a few drum are caught off the surf on clam. Only time will tell.

Striped Bass Out Front

We’ve finally had some nice easy west winds set up the past few days. We were hoping the bunker schools would FINALLY stage up but so far that hasn’t happen. My fingers are crossed hoping a large body of bunker move in and pod up to give a taste of the good ol’ days spring bassin’ in the boat. Until then trolling along IBSP and LBI is slow put there’s a few bass picking to be had.

There was a post on the Barnegat Bay Fishing Report Facebook page, “(Is the) spring striped bass ocean run a thing of the past for us in Barnegat? (It) seems (the) spring (is) becoming more and more unpredictable out front. This year (the) water is still plenty cold but (there’s) little bait. (The) fall run is later and later. Thoughts?”

My take on things and what I posted as a reply…

Here at Fishermans Headquarters we have had a very good spring with positive catches coming in from customers. It has been a phenomenal spring run along the SURF here on LBI. Not so much “out front” in the boat. I don’t want to speak for IBSP [Grumpy’s Tackle – Ray’s reply to me “The fishing this spring in the IBSP are has been excellent. Since April we’ve had consistently good bass fishing with clams. The drum bite has been phenomenal and we have also seen a good number of medium to large bluefish. Overall I’m very pleased with how this spring has turned out so far. The drum bite in the bay was a bonus two weeks!] or Brigintine [Riptide Bait & Tackle – Andy’s reply to me “The last three to four years has been crazy good fishing for us here in Brigantine from the surf. Big bass, big drum and monster blues. But in the fall it hasn’t offered as much fun. Not much out front for the boaters but the boat anglers fishing in the bay are hitting big blues and stripers as well as big drum. Who knows why and how long it will last but we are enjoying responsibly while it is happening! On the bait side we have had little bunker and only a couple deliveries of small ones but 95% of the action has been on clams. Salted, frozen or in the shell it hans’t mattered.] but maybe they do?

For LBI, one of the best in a decade. [Take one look at the LBI Spring Surf Fishing Tournament live results and be sure to look at the catch and release devision too.] The bass have been in tight to the beach and anglers have caught most of April and all of May. A great size range too from trophies to slots and shorts. While management and scientists say bunker is abundant and wintering off NJ in large strong numbers our anecdotal reports do not agree. [Us NJ anglers have known for years that bunker winter off NJ] I would point to the lack of adult bunker as the main reason why we don’t have a strong boat fishery [right now] along LBI and IBSP like previous years. I would point to the fact that we have had little to no west wind (bunker filter feed and swim into the wind) until recent, the past couple days. There’s times we would have a week or more of west winds, bunker pods on the beach and bass feeding with boats, live bait or lure fishing and others trolling, all catching.

I’m not saying there are no bunker in the region, however there is little bunker near shore. Little in terms of both size and abundance. The local bait guys are having one of their worst year ever. Struggling to say the least. Maybe some are doing good but my two long time sources are not. Also don’t overlook management and data shows a decline in the striped bass stock. For those who don’t attend meetings and follow the fisheries data updates, their on the water fishing experience gauges how good or poor the fishery is. When management says there is a problem or a potential looming, many don’t agreed based on their great anecdotal catch “data”. That doesn’t account for recruitment, shrinking spawning stock biomass, spawning area water quality issues, invasive species, migratory path changes and the list goes on and on. While I don’t want to say the sky is falling, there are significant problems with the striped bass fishery. Unfortunately some of these issues are a bit too complex to dive into here with text. It would could and should be a book. But hopefully this explains a little bit of my take on it.

Hi Flier Open Boat Stripers and Blues

We fished hard Thurs, Fri, Sat, and Sun through the holiday weekend and had great action with 3 to 5 lb blues. Casting topwater lures on the west side of the bay provided most of the action. Here’s a video clip from Sunday: youtu.be/4Ysw__DjKR4?si=go2tPavae8Le7jZs

We are also fishing the inlet jetty but we did not have any stripers. We did catch plenty of 3 to 5 lb tog that are out of season so they had to be  released. They are hitting the bobber and worm rig we are using to try for stripers. We are also catching blues up to 7 lbs out by the jetty on soft plastics like Fin-S and BKD’s. We also had a few nice keeper fluke in the mix.

Sailing Open Boat or Charter this coming Thurs May 30, Fri May 31, Sat June 1, and Sun June 2. 6AM to 1PM. $200 person. 4 people max. All fish are shared. Targeting Stripers and Blues.

Pics:

Mike Daly Sr of Bayville NJ with Tog and Fluke

Michael Daly of Bayville NJ with 7 lb Bluefish

Jay Blanchfield of Belvidere NJ with one of his topwater Blues

Thank you,

Dave

Dave DeGennaro

Hi Flier Sportfishing

732.330.5674 cell

hiflier.com

Fishing LBI Report Update 5/23/24

The month of May has been very, VERY good to surf anglers. The beaches of Long Beach Island are alive with both striped bass and drum. The fishing is and has been firing on all cylinders. Here’s my latest report video from earlier this week, loaded with some recent catch photos…

CLAM – CLAM – CLAM – This spring the clam bite is strong for both striped bass and black drum. Right now we have possibly the best showing of black drum that the area has seen in decades. It started off earlier in the spring with a great showing in the bay but more recently the suds have lit up with boomers.

For the most part it has been clam, clam and CLAM for these two species. Bunker will yield bass and blues but it has been hard to get. It’s not podded up in the local waters like we usually see in the spring so these migrating fish are coming into the suds to hunt and that is where they find us! Don’t over look live sand fleas (for striped bass) and mullet (for blues) as they are both great baits.

Patrick Howley Jr and his dad Pat got into the surf action!

Fluke fishing isn’t phenomenal but at the right times and places anglers are putting together catches. We had a 25″ 5.5# fluke weighed in by a kayak angler fishing the bay with live minnow. Sorry the name never got shared with me, just the photo.

Also making their presence know… smooth dogs. Up into this full moon, we have seen a robust showing of large dogfish. These girls put up a great fight and are actually very good table fair but be sure to gut, bleed and ice down immediately. You may be surprised how good eat these are those looking for quality table fair. Give them a try as they have been abundant the past few years and we do our part to keep them in check right now. A lot of these are pregnant females. I’m not sure if they’re here to spawn, but it would make sense based on the time of year and the fact that many other fish spawn in the spring. Below is a mouth watering photo from Dave Minnick “the sea provides”!

Hi Flier Open Boat Stripers and Blues

Looks like we are finally getting a break in the weather here. I am looking forward to getting out this week. We will be in the bay and inlet on the hunt for stripers and blues. We will be fishing a variety of techniques, including anchored with clams, drifting with worms, casting soft plastic and topwater lures, and trolling plugs. Throwing the kitchen sink at ’em! 

We are available Wed May 22 and Sun May 26 for charter or we will be running Open Boat on those days. 6AM to Noon. $200 person. 4 people max. All fish are shared.

We also have one spot available on Friday May 24. There is a group of 3 people looking to add one more. Same hours and cost as above.

Attached pic is Bill Buckham of PA with his keeper striper that ate a worm under a bobber at the inlet jetty on a recent trip.

Hope to see you on board!

Thank you,

Dave

Dave DeGennaro

Hi Flier Sportfishing

732.330.5674 cell

hiflier.com