Daily Fishing and Outdoor Report
Sunday, June 01, 2014: What a revoltin’ wind development this is. Early forecasts did not call for winds to honk as hard as they did yesterday – and even today, as NE winds returned by midday. Oh, they’re not hideous today but enough to make things all sloppy.
Bassing remains very productive in a drib-drab way. It’s not a slam dunk every trip but bass life is good if you’re in the zone – as a surfcaster in Surf City found out the easy way, with four fish in quick succession, all over 20 pounds. He kept one, the smallest.
Boat bassing was greatly reduced yesterday but I still heard radio chatter of some decent hooking north of Barnegat Inlet, including an estimated (and released) 54-pounder. By the look of the photo, that fish was every bit of mid-50s. It also drew blood – to which I can relate. The angler, trying to hold the fish under belly for a photo, had it flop. He tried to cradle its fall and took a shoulder hit from that nasty-ass dorsal barb. Kudos for not allowing the fish to hit the deck – and possible have its innards squashed. I’ve gotten that barb before and not only does it hurt above average but the puncture bleeds like all get-out, likely caused by some substance in the slime sheath covering the fin.
Fluking is ranging from good south to stunningly good south, namely down toward Great Bay. Had a report of a fellow who had fish five keeper flatties during his first 20 minutes of drifting squid/Minnie combos. The surf has been heavy from the NE winds so the suds fluking isn’t that readable, though I am very confident that we’ll have an entire summer of sizzling surf fluking, even if the ocean gets warm. Fluke are somewhat warm-water sensitive in the bay (where the shallows can reach 90 low-oxygen degrees but even a surfline in the 70 won’t drive off fluke in the swash. That’s just fine for surf bucktailers like myself. I’m going to bag some fluke filets this summer. Last year I got nada.
Bluefishing has gotten spotty but a bit like the bass if you’re where they’re at you’d think they’re everywhere. As I oft note, there are a goodly number of folks who are quite happy getting bouts of bluefish to add some meat variety to a fluking day. They just don’t want those Jersey piranha around while they’re in the midst of fluking.
Even though it’s a comatose fishery, bag limit-wise, weakfishing is beginning to show its summer spike colors. Smaller models are inching around Barnegat Bay, as I found out doing night jigging, bayside, mid-Island.
I’ve been doing pickerel fishing at a load of sites. Late springtime in the Pines is as perfect as outback life gets. Plants are bustin’ loose, especially laurels and rhododendrons, and there is wildlife to be seen daily – and nightly. The pickerel are as attack-crazed as ever. Nothing big. The big chains seemingly disappeared long ago, due mainly to careless catch-and-release practices. It’s sophomoric to keep bringing this up but if you tear even one gill filament – or even a single artery within a filament -- and the fish will die, no questions asked. Odd catch was a pickerel with a snake in its belly. That snake meal was not unusual for this time of year but the ingested snake was quite obvious still writhing – yet the pickerel went for my spinner. I guess he figured he was on a roll. I was gonna coax the snake outta the belly but I figured it was likely already blinded by the fish’s stomach acid. Nature is a cruel mistress – daily.
I’ve been frogging quite a bit. Here are some vids:
Good night in LBI
Caught this sundial on a bunker head.
27lbs on the beach