Daily Fishing and Outdoor Report

Pro reports and good read on sport fishing

BHCFA report: 




            Enclosed is this week’s fishing report for the Beach Haven Charter Fishing Association. I am attaching it and also pasting it. If you have any questions, my cell phone number is 609-290-5942 and my e-mail address is jamesghutch1@aol.com

Thanks for your help,

Jim Hutchinson Sr.


The offshore canyon fishing is very good right now for the captains and boats of the Beach Haven Charter Fishing Association.

            Captain Bob Gerkens on the “Hot Tuna” decided to make a scouting trip last Friday to check out the canyon bite and found an outstanding white marlin bite along with some very good yellow fin tuna action. There was also quite a bit of whale activity going on for the visual effects.

            With a crew of Bob Lefevre, John Guardabasso, Joe Zaccaria, and Val Zak, the owner of Oceanside Bait and Tackle in Brighton Beach, the group went three for four on white marlins. All of the billfish were released including two which were estimated at over 90-pounds. Captain Bob also helped them to boat 6 yellowfin tuna to 45-pounds.

At the return to the dock, both Val and Joe had to do the traditional fully clothed swim upon arriving back to dock for their first Marlin catch. Captain Bob recommends booking trips to the canyons now while the bait is present.

            Captain Fran Verdi of the “Dropoff” took a “busman’s” holiday and went fishing at the Washington Canyon out of Cape May. He reports a great trip on white marlin, skipjacks, sharks, and yellowfin tuna. He is anxious to make a trip of his own in the next week or so.

            Captain Lindsay Fuller of the “Jun Bug” had a trip recently to the Lindenkohl Canyon. Arriving about an hour before sunrise, they started trolling about 3 miles inshore of the 100-fathom tip. The first action came about 7am. when a pod of nice yellowfin crashed the baits and five lines went down. Two stayed hooked and one was landed. As they spent the morning trolling they saw numerous whales and small porpoise around their boat.

            In the same area where they caught the first tuna, they had a second one on that crashed a ballyhoo bait, but the fish was lost at the boat.

            In closer to shore, the “Miss Beach Haven” under Captain Frank Camarda has seen the fluke fishing improving. The shorts are still outnumbering the keepers, but the bite is on, and keepers are coming across the rail. The boat is now sailing seven days a week with a full service galley Wednesday through Sunday.

            Captain John Koegler on “Pop’s Pride” had a good fishing trip in Little Egg Inlet last weekend. They released over 20 fluke and kept two larger ones, a 19-incher and a 20-inch fish. Captain John says the fish were in excellent physical condition with the top fillets measuring over ¾’s of an inch. He feels that based on last year’s experience this great inlet fluke fishing will keep improving weekly until mid August when the fish really move into the ocean.

Additional information on the association can be found at www.BHCFA.com or by calling 1-877-LBI-BHCFA (1-877-524-2423).



Barnegat Bay has lots of fluke to be had. Most are shorts but we are boxing enough for a dinner or two every outing and rods are consistently bent. Small bluefish are popping up around the inlet and can be caught on plastics, jigs, or metals. Later this month I am going to do a recon to see if there are enough weakfish in the bay to start targeting them. With the limit of 1 weakfish @ 13" I still plan of fishing for them at least part of my back bay trips since they are loads of fun on light tackle.

Nature note: If you looked outside last week you may have noticed a lot of dragonflies around NJ.  Many of these just migrated here from the south after hatching from small ponds.  They do this to find habitat for their next generation.  With much of their suitable habitat drying up it makes sense to migrate north mid summer to lay their eggs.  This coincides with the population peak of NJ's state bird, the mosquito, which is the dragonfly larva's favorite food. 

Capt. Alex
Barnegat, NJ


Sport fishing a big business, with 12 million lines in the water; impacts becoming more visible

SEAFOOD.COM NEWS [Climate Progress] by Michael Conathan 

Mr. Conathan is the Center for American Progress's Director of Ocean Policy

Beneath recreational fishing's bucolic veneer of a solitary angler alone with his thoughts-and perhaps a striper or two-on a desolate beach, the reality is that sportfishing is big business. Still, the perception remains that the effect of this hobby on the environment is far below that of commercial fishing despite the overall quantity of fishermen on the water.

According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, or NOAA, nearly 12 million Americans went sportfishing annually from 2005 through 2009, making about 80 million saltwater sportfishing trips per year. That's roughly equivalent to the entire population of the five coastal New England states getting out on the water seven-and-a-half times apiece.

The economic benefit of these activities is tremendous. Rec fishermen spent $18 billion on equipment and for-hire vessels in 2006 alone according to NOAA's most recent figures. These contributions rippled through coastal economies, ultimately contributing $49 billion and creating nearly 400,000 jobs. Further, these figures don't account for costs like hotel rooms, meals, travel costs, and other services of which anglers avail themselves in their quest to land the big one.

Yet many rec fishermen still believe there's no way his or her single hook on a line can possibly do as much damage as the sweep of a yawning bottom trawl. Well, when we put 12 million hooks on 12 million lines the equation starts to come a bit more into balance.

Certainly many species of fish are hit harder by commercial fishermen. There aren't many 25-foot Wellcrafts trolling for pollock in the Gulf of Alaska or longlining swordfish in the Gulf of Maine. And the overall numbers clearly skew in favor of the commercial industry. NOAA estimates anglers caught about 173 million pounds of fish in 2009. Commercial fishermen? Slightly more: 7.9 billion pounds.

But impacts on individual species are sometimes far greater as a result of sportfishing. Again according to NOAA's landings data, recreational fishermen, for example, landed an estimated 13.3 million pounds of red drum in 2009 while their commercial counterparts caught just 200,000 pounds. That same year in the south Atlantic and the Gulf of Mexico, sportfishermen hauled in over 60 percent of the total catch of red snapper, a species classified as overfished and subject to overfishing by NOAA. As a result of these rec and commercial pressures the snapper fishery has undergone multiple closures in recent years.

Fishery managers, and even Congress, have acted on our need to get a better handle on recreational fishing's true effect on our fish stocks. Included in the 2006 reauthorization of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act were provisions to strengthen federal oversight of this activity.

In particular, beginning in 2010 the act required fishermen to register either through a federal registry or a comparable state program, and this mandate included a registration fee beginning in 2011. As a result, 49 states now have mandatory license programs for those who want to fish in federal waters. Hawaii is the lone hold-out, but Hawaiian fishermen aren't off the hook. They simply must pay their registration fee directly to the federal government.

As this program took effect, fishermen accustomed to the generations-old tradition of simply walking down to the shore and throwing in a line carped at what they considered excessive bureaucracy restricting their freedom to fish. Battles raged in state legislatures about whether to impose a state registration fee or stand on principle and force anglers to instead pay the federal government.

Still, as the numbers of recreational fishermen continue to rise their effect on fish populations goes up as well. And it's tough to make the case that fishing should be unregulated when hunters have been buying licenses for decades.

Anglers also have been subjected to additional efforts to enhance the sustainability of their actions. The catch-and-release movement is in full swing for many fisheries, particularly large game fish like marlins.

Now, many fishing groups, like the Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership and the Sportfishing Conservancy, are taking that message further, attempting to educate fishermen not just to release the fish they catch but how to ensure that fish has the greatest chance of survival. Recognizing that if fish populations continue to decline, so will fishermen's opportunity to engage in their favorite sport, these organizations attempt to educate the public about best practices.


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