Thursday, May 22, 2008: Well, the stars are aligning for this week end – better make that the skies are aligning. As last-minute frenzies go on at boat storage facilities – fuel has surely slowed the put-in for many captains – it could well be an insane weekend as bass, blues and weaks are scattered but highly reachable for anglers around both inlets (and particularly over in west Barnegat Bay.)
Unfortunately, surfcasters are being tested by dirty waters. In fact, this has been a very turbid-water week even with smaller surf. It’s possible the big blow started the stir and a series of wind shifts has kept is riled. Add in the fact the water is still firmly holding in the 50s (as much as 10 degrees cooler than this date in recent years), and beach anglers should not be overly concerned if the sand become fully people covered as the beach weather looks excellent.
There are some beach bass to be had, north to you. A 16-pounder entered the Simply Bassin’ yesterday and some 30-inch-ish fish were taken, though the ocean’s handout rate of fish is generally one per anglers.
Bluefishing is sketchy, better near the inlets or the further north you get. Many of the blues are “racers,” mainly head, differing from the blues of a few weeks back which were very plump – apparently on grass shrimp and small “herring-like” forage fish that many anglers found in the bellies of take-home fish. By the by, they are likely small ocean herring. This time of year those very tight baby herring baitballs – some five feet in circumference -- can be seen near bayside bulkheads, especially near inlets, and even along the beachfront where they’ll occasionally be beached by blues or circle in nervous balls in the coffin corners of beachfront groins.
It sounds like the black seabass bite is better than I first heard. Being this is one of the few fish species that anglers can target out at sea, seabass are going to be targeted very heavily this weekend. The minimum size is 12 inches and that does not include the filament (also known as a streamer) coming off the top of the rounded tail. Not all seabass have these.
I’d like to note once again (I mentioned it in my weekly column) but a huge number of fishing folks don’t realize the tog season is totally and completely closed until July 15. I’ve run into at least a dozen better anglers who not only didn’t know this but disputed it, most going with the “You can keep one” line. Well, that one can cost you dearly if checked by Fish and Wildlife.
SURF CITY THEFT:
A boat and trailer were stolen in Surf City from the front yard of 304 15th St. sometime between May 16 and 17, apparently driven.
The stolen boat is a 2000 Searay 210 Bow Rider, NJ Reg NJ4284GP. It was still encased in white shrink wrap. The trailer was a 2001 Load Rite. The boat is named “Something To Do II.” Boy that has to be a sinking feeling to pull into your drive and find your boat gone. Truth be told, boat stealing is not a huge business, at least not in the ssne of being able to take it somewhere else and begin motoring around. Just one stop by marine police of Coast Guard and that’s all she wrote. Of course, if someone is dumb enough to buy a nice boat and trailer “dirt cheap” they’re just as guilty – of stupidity.
There are some essential steps boat owners should take to mark their vessel should some rustlers come and name it. While all boats after 1972 have hull identification numbers on the transom, permanently mark your driver’s license number in a location this is tough to see. This comes in very handy when HINs are tampered with by professionals. Do the same with your trailer, using wither your driver’s license number or the boat HIN number. That marking method also works with electronics, though finding an inconspicuous place is real tough unless you go inside the works.
Trick: Take a tracing of your HIN using thin paper and a leaded pencil or a piece of graphite. It helps the cops a lot. Obviously, keep a copy of your boat ad trailer registration at home, readily accessible if you have the trauma of pulling in to find your vessel has vanished.
1) Jason DelFalazzo 5/166 p.m. 25-9 40 ¼” 22 ½” B.L. area Bunker 5/20 B.L Bait and Tackle
2) Dean Stankiewicz 5/17Noon 23-15 39 ¾”22” Holgate area Clam 5/17 Jingles B&T
3) Gregory M O’Connell 5/183 a.m. 20-12 39”20 ½” B.L. area Bunker 5/18 Surf City Bait Tackle
4) Jake Behan 5/17Noon 16-12 36 ½”18 ½” Brant Beach Clam 5/17 Fisherman’s HDQ
5) Rocco Sarullo 5/226 a.m. 16-10 38”18 ¼” Holgate Clam 5/22 Jingles B&T
6) John Parzych 5/34 p.m. 16-6 36” 20” Beach Haven Clam 5/3 Fisherman’sHDQ
7) Dante Soriente 5/98 a.m. 15-12 34 ¾”19 ½” Beach Haven Clam 5/9 Jingles B&T
8) Gordon Kirk 5/18 14-8 35 ¾”\17” BH Park Clam 5/18 Jingles B&T