Lewes Harbor Marina Bait and Tackle
217 Anglers Rd., Lewes DE 19958
Fishing Report - Delaware Bay / Atlantic Ocean
December 29, 2013
- Where Did The Year Go?
Hard to believe it's the end of December already. The year has flown by. There's still fishing activity when weather permits. Yesterday, Captain Carey on the Grizzly set up at Site 10, where his anglers put 27 tog in the box, and released several more. Captain Pete's toggers on Top Fin also had a good trip to Site 10 yesterday, returning with 22 keepers. Captain Brent togged at 10 the day before, and his guys aboard Katydid captured 23 keeper blackfish. Brent squeezed in one last seabass run yesterday, before the season shuts down December 31st. His bassers picked through a bunch of undersized fish, but ended up with 45 good sized blueheads. Sea bass fans will miss out this winter, since the season will be closed, but tog will provide opportunities inshore, and cod and tilefish will be available for offshore bottom bouncers. Captain H.D. Parsons at Fisherman's Wharf has special headboat trips lined up most weekends throughout the winter. You can check the schedule at 302-645-8862. Steve Kiibler and Daryl Mergenthaler fished one of the excursions yesterday, and combined for 26 beautiful bass and a blueline tile. Stripers are still moving down the coast, but there hasn't been much going on with rockfish in Delaware Bay the past couple weeks. Ocean going linesiders have been located under kamikaze Gannets within a couple miles of the beach as they make their way south. Rock continued to stage on structure between Indian River and Fenwick, although they were often found working on bunkers in open water. The lumps off Sea Colony remained productive, but the fish don't seem to be as thick there as in weeks past. Mike and John Davis trolled Stretches and Mojos off Bethany yesterday for 3 quality striped bass, including John's 32.4 pounder. Before Christmas, Stanley Smith and Jeff Griffin intercepted a school of stripers pushing bunkers to the south, north of Indian River, about 2 1/2 miles off the coast. They pulled Stretches and umbrellas among diving birds for their 4 bass limit, and released 10 others before calling it a day. If water temps don't drop too much, rockfish might be in the area much of the winter. Anglers have plenty to look forward to in the coming new year. Weakfish seemed to be making a comeback, and trout of varying sizes were taken throughout Delaware Bay. There were more red drum around than ever before. A couple bountiful year classes produced a bumper crop of redfish, and they seem to be pushing farther north in search of forage each season. Lewes Canal produced some decent flounder action, and the 2013 Canal Flounder Tournament had the largest turnout ever. The date for the 2014 Canal Tourney has been set for Friday May 16th. Although flounder fishing in Delaware Bay was kind of disappointing, boaters who learned how to present bucktails and bottom rigs on the Old Grounds in the Ocean between DB and DA Buoys had a banner summer with flatties. Croakers were small this past year, but spot of jumbo proportions were extra plentiful, and those tasty panfish will certainly be welcomed back. The same goes for kingfish. There was a resurgence of kings, and many Delaware Bay anglers enjoyed double digit catches of these delicious members of the drum family while anchored on Bay coral and other live bottom. Black drum didn't seem as thick this past spring, but Broadkill surf casters and boaters anchored on the Coral Beds still caught good numbers. Some real heavyweights were landed on light tackle when the big boomers grabbed small baits intended for trout. The largest we checked in tipped the scales to 93 pounds. Tuna fishermen were treated to some of the best action in a long time. Yellowfins hung out with bait and whales in Washington Canyon for most of the summer, and the bigeye bite was the hottest in recent memory. It was not uncommon for crews to boat multiples of the titanic tunas between 150 and 300 pounds while trolling at first light and just before dark. The offshore crowd will certainly get excited with the prospect of that happening again in 2014. Stripers were late in arriving in great numbers at the Delaware Bay entrance this November, but when sandeels got thick mid month, so did the rockfish. There were many quality trophies caught, and trollers seemed to do better than bait fishermen. All three winning fish in the 2013 Lewes Harbour Striper Tournament weighed over 40 pounds. Evan Falgowski's 47.2 pounder took the top prize. Mike Ambler landed the largest of the season, a mammoth 50 inch 49 pound bass, but he unfortunately wasn't entered in the Tourney. Quite an accomplishment none the less. The anticipation of all the fishing possibilities ahead will help get anglers through the doldrums of winter. Amanda, Phoebe and I are doing our own doldrum prevention thing by heading for the Florida Keys to do some fishing ourselves. We'll hopefully have some good catch pictures to share in the website photo gallery, and on our Facebook page, so stay tuned. I'll resume regular web fishing reports when the store reopens full time in April. Lewes Harbour Marina will be open Friday, Saturday and Sunday through the winter. The Saltwater Fly Anglers Of Delaware meet every Saturday for a fly tying session at the shop, where members, and guests, swap tips and techniques and, of course, fishing tales. Stop in and check them out. Thanks for following us this past season, and we wish you the best of success in the coming New Year!
December 19, 2013
- Ocean Togging Shows Promise
Cold wind has kept boats at the dock many days, but when conditions were fishable last weekend, Ocean togging showed signs of promise. Tog activity in the Bay had slowed down, and toggers had been trying Ocean Sites the past couple weeks, hoping those spots would turn on. Seems they're now starting to produce. Captain Brent took Katydid to Site 10 last Friday, where his anglers put 20 keepers in the box. He returned to the reef Saturday with a group of tautog regulars, and they proceeded to limit the boat out with a catch of 50 blackfish. Inshore water temps are in the low to mid 40's, and tog should start settling in on their normal wintertime haunts. It's been slim pickin's for striped bass at the Delaware Bay entrance over the past week. Striper fishermen continue to have success in the Ocean south of Indian River. Bottom structure from 1 1/2 to 3 miles offshore between Bethany and Fenwick has been holding rockfish. Their presence is often given away by flocks of dive bombing gannets. Chris Huk worked the area Monday for a limit of keepers in the 29 to 31 inch range, and released several others. He said the birds were thick, and when you found the birds, you got fish. Trolling Stretch 25 and 30 plugs worked well, as did pulling Mojos or tandem shad rigs. Captain Chris on Quintessa had 3 nice keepers while trolling off Sea Colony Saturday. Brandy Timmons Parker and her crew fished the Ocean City Marlin Club Rockfish Tournament with Captain Brian on Lil' Angler II Saturday. They pulled Cabo Sunset Stretch 25s off the Condos to secure 7 keeper stripers to 16 pounds, plus a bonus flounder. With warmer air temperatures and moderate winds forecasted for the weekend, there will likely be several crews on the water in search of some pre-Holiday stripers as the fish are moving south between Indian River and Ocean City. Merry Christmas and Good Fishing to all!
December 12, 2013
- Another Cooldown
Cold, windy weather has caused Bay water temperature to fall to 41 degrees, and striper action that was so good last week, cooled off as well. Masses of sandeels had been holding linesiders in the area, but it seems the schools of baitfish have thinned out. Rockfish are still being taken, but a majority have been below the 28 inch minimum. Captain Brent on Katydid trolled Overfalls Monday. His guys caught 20 bass, however only 3 were keepers. Ralph Short fished Overfalls yesterday and reported that the water was clean with well defined rips. Even though conditions looked good, Ralph's efforts resulted in just one 31 incher and a single throwback. Migratory stripers will probably continue to stage at the Bay entrance over the coming weeks, but it's tough for boats to get out every day to keep track of their movements, because of blustery weather fronts. Ocean bassers have been following fish down the coast, looking for working birds to indicate the presence of bass below. A few fish came from Hens and Chickens Shoal, but lumps off Sea Colony at Bethany Beach held better numbers. Nick and J.T. DiGuglielmo stopped by Friday with four quality linesiders they captured while trolling Stretch 30 plugs in that area. Other structure between Fenwick and Ocean City gave up rockfish too. Trolling Stretch and Bomber Plugs, Mojos, umbrellas or tandem shads was the popular method for taking stripers. When moving stripers were located, feeding under birds, casting lures was a fun way to hook up. Sandeel imitatitions from Savagear, Tsunami and Storm were effective. Tube tailed diamond jigs, Gulp! Sandeels on leadheads, and bucktails also got bit. Keep in mind, it is still illegal to keep stripers outside the three mile limit, and the boundary at many popular spots is patrolled by the Coast Guard to ensure fishermen play by the rules. Beach fishermen intercepted a few decent bass, but there hasn't been a relible run in the surf. Andy Lano landed a pair of real nice rockfish while soaking bunker near Herring Point Saturday. Other catch reports came from spots south of Indian River, such as 3Rs Road.
December 5, 2013
- Been A Good Week For Bassin'
Stripers have been moving through the area, staging at the Bay mouth for short periods to fill up on sandeels that are unusually plentiful this fall. Anglers working structure by trolling diving Stretch and Bomber plugs did well. Tides have been exaggerated around the recent new moon, and wind in combination with strong currents made for dirty water a lot of the time, so savvy fishermen realized the cleanest conditions occurred at the end of flood current through the slack. That's when catching was best, especially first thing in the morning when boat traffic was light. Fish didn't seem to bite as well with a fleet running through the rips. Boats often vied for the same choice spot on the face of a shoal, making for close quarters, and sometimes bad tempers. Common sense and courtesy go a long way in making things work for everybody. Guys who tried lumps away from the crowds often caught better. Rockfish were also taken by drifting eels and casting bucktails and plastic or metal jigs that imitate sandeels. Katydid Captain Brent had success trolling plugs on structure at the Bay mouth. Jack Austin and his group limited out with 10 good bass aboard Katydid Saturday. On Sunday, Katydid regulars burned the bass, keeping a limit of 16 to 37 inches, and releasing 22 others. Tommy Isaacs and his boys crushed big rock aboard Katydid Monday, bringing in a 14 fish limit, most of them over 20 pounds. The heaviest weighed 29.6 pounds. Tuesday's group on Katydid decked another limit of 16 up to 26 pounds. Other nice fish checked in during the week included John Joe Kabino's 29.4 pounder, Daniel Green's 24.2 pounder, Bobby Fitzwater's 24 pounder, and Matt Urban's 24 pound bass. Chad Beitler boated a 25.7 pound rock, and Jim McLaughlin muscled in a 25.5 pounder aboard Miss Kirstin. Patrick Staggs took home his first striper, one weighing 24.5 pounds. Adam Sammons scored a 22.4 pound striper. Matt And Danny Baker, Nate Evans, Chip Graves and Jeff Drury trolled Stretches at Brown Shoal for a limit of 10 hefty rockfish in the 20 pound class this past weekend. Ocean trolling boats got into bass too. Some were caught along Hen and Chicken Shoal, but more reliable action came from lumps one to two and a half miles offshore between Indian River Inlet and Fenwick Shoal. The area off Bethany's Sea Colony condos was productive. Sometimes gannets and other birds gave away the presence of schools, other times, boaters just marked bait and fish on the sounder. Stretch 25+ and 30+ plugs, Mojos, umbrellas and tandem shad rigs all did the job on rockfish. Mike Behney and his buddies fished off Bethany with Keith Orendorf on Miss 5-O, where they trolled up a 14 bass limit. Fischer Edmonson celebrated his Eighth Birthday on that trip by boating a 21.9 pounder. Another excursion to that spot also produced a limit for Keith and a different crew, but in addition, they landed a bonus 8.6 pound doormat flounder that grabbed an 11 inch long Stretch 30+ plug. Matt Wiedmann and his guys towed tandem shads and chartreuse Mojos for their limit of 8 chunky rock off Sea Colony. Many sizeable stripers came from the area. Chris Dawson decked a 35 pounder yesterday while pulling a Stretch 30+. Jay Huss hooked his 32.2 pound rock with a Stretch 25+ plug. Marks Dunn put a 24.5 pounder in the box. There's been some activity in the surf. Andy and Anthony Lano landed their limit of bass to 20 pounds from the beach at Herring Point last Saturday using bunker. Dave McGirk got a 15 pound rock at Cape Henlopen Point Tuesday, then did it again Wednesday with a 25 pounder. Dave Furio landed a keeper red drum at 3R's Road Tuesday. Glen Felker was surprised by a nice redfish from the suds at the Navy Crossing today.
November 28, 2013
- They're Here Now!
Striper action really kicked into gear the past few days. What's likey a fresh batch of bass has been working over scads of sandeels schooled up at the Bay mouth. Anglers report stripers coughing up sandeels when brought aboard, with stomachs stuffed full of the slender lances. Several flounder were caught with stripers, and the flatties had bellies packed with sandeels too. Captain Ted on the Pirate King told me that when the current slacked up Tuesday, stripers pushed sandeels to the surface southeast of Overfalls, and bass were boiling on the baitfish. He instructed his customers to cast unweighted eels into the feeding frenzy, and they were immediately gobbled up by hungry rockfish. His group ended up with a boat limit of 20 big rock. Captain Brian's bassers aboard Lil' Angler II drifted eels in the Overfalls area late Tuesday afternoon to capture a limit of 10 quality keepers. Captain Brent's crew on Katydid trolled Stretch 25+ plugs to take home their limit of 14 linesiders to 25 pounds Tuesday. There was a good troll bite at 8B Buoy Tuesday morning. J.D. and Connie Miller, and John Whelen towed chartreuse Bomber CD25s there for a quick limit of 6 bass to 27.9 pounds. Dave Potter fished up the Bay a little ways at Brown Shoal both Monday and Tuesday, remarking that there were other boats around. Stripers were active there due to light traffic and pressure, and Dave's guys enjoyed good catching both trips. On Tuesday, they kept 7 fish to 39 inches and released several others while pulling Stretches. There were signs that things were about to bust loose at the end of last week. After a little shot of northeast wind, boaters were able to get back on the Bay Friday, and there seemed to be more fish around than in previous days. Keith Orendorf and the boys on Miss Five O found a school of stripers on structure south of Overfalls Friday, and proceeded to troll up their limit of 8 big beauties. Mike Trestka drifted spot at Overfalls Friday to take a 28.6 pounder. Tom Kirk was eeling at Overfalls Friday when he hooked a 27.6 pound rock. Bill McMahon braved marginal conditions on Overfalls Thursday, but ended up boating a 42.8 pound trophy using an eel. Tom Lobozzo used a jumbo spot to tempt a 41.5 pound whopper from 8B Buoy Friday. Bruce and Josh Buchalter, Alex Wartman and Jerry Wert chunked bunker near #2 Buoy for 3 bass to 20 pounds Friday. Just when things were shaping up, cold temps and strong winds shut down activity over the weekend. It was still quite chilly and breezy Monday morning, but diehard John Joe Kabino made his way out to the rips, where he had his hands full with hungry stripers. There were no other boats around, and fish pounced on his trolled Stretch plugs, even during slack water. John Joe said often he had two or three bass on at a time, and figured he'd caught 25! News of the wild bite was welcomed by other anxious anglers after the windy weekend. As noted earlier in the report, many fishermen got out Monday and Tuesday to take advantage of the fish that are here now. Another front blew in Wednesday, and it's still crankin' 20 knots out of the WNW as I'm writing this Thanksgiving morning. But, good weather is forecasted for Friday through Monday, and with the word out, the Bay mouth will be a busy place! It might be beneficial to check out lumps and rips where there's not as much boat traffic. Jig fishing should be good with all the sandeels around. Diamond jigs mimic sandeels, and tube tailed AVA 27 or 47 models are favorite choices. Soft plastic imitations by Storm or Savagear should be effective, as should jerk shad or Slug-Go style plastics, with their slim profile. A sandeel-like teaser fly on a dropper rigged ahead of a bucktail should get a look from stripers too. The annual Lewes Harbour Striper Tournament ended up November 26th, and here are the final standings. Evan Falgowski finished First with his 47.2 pound bruiser bass. Brian Seglem secured Second with a 41.6 pound slob. Tom Lobozzo landed a 41.5 pound lunker to wrap up Third. Congratulations, and of course, bragging rights, go to the winners, and many thanks to all who competed. Striped bass have been getting most of the attention, but tautog are still available too. A recent trip with Captain Pete aboard Top Fin produced a 30 tog limit for Mr. Chung and friends. Captain Carey's toggers on the Grizzly also returned with a limit of 30 keepers last Friday. There's plenty of fishing left this fall, so get out when you can to put some fillets in the freezer. They'll taste especially good this winter. Hope you have a Happy Thanksgiving!
- Another Windy Weekend
It looks like we're in for a blustery Saturday and Sunday. Supposed to blow northwest 15 to 20 knots Saturday, then 25 to 30 Sunday. We've lost a lot of days to wind, and this weekend might be a blowout too. There have been reports of a real good striped bass bite off Barnegat the past couple days, in spite of wind. Sounds like there's a load of bait inshore, with butterfish, sand eels and bunker right on the beachfront. Limit catches were common among crews working metal jigs. Maybe some more stripers have slipped into Delaware Bay after yesterday's northeast? When it's been fishable, anglers had some beautiful bass, just not many of them. Whopper of the week was a 49 pounder, boated by Mike Ambler. The 50 inch long behemoth inhaled a live spot at 8B Buoy Saturday. Striper specialist Evan Falgowski had linesiders of 35, 40.2 and 47.2 pounds while trolling plugs at the end of last week. Rick McCoy managed a 32.7 pounder while eeling aboard the Quintessa. The Lewes Harbour Striper Tournament runs through November 26th, and as of this writing, Evan Falgowski had the First and Third place spots with his rock weighing 47.2 and 40.2 pounds. Brian Seglem held Second with a 41.6 pound fish. The chunking fleets up the Bay have been anchoring in Tussey's, the Horseshoe, Miah Maull and the Egg Island Flats, and catching considerable amounts of stripers, but almost all of them have been undersized. They're probably resident fish, and as more migratory bass move in, keeper sized specimens should go in the box. We're expecting a delivery of fresh bunker this morning for guys who want to try some bait fishing. Togging has also been affected by wind. The boys on Katydid braved crappy conditions yesterday, and returned from the Brown Shoal reefs with 13 keeper tog, including Bob Murphy's 6.7 pounder and Dave Walker's 8.7 pounder. On days with decent conditions, tautog action was pretty good. Mr. Hong and his group of tautog regulars fished with Captain Pete on Top Fin Sunday, and put together a limit catch of 30 chunky blackfish. Toggers on the Grizzly had 29 keepers during Friday's trip. With Bay water temps in the upper 40's, tog should cooperate for awhile yet. Surf fishermen have not had much success along the Ocean beach, although, we had a customer in over the weekend who had a 32 incher and several shorts while using cut bunker from Broadkill Beach.
November 14, 2013
- Big Cool Down
A strong cold front blew through the area over the past couple days, with gusty winds and sub freezing temperatures at night. Water temp had fallen to 44 degrees. Light southwest winds began warming things back up today, and several boats were out trying for both tog and stripers. We already weighed in one trophy striper this morning. Brian Seglem brought back a 41.6 pounder he captured while trolling a pink Stretch 25 plug at Overfalls during ebb tide. There were a few other reports of rockfish caught by crews drifting eels and spot on structure at the Bay mouth this morning. Brian's big bass moved him currently into First Place of the Lewes Harbour Striper Tournament. Jacob Webb holds Second with his 39.8 pounder, and Evan Falgowski's 35 pound striper has Third Place. Tautog action has been pretty good on days with decent conditions, and clean water. On Monday, ahead of the frontal system, toggers aboard Katydid put 32 keepers in the box while fishing the Brown Shoal reef sites. Scott Levering landed a 7.6 pounder on that trip, and captain Brent Wiest wound in one weighing 9.2 pounds. Bert Long anchored on the Star Site Monday, where he hooked a 9 pound citation winner. Joe McNeal nailed a 7.2 pound tog on the Katydid Sunday. On Saturday, anglers on Katydid kept 26 tautog and released 52 others. Captain Carey's patrons on Grizzly took home 26 tog on Monday. Saturday's group on Grizzly had 25 blackfish and a striper. George Cyhan caught an 8.23 pound blackfish aboard Lil' Angler II on Saturday. Paul Hertzog was togging with Captain Ted on the Angler Monday when he had a 7.62 pound citation tautog. Tog came from the Inner and Outer Walls as well as from the reef sites. Jim Meyers and Sheila Stohler fished the Outer Wall Saturday for their limit of plump tog. Jay Lightner pulled a 10.34 pound blackfish off the Inner Wall Sunday. Still not much from the surf, but we did see quite an impressive bluefish caught in the suds between Herring Point and Gordon's Pond Sunday. J Ehrlich beached a 38 inch long slammer there that weighed 17.8 pounds.
November 7, 2013
- First Big Stripers
The first few big striped bass have been taken from structure at the mouth of Delaware Bay in recent days. Those crews proficient in trolling rips on Overfalls Shoal hooked some real nice fish. Mann's Stretch 25+ and Bomber CD25 plugs have been the weapons of choice. The lures dig in and go where rockfish are living, and their wobbling action often causes a reactive strike from fish, even if they're not actively feeding. Popular color patterns have included Cabo Sunset, Chartreuse, Red Head, Gold and Black, and Pink. Jacob Webb was pulling a plug on the Shoals yesterday when he connected with a 39.8 pound linesider that put him in the lead of this year's Lewes Harbour Striper Tournament. Evan Falgowski trolled plugs to capture the first lunker striper weighed in for the contest Saturday. It tipped the scales to 35 pounds, currently putting Evan in Second Place. Ryan Falgowski captured a 34.8 pounder while trolling Overfalls which put him in the Third spot for now. Trolling plugs has produced striper action up the Bay too. Burt Betts towed Stretch 25's near Miah Maull lighthouse for 6 keeper stripers, and several shorts. Catching should pick up soon for chunkers and live bait fishermen too as more rock make the right turn into Delaware Bay on their way down the coast. Water temp now is 57 degrees. Stripers have been active in Indian River Inlet. Dave Sallac drifted spot there yesterday and landed a 30 inch keeper, plus several shorts. There haven't been any legal striped bass reported from the surf yet. Last year, there was a run of rockfish on the beach around November 15th, so maybe they'll show then. Togging has been up and down, depending on favorable conditions and clean water for success. Water was dirty along the Walls yesterday until the end of flood tide. Nate Evans said he and his buddies had a window when there was clean water on the tide change at the Inner Wall, and they capitalized by putting 10 keepers in the box. Reefsite action was spotty yesterday too, but tog fishermen on the Pirate King also managed 10 keepers. Captain Pete's toggers on Top Fin took home 14. Jesse Byler's group had 23 tog on Top Fin the day before. Sea Bass season reopened, and despite lumpy seas, Captain Brent worked some inshore snags in search of bass Tuesday. The result was a limit of 125 knotheads, plus triggerfish, bluefish, porgy and an Atlantic Bonito.
October 31, 2013
Delaware Bay tautog action has been good this week, and many nice tog have been brought to the dock. However, none quite compare to the bruiser that hit the scales yesterday. Claude "Cool Yul" Benner was togging aboard the Angler with Captain Ted Moulinier when he boated the blackfish of a lifetime. While baiting with green crabs at Reef Site 6, Yul hooked and landed a 32 inch long behemoth that weighed 20.0 pounds. It was a real Togzilla, just in time for Halloween. The Lewes Harbour Tog Tournament finishes up today, and Yul sits comfortably in First Place. Another brute of a blackfish caught yesterday on the Angler by Kenny Greigg, and weighing 11.20 pounds, holds Second Place. As of this writing, Charlie Breitenbach's 8.85 pounder has the Third spot. Some other quality tautog taken recently include Alex Levantovsky's 8.83 pounder, and an 8.68 pound specimen for Tony Zdrojewski, Jr. Captain Carey on the Grizzly reported consistent tog catching on reef sites in the Bay, with limits or near limits for his patrons each trip. Captain Brent on Katydid told of similar results, with boat limits common. His group of regulars returned with 50 quality keepers yesterday. The rock breakwaters have been productive too. Chip Graves, Nate Evans and Aaron Hurd fished the Outer Wall yesterday morning. They had their limit of 15 plump tautog in the box by 8:30 using green crabs. Several crews have been trying for stripers at the Bay mouth the past few days by trolling Stretch Plugs and livelining eels and spot, but no keepers have been checked in here. It could turn on any time now. Stripers have been plentiful in Indian River Inlet. Dave Sallac drifted live spot there yesterday to catch 18 bass, two of which were legal size. Surf casters had a few small blues. Mike Flemming hooked a couple keeper flounder and several short stripers while tossing jigs in the suds near the Gordon's Pond jetty.
October 24, 2013
- Cooling Off
With nighttime lows in the 40's recently, Bay water temperatures have dropped to 60 degrees. This cooldown should prompt tautog to feed more actively, and also move stripers along in their Fall migration. There have been some decent tog catches in the past week form the Inner and Outer Walls and the artificial reefs. Captain Carey's Sunday group on the Grizzly put 26 keepers in the box. Jim Thomas took home the lunker of the trip, a near record sheepshead weighing 14.5 pounds. Toggers on the Grizzly captured 28 tog Monday. Captain Pete's anglers on Top Fin kept 17 tautog Sunday. Mark Stover was togging at the Outer Wall Monday when he hooked into an impressive sheepshead that weighed 14.5 pounds, exactly the same as the one caught on Grizzly Sunday. With conditions starting to change, Captain Brent on Katydid tried three different Ocean wrecks Tuesday, and found blackfish chewing at each spot. His crew of regulars culled through many tog during the day, and ended up with a limit of 50 keepers. The Lewes Harbour Tog Tournament finishes up October 31st. Currently, Dave Walker is in First with an 8.83 pounder. Brent Wiest's 7.56 pound tautog was bumped to Second. Rodney Shoemaker has Third with a 7.50 pound tog. Although no migratory have shown at the Bay mouth, they should soon. The Lewes Harbour Striper Tournament begins October 26th and runs through November 26th. Resident stripers have been active in Lewes Canal and Broadkill River. Some of legal size were caught around the drawbridge on live pencil eels. Short stripers were often seen busting on baitfish along the marshbanks of the Canal and River, and could be tempted into striking RatLTraps, small poppers, Storm Shads and other plastic swimbaits. Stripers mixed with good sized white perch in Petersfield Ditch. Small minnows, grass shrimp and bloodworms were effective for both. Some big spot remain in the River and Canal. Red drum are still around too. Harry Aiken worked shallow water of Rehoboth Bay Saturday with MirrOLures and caught 5 puppy drum, 5 short stripers and a surprise 8 pound flounder. Boats that made it offshore still found tuna, wahoo and dolphin. The boys on Not Right trolled 100 fathoms between the 175 and 190 lines south of the Baltimore Saturday. They reported bait everywhere in 71 degree water. The result was one yellowfin, 4 longfins to 41 pounds and a wahoo cutoff. Chris Adkins and his crew fished around some lobster gear in Poor Man's Canyon Tuesday, where they captured 18 mahis.
October 18, 2013
After more than a week of relentless northeast wind, the weather finally broke, allowing fishermen back out on the Bay the past few days. Water temps have not dropped much, with readings still 64 to 65 degrees. Clarity has improved, compared to roiled conditions following the blow. Tog catches have been getting better each day. Blackfish were taken from the Walls and Ice Breakers, and also off the artificial reefs. Wes Olson and Barney Gallagher worked the Inner and Outer Breakwaters yesterday for 7 keeper tautog and a nice triggerfish. Captain Brent's toggers aboard Katydid put 38 tog and a sheepshead in the box Wednesday while anchored over some mid Bay rubble. Reef structure yielded a limit of 50 tog to Brent's group on Katydid yesterday. Captain Carey's guys on the Grizzly got 27 keeper tog and a black drum Wednesday. Anglers on the Grizzly harvested their limit of 40 blackfish yesterday, including Billy Guzman's 6.33 pounder. They also had a bonus 9.25 pound sheepshead. With increased fishing activity, standings shifted around in the Lewes Harbour Tog Tournament. Brent Wiest is still on top with a 7.56 pound tog, but Billy Guzman's 6.33 pounder got him the number two spot. Dave Walker is currently Third with his 6.23 pound tautog. It's likely rankings will continue to change as more folks fish through the end of the contest on October 31st. Bigger tog seem to be more active as the water cools down. Mullet have been scarce since last week's wind, but spot were still caught in the Bay and Lewes Canal. Kingfish and trout were still around too. Migratory stripers haven't reached the mouth of Delaware Bay yet, but big bass were reported between Long Island and north central New Jersey. Effects from today's full moon and approaching cold fronts could push the rockfish our way soon. Some resident rock remain in Lewes Canal. Harry Sheing checked in a 29 inch linesider he hooked near the railroad bridge. The annual Lewes Harbour Striper Tourney starts October 26 and runs through November 26.
October 10, 2013
- It Blows
We've had hard northeast wind the past few days, it's blowin' a gale again today, and the forecast calls for more rain and 20 knots of northeast through the weekend. Needless to say, fishing activity has come to a halt. This weather will likely push the remaining mullet out of the area, and spot and croakers might be hard to come by after it gets out of here as well. It's possible the consistent northeasterly flow may prompt migratory stripers to start their move, and keep them closer to the beach. Rockfish normally show after the October full moon. Some of the season's largest bass stage on shoals at the Mouth of Delaware Bay during the last week of October and first week of November. Their arrival offers up some good opportunities for crews trolling Stretch Plugs or drifting live baits to connect with some lunker linesiders. Bunker chunkers begin to get into big fish too in mid bay sloughs. Once the winds subside and Bay water clears up, the tog bite should resume. Blackfish should be available on the Breakwaters and artificial reef sites. Don't know if triggerfish will stick around. Saturday was one of the last fishable days, and Captain Brent took Katydid to the Wall and wrecks for some togging. The take included 23 tautog, 4 triggerfish and an 11.5 pound sheepshead landed by Ed Winkler. Tog came from the Wall Sunday, ahead of the weather change. Dan Lauer wrestled a 10.4 pound bruiser from the rocks then. Current standings in the annual Lewes Harbour Tog Tournament have Brent Wiest in the Lead with his 7.56 pounder. Dave Walker's 6.23 has Second, and Charlie Breitenbach holds Third with a 6.15 pound tautog. The contest runs through October 31st. Red drum have been more and more common over the past two years, and there have been fair numbers around this Fall. Some were caught on artficials in Roosevelt Inlet and on cut mullet in the surf. Drum came from Rehoboth Bay and Indian River inlet as well. Matt Brittingham and Tyler Bryan were casting Storm Shads in Assawoman Bay Sunday, and captured 7 beautiful keeper puppies in the 25 inch range. Offshore anglers will be anxious to get back out and see what's available after the blow subsides. Perhaps tuna fishing may be even better...
October 5, 2013
- Tog Season Is Open
Tautog season reopened last Sunday, and toggers have been working the Walls off Lewes in search of tasty blackfish. Catching has been decent, but will improve as water temperatures drop from their present readings in the mid 60's. Triggerfish and sheepshead are still mixed with tog. Bay wrecks and reef sites have started to give up tautog, but fish only bit for a short time due to strong running currents around the new moon. Captain Brent on the Katydid fished a wreck last Sunday, and his patrons took home 26 triggers, 12 tog and 2 bass. The trip also produced keeper flounder number 801 of the season, a 6.5 pounder landed by Dr. Luis Mispireta. On Wednesday, Katydid captured 27 tog and 12 triggers while wreck hopping. Captain Brent did a four hour trip to the Wall Thursday for 15 tog and 2 triggers, and the Wall yielded 22 tog to Brent's Friday group. He said the best bite was during the slower parts of incoming tide. Brent currently leads the annual Lewes Harbour Tog Tournament with a 7.56 pounder. The contest runs through October 31st. Barry Downs boated an 8.75 pound bruiser blackfish aboard the Angler, but he wasn't entered in the Tourney. Bay bottom bouncers are still finding a mix of trout, spot, croakers, blowfish and kingfish. Lewes Canal continues to give up jumbo-sized spot. Snapper blues have been active around the Outer Wall and in the Cape Henlopen surf. Guys casting Bass Assassins and other soft artificials from the Roosevelt Inlet rocks had a few weakfish, speckled trout and red drum. Ryan Kroh checked in a 4.25 pound trout he got at Roosevelt using a strip of squid. Ocean flounder action has faded, but a handful of nice fish were still landed on the Old Grounds and at Site 11. Michael Davis decked a 5.54 pound flatfish near DB Buoy yesterday. Sea bassing has been fair, but hopefully they'll be more keepers in the latter part of the season. Offshore fishermen are still enjoying success with tuna. Ron Baker said he and some buddies had an awesome trip to the Washington Canyon Tuesday aboard the Restless Lady with Captain Todd Kurtz out of Ocean City. They chunked up 21 yellowfins in the afternoon using spinning gear and other light outfits. Then they trolled just before dark, and boated bruiser bigeyes weighing 227 and 310 pounds! Wes and Shane Olson chunked 6 yellowfins in the Washington yesterday. Geoff McCloskey and his crew trolled 100 fathoms along the 150 line between Poor Man's and Baltimore Canyons yesterday. They scored 7 longfins, incluing a 36.7 pounder for Mark Spence, plus 20 dolphin. True albacore have shown in the Wilmington too. Jerry Schmidt landed a 36.1 pound longfin and Stan Twardus took a 33.4 pounder during a recent trip on Lil' Angler II. That outing also yielded a 21.7 pound dolphin to Jeffrey Pinero. Ed Sigda and his guys trolled the Baltimore yesterday for a pair of longfins and some dolphin. They finished the trip with some deep dropping that produced tilefish and a not so common 14 pound snowy grouper for Mike Fritz.
September 26, 2013
- Fall Action Offshore and Inshore
Autumn officially arrived this past Sunday, and with it, the promise of continued good fishing both offshore and inshore through the coming weeks. As long as we don't have any hurricanes, wicked nor'easters or strong northwesterly fronts, anglers should be able to take advantage of a multitude of species making their way into and out of the area during Fall movements. Sounds like a broken record, but the Washington Canyon tuna bite just keeps going. Best recent action has occurred during daylight hours, as opposed to nighttime catching that was better before. Boaters sought out pods of whales still working over squid in the region, and concentrated their efforts in those locations. Most of the whales and tuna hung out around the 800 Square of the Canyon edge, and a little farther down along the eastern side. Whales didn't seem to be as numerous as in the past, but hordes of skipjacks have been frequenting the same spots, and their presence was a good indicator that yellowfins were there too. Chunking with butterfish, sardines, peanut bunkers, finger mullet and anchovies got the attention of tuna. Pieces of the same cut baits on fluorocarbon leaders ranging 20 to 50 pounds got bit. Some days, especially bright, sunny or calm days, the lighter the leader, the better. Many times when tuna wouldn't take a a baitfish chunk, a small whole squid would do the trick. On average, the tuna ranged 20 to 35 pounds, with an ocasional 40 plus. They're a great size to fight on spinning outfits or lighter conventionals. Jigging with Butterflies and other metals can generate reaction strikes from tuna too. Captains Brent and Dave made the long run from Lewes to the Washington yesterday. The ride was worth it, and their patrons returned with a limit of 21 yellowfins that they chunked up during the daytime. Captain Carey on the Grizzly chunked Washington Canyon Friday evening, and his group harvested 17 yellowfins to bring back home. Chris Ragni and his buddies limited out with a dozen yellowfins in the Washington Tuesday afternoon. Catching took place between the Canyon and the beach as well. The boys aboard Not Right were on their way home from offshore when they encountered a barrell floating in thirty fathoms. The find yielded a jackpot including a 45.4 pound wahoo caught on a jig, and 17 big dolphin to 24.8 pounds. Captain Jeff Stewart's crew aboard Ocean City Girl landed a whopper wahoo at the Hambone. The humongous 'hoo tipped the scales to 98.6 pounds. Shawn Gallagher and the guys on Free Spool hit the Hot Dog for 25 false albacore, then trolled the Chicken Bone where they boxed 14 gaffer mahi and a yellowfin. Closer to the beach, flounder were still being taken at Reef Site 11 and the southern old grounds. Flukers have had to ride farther and weed through more throwbacks, but still ended up with some flatties for the table. Captain Vince hosted Bill and Charlotte Hughes aboard Miss Kirstin for some flatfishing at Site 11 Tuesday, where they managed 3 keepers out of 55 caught, plus a dozen and a half nice sea bass. Last Sunday, Captain Brent's fluke aficionados on Katydid put 29 legal flounder to 5.7 pounds in the box. The fishin' Falgowski family was at it again Saturday, icing 19 keepers to 6.5 pounds on the Katydid. The mullet run is happening, and inshore species have been keying in on schools of the silver baitfish as they migrate through. Jacob Webb deployed live mullet around the rock walls off Lewes to capture a 17.6 pound striper, a 4.5 pound flounder, and some chunky bluefish on Saturday. Jacob joined Evan and Kyle Falgowski and Brian Seglem for a Wednesday afternoon jaunt, when they fished live mullet to score a 20.4 pound striper, four 25 inch red drum, a 3.5 pound flounder and 25 plump bluefish. Mason Newsham used cut fresh mullet in the Cape Henlopen Surf to beach a 23 inch redfish. Other surfcasters at the Cape baiting with mullet got into snapper blues and an occasional short striper. Jack Henriksen and John Deiner worked a wreck at the Bay mouth Wednesday for a keeper trout and 8 big triggerfish. Other Bay structure continues to yield a variety of species as well. The western edge of the Star Site and live coral bottom of The Shears held croakers, spot, kingfish, blowfish, porgies, bluefish and trout. Captain Ted's patrons on the Angler, Indian and Pirate King have done well with good numbers of keeper trout, plus other panfish. Captain Jack's group on the Fish Hawk kept a nice batch of 40 puffers, trout, spot, snappers, kingfish and hardheads yesterday. The Lewes Canal, Broadkill River and Cape Henlopen Pier have produced jumbo spot. Those slab sided goodies can't resist a piece of bloodworm or Fishbites. Tautog season reopens Sunday September 29th, when toggers will be able keep 5 blackfish with a 15 inch minimum, per person per day. The shop will be stocking sand fleas, green crabs and box crabs as tog baits.
September 20, 2013
- Flounder On The Move
There's been some great flounder fishing on the Old Grounds over the past several weeks, but a blast of northeast wind early this week may have prompted fluke to start moving out. Boaters plying the Grounds in recent days report keeper flatties harder to come by. Flounder will continue to stage along channel edges as they migrate offshore, offering flukers a few more shots at good catches, but the bulk of the best action is probably behind us. Prior to the blow, Captain Brent's anglers on Katydid scored 26 keepers to 6 pounds on a trip to the Old Grounds last Thursday. On Sunday, Michael Davis decked doormats of 7.08 and 6.08 pounds, and "Beaver" Ruff reeled in a 6.01 pounder near DB Buoy. Adam Legg, "Striper Killer" Steve Kiibler and Scott Riniker limited out on quality flounder while drifting the Old Grounds Sunday. Captain Carey's flukers aboard Grizzly put 20 keeper flatties in the box Sunday. Mason Newsham nailed a 7.4 pound trophy fluke Sunday on Local Girl, with his dad, Captain Mike Newsham. Doug Mickowski brought in the whopper of the week, an 8.25 pound beauty he boated Sunday near DB Buoy. Early week wind dirtied Delaware Bay water, and slowed the bottomfish bonanza that had been taking place all summer. Croakers continued to be caught around the various artificial reefs, but not in the volume of past weeks. Big spot remained plentiful in Lewes Canal, Broadkill River and around Cape Henlopen Pier. Mullet are active along Lewes Beach and the Ocean shoreline. Castnetters have been stocking up on fresh bait, and a supply for the freezer. Snapper bluefish have been roaming the surf working over schools of the shiny baitfish. Some legal trout came from the Bay surf, around the Walls, and on the Reefs for anglers using cut fresh mullet. On the offshore scene, the tuna bite just keeps on going in Washington Canyon. Whales have been working on squid and baitfish there for the last several weeks, and bigeyes and yellowfins have been feeding with them. Nighttime chunkers, and recently those fishing in the daytime both did well. The trick to catch tuna in daylight was to use light fluorocarbon leaders. Butterfish, sardines and peanut bunkers were effective offerings. The same worked after dark, but crews were usually able to catch live squids to use for bait as well, which tuna found irresistable. Jig fishermen also had good success with yellowfins. Often in the daytime, skippers marked fish on their machines 100 feet down below the whales. Butterfly and diamond jigs could be dropped right into the zone by counting seconds, watching metered line colors change or seeing the jigs fall on the depth recorder. The erratic motion of the lures forces a reaction strike and is deadly on tuna. It has been one of the most amazing bigeye seasons most offshore anglers ever remember. Crews that are able to be on the scene for the last hours of daylight or at dawn seem to do best. Some boats are really dialed in on eyeballs. Jim Hukill said he and the guys aboard No Quarter caught their 20th bigeye of the summer this past week. Steve Moore mentioned that he fished with Captain Chad Meeks on the Playmate Wednesday afternoon for some incredible action in the Washington. Between 6 and 9 pm, they trolled up 4 bigeyes to 226 pounds. At 9, they set up to chunk, and by 10 pm had put their limit of 24 yellowfins in the box and were headed back to the dock. Billfish and true albacore also made appearances in the canyons. Hank Draper and his crew trolled 76 degree water in 70 fathoms along the 090 line of Poor Man's Sunday. They released a 108 inch Blue Marlin estimated at over 400 pounds. The fish had been previously tagged and Hank retrieved the tag to find out the marlin's history. The boys also boated 4 longfins and 5 gaffer dolphin. Ed Sigda and his group on Snow Goose iced 3 longfins while trolling in the Baltimore Sunday. On a sad note, the local fishing community lost a well respected friend with the passing of Joe Walker. Joe was a regular at the dock every summer, in pursuit of his passion, catching flounder. Through many years of learning by paying attention to elements that make fish bite, Joe had become a very proficient angler. His intuition put him where he needed to be at the prime time, telling him to stop the boat "when the water was right". Joe's skill led to many citation-size fluke each season, earning him the reputation as a Flounder Guru. His most prized accomplishment was landing a 32 inch, 13.6 pound flounder from a Delaware Bay reef site back in July of 2006. Even though Joe dished out a little good natured ribbing to his fishing buddies when he'd have the biggest flattie of the day, he was a modest man, willing to share knowledge he'd gathered. Joe cherished his family and friends, and was quite generous. His sons Joe, Dave and Michael benefited greatly from the example of their father. Joe honored and loved his wife and daughters. He enjoyed countless good times with his fishing and hunting cronies "Uncle Tom" Coyle and Bobby Bryant. Joe delighted in taking his grandchildren fishing, even when they were no longer little kids. He fretted whenever he invited members of his Gun Club for a day on the Bay, trying to make sure everything was taken care of so they'd experience the best trip possible. Joe's attention to details made him a very successful business person too. His family run Marcus Hook Florist has always received praises from customers who describe it as exceptional in every respect. Joe will truly be missed by all who had the privilege of knowing him. And, there just might be a record flounder out there Joe hadn't gotten to yet, sighing with relief.
September 12, 2013
- Record Swordfish
The big news around our dock this past weekend was a potential new Delaware State Record swordfish. The Guys aboard Candy's Reel Choice had an awesome offshore adventure. They overnighted in Washington Canyon Friday, where they chunked up 11 yellowfins and a mako. The crew headed to Poor Man's Saturday and deep dropped for 11 golden tilefish to 20 plus pounds. Just before dark, Captain Pete Floyd set up in about 2000 feet of Poor Man's and proceeded to put out his swordfish spread. He deployed the first bait, a skipjack belly dressed with a dolphin colored skirt, 300 feet down beneath a balloon. Within moments, a tell tale bounce of the rod tip indicated something was about to happen. The hook was set, and Kurt Lorenz battled the big fish for 2 hours and 50 minutes on 80 pound tackle before it was subdued. Mark Avon, Rusty Smith, Chris Ragni and Brian Garancheski all played a part in making sure the trophy would be coming home with them. Back at Lewes Harbour's scales, the bruiser sword weighed 358 pounds. The massive swordy measured 140 inches overall with a 48 inch girth. The existing Delaware record of 276 pounds 12 ounces was set in 1978. DNREC Officer Shea Lindale verified the catch, and citation paperwork was submitted, so it's likely the swordfish will be declared a new State Record. In other offshore action, bigeyes were caught in the Wilmington Saturday by boats trolling among pods of whales in the waning daylight of early evening. Traffic was heavy as many crews vied for position where the tunas were likely to pop up. The Boy's Toy had a pair of bigeyes, 9 yellowfins, and a longfin during a weekend overnighter. The crew also released two white marlin. Fish Whistle returned with a 241 pound eyeball. Yellowfins were also caught by those vigorously jigging cedar plugs or trolling Drone spoons behind planers. True albacore made an appearance in the Canyons too. Quintessa had a pair of longfins trolling between Poor Man's and the Washington Sunday. The anglers also got 3 makos on the troll, after spending the previous night in the Washington, where they chunked up four yellowfins. Billfish were present as well. Geoff McCloskey and his buddies released a white marlin and put a 61.1 pound wahoo in the box while working the Baltimore Saturday. Chunking in the Washington Saturday night produced 7 yellowfins for Wes Olson and his gang. Captain Mike Faust and the boys on Chasin' Tail released 2 whites in the Washington Sunday, and Jimmy Yingling brought in a 133 pound mako there just before dark. Last night, Greg and Chris Wagner and crew chunked up 8 yellowfins in 500 fathoms of the Washington. On the inshore scene, flounder catching remains good on the Old Grounds and other bottom structure along the edges of the shipping channel between DB Buoy and Delaware Light. Bottom rigs with squid, smelts and shiners worked, as did bucktails sweetened with a strip of cut spot, bluefish or sea robin. Wayne DeMarco and "Striper Killer" Steve Kiibler limited out with quality fluke Saturday Between DB and Site 11. The largest was Wayne's 7.16 pound citation doormat. Flounder catching has been slim in Delaware Bay, but guys concentrating on heavy structure are still managing a few flatties. Shea Lindale and Nate Evans drifted live spot near the rocks of the Inner Wall Wednesday for their limit of 8 chunky fluke. Nice bluefish in the 2 to 4 pound range have been roaming the Outer Wall and would respond to a bucktail and squid strip combo or metal Gotcha Plug. Bottom bouncers continue to enjoy a panfish bonanza. The croakers are still just about everywhere, but bigger specimens in the 12 to 15 inch range showed up between the Lower Middle and Brown Shoal. Kingfish, puffers, trout, porgies and spot were plentiful around reef site 8 and on The Shears. Jumbo spot were pulled from Lewes Canal and Broadkill River by anglers using bloodworms and Fishbites. The Cape Henlopen Pier was productive for big spot too. Clyde Gardner captured 75 slab sided spot from the Pier Tuesday, and 72 more Wednesday.
September 6, 2013
- Good Overnight Tuna Bite
Washington Canyon has offered up good action most of the summer. Large pods of whales worked the area all season, attracted by loads of bait. Boats trolling among the whales connected with numerous tuna. The Bigeye bite has been the best that many captains remember, with multiple eyeballs per trip common earlier in the season. Crews that invested in Greensticks, or fine tuned the use of dangler rigs caught impressive numbers of yellowfins. A lot had to be measured and went back, but even a limit of BLTs produced plenty of tuna steaks. Fifty and sixty pounders mingled among smaller fish, and ended up in coolers for a nice mix. The overnight bite has been hot too. Squid and tinker mackerel were quick to come to the glow of spreader lights, and hungry tuna soon followed. Catching had cooled off the past couple weeks, and wasn't reliable every night, but picked back up recently, and crews once again were returning to the dock with full boxes. Captain Carey ran Grizzly to the Washington Wednesday evening, where his anglers were rewarded with an excellent catch of yellowfins. The finder screen lit up with fish 100 feet down in the water column, and his guys had a blast catching tuna on spinning gear using hammered diamonds and butterfly jigs. Within three hours, they put a limit of 27 tuna aboard. A pesky mako shark hung around and ate a couple of the yellowfins, but the crew finally hooked and landed it to add to their take. Captain Brian and his buddies on Lil' Angler II took a busman's holiday to get in on the bite and put some tuna in the freezer. He also made the long run to the Washington from Lewes on Wednesday afternoon, but brought back a limit of 12 yellowfins Thursday morning. Other recent offshore reports tell of spotty tuna catches in Wilmington Canyon. Robert Jarboe and his crew on Ella Belle trolled there among whales on Friday, landing a 110 pound bigeye out of 4 that bit. They also released a 64 inch white marlin and a mako taken on the troll. The guys also put a gaffer dolphin in the box while crossing 30 fathoms near the Tea Cup. Shawn Gallagher and his group on Free Spool released a white while trolling the Wilmington Friday as well. It's wahoo time, and the speedsters normally show on structure between 20 and 30 fathoms this time of year. Kevin Fink connected with a 40.8 pounder while trolling the Elephant Trunk aboard Bottom Line. Steve Rogers scored a 41.9 pound 'hoo at the Hot Dog on the Kingfish. Back inshore, fine flounder fishing continued on The Old Grounds. Wayne Demarco, Joe Pergeorelis, Daryl Merganthaler and Doug Mikowski worked the bottom between DB and Site 11 Saturday for their limit of 16 flatties to 5 pounds. Captain Carey's flukers on the Grizzly put 16 keepers in the box at the Grounds Monday. Theresa Coughlin Pauley caught her biggest flounder ever while fishing with Captain Brent on the Katydid Monday. Her fished tipped the scales to 5.83 pounds. Captain Brent was back after flounder on Wednesday, and collected 15 keepers for his fares, among many, many other flounder that were just shy of minimum. Wes Olson and Barney Gallagher drifted a favorite flattie haunt southeast of DB Thursday, and limited out on quality flounder to 6.75 pounds. Keith Orendorf and his crew fished near DA Buoy Thursday for 7 keepers to 23 inches. Mike Newsham and a buddy fished between DB and DA Buoys Thursday for a limit of nice fluke. The day before, Mike and two friends limited out with a dozen, a couple over 6 pounds. In Delaware Bay, there's still an abundance of bottomfish. Little croakers are everywhere, but boaters who anchored on wrecks or the heaviest reef site structure caught nice hardheads to 14 inches. Good sized kingfish are still around. Jackie Shafer checked in a 1 pound king she caught on the Angler. Corky Falgowski weighed in a 1.04 pound citation kingfish. Other panfish rounding out the mix available included blowfish, spike trout, porgies, pigfish and spot. The Lewes Canal has been home to some jumbo spot. Anglers fishing with pieces of bloodworms or Fishbites on sabikis or small hook bottom rigs got into plenty of slab sided spot. Casters at Roosevelt Inlet had a few legal flounder, along with some spot, croakers, snapper blues, small trout, short stripers and an occasional puppy drum. Triggerfish remain here in the warm late season water. They are hanging around the Ice Breakers and Bay wrecks, and will eat a sand flea, piece of clam or shrimp, or a small chunk of pink Gulp! Remember that Tog season is now closed until September 29. The striper slot season is also over, and striped bass must currently meet a minimum size of 28 inches.
August 29, 2013
- Open Bottom Flounder, Bigger Croakers
Ocean flounder action has been good for boaters drifting the Old Grounds and edges of the shipping channel between DB Buoy and Delaware Light. Captain Brent's flukers on Katydid worked the grounds last Friday for 20 keepers to 6.1 pounds. Wes Olson and Barney Gallagher fished a favorite spot southeast of DB Buoy Friday to put 8 flatties in the box, the heaviest just under 6 pounds. Don Hoffman was in search of flounder Saturday when he connected with his 7.25 citation earner aboard the Grizzly. Captain Brent's Saturday group had a great trip over Ocean bottom. The ended up with 37 quality keepers, six of which were over 5 pounds. On Wednesday, Wes Olson and Barney Gallagher were back at it again on the Old Grounds, and returned with 6 nice flatfish. Ocean reef structure produced flounder too. Site 11 yielded some decent sized ones. Despite strong northeast breezes today, Katydid made it to Site 11. The guys shortened their trip because of rough seas, but they landed 10 for the box before heading back. Captain Brent boated the largest, a 7.4 pound citation fluke. On Tuesday, Bill and Charlotte Hughes joined Captain Vince Keagy and Mate Bert Long aboard Miss Kirstin to get in on an afternoon fluke bite at Site 11. They returned with 11 chunky flatfish. Delaware Bay flounder catches were sparse, but some continued to come from reef rubble. Jack Henriksen hooked a 5.25 pounder drifting a squid strip and smelt combo at Site 8 today. Bay bottom bouncers did see an increase in bigger croakers. Hardheads up to 14 inches were taken by anchoring on the heaviest cover of Reefs 6,7 and 8. Kingfish, snapper blues, puffers, porgies, pigfish, triggerfish and spot mingled with croakers. Lewes Canal has been home to some jumbo spot. Bits of bloodworm or Fishbites on sabikis or other small hook rigs caught lots of the plump and tasty panfish. Offshore, white marlin were hooked at the Hot Dog early in the week. Other billfish catches were reported from Poor Man's Canyon. Boats fishing way south from Virginia Beach and Oregon Inlet experienced very good white mrlin action at the Triple O's. Captain Charlie's crew aboard Tranquila overnighted in the Wilmington Sunday into Monday. They went 2 for 4 on bigeyes that struck ballyhoos with pink and white skirts Sunday evening. Nicholas Hawrylchak boated a 146.8 pounder, and Chris Stoner subdued a 140.9 pound eyeball.
August 22, 2013
- Bottomfish Abound
Plenty of panfish continue to please bottom fishermen in Delaware Bay. Small croakers are just about everywhere. Bigger hardheads were hooked by anglers who anchored right on heavy reef rubble or wrecks. Nice sized kingfish are still being taken on the Star Site and Broadkill Reef Site 5. Daryl Plotcher decked a 1.38 pound king on the Angler, Dorothy Wright wound in a 1.22 pounder, Nathan Porter nailed a 1.13 pounder aboard the Fish Hawk, and Reilly Burnett boated a 1.2 pound kingfish on the Indian. Blowfish, spike trout and spot also hung out on Bay structure. Lewes Canal held lots of spot, many of jumbo proportions. Slot stripers and some other surprise fish also cruised the Canal between the drawbridge and train bridge. Jeff Drury checked in a 5.53 pound red drum that ate a live killifish he was drifting there. After being absent most of the summer, schools of snapper bluefish showed up long the Outer Wall. The scrappy snappers could be found slashing through groups of silversides and anchovies under diving terns. Tossing a small Kastmaster, Stingsilver or bucktail into the melee would result in plenty of action. Using ultra lite tackle made for even more fun. Flounder fishing in the Bay was challenging around the full moon due to strong running currents. There were only short windows at the beginning and end of each tide when anglers could drift properly. Sometimes, anchoring allowed boaters to stay on productive structure, and work jigs or rigs where flounders lived while the current was running hard. Some decent catches did come from the Bay on days with ok conditions. Last Thursday, Captain Brent's group on Katydid put 19 keepers in the box at Site 7. Brent boated a citation worthy 7.1 pounder himself. Bill and Charlotte Hughes joined Captain Vince on Miss Kirstin to capture their limit of nice flatties. On Saturday, Captain Brent worked Bay structure for 26 fine fluke. Geoff McCloskey and his buddies bounced Brown Shoal reef rubble for 8 good flounder Saturday. Katydid went back up the Bay Monday, and returned with 16 keepers for Bobby Bryant and friends. Captain Les on the Martha Marie hit Site 5 Tuesday, where his patrons iced 8 nice fluke. With full moon currents causing drift problems in the Bay Wednesday, Captain Brent chose to take Katydid to the Old Grounds in the Ocean, and the decision resulted in 18 keeper flounder to 6.25 pounds for his group. Captain Brian on Lil' Angler II fished the Old Grounds Wednesday as well, and ended up with 8 in the box. The largest was an 8.5 pound doormat landed by Joe Lucyk. Wayne Demarco and his fishing partners beat up the bottom between DB and Site 11 Wednesday for their limit of 16 flounder to 24 inches. Bucktails tipped with smelts were the downfall of many of the flatties. Offshore bottom bouncing was productive too. Jason Burris and friends had a nice catch of golden tilefish in the Baltimore Canyon yesterday. Shawn Gallagher and the guys on Free Spool overnighted offshore. They trolled a 52 pound yellowfin in the Wilmington, and caught and released sharks in the dark. They finished off the trip with a nice batch of Golden Tiles from the Baltimore. Wes and Shane Olson ran their center console to the Washington Canyon and spent the night. They chunked up a limit of 6 yellowfins and released as many others before heading back to shore.
August 15, 2013
- Picking at Flatties
Flounder fishermen have had fair catches in both the Ocean and Delaware Bay, but they've had to work them. The best concentrations of flatties continue to be found around heavy cover, such as the artificial reefs and wrecks. Go prepared to lose tackle when you work these areas because the fish are right among the rubble. Bucktail jigs with a teaser or short leadered bottom rigs are effective, and a little less likely to get snagged. Adding a Gulp! Swimming Mullet, Jerk Shad or Belly Strip to jigs enhances their effectiveness. Strips of fresh cut bait such as bluefish or sea robin, and squid, smelts and silversides are favorites of flatfish too. In the Bay, sites 6 and 7 at Brown Shoal yielded some fluke at the beginning and end of the tide. Brian Logue bucktailed a 6.57 pounder from Site 7 on Sunday. Nate Evans nailed a 6.54 pound fluke Sunday. Katie Malin captured two quality keepers at Site 8 aboard Quintessa Monday. Joe Walker and friends had 9 keepers at the Starsite Tuesday. Ocean reef structure at Sites 9, 10 and 11 held flounder, and rough, live bottom of the Old Grounds between DB and DA Buoys was productive too. Captain Brent's flukers aboard Katydid on Sunday scored 18 beautiful keepers, including specimens of 6.1 and 6.9 pounds. The largest of the trip was a 27 1/2 inch 8.4 pound doormat landed by Jason Lhamon. Wayne Demarco and Joe and Paul Pergeorelis drifted near Site 11 Sunday for their limit of a dozen flatties, including Paul's 5.31 pounder. Scott Ayars checked in yesterday with 3 keepers to 3.61 pounds he caught at the Old Grounds aboard Thelma Dale IV, despite blustery winds. Bottom bouncers in the Bay are still finding croakers just about everywhere. Better sized ones hung out near the Ferry Jetty and right in the heaviest reef cover. Hardheads up to 2 pounds were found near the Gypsum Prince wreck off Cape Henlopen. Plenty of spot, kingfish, blowfish and spike trout rounded out the mix available to anglers. Triggerfish were taken along the Outer Wall and Ice Breakers. Alex Joseph was surprised when a 67.2 pound black drum grabbed the strip of squid he was drifting past the Haystacks for flounder. Evan Falgowski got a 6.4 pound sheepshead from the rocks. The offshore bottomfishing remains good for those venturing to the canyons. A group of deep droppers aboard Katydid returned from the Wilmington Tuesday with an impressive haul of 200 blueline and golden tilefish. A few yellowfins and wahoo were reported by trollers in 30 fathoms between the Elephant Trunk and Hot Dog Notch. Nighttime chunkers in the Washington got into good number of yellowfins. Pete Mohacey battled and released a 98 inch blue marlin in 70 fathoms of Poor Man's Sunday aboard Tranquila.
August 8, 2013
- White Marlin Open Week
The White Marlin Open has been the talk of the Tackle Shop this week. 262 boats participated in this year's event. As of this writing, with one fishing day left, an 83 pound White Marlin is at the top of the leaderboard. Strangely, four individual whites weighing 77 pounds each were weighed in to fill the other top spots. No qualifying blue marlin have hit the dock. Some large tuna were weighed in as well. A 261.5 pound bigeye holds first in that category. Nice dolphin, wahoos and makos are also in the running for prize money. It will be interesting to see how things end up. In other offshore action, yellowfins continue to come from the Washington Canyon. Crews deploying baits with greensticks have racked up some impressive catches. Creative anglers using plastic squids on danglers from their outriggers also got bites. Overnight catching has been good in the Washington. Jason Massey, Matt and Wil Weidman and Drew Stuchlik spent the night there recently aboard Tighten Up. Jason said there was alot of life in the deep, with scads of squids and tinker mackerel in the lights. They hooked more than 35 tuna, some on spinning gear. The guys kept their dozen fish limit, and released the others. Most were in the 30 inch range, but they did have 4 yellowfins between 50 and 55 pounds. Bigeyes popped up from time to time in Wilmington Canyon during the week. Offshore deep dropping has been productive. Captain Chris on the Quintessa dropped in the Wilmington Tuesday for 6 big golden tiles from 20 to 35 pounds. On Wednesday, Chris went back Wednesday and brought in 15 quality gray tiles to over 15 pounds. Captains Brent and Dave fished the Wilmington Tuesday aboard Katydid to capture a yellowfin and a box full of nice blueline tilefish. Inshore bottom fishing has been pretty good. The fishin' Falgowski family joined Captain Brent for an Ocean outing on Katydid Friday, and returned with 24 keeper flounder to 5.6 pounds. Mike Schreiber fished Site 11 Friday aboard the Sea Note, and caught his personal best flounder, weighing 5.8 pounds. Captain Carey on the Grizzly hosted Joe Shaffer and family Saturday, when they put 16 flounder, triggerfish, sea bass and all the crokers they wanted in the box. Captain Les on Martha Marie had 11 keepers for his patrons while working Bay reefs Saturday. Captain Pete on Top Fin hit Ocean Reef Structure Saturday for 9 keeper flatties. Wayne Demarco drifted ner Site 11 Sunday for his limit of fluke to 5.34 pounds. A bucktail and smelt combo was the key to success. Captain Vince ran Miss Kirstin to the Brown Shoal reefs where Bill and Charlotte Hughes had their limits of both trout and flounder. Captain Brent's flukers aboard Katydid had 23 keeper flatties on Bay reef structure today. The bottomfish bonanza continues in Delaware Bay. Hardheads have been plentiful just about everywhere, but remain small for the most part. Some bigger ones can be found on heavy structure. Anchoring on reef rubble resulted in some better specimens. Captain Brian on Lil' Angler II set up on a wreck for a load of croakers to 2 pounds, porgies and triggerfish. There are spike trout, hand sized spot and kingfish mixed with croakers at most locations. Many of the kings have been respectable. Alice Harness had a 1.43 pound citation earner, Audra Babb boated a 1.17 pounder, Joe Hacay got a 1.16 pound king, and Eric Thompson landed a 1.09 pound kingfish, all on Angler headboat trips. Sam Cregar captured a 1.02 pound king on the Indian, and Jo Ann Droege decked a 1.11 pounder on the Pirate King.
August 1, 2013
- Inshore Flounder, Offshore Tuna
Ocean bottom fishing has been pretty good. The Old Grounds between DB and DA Buoys continue to give up nice flounder and some keeper sea bass. Reef Sites 9 and 10 produced flatties too, but Site 11 outside the shipping lane offered up better catching. Captain Brent's flukers on the Katydid worked 11 Monday for a boat limit of 32 fine flatfish. Ron Mistretta put a citation worthy 7.72 pounder in the box as the day's heaviest. Katydid drifted the Old Grounds Monday to capture 13 keepers. Hang Soo had a pair scaling 5.5 and 5.6 pounds. Jack Henriksen decked a 5 pound flounder and a 2.1 pound sea bass. On Sunday, patrons on Katydid took home 15 flounder. Captain Vince on Miss Kistin hosted Bill and Charlotte Hughes Wednesday for a trip to the Old Grounds. They returned with a limit of flatfish to 5.43 pounds. Captain Carey on the Grizzly reported that anchoring over inshore wrecks was productive for his customers. He hooked up to a snag Saturday for a boxful that included 104 seabass, 62 ling and a 9.4 pound cod. Captain Brian ran Lil' Angler II to Del Jersey Land where he set up on the Radford for a good catch of knothead sea bass Saturday. The Quintessa drifted site 11 Saturday for a nice batch of flounder, including Eric Meck's 5.9 pounder. In Delaware Bay, bottom bouncers are still finding loads of croakers in the 8 to 10 inch range, with a few over 12 mixed in. Plenty of spot, kingfish, blowfish and spike trout round out the assortment of panfish. Leon Zimmerman told of catching several nice trout while tossing pink Gulps along the Outer Wall. Flounder action in the Bay has been spotty at best. Bites have been limited to the beginning and end of the tide around the reef sites. Captain Pete's guys on Top Fin bucktailed 7 quality keeper fluke while anchored on Site 5 Saturday. Steve Friend checked in 3 fat fluke to 6.01 pounds he caught at Roosvelt inlet with Gulp! Closer to shore, lots of spot and croakers were caught from the Cape Henlopen Pier and in Lewes Canal.Emily Wilber wound in her limit of two 25 inch slot stripers from the Canal while baiting with live spot. Offshore bottom action was good too. The boys aboard Candy's choice captured 14 golden tile in the Wilmington Saturday. The guys on Sword's Fish boxed 6 golden tile plus a 41.3 pound wahoo and 41 mahi Wednesday. Katydid set up on the Hot Dog Saturday for a 107 pound slob yellowfin. The crew also iced a 75 pound bluefin, then moved offshore for a mix of 93 blueline and golden tilefish. Tranquila trolled the Teacup Tuesday to boat a 40 pound yellowfin and 6 mahi to 16.7 pounds. The offshore bite down south has been real good. Jason Massey and his buddies aboard Tighten Up overnighted in the Washington for more than 35 yellowfins. Scott Stapleford and friends kept a limit of yellowfins from many they caught while towing single bulb squids in the Washington.
July 25, 2013
- Tuna and Triggers
Bluefin tuna have been hanging around the Hot Dog the past couple weeks, and trolling boats have had success with fish that range mostly from 50 to 90 pounds. Larger specimens up to 200 pounds have also been taken. The bite has been better some days than others in clean green water in the upper 70's, but crews that were on the scene at first light usually hooked up. Tuna were drawn to spreader bars pulled from the riggers, or ballyhoos skirted with Joe Shutes, Ilanders or Bluewater Jags towed way way back. It was not uncommon for charter boats to score their over and under fish at the Dog, then move offshore in search of yellowfins or bottom dwelling tilefish. Anglers were also able to jig fish that were grouped on the edge of the lump. Savvy captains that kept an eye on the sounder while trolling were able to hang a few extra tuna by dropping diamond jigs or Butterfly Jigs when marks appeared on the screen at midwater. Yellowfins mingled with bluefins and were also caught by trolling and chunking. On a recent trip to the Hot Dog, Katydid trolled up their under 47 inch bluefin, and an over 47 inch 72 pounder for Sam Hazlett. The guys released 7 other big tuna. In addition, they boated three dolphin, including a 13.7 pound mahi for Steve Gerhard. Port A Bella worked the Dog for Tim Hendrickson's 69 pound bluefin and a pair of yellowfins. Tranquila trolled the Hambone, where Frank Procipio put a 45.7 pound wahoo in the box. That group had 4 gaffer dolphin to 14.7 pounds as well. The offshore bigeye bite shifted back and forth between the 800 square of Washington Canyon and the Norfolk Canyon. Boats towing greenstick rigs did very well on yellowfins in the 50 pound class in the same areas. Congratulations to Captain Charlie Horning and his crew aboard the Fish Whistle. During a late afternoon foray to the Norfolk, they battled and successfully boated four quite impressive eyeballs weighing 178, 192, 271 and 271 pounds! The jumbo tunas fell for ballyhoos behind Joe Shutes and Hawaiian Eyes. Inshore bottom fishing produced decent flounder action on the Old Grounds between DB and DA Buoys. Katydid drifted Site 10 Sunday for 14 keepers. Fred Robinson reeled in a 6.03 pound doormat, and Captain Brent bested a 5.82 pounder. Katydid returned to the flounder grounds Monday for 19 keepers, including a 5.57 pound flattie for Richard Adams. Inshore wrecks yielded some good catches. Captain Carey's group on the Grizzly anchored over a snag Wednesday for 39 sea bass to 3.75 pounds, 45 ling and a pair of bonus dolphin. An earlier wreck trip on the Grizzly produced 21 triggerfish, 2 tog and 2 trout. Delaware Bay structure showed signs of giving up some flounder once the full moon currents subside. Joe Walker, Joe Walker, Jr and Tom Coyle took seven keepers off Reef Site 7. Bobby Bryant and his flukers captured 10 keepers when conditions got right on Site 5 Monday. Flounder were also pulled from Roosevelt Inlet. Jason Mowery and Travis Habecker used Gulp! to score 3 keepers to 20 inches. Lewes Canal held plenty of spot and croakers, and slot stripers were caught between the Drawbridge and the Train Bridge. Croakers, spot kingfish, blowfish and spike trout remain plentiful on Site 8 and The Shears. Lou Papp checked in a citation weakfish weighing 3.04 pounds. The Outer Wall and and Ice Breakers attracted tog and triggerfish that would bite sand fleas, green crabs or box crabs. A piece of pink Gulp! also proved an effective bait for triggers. William Breasure took a 3.65 pound trigger at the Wall on Katydid. Joe Schneider scored a 7.67 pound blackfish at the Wall as well. Paul Hazzard was dunking sand fleas at the Ice Breakers when he hooked an 8.36 pound sheepshead. Some black drum were caught at the Breakers too.
July 18, 2013
- Tog Season Reopens
Delaware's Tautog season reopened July 17th, and anglers found blackfish willing to bite along the Outer Wall and Ice Breakers. It was a good opening day for David Ruta, David Ruta, Jr and Mike Ruta. They returned from the Haystacks with their limit of tog to 7 pounds, plus some nice triggerfish. Dave Ruta, Jr decked a 7.02 pound citation earner. Shane Roth checked in a 5 pound blackfish he got at the Wall Wednesday, and a 5.92 pounder Thursday. Spadefish were also at the Wall with tog and triggers. Todd Manning hooked a 4.77 pound spade at the Inner Wall. Bottom bouncers in the Bay continued to do well with kingfish, croakers, spot, blowfish, and spike trout around reef sites 5 and 8. The Angler Headboat had some great days on kings recently. Flounder action in the Bay was so so. Bites usually occurred only during the last couple hours of flood tide, and first of the ebb. There have been a few decent catches. Last Friday, flukers on the Katydid captured 20 keepers on a Bay reef. Charlie Zukowski had the heaviest, a flattie weighing 6.3 pounds. On Saturday, the crew aboard Katydid kept 16 flounder. Joe Walker pulled a 6.2 pound flatfish from Bay structure Sunday. Charles Small, Jr scored a 4.96 pounder on the Martha Marie. On Monday, the guys aboard Katydid put 13 keeper fluke in the box. Ocean flounder pounders found some cooperative flatties on rough bottom between DB and DA Buoys. Scott Ayars had his limit there yesterday while drifting aboard the Thelma Dale IV with Captain Ricky. Kevin Maskell muscled in a pair of flounder weighing 4.9 and 3.4 near DB. Captain Pete's gang on Top Fin took home 9 keepers from Site 10 Saturday. Peter Geng got a 5.31 pounder and Kyle Peterson put a 7.35 pound citation fluke in the box. Matt Baker used a live spot at Site 9 to tempt the largest flounder brought to the dock this summer. Matt's doormat tipped the scales to 8.75 pounds. Buckwheat and Bob Bryant and Joe Walker worked Site 10 Tuesday for 9 keepers to 23 inches. Offshore tuna fishermen have had some good trips. Last Saturday, Bill Swords, Jon Bixler and friends trolled a 50 inch bluefin and a pair of gaffer dolphin at Massey's Canyon. They then moved off to the Baltimore where they dropped for 8 golden tiles, and bailed 15 more mahi. On Sunday, Jason Burris and his buddies trolled an 85.2 pound bluefin at Massey's and finished their day dropping for golden tile in the Baltimore. Mike and Mason Newsham, Geoff Klopp and Coy Johnston had a 60.5 pound bluefin trolling in Masseys, and tilefish to 31.4 pounds in the Baltimore. The Katydid trolled the Dog early Sunday for a 72 pound bluefin. The guys spent the rest of their day dropping in the Baltimore for a big load of gray tiles to 17 pounds, plus several goldens to 21 pounds. On Tuesday, patrons on Katydid trolled 2 yellowfins and George Durant decked a 77.4 pound bluefin. Later in the day, the guys dropped for 39 tilefish. Tom Smiga and friends had 3 yellowfins and a mahi during a recent trolling trip to the Hot Dog aboard the Grizzly. Wesley Davis landed a 13.2 pound cobia that grabbed a trolled Black Bart lure at the Dog aboard Swords Fish. Yesterday, Mike and Mason Newsham, Richard Bloom and Chris Irelan put an 80.1 pound bluefin aboard Local Girl while trolling the Hot Dog. Ron and Danny Baker, Sam Connors and Rob Coulbore were trolling the Hambone when they connected with a 64.9 pound whopper wahoo. They also boated a 68.4 pound bluefin and a some mahi to 16 pounds. There has been quite a bigeye bite in the 800 square of Washington Canyon. Best of it is at first light or just before dark. Last Friday, it was dark and rainy offshore and the eyeballs bit all day. Twenty nine bigeyes were weighed in during the first day of the Ocean City Tuna Tournament. The crew of No Quarter captured three of the oversized tuna weighing a total of 644 pounds. The heaviest was a 253 pounder reeled in by Bill Schatzman, which ended up taking First Place in the Tournament.
July 11, 2013
- Bruiser Bluefins
Good sized bluefins have come from traditional tuna structure such as Massey's Canyon, the Chicken Bone, Hambone, Nineteen Fathom Lump and Hot Dog. Most boats have been trolling spreader bars and skirted ballyhoos, but chunkers have started to take some fish as well. Last Thursday morning, Bill Swords and his buddies aboard Swords Fish ran to the northeast corner of the Dog, and before the third trolling line was in the water, they were hooked up. The tuna nailed a pink and white Joe Shute Lantern and ballyhoo combo, and after a lengthy battle, the 135 pounder was brought aboard. The boys were back at the Dog the next day for a repeat performance. As they were letting lines out, three tuna crashed the spread, and one came tight, again on the pink and white. Andrew Earle kept the pressure on for over four hours before the 72 1/2 incher was put in the boat. Back at Lewes Harbour the brute weighed 200.1 pounds. Bobby Bryant and his buddies trolled the Hot Dog Sunday aboard Katydid. John Schnaitman wrestled with a 75.2 pound bluefin, and the guys released two other 50 plus inch tuna. Tom Richardson reeled in an 11.8 pound dolphin. Canyon trollers encountered a good number of bigeyes in 75 degree water at the 800 Square of the Washington. The crew of Moore Bills landed a 247 pounder there Sunday. The area also held yellowfins and dolphin. Deepwater bottom bouncers had catches of Blueline and Golden Tilefish. Brandon Brown battled a 37.3 pound Golden from the depths of Poor Man's Canyon on Swords Fish. Inshore bottom action was decent too. Continuous southwest winds mad for challenging conditions some days, but the Old Grounds between DB and DA Buoys yielded a fair number of flounder. John Yoder was fishing there with Captain Ricky on the Thelma Dale IV and returned with his limit, including flatfish of 5.17 and 5.5 pounds. A ball jig with 6 inch Gulp! was John's ticket to success. Steve Kiibler kept a 6.04 pound fluke from the Grounds on Lil' Angler II. Mike Octavio got a 5.03 pounder on Martha Marie. Reef Sites 9 and 10 also produced flounder. Last Friday, flukers on Katydid captured 32 keepers up to 6.76 pounds. Katydid went back to the rubble Saturday and came in with a limit of 28 flatfish, including a 6.1 pounder that captain Brent put in the box himself. On Monday, anglers aboard Katydid had 22 keeper fluke while drifting structure. Ricky Mills managed a 4.93 pound flattie from Site 9. Tony Vansant took a 6.15 pound doormat off Site 10. The inshore wrecks harbored a variety of summertime species. The gang on Katydid worked some inshore snags Tuesday for 37 triggerfish, 3 spadefish and 80 kingfish. With hot weather, triggerfish have shown up around the Outer Wall. Andrea Monetti and Mike Surowiec anchored near the lighthouse Tuesday for a great catch of 31 triggers to nearly 3 pounds. Sandfleas were the bait of choice. Aaron Brommer hooked a 2.96 pound trigger at the Ice Breakers on Martha Marie. Tim O'Connell was casting a pink bucktail with light spinning gear along the Outer Wall for trout he felt a heavy hit. Three hours later, he boated a 65.6 pound black drum. Warm weather has attracted other exotics to the Bay. Bud Posey had the uncommon catch of a 7.61 pound cobia aboard the Pirate King II. Bay boaters contiuned to enjoy good catching with croakers, spot, kingfish, blowfish and trout. Reefs 5 and 8 and The Shears held plenty of the scrappy panfish. The hardheads have been small for the most part, but some 12 plus inchers are mixed in. Bloodworms, Fishbites and clams as baits ensured lots of bites. Flounder catches have been improving on Bay reefs. Captain Carey reported 11 keeper fluke, 4 legal trout and all the croakers you wanted during a Bay trip Tuesday. He said they released many good sized brown sharks too. Captain Brent's group on Katydid kept 14 nice flounder in the Bay today. Flounder are still coming from Lewes Canal. Fred Robinson tempted a 4.3 pounder and 2 other keepers from the Canal with pink Gulp! Kenny Dear captured a 24 inch 5.48 pound flatfish in the Canal using minnows. Stripers are active in the Canal too. Slot size fish were concentrated between the drawbridge and train bridge and could be caught with pencil eels, clams, Rat-L-Traps, soft plastics and swimming plugs. Working poppers along the marsh banks also resulted in bites from rockfish. Tautog season reopens July 17, and we'll have green crabs and sand fleas on hand for baits.
July 4, 2013
- Canal Stripers
The slot size striper season kicked in July 1st, and until August 31st striped bass between 20 and 26 inches may be kept from Delaware Bay and it's tributaries. Anglers are allowed to retain 2 per person per day. The minimum size along the Ocean coast and in Indian River remains at 28 inches. Lewes Canal is home to numerous summertime stripers, and many fall within the slot size. Most of the waterway is sheltered and can be fished even in windy weather, so it's a good plan B if you can't get out on the Bay due to strong breezes. Boaters drifting pencil eels around the drawbridge and train bridge did well with rockfish. Rock were also caught on clams, RatLTraps and Storm Shads. Bass were active at daybreak and could be tempted with topwater poppers. Last of incoming tide and first of outgoing were usually best times to try. The Canal continued to produce flounder. William Rybinski reeled in a 2.83 pound flattie he hooked from the Town Dock on a chunk of soft crab. Other fluke were caught by guys using Gulp! and minnows at Roosevelt Inlet. John Giblin was casting a white Gulp at Roosevelt when he connected with a 3.67 pound weakfish. Spot and croakers were plentiful in the Canal and also along Lewes and Broadkill Beaches. Bloodworms and Fishbites were most effective. Spot and hardheads were found out in the Bay on structure as well. Reef Site 8 and live bottom on The Shears held them, along with kingfish, blowfish and spike trout. Collin Delauten checked in a 1.2 pound citation kingfish he decked on the Indian. Samuel Key kept a 1.02 pound citation king on the Fish Hawk. Grant Bobbit was surprised when he landed an 18 pound black drum while fishing for croakers at Site 8 aboard the Grizzly. George hanstein had a 5.75 pound flounder on the Grizzly. Ocean bottom fishing was pretty good. The inshore wrecks yielded a good mix. On Monday, Captain Brent's group on Katydid worked some snags close to the beach for a boxful of triggerfish, spadefish and kingfish, plus a 4.86 pound lunker sea bass landed by Mike Surowiec. Captain Brent's Saturday group of flukers aboard Katydid captured 7 keeper flatties from the Old Grounds. John Yoder used a Tsunami Ball Jig tipped with a 6 inch Gulp for his limit of fluke while fishing the Old Grounds on Thelma Dale IV Saturday. His two heaviest weighed 5.17 and 5.5 pounds. Ernie Stone also limited out with nice flounder Saturday on the TDIV. Tuna trollers took some big bluefins while pulling skirted ballyhoos way back at the Hot Dog and Hambone.
June 27, 2013
- Southwest Wind Makes It Tough
Continual southwest wind has made it tough for tuna fishermen. Catching had been good along the edge of the canyons, but several days of southwesterly flow broke up warmer water that had been holding baitfish and gamefish in the Wilmington, Baltimore and Poor Man's. Inshore water turned green, and offshore water became void of life. Up until this weather event, trolling boats had done well with yellowfins. Last Friday, Hank Draper and his buddies had 7 yellowfins to 40 pounds in the Baltimore. Captain Ed and his crew on Snow Goose overnighted in the Baltimore Friday where they tangled with sharks during the darkness. They released a large scalloped hammerhead, an oversized blue shark and a half dozen big duskies. They also put 5 yellowfins to 58 pounds in the box and let go 4 others while trolling the East Wall. Geoff McCloskey, Phil Falgowski, Josh Loose and Mark Spence had hot trolling action in the Wilmington Saturday. They hooked 28 yellowfins, keeping a limit of 12 to 69 pounds, and releasing the other 16. Captains Brent and Dave trolled the Baltimore Saturday for six tuna to 40 pounds, then capped the day off by dropping for a mix of 35 blueline and golden tiles. Inshore bottom fishermen found sea bass and ling on the Del-Jersey Land Reef Site. Site 11 held bass too, but the quality of fish and number of keepers was better at DJL. Gladdy Dcruz decked a 4.16 pound knothead there aboard Martha Marie. Before all the southwest breeze and the effect of the recent full moon, Site 11 yielded some decent flounder. Bob Kauffman and his group fished there with Captain Brent on Katydid last Thursday and returned with 18 keeper flatfish to 4.9 pounds. Brent took the Katydid back to 11 on Saturday, but only ended up with 8 in the box, however, the largest was a 6.33 pounder that Brent boated himself. Captain Pete on Top Fin worked Sites 9 and 10 Saturday and brought back 12 flatties to 4.5 pounds. The Old Grounds southeast of DB Buoy has been producing some flatfish too. Captain Ricky on the Thelma Dale IV has been drifting that region for fluke and sea bass and he reported that there were schools of small mackerel all over the place. He's been deploying sabiki rigs to catch the little macks whenever he sees them on the screen. The mini mackerels make excellent bait, and are candy to flounder and other species as well. In Delaware Bay, croakers, spot, kingfish, blowfish and spike trout were caught on the rubble of Reef Sites 5 and 8. Strong currents from the big moon made flounder fishing challenging, but some flatties came from artificial structure. "Fishin' Ricky Mills" and Jack Henriksen had 3 keepers to 22 inches at Site 5 Monday. Flounder continue to come from Lewes Canal. Eileen and Gary Smith had keepers of 18,19,20 and 22 inches using 6 inch white Gulp Saturday. Eileen used a speck rig with pink Gulp to tempt a 4.57 pounder Sunday. Cris and Mala Teeter took home 4 fluke from the Canal using pink Gulp Saturday. Chuck Hazel checked in yesterday with a limit of nice flatfish he caught in the Canal using minnows and shiners on "Nick's special rigs". Stripers were also roaming the Canal. Keepers were caught around the drawbridge by boaters using eels or clams. The striped bass slot limit goes into effect July 1st. Anglers will be able to retain 2 rockfish between 20 and 26 inches per day in Delaware Bay and it's tributaries until August 31st. The minimum size for the Ocean and Indian River remains at 28 inches.
June 20, 2013
- Tuna in the Canyons
Offshore trollers have had success with tuna. Yellowfins were reported scattered along the edge, with catches coming from the Wilmington Canyon, the West Wall of Baltimore Canyon and the 800 square of Washington Canyon. Willie and Art lodge teamed up for the heaviest yellowfin brought in to Lewes Harbour so far this season. They boated the 77.7 pounder after it pounced on a squid chain in the Bight of the Baltimore. Bubba Hastings checked in with his report of 5 yellowfins his crew caught while trolling ballyhoo in 70 to 80 fathoms inshore of the Baltimore Bight. In addition to tuna, billfish have shown up. The first white marlin of the year was released Saturday from the charter boat No Quarter, out of Ocean City, in 1000 fathoms outside of Poor Man's Canyon. Tim Hawn had the honor of winding on the highly coveted first whitey. Offshore bottom bouncing was good for tilefish. Last Saturday, the gang aboard Katydid scored a load of gray tiles to over 15 pounds, plus a bunch of rosefish and several golden tile. Sam Scott landed the largest golden, that tipped the scales to 36.4 pounds. Bill Swords and his buddies on Swords Fish also enjoyed good deep dropping Saturday, putting a nice batch of golden tile in the box. Inshore bottom fishing has has been pretty good too. On Tuesday, Captain Brent's group on Katydid had 120 sea bass, several ling and three nice flounder. Flounder have been roaming the Old grounds southeast of DB Buoy. Mike Newsham and friends had 10 keepers in 80 feet of water there on Monday. Fluke activity has also improved in Delaware Bay. Flukers aboard Katydid captured 20 keepers to 3.6 pounds while drifting Site 5 on Wednesday. Some flatties continue to come from Lewes Canal and Broadkill River. Eilene Euston and Peg Proctor checked in with 4 flounder from the Broadkill caught using pink Gulp and smelts. Mike Smith and Mike Smith, Jr celebrated Father's Day by taking 4 quality flatfish betweeen 3 and 4 pounds from the Canal with Gulp! Panfish are plentiful in Delaware Bay. Croakers and spot seem to be just about everywhere, and will hit bits of bloodworm or Fishbites on small hooks. There have been more kingfish in the Bay than there have been for some time. They are concentrated on live bottom along the western edge of The Shears and on the Coral Beds, but casters on Lewes and Broadkill Beaches, and in the Cape Henlopen surf have also encountered kings. Striped bass are hanging out in Lewes Canal. Rock were hooked using clams or peeler crabs on bottom rigs. Boaters casting eels, RatLTraps or Storm Shads around the drawbridge also got bit.
June 13, 2013
- New Flounder Regs
The Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission approved a coastwide recreational summer flounder harvest limit that allowed for changes in Delaware's flounder regulations. As of June 11, anglers catching summer flounder in Delaware waters will be able to retain smaller fish, with no closed season. Under previous regs, legal flounder had to be at least 18 inches long. The new minimum size is 17 inches, and anglers may keep four fluke per day. This should mean more in the box for summertime fishermen, and less wear and tear on the flounder population, since anglers won't have to cull through and handle as many fish prior to releasing them if they don't meet minimum size. Flatties continued to come from Lewes Canal and Broadkill River. Terry Euston and Scott Proctor stopped by with 5 nice keepers caught with smelts and chartreuse Gulp!. Chris Teeter was casting a chartreuse Gulp! from Lewes Beach when he connected with a 4.4 pound flounder and a 15 inch trout. Delaware Bay structure is also yielding some flatfish. Captain Brent's afternoon group put three in the box yesterday, along with a bunch of croakers, while working reef 5. Matt Adams managed the largest flounder, which weighed in at 4.63 pounds. The resurgence of weakfish has been a bright spot this spring, and many good sized trout have come from the same spots that produced years ago. The submerged jetties at Roosevelt, the Ferry Wall and Inner Wall were likely haunts. Soft artificials like Gulp!, Bass Assassins and paddletail worms were effective offerings. Francis Walsh was tossing a Pink Ghost Bass Assassin Shad at the Ferry Wall when he hooked a beautiful 4.05 pound weakie. Dustin Schell captured a 4.1 pound seatrout while working a jig and bunker strip combo from a pier inside Cape Henlopen. Kingfish are another Bay species that seem to more plentiul this year. Numerous kings have been caught on live bottom in The Shears and on the Coral Beds, and also from Broadkill Beach. Bloodworms, Fishbites and bits of clam were favorite baits. Patrons on the Angler headboat have done well with kings, returning with buckets of the tasty panfish. The Bay is also holding plenty of spot, croakers and blowfish. These should offer great action for anglers of all skill levels this summer, especially kids. Some uncommon species have made an early appearance in the Bay this spring. Taylor Deemer spotted a big Spadefish swimming around the pilings of Cape Henlopen Pier, and tempted the 4.72 pound beauty with a small piece of clam. Striper fishing has been good in Lewes Canal. Guys baitng with clams or peeler crab on bottom rigs got into bass. Many were shy of the 28 inch minimum, but some were keepers. "Rick" weighed in an 11.9 pounder he took from the Canal using frozen peeler. Drifting eels or casting RatLTraps around the drawbrdge resulted in legal rockfish too. The 20 to 26 inch slot limit for stripers goes into effect July 1. Sea Bassing was fair at Site 11, but better for those willing to travel farther off to structure in 120 foot depths. On Sunday, bassers aboard Katydid had a banner trip. They boxed 240 quality blueheads, and nearly 60 ling. Bernie Smelstoys and friends had their limit of 140 bass and 26 plump ling Sunday on the Grizzly. Offshore trollers found yellowfin tuna in the past few days. On Monday, the charterboat Moore Bills out of Ocean City returned to the dock with 15 yellowfins they landed while trolling 200 fathoms in the Baltimore Canyon. Other crews reported tuna catches from 50 to 70 fathoms of the Washington.
June 6, 2013
- Sharks, Sea Bass, Drum and Trout
Twenty fathom structure looks pretty sharky so far this season. Good numbers of Threshers have been reported from The Fingers over the past two weeks. Several have been sizeable specimens, over 200 pounds. Captain Ed Sigda and his crew aboard the Snow Goose drifted Massey's Canyon Friday for plenty of action with toothy critters. They battled a big Thresher for an hour before bringing it to the boat. When it was along side, the shark's fork length measured over 8 feet. They stuck a tag in the big girl and estimated her weight between 400 and 500 pounds before cutting her loose. They also released 16 blue sharks during the day. Captain Jeff Stewart sharked the Chicken Bone and Hambone Tuesday. His anglers hooked four makos. They fought and released 3 of the Blackeyes, and boated the largest, a 200 pounder. Regarding other Ocean opportunities, sea bass were available on reef and wreck structure between 100 and 150 feet of water. Captain Brent on Katydid said bass had been spotty since the season opening, but they finally showed signs of starting to stack up around certain spots. Brent bassed yesterday, and his nine guys returned with their boat limit of chunky knotheads, many close to 2 pounds. They also had several quality ling. A few days earlier, Captain Brent hosted the fishin' Falgowski family for a wreck trip. The group came in with 105 bass and 20 ling. Kenny Luckanish stopped by to weigh a 3.95 pound citation sea bass he decked aboard the Thelma Dale IV. Offshore bottom bouncers had success too. Captain Pete and the boys on Candy's Reel Choice deep dropped in Baltimore Canyon for 15 golden tilefish to 30 pounds, plus a mix of sea bass, ling and black belly rosefish. Back in Delaware Bay, drum fishing held up well through the past week. Fish continued to come from the Coral Beds area, but a good bite also developed northeast of Brandywine. Captain Carey had a one man charter there Friday evening aboard Grizzly. Wild man Jim Weidman wound in 14 drum by himself during a crazy bite. He kept one, and released the rest. Carey hosted Steve Henry and family for some drumming Saturday night, when they harvested 6 drum and released 4 others. The Knotts family from West Virginia fished on the Katydid Saturday evening. That's when young Karley Knotts captured her first black drum weighing 36.1 pounds. Captain Vince's drummers on Miss Kirstin decked 4 drum Saturday night. Lucas Stawarz landed a 51.7 pound drum on the Indian while visiting Delaware from Japan. James Jones got his 59.8 pounder aboard the Pirate King II. Madison Tober managed a 64.2 pound drum during an afternoon outing on the Angler. Some nice drum hit the deck aboard Local Girl. Zach Jackson got a 52.5 pounder, Brandon Jackson boated a 58.1 pounder, and Darby Klopp battled a boomer weighing 55.3 pounds. Robert Orton weighed in a 53.2 pound drum he hooked at the Coral Beds. Drum should be available through this new moon, but catches normally fade out by mid June. The return of weakfish continues to please Delaware Bay fishermen. Numerous seatrout have come from the submerged jetties at Roosevelt Inlet, the Ferry Wall and Inner Wall. Soft artificials such as Gulp!, Bass Assassins and paddletail worms worked well. Jeff Purdy used a purple and pink paddletail on a red jighead to tempt a 5.6 pound trout from the Ferry Wall. Not to be outdone, Jeff's Dad Vince Purdy took a 5.3 pound trout and a bonus 1.9 pound speckled trout using the same jig and paddletail combo at the same spot the next day. Glenn Barrett brought in a 3.5 pound weakie that swallowed a spot he was reeling in from the Cape Henlopen Pier. Chris Huk had a 28 inch trout that blasted a topwater plug he was working along the grass in Lewes Canal. Flounder catches in the Canal improved the last few days. Some flatties were also caught along Lewes and Broadkill Beaches. Karen Revis stopped by with a pair of keepers to 19 inches she got drifting minnows in Broadkill River. Croakers and spot have been plentiful around the Henlopen Pier and along Lewes Beach and will jump on pieces of bloodworms or Fishbites on small hook rigs. Kingfish and blowfish have been caught in the Ocean surf with the same baits.
May 30, 2013
- First Mako
The season's first mako hit the dock this week. Wes and Shane Olson and Barney Gallagher were drifting 59 degree water in the tip of Baltimore Canyon when they hooked and landed the 84 pounder. Wes said they had just finished putting the first line out when the blackeye bit. Captain Steve Moore's crew aboard the All In, out of Ocean City Fishing Center, took a 201 pound mako from 30 Fathoms outside the Hot Dog. Other sharkers found threshers in The Fingers and at the Twin Wrecks. Threshers should be caught along the Delaware shipping lane soon. Strong winds kept most boats in Saturday and Sunday over the Holiday weekend, but seas laid down Monday, allowing Katydid to head off to the Del-Jersey-Land Reef for a sea bass trip. The results were good, and patrons returned with 114 bass, 99 ling, a bucket of cunners and a pair of nice codfish. Lou Pennella landed a knothead bass scaling 4.7 pounds. One of the cod, which Brent himself boated, weighed 22.7 pounds and was the largest we've seen in some time. It's great that cod have staged a comeback off Delaware's coast in the past few years. Captain Carey's bassers aboard Grizzly had a productive trip Monday. John Mattson and friends put a mix of 121 seabass, ling and cod in the box. Wesley Bernard checked in the unusual combination of a 4.2 pound cod and a 4.2 pound flounder he caught while reef fishing on the Dana Lynn. Structure of the Del-Jersey-Land Reef Site, that includes wrecks of the Radford and Gregory Poole, has yielded good action, but bass also came from Site 11, closer inshore. Striped bass catches have been good during nighttime incoming tides at Indian River Inlet. Jetty jocks and boaters had rockfish while casting Storm Shads and bucktails. Carl Swinn and Buster Bair stopped by with a trio of bass to 20 pounds they got by livelining eels from the rocks. Stripers were also hooked in Delaware Bay. Guys tossing lures around the Outer Wall got into fish. Bombers, X-Raps, RatLTraps and Stretch 12 plugs were popular. Paul Matthews managed a 22 pound linesider with a swimming plug at the Ice Breakers. Black drum continued to come from the Coral Beds, but the run traditionally tails off through early June. Kevin Parker had his hands full with a 69.2 pound boomer he boated with light spinning gear. Mark Gardenghi and friends drummed aboard the Grizzly for their limit of fish to 68 pounds. Captain Brian's group on Lil' Angler II had plenty of action Sunday night. P.J. Sneeringer muscled in a 73 pound brute. Tara Wiker wound in a 57 pounder and Anthony Wiker wrestled one of 56 pounds. Jackie Robinson reeled in a 55.5 pounder aboard the Angler. Sophie Gressens came all the way from France to catch her first black drum. She's an exchange student and celebrated graduation by boating the 50.1 pounder on the Fish Hawk. Flounder aficionados are still picking flatties from Lewes Canal, along the Inner Wall, and around the Henlopen Pier. Trout have been in good supply too, and those using Gulp! and other soft artificials have had some nice sized weakies. Increasing numbers of spot and croakers are showing up in Delaware Bay. Kingfish have been plentiful on the Coral Beds.
May 23, 2013
- Flounder Tourney Results
The 2013 Canal Flounder Tournament held May 19th was a great success. This year's turnout was the largest ever. The weather was beautiful, and decent numbers of flatties were caught. Bragging rights for his winning 5.09 pounder go to James Stanley. Charlie Booth secured Second with a 4.24 pounder. Danny Schurman scored Third with a 4.06 pound flatfish. Jesse Steele's 4.04 was Fourth. Gene Stalls got a 3.98 pounder that was good for Fifth Place. Mike Hoffman had a 3.94 pound fluke for Sixth, and Will Wiedmann wound up Seventh with his 3.93 pounder. Twenty percent of the entry fees will be donated to Camp Awareness, which promotes education about the State's natural resources to young fishermen, hunters, hikers and other outdoor enthusiasts. We thank all who participated to make the day a fun event, and are already looking forward to next year's Tourney. Flounder continued to come from the Canal following the Tournament, though the numbers have dwindled compared to a couple weeks ago. It seems that the fish have started to move out into the Bay. Flukers on Katydid returned with the first nice catch of flounder from the open Bay last Saturday. They had 8 keepers plus a 32.2 pound striper that Captain Brent bucktailed off reef rubble. It's likely we'll see more fluke from structure like the artificial reefs, and inner and outer breakwaters in the coming weeks. Fishermen on the Cape Henlopen pier had flounder on speck rigs tipped with shiners or Gulp! They also reported increasing numbers of spot and croakers. Shore fishermen inside Cape Henlopen and on Lewes Beach also caught a mix of croakers, spot, kingfish, blowfish, bluefish and weakfish. Zach Brown brought in a beautiful 5.66 trout he took while casting a pink Gulp! from the beach. Sea trout have definitely come back in better numbers and sizes than in past seasons, and anglers targeting them around the Roosevelt Jetties, and the Inner and Ferry Walls have done well. Artificials such as Bass Assassins, Fin-S-Fish, Gulp! and paddletail worms were effective. There have been some surprises for trout fishermen tossing jigs around the rocks. Robert Perholtz was working a pink Gulp along the Inner Wall when it was inhaled by a 72.6 pound black drum. Amazingly, he was able to land the brute with the 10 pound test spinning outfit he was using. Just to prove it was skill and not luck, the very next day, Robert boated a 63.3 pounder at the same spot, using pink Gulp! on the same ten pound spinning gear! Those actually trying to catch a drum also got into some big boomers at the Coral Beds while baiting with surf clams. The fleet of New Jersey boats that had been fishing there disappeared, so it's likely they've located some schools on their side of the Bay. Spots such as Brandywine, Tussey's, the Pin Top and Horseshoe usually yield drum. This weekend traditionally offers the best action with boomers. Some of the most impressive specimens to hit the dock this week included a monster 93 pounder boated by Mark Butler aboard the Indian, and an 82.7 pound behemoth taken by Tom Kuzsma on the Pirate King. Richard Hammond had a 68 pounder on the Pirate King, and Chuck Coverdale captured a 67.3 pounder on the Indian. Kathy Rodgers checked in drum scaling 65.4 and 58 pounds. Nick Campbell nailed a 64.5 pounder on Martha Marie. Larry Grim landed a 62.5 pounder, and Scott Dostaz decked a 60.9 pounder, both aboard the Lil' Angler II. In recent days, drum seemed to feed more actively in the late afternoon rather than after dark. A lower Bay striper bite has failed to materialize, which is surprising since it's been so good in the upper Bay. However, there were some nice bass pulled from the surf during daybreak at Herring Point by casters using clams. Wayne Demarco and Wayne,Jr double teamed rock of 15.4 and 25.9 pounds. Martin Kris captured a 33.8 pound lunker rockfish. Andy Lano and Mickey Bremer limited out with 4 linesiders to 24.3 pounds. Robert Baum deployed a chunk of bunker to beach a 25.7 pound bass at Roosevelt Inlet. Sea bass season got off to a lumpy start, with high winds and rough seas last Sunday. Captain Brent on the Katydid pushed many miles offshore despite crappy conditions, and made several anchor stops. He said the structures were not loaded up like he expected, but his anglers picked some keepers at each spot, and ended up with a boat limit. Paul Pergeorelis put a 3.25 pound knothead in the box on that trip. Seas were friendlier Tuesday, and bassers aboard Katydid had a much better time of it. They returned with a 160 bass limit, plus 30 plump ling and a pair of nice cod. Boats working reef site 11 had good numbers of fish, but the majority were shy of the 12.5 inch minimum.
May 16, 2013
- Bass On The Beach
There were some nice stripers taken from the Cape Henlopen surf early in the week. Guys fishing near the jetties at Herring Point had best success at daybreak, when the tide was low. Clams and bunker were the offerings of choice. Chris Vann and Ernie Stone kept four striped bass from 13 to 19 pounds they caught at first light Sunday. Bert Long brought in a 19.8 pound rockfish Monday. Chris Vann had his limit of bass that same morning, which included a 25.7 pounder. Keith Sherman landed a lunker linesider weighing 31.7 pounds. Surfcasters continued to pick at stripers throughout the week, with most catches occurring during periods of low light at dawn and dusk. Striped bass action in the surf was good this same time last year, so hopefully the catching will continue. Indian River inlet fishermen have also been hooking into rockfish, mostly after dark. Marc Uhde took a pair of stripers weighing 19 and 24.4 pounds from the jetty while casting Storm Shads. Drum fishing has been decent on the Coral Beds off Slaughter Beach. Captain Chris took the Pirate King there Saturday night and returned with 5 boomers in the 25 to 30 pound range. Mike Newsham fished the Beds Tuesday evening and had four drum from 30 to 35 pounds. He said the bite took place at the end of ebb tide and the beginning of flood. Captain Brian on Lil' Angler II got two drum Tuesday night. Traditionally drum catches are best around the May full moon, that this year falls on the 25th. Smaller members of the drum family, croakers, made an early appearance this year, and have been reported by surf fishermen along the Ocean beach, and by bottom bouncers in Delaware Bay. This could be a good sign for those targeting hardheads this summer. Fair numbers of weakfish have also been caught so far this spring, and we should see more as the season progresses. Glenn Parker weighed in a 4.28 pound trout he captured by tossing a white Gulp! from the Cape Henlopen Pier. Lewes Canal continues to produce flounder, but catching wasn't as good on days when the water was dirty. The annual Canal Flounder Tournament takes place tomorrow, so we'll have a rundown on the results in next week's report. Sea bass anglers are anxious for the season opening on Sunday May 19th. The reefs and wrecks should be loaded, and fishermen will be able to keep 25 bass measuring at least 12.5 inches long. Reef Site 11 yielded some quality tog at the end of Spring Season, which was over May 11th. Keith Orendorf caught an 8.3 pounder, Guy Jensen got a 12 pounder, and Robbie Hummel had a 14.6 pound bruiser.
May 10, 2013
- Drum Time
Surf fishermen have been hooking into black drum over the past couple weeks, and boaters are now getting in on the game. The biggest boomers to hit the dock so far were brought in yesterday. Mason Newsham nailed a 75.7 pounder, and Richard Bloom boated a 64 pounder. They also had drum of 24 and 36.8 pounds while using clams at the Coral Beds, with Mike Newsham and Geoff Klopp aboard Local Girl. First of evening flood tide was best. Captain Ted had a pair of 40 pounders on the Indian Thursday night. Surf casters along Broadkill Beach continued to catch drum, and a few were beached by anglers working the wash at Cape Henlopen as well. Bert Long landed a 28 inch drum at Herring Point Thursday. Bert also released 7 short stripers, and had the surprise catch of two 14 inch croakers. It's early for hardheads, but hopefully a good sign for the season ahead. Lance Cochran captured a 21.7 pound linesider from the Herring Point surf using bunker. There was a good run of rockfish in the Broadkill surf midweek, when the weather was at it's worst. Cool east winds and damp, dreary conditions held bass in close to the beach. Several fishermen had limits of legal rock. Jack Austin, Tosh Tryon, Chris Vann and Brent Wiest limited out with Bass to 18.5 pounds Tuesday. Jack Austin went back Wednesday and baited with clams to tempt an 18.8 pound striper from the suds. Flounder fishing came on good in Lewes Canal. D.J. Churchill and Bruce Phillips had their limit of 8 nice flatties to 23 inches while drifting minnows and shiners in the Canal Thursday. Bear Berezansky and Art Kitzmiller checked in four fluke to 22 inches plus a plump trout from the Canal. Chuck Hazel had a 5.75 pound flatfish using shiners on a chartreuse colored rig. Donald Lewis was working a minnow on a jig when he connected with a 6.9 pound doormat. John Gudknecht was surprised when a 21 inch trout grabbed the Gulp! he was drifting in the Canal for flounder.Don't forget the CANAL FLOUNDER TOURNAMENT Friday May 17th. Complete details in last week's report. Tautog fishing was good for those squeezing in the last few trips of the Spring Season that closes May 11th. Limit catches were common among toggers at the Outer Wall and Ice Breakers, and reefs 6 and 7. Skip Long scored a 9.42 pound blackfish at the Breakers. Jacob Webb wound in an 8.21 at the Inner Wall. James Kossek caught a 7.69 pound tog at the Wall, and John Shoemaker stuck a 7.06 pounder at the Ice Breakers.
May 2, 2013
- Flounder In The Canal - Upcoming Tournament Details
Lewes Canal has produced a decent number of keeper flounder in past days. Even with strong currents from last week's full moon, and murky water, flatties fed actively during outgoing tide. Harry Aiken and his fishing partner caught 22 fluke and kept their limit of 8 nice ones during a recent trip to the Canal. Harry said chartreuse hair rigs tipped with shiners and chartreuse Gulp! were the key to success. Joe and Drake Crowley teamed up for a good pair of Broadkill River flatfish scaling 4.79 and 3.6 pounds. Ryan Weiber was casting a white Gulp! at Canary Creek bridge when he connected with a 4.14 pound flounder. Flatties also came from Cape Henlopen Pier. Some of the better catching occurred at night on the edge of the light line. Bob Tripple stopped by with a pair of keepers that fell for a small bucktail tipped with pink Gulp! Fishing should be in full swing for the annual Lewes Canal Flounder Tournament to take place Friday May 17th. Participants may fish from boats or kayaks. Entry fee is $25 per angler to be paid in cash at Lewes Harbour Marina any day before the Tournament begins. No sign ups will be accepted after the 7am start time on May 17th. Five dollars of each entry will sponsor the Camp Awareness Youth Fishing Tournament. The remaining $20 goes into a pool and will be awarded as cash prizes for the six heaviest flounder weighed in by registered anglers during the event. The more entries, the bigger the prizes. Last year, 360 people fished the Tourney. Fishing is permitted within the confines of Lewes Canal from the Rehoboth Bay entrance to Roosevelt Inlet. You may fish in Roosevelt Inlet, but not past the red and green entrance markers. Fishing is also allowed in Broadkill River from Roosevelt to the Oyster Rocks Ramp. Fishing hours are between 7am and 3pm on May 17th. Flounder need to be weighed at Lewes Harbour Marina between 7am and 4pm. It's strongly recommended that fish be weighed live so there are no questions about freshness. In case of a tie for weight, the flounder weighed in earliest will take the higher prize. Therefore, it's beneficial to bring a contending fish to the scale as soon as you can to avoid the fish loosing weight, and to maintain good placement in the standings. All flounder weighed must be caught with hook and line by a registered contestant. The cash pool will be divided among the winners as follows: 35% will be awarded for the Heaviest flounder, 25% for the Second Heaviest, 20% for Third Heaviest, 10% for the Fourth Heaviest, and 5% each for the Fifth and Sixth Heaviest Flounder weighed in by registered contestants. The Seventh Heaviest weighed in by a contestant earns a $100 Lewes Harbour Marina Gift Certificate. This is a flounder tournament only, and all state and federal regulations apply. Drifting boaters are reminded they must give the right away to any vessel underway in the Canal. Thanks to the Dewey Beach Lions Club for their help with the event. Be Safe and Have Fun! Bay surf fishermen continue to hook stripers, drum, blues and blowfish for Broadkill Beach, using bloodworms, clams and bunker. Andy Lano landed a 36 inch striper and a 20 pound drum at Broadkill with clams. After this recent full moon, the first few black drum were taken in the evenings by boaters anchored near the submerged pilings off Slaughter Beach. That action should heat up through May, and peak around the next full moon May 24th. We'll be stocking surf clams, but suggest you call early in the week to reserve baits for the weekend. Togging was good around the Walls and on Reefs 6 and 7 prior to the big moon, but was challenging over the weekend with strong currents. Guys who fished the beginning of the tides did ok though. Doug and Scott Riniker, Steve Kiibler and Scott Haas had their limit of chunky tog at the Wall by 8am Sunday. The bite happened with clean water during the first of flood tide. Hannah Staniszewski checked in a 6.04 pound tautog she pulled from the Ice Breakers. Jay Schlink caught a 7.81 pound citation tog aboard the Martha Marie. Lance and Chad Hitzelberger, Gil Waddington and "Vito" enjoyed a teriffic trip to Site 11 Saturday. They culled an impressive limit of blackfish over 8 pounds from several they caught. Among the take were tog of 9.6 pounds, 10.6 pounds and a 13 pound bruiser. Along the Ocean Beach, surf casters caught few bluefish in the 1 to 5 pound range and an occasional striper near Herring Point. A bright spot has been the number of blowfish in the suds this spring. Anglers report catching lots of tasty puffers in the wash at spots like Keybox Road, the Old Coast Guard Station and 3 R's Road. Bloodworms or bits of clam on small hooks did the trick.
April 25, 2013
- Action on the Beaches
Surfcasters continued to have success along Broadkill Beach. Better bites have occurred on decent weather days when sunlight warms the shallow water. Baits such as bloodworms, clams, bunker and frozen peeler crabs were popular offerings. Anglers encountered stripers, black drum, bluefish and flounder. Roosevelt Inlet and the adjacent Lewes Beach also gave up some blues in the 2 pound range to those soaking cut baits. Gene Laskowski landed a 3 pound bluefish from the dock right in front of Lewes Harbour Marina. There was pretty good catching during Sunday's flood tide in the Cape Henlopen surf. Guys working the suds at Herring Point had a nice mix including stripers, drum, bluefish and blowfish. Curt Stephens captured a 17 pound striped bass and released many more using clams and sandfleas there. Judah Lynam beached a 17 pound black drum. He also had a bunch of blues, short stripers and blowfish. Jason Massey and Matt Weidman whacked the blowfish a little farther down the beach at Keybox Road. The focus area for toggers has shifted form the Ocean into Delaware Bay. Tog fishermen toggled into the Inner and Outer Walls did well with green crabs. Reef Sites 6 and 7 at Brown Shoal yielded good numbers of blackfish too. Captain Brent's Saturday group on Katydid limited out in short order on Bay structure. Captain Carey's guys on the Grizzly ended up with a real nice catch yesterday after culling through lots of shorts. Flounder are becoming active around the Cape Henlopen Pier. Cut fresh baits like bunker, shad or bluefish presented on small jigs are preferred offerings for fluke at the pier this time of year. A few keeper flatties came from Lewes Canal, and more will come with warming temps and clean water. John Mitchell kept 3 fluke to 3 pounds while drifting minnows and shiners in the Canal today. The annual Lewes Canal Flounder Tournament will take place Friday May 17th. Entry fee is $25 per angler, and $5 of that is donated to Camp Awareness Youth Programs. Participants must register at Lewes Harbour Marina before the Tourney.
April 18, 2013
- Stripers and Drum in the Bay Surf
Fish have become active in shallow water along Broadkill Beach over the past few days, and surf casters reported catches of Stripers and Black Drum. George Sharp stopped by the shop for bloodworms this morning and was back a couple hours later with a pretty 17.3 pound striper that fell for the bloods. George said he saw other stripers pulled from the wash at Broadkill as well. Mike Dittmann weighed in an 18 pound black drum that ate a clam at Beach Plum Island yesterday. Surf fishermen caught quite a few black drum along Broadkill Beach last spring, so maybe the bite will happen again this season. It's likely the first trout will be hooked by Broadkill surf casters soon. Anglers fishing the Ocean beach have had mostly skates and sharks, with an occasional rockfish. Bert Long released a 21 incher that bit a clam at Herring Point yesterday. Bert also beached an 18 pound black drum there. Lower Bay boaters haven't done much with stripers, but bass were taken in the northern section. Wayne Wilson reported crews anchored near 6L Buoy off Collins Beach got into good sized rockfish. Fresh bunker was the ticket. Tautog catching was good over the past week. Ocean Reef Sites 9 and 10 had been yielding tog, but blackfish began biting along the Inner and Outer Walls as water temps slowly rose into the 50's. Captain Brent on Katydid Brent ran tog trips Saturday, Sunday and Wednesday, all resulting in in limits of chunky tog to 7 pounds. Patrons on the Angler had good tautog action with Captain Don Saturday. Dick Yohe and family joined Captain Carey aboard Grizzly for a great outing Sunday. The group scored their limit of hefty tog, including an 8.5 pound citation winner for Adam Yohe. Flounder have been taken from Indian River Bay, and should start cooperating soon in shallow water around the Cape Henlopen Pier, and in Lewes Canal. Brett Jackson managed a keeper fluke in Broadkill River near Oyster Rocks. River fishermen also found white perch, catfish and small stripers while baiting with bloodworms. Petersfield Ditch was a good spot for perch. The annual Lewes Canal Flounder Tournament takes place Friday May 17th. Anglers may fish from boats or kayaks from 7am to 3pm within the confines of Lewes Canal, Roosevelt Inlet and Broadkill River. Entry fee is $25 per entrant, to be paid in cash before the Tournament at Lewes Harbour Marina. Five dollars of each entry will be donated to the Camp Awareness youth program.
April 11, 2013
- Ready For Another Season
Amanda and I have returned from our winter vacation in the Florida Keys, and we're getting ready for another season. Shipments of tackle, clothing and marine supplies have been arriving over the past two weeks, so we've been busy restocking and reorganizing the store in anticipation of a good fishing year. The weather finally broke, and warm days and nights this week caused water temps to rise, resulting in improved fish catching. Captain Brent's toggers aboard Katydid had a great trip yesterday, returning with a boat limit of 27 tautog. Brent himself boated the biggest blackfish of the day, a bruiser weighing 12.3 pounds. The guys also released numerous other tog while anchored over ocean reef site rubble. Green crabs worked well, but sometimes soft baits like clams and shrimp tempted tog when the bite slowed down. Just a reminder, tog season is open through May 11th, and anglers may keep 3 fish 15 inches or longer per day during that period. Ocean tog fishing has been pretty good, but tautog should also turn on around Bay structure such as the Inner and Outer Walls and artificial reefs as the water warms up. Lots of bunker have been roaming the mid and upper Bay. Net fishermen have had good success with menhaden, and have also caught numbers of stripers, along with some weakfish. It was encouraging to see as many trout as we had last year, and we're looking forward to more sea trout action this spring. The current weakfish limit remains one per day with a 13 inch minimum size. Trout should be taken by hook and line in shallow water along Broadkill Beach in the next couple weeks. Stripers have started to bite in the Upper Bay. Guys using fresh cut bunker near 6L Buoy off Collins Beach have caught big rockfish in recent days. Rockfish activity should pick up in other areas of the Bay soon. A few flounder were taken from Indian River Bay, and with increasing water temperatures, flatfish should come from Lewes Canal before long. The Annual CANAL FLOUNDER TOURNAMENT will take place Friday May 17th. Entry fee is $25, to be paid in cash at our store before the Tourney. Five dollars of the amount will be donated to Camp Awareness youth programs. Boats and kayaks may be used during the event, and fishing time is from 7am to 3pm. Fishing is limited to the Lewes Canal, from the Rehoboth Bay entrance to Roosevelt Inlet, and up Broadkill River to Oyster Rocks Road. Money will be awarded for the 6 heaviest flounder weighed in during the Tournament. The more entrants, the bigger the prizes. Last year, more than 300 anglers participated.
December 28, 2012
- Another Year Gone
It's hard to believe 2012 is coming to a close. Fishing activity has been slim over the Christmas Holiday due to family obligations and less than favorable weather. Water temps are around 45 degrees, and stripers should still be available along the coast and in Indian River Inlet. Striped bass catches for the Fall were a little disappointing overall. Hurricane Sandy came at a bad time, and the string of northeast storms following her definitely affected water quality in Delaware Bay, likely keeping many migratory bass away. A bright spot was a new Delaware State Record striped bass taken from the surf. Congratulations to Ben Smith from Bryn Mawr, PA who landed the 52 pound trophy on December 8th. The former 51 pound 8 ounce State Record striper was caught by Betty Rosen from the Indian River south jetty in 1978. Surf and jetty anglers were also surprised by the large numbers of red drum around this year. It was unusual to see so many puppies, but it would be great if they return next season. Tog action had started to pick up on Ocean Reefs and wrecks, and that should continue through the winter. Delaware officials announced that the State sea bass season will open January 1, to coincide with the opening of sea bass season in Federal waters from January 1 through February 28. Most of the effort takes place well offshore, but this will offer another cold weather fishery for anglers hardy enough to brave the chilly elements. This past summer offered up some of the best flounder fishing in quite awhile, and that's certainly something to look forward to next year. More boaters are learning how to work reefsite and wreck structure for flatties, and their efforts are paying off. Some guys are really dialed in and finished the year with impressive totals. Captain Brent on Katydid ended up with over 800 keeper fluke. It was encouraging to have more weakfish around too. There was a spread of spike trout along Broadkill Beach in the Spring, reminiscent of years back. Trout continued to come from Roosevelt Inlet and Bay structure throughout the Summer and Fall, hopefully indicative of a resurgence of the popular gamefish. Amanda and I will be leaving for our winter vacation in the Florida Keys January 1, when we'll finally get to do some fishing ourselves. The store will be open on Saturdays from January through March, with Mac McNaught behind the counter. The Saltwater Fly Anglers of Delaware meet at the shop for tying sessions each Saturday until the end of March to learn new patterns, compare techniques and swap stories over coffee and donuts. It's a great treatment for cold weather cabin fever. Many thanks to all our customers and friends for a great season. We're taking a side trip to Guatemala in February for Pacific Sailfish and marlin. We'll post pictures of our Keys fish and those from our Buena Vista Sportfishing Lodge adventure in the website Photo Gallery, so be on the lookout. Wishing you the best of success, much prosperity, bent rods and smooth drags in the New Year! Joe.
December 20, 2012
- Tog Bite Shaping Up
Tautog action started to shape up over the past week. Captain Carey on the Grizzly reported plenty of quality blackfish on recent trips to the rubble of Reef Site 11 in the Ocean. Sunday's excursion resulted in a 40 fish limit that included an 11.25 pounder for John Mattson, a 9.5 pounder for Frand Irwin, plus two others over 7 pounds. The Monday trip produced even more impressive results. Among that limit was a 12.25 pound brute for Mo Wilson, an 11.25 pounder for Don Johnson, and a pair scaling 10.75 and 10.25 for Maurice Wilson. In addition, the group put 5 other tog over 8 pounds in the box. Captain Brent's toggers on Katydid also had some good catching, returning Saturday with 20 keepers, including a 7.7 pounder for Bob Wilson, and a 9.2 pounder for Brent. Sunday's guys brought back 25 blackfish. Steve Kiibler checked in a 13.9 pound bruiser tog he captured while togging on the Bandit. Ocean water temperature remains near 50 degrees, and the tog bite should hold up in the Site 11 area, and on wrecks and other hard structure between 60 and 100 foot depths. Bottom boucers will be glad to hear that the sea bass season will reopen January 1, 2013 and last until the end of February. A daily creel limit has been set at 15 fish per person with a 12.5 inch minimum size. Winter sea bassing is primarily an offshore fishery, and boaters concentrate on wrecks and hard bottom in 30 to 40 fathoms. It hasn't been made known if there will be any sea bass season during the summer or fall of 2013, so we'll just keep our fingers crossed. Stripers were still available at the mouth of Delaware Bay. Trollers pulling Stretch 25+, Bomber CD25 and Rapala Clackin' Magnum plugs continued to hook bass at Overfalls. Bright color patterns with hues of chartreuse or pink were effective. Most of the fish were shorts, but crews who worked rips during the best parts of the tides did end up with a few keepers. A handful of rockfish were also reported by boaters anchored and baiting with cut bunker in 60 Foot Slough, Tussey's Slough and Blake's Channel. Some customers traveled to Virginia to take advantage of the striper action taking place there. Bubba Hastings weighed in a 35.2 pound linesider he landed while floating an eel under a bobber off Cape Charles. Indian River has been yielding numerous stripers. John Hazzard and a buddy had 4 keepers and 11 throwbacks Monday. The next day, John took two more quick keepers to 15 pounds while drifting live spot in the Inlet during morning flood tide.
December 13, 2012
- Mostly Short Bass
Boaters are still catching stripers at the mouth of Delaware Bay, but keeper sized fish are hard to come by. Crews trolling Stretch plugs at Overfalls Shoal continue to hook rockfish, but most are between 20 and 26 inches. Trollers did manage some keepers there, and also on Hen and Chickens Shoal. Those drifting live spot and eels at 8B Buoy and in The Valley had a few fish too. Guys anchoring in 60 Foot Slough and Tussey's Slough caught stripers using bunker, but again, mostly undersized. Captain Brent on Katydid set up in the 60 last Thursday, kept 4 and released 11. Friday his bassers boxed 3 and put back 11. Toggers up the Bay on reef site 4 had some decent days. Capt. Dave's patrons on Miss Shyanne enjoyed good catches there over the weekend. Capt. Ricky Yakimowicz fished the Ocean Saturday and Sunday, and also had success with nice numbers of tautog to 7 pounds near Site 11. Surfcasters picked at striped bass along the beach. Dave McGirk stopped by with a brace of 15 pound bass he pulled from the wash at Herring Point while soaking bunker during the morning flood tide. Walt from West Marine used bunker in the North Pocket for a keeper rock and 2 shorts. Offshore bottom species didn't mind cooler weather. Bill Swords and his buddies dropped in Baltimore Canyon for a mix of Golden Tiles to 25 pounds, Blueline Tiles and Blackbelly Rosefish.
December 6, 2012
- Some Tautog in the Ocean
Tog catching has been slow in Delaware Bay the past few weeks, but recently, Ocean togging improved somewhat. Captain Brent on Katydid has been running 25 plus miles to find blackfish willing to bite, but the trips have paid off. On Saturday, his group brought home 37 tog to over 7 pounds. Sunday, toggers on Katydid took 22 keepers. Monday's charter returned with 40 tautog to 7.5 pounds. Tog fishermen on Top Fin put 17 in the box Sunday. Kevin Yim had citation tog of 7.25 and 7.5 pounds as part of 18 keepers aboard the Grizzly on Sunday. Surf fishing has produced some stripers in recent days. Jack Austin checked in a 36 inch striper and a 12.25 pound bluefish he beached at 3 R's Road. Dave McGirk used fresh bunker to tempt a brace of 15 pound bass from the wash at Herring Point during flood tide yesterday morning. Boaters have been finding rock too, but a lot of them are shorts. Trolling plugs at Overfalls and 8B Buoy has yielded decent numbers of fish, but the keeper ratio is low. Chunkers have had better success with legal sized linesiders. Captain Pete anchored Top Fin east of Brandywine Friday for 9 keepers, including a 24.9 pounder for Jeremy Bennett. His anglers released 13 others while baiting with bunker. Captain Vince Keagy finished off his season on Miss Kirstin Sunday with 5 quality keeper bass and 23 throwbacks from 60 Foot Slough. On Tuesday, bassers on Katydid captured 6 chunky rockfish from 14 to 18 pounds, and put back 24 others while using bunker in the Slough.
November 30, 2012
- Chunkers Catching Rockfish
Sorry I missed last week's report. Time got away from me over the Thanksgiving Holiday weekend. Striper catches have been fair over the past two weeks, with some days better than others. Trolling Stretch and Bomber plugs on Overfalls Shoal has yielded keepers for some crews, but numerous short fish have been mixed in. Chunkers anchored over structure on the New Jersey side of the Bay fishing cut bunker have also been catching rockfish. The lower end of 60 Foot Slough, Tussey's Slough east of Brandywine, and the Banana Peel east of Fourteen Foot Light have been popular spots. The availability of fresh bunker has been an issue, with changeable weather conditions hampering efforts to obtain bait on a regular basis. Recent reports from chunkers tell of a few nice fish. Yesterday, Katydid returned with 5 good keepers. The largest was a 35.8 pounder decked by Denny Myers. Tom Smiga scored a 28.75 pound linesider, one of 5 keepers landed on the Grizzly yesterday. Captain Pete's bassers on Top Fin took home 4 nice rock yesterday. On Tuesday, Katydid captured 7 keepers and released 15 others. The Grizzly got 3 k's and 15 tb's on Tuesday. Monday's anglers on Katydid enjoyed good chunking, returning with a boat limit of 14 bass to over 20 pounds. Monday was a good day for trollers too. Captain J.W. Hocker on Miss Caroline pulled Stretch plugs at Overfalls for 10 quality fish in the box, and 10 others that were released. Rick and Doc Roberts and Kevin Cross found birds working in the Ocean between Bethany and Fenwick Monday. They trolled the area with Stretch 25s, and limited out with 6 nice rockfish to 18 pounds. The group released other rock, and also iced one big blue. Today is the last day of the 2012 Lewes Harbour Striper Tournament. As of this writing, Evan Falgowski remained in the lead with his 34 pounder. Beau Kemeys held Second with a 29.7 pound rock. John Joe Kabino was still in Third with a 29.2 pounder. Thanks to all who participated in this year's event, and hopefully we'll have more striper catching to come throughout December.
November 16, 2012
- Striper Action Picking Up
Striped bass action has been spotty, no thanks to the string of recent storms, and subsequent relentless northeast wind. However, fishing has showed signs of shaping up in the past few days. This morning, Ralph and Ryan Short, Paul Daisey and Mark Stephens endured rough seas and beat their way to Overfalls Shoal. They trolled Stretch 25 plugs during flood current, and within a couple hours, were back at the dock with their limit of quality linesiders to 25.9 pounds. John Joe Kabino and Rhett Passwaters took a similar thrashing yesterday, but were also rewarded with a limit of 4 rock to 29.2 pounds while pulling plugs. Other crews also reported catching by trolling plugs. Stretch 25+ models in chartreuse, cabo sunset, red and white, gold and black, and pink were popular offerings. Bomber CD25 lures were effective too. Trolling produced for Ocean anglers as well. Stripers were found under flocks of gannets along the beachfront, and trolling plugs or bucktails among feeding fish resulted in nice catches. Ronnie Payne and his crew had bass of 32, 39 and 40 inches while pulling lures under birds 2 miles off Indian River. Kevin and Shawn Cross captured 3 rockfish to 16 pounds and a 9.5 pound blue while trolling inshore of Fenwick Shoal. In addition to trollers, live bait fishermen also hooked stripers. Jacob Ness was drifting an eel in the deep near 8 Buoy aboard Katydid when he boated a 38.1 pound lunker. Hix Gilbert employed a spot at 8B to tempt his 26.4 pounder. Bert Long was eeling at Brown Shoal when he boated a 19.5 pounder on the Miss Kirstin. Ann Gudknecht used an eel for the 35 incher she took aboard Quintessa. Chunkers have had success when fresh bunker is available. Mike Newsham nailed a 24.2 pound striper chunking on the edge of the 60 Foot Slough. Katydid's chunkers had 5 bass yesterday in the 60 foot slough. Today, Captain Brent's bassers chunked an impressive 15 fish to 20 pounds with bunker at the bottom of 60 Foot Slough. Surfcasters started catching keeper stipers. Jack Austin, Tosh Tryon and Jim Wahl beached 5 stripers to 24.9 pounds and a big blue while using bunker near the Herring Point jetties. The Lewes Harbour Striper Tournament is going on through November 30th. Evan Falgowski still holds the lead with his 34 pounder. Beau Kemeys caught a 29.7 pounder with an eel aboard Quintessa to put him in Second. John Joe Kabino's 29.2 pound rock is currently Third. Reports from the New Jersey coast tell of plenty of stripers to the north, so we should have several more weeks of good bassing as they migrate through.
November 9, 2012
- Another Nor'easter Behind Us
We were just getting settled in after Sandy's passage when another northeast storm blasted the coast, bearing wind, tidal flooding, rain and snow. Delaware Bay water temperatures have fallen to the mid 40's, after a continued stretch of chilly days and nights. The past couple days have been brisk and breezy, but the forecast looks good for the weekend and early next week, with less wind and warmer daytime highs in the 60's. Conditions have kept boats at the dock most days, and many striper and tog fishermen have been chomping at the bit to get back out and see what's going on. Looks like they'll get their chance this weekend. Rockfish were caught on the few occasions when boaters were able to make it to the grounds. John Joe Kabino trolled up his limit of linesiders scaling 22.7 and 25.4 pounds while pulling Stretch 25+ and Bomber CD25 plugs at Overfalls Sunday. Evan Falgowski fooled a 26.3 pound bass with a plug, and Ryan Falgowski landed a 23.5 pounder. Beau Kemeys captured a 29.7 pound striper while drifting an eel at Overfalls Sunday aboard Quintessa. That fish moved him into Second Place of the Lewes Harbour Striper Tournament, which has now been extended to run through November 30th. We have live eels and spot available, and a good assortment of trolling plugs on hand for the striper crowd. It's been tough to obtain fresh bait, but we'll attempt to have bunker when we can get it. Surf fishermen have had success, despite adverse weather. It's surprising how many red drum remain along the coast. Jack Austin had several puppies from the beach in the Herring Point area in past days. Most were in the 16 to 18 inch range, but he did manage a keeper drum, and a beautiful 22 inch speckled trout from the wash. Numerous short stripers were pulled from the suds as well. Frozen mullet, bunker, sand fleas and live bloodworms got bit. Tog should be avaialble on Bay reef sites. Clean water will probably be critical to catching.
November 2, 2012
- Good Riddance To Sandy!
It was a tense few days as we braced for and endured one of the worst storms in recent memory. Wind and waves battered the region for days, and relentless rain saturated the area. Tidal surge compounded by a full moon caused flooding along most of the coast. To our benefit, the center of the weather system passed to the north of us, and winds shifting to westerly quadrants prevented more severe flooding. However, folks in New Jersey and New York took a real pounding, and we feel for the families and businesses dealing with the destruction and aftermath. We, personally, had no real troubles. We never lost power at the store, or at home. Tidal levels rose to the edge of the deck out front, but saltwater didn't make it into the walk in freezer or bait tank pump motors. We were very forunate. Bay and Ocean beaches had quite a bit of erosion. Angry waves washed over and leveled dunes between Dewey Beach and Indian River. Tons of sand covered Route 1. The beach at Cape Henlopen actually seemed wider, like more sand had been redistributed there. Lots and lots of freshly exposed whelk shells were visible. I talked with Bert Long, who mentioned some friends fished near the Herring Point jetties yesterday. They said the water was clean, and they caught and released short stripers and puppy red drum while baiting with cut mullet and bunker. Jack Austin also fished the surf there yesterday and today. He released 6 drum and 3 rockfish Thursday, and 6 stripers and 6 drum today. Striped bass also showed up at the mouth of Delaware Bay, on the heels of Sandy. Many bassers predicted their arrival would be brought on by the combination of a strong flow from the northeast, dropping water temps, and the effect of the full moon. Things had settled down enough yesterday for some boaters to give it a try. Striper sniper Evan Falgowski returned with the first big bass after the blow. He weighed in a 34 pounder taken while trolling a diving plug on shoal structure Thursday morning. That fish currenty leads the Lewes Harbour Striper Tournament. More rockfish should arrive daily, and roam rips across the lower Bay. We'll have live bait and a good selection of trolling lures for those pursuing stripers this fall. We also had some customers who attemped togging at the Outer Wall yesterday, but none reported back. Blackfish action should bounce back soon. The Lewes Harbour Tog Tournament finished up October 31st. Rodney Shoemaker took First with an 8.1 pound Tautog he pulled from the Ice Breakers. Brian Wazlavek wound up Second with his 7.5 pounder, and Scott Bucka also boated a 7.5 pounder that put him in Third. Thanks to all who participated in the annual event, and made it success. Some other quality tautog were checked in prior to the storm. Jim Hukill had a 9.9 pound bruiser, Ted Garman got a 7.3 pounder, and Geoff Klopp captured a 7 pound citation winner. Sheepshead were still avaialble prior to Sandy. Bruce Bennett bested a 12 pound brute at the Wall. Large flocks of gannetts have been working of Cape Henlopen the past two days, indicative of baitfish being present. The activity should attract more migratory stripers. Tog action will kick back in soon, so there's plenty of great fishing ahead now that we've said goodbye to Sandy.
October 25, 2012
- Record Sheepshead
This is the time of year when anglers are treated to the bonus catches of some nice sheepshead, while fishing for tog on the rockpiles off Lewes. The biggest sheepshead so far was brought in recently, and it met the qualifications for surpassing the standing Delaware State Record. Chris Wentz was anchored on the inside of the Outer Wall Saturday when the 15.7 pound jumbo porgy inhaled some sandfleas he was using for bait. Randy Jensen took the current 15.5 pound Record last Fall. Delaware Sport Fishing Tournament rules require that a fish replacing another record fish weighing less than 25 pounds must weigh at least 2 ounces more than the existing Record. A qualified representative from the Division of Fish and Wildlife approved the catch, so if it holds up, the new record will be announced at the end of the year. Tautog fishing has been real fine along the Inner and Outer Walls and Ice Breakers the past few days. Tog still haven't really turned on over reef sites in the Bay, but catching on the rock piles has more than made up for that. The reefs should become productive with cooler water temps. Indicative of the good action yesterday, Captain Ted Moulinier said, "Looks like it was a bad day to be a tog", as his patrons from the Indian added their take to the pile of blackfish from other anglers already covering the cleaning table. Captains Brent and Dave from the Katydid took a busman's holiday, along with Kate Wiest and Bob Murphy, to bring back a limit from the Walls yesterday. Toggers on Katydid boxed a limit of 45 keepers Sunday. "Booker" Bookwalter and Rodney Shoemaker continued their streak of several consecutive days of catching tog at the Ice Breakers. They returned with a box of quality Tautog again yesterday. Rodney took over the lead in the Lewes Harbour Tog Tournament with an 8.1 pounder he landed Monday. Brian Wazlavek currently holds Second with his 7.5 pounder, and Scott Bucka has Third with a 7.5 pound Tog. Captain Pete on Top Fin has had steady togging. On Saturday, Hwa Park's group limited with 35 tog. Alan Danoff, Ken Brittingham and friends joined Pete Monday for a 30 fish limit. Mr. Kim, "Jesse James" and their party limited out with 35 tautog Tuesday. Aside from tog, decent numbers of trout remain in the area. Trout were taken from Roosevelt Inlet and around the pilings of the Cape Henlopen Pier. Lex Robertson checked in a 2.4 pound weakie he captured in Lewes Canal while using cut spot. Marty Riley hooked a 2.8 pound speckled trout by casting a Storm Shad along the marsh bank of the Canal. Spot continue to be caught in Lewes Canal, Broadkill River and from the Henlopen Pier. Surf fishermen found small blues and an increasing number of short stripers in the wash between Cape Henlopen and Gordon's Pond. Both red and black puppy drum were also pulled from the suds. Legal size stripers were captured in Lewes Canal. Doris Smith scored a 29 incher using mullet, and Dave Walker had a pair of 30 inchers on cut bait. Migratory rockfish should show at the mouth of Delaware Bay soon. They usually appear around the full moon, which is October 29th. Most striped bass addicts have been chomping at the bit for the arrival of their favorite quarry. We'll have eels, spot and fresh bunker, when available. We also have a large selection of Mann's Stretch 12+ and 25+ plugs, along with Bomber CD25 plugs for trolling aficionados.
October 18, 2012
- Drum at Roosevelt
As mentioned in previous reports, red drum have been unusually plentiful in the area this year. They've been caught from the Ocean and Bay surf, in the Lewes Canal and Broadkill River and in Roosevelt Inlet. Very few have measured between the 20 to 27 inch legal slot size, but it's pretty cool just seeing them here. In addition to red drum, there's been quite a run of small black drum. Good numbers of puppies were landed at Roosevelt Inlet on Sunday. Some anglers scored their 3 fish limit of drum over 16 inches. Most of the fish fell for clam or sand flea baits, and were in the 16 to 20 inch range. A few trout were mixed in. Drum were also caught from the beach between Cape Henlopen and Gordon's Pond, along with snapper blues, kingfish and an increasing number of short stripers. Surf casters had success using cut mullet, clams and bloodworms. Folks on the Cape Henlopen Pier still managed some decent sized spot by using bloodworms and Fishbites. Schools of mullet that had been thick the past few weeks have thinned out. Mullet congregated in Indian River Inlet, but a mojority of the silver baitfish seem to have vacated Delaware Bay. Tautog action was tough the past week. Wind, dirty water and strong new moon currents made for challenging conditions. Some blackfish were pulled from the Walls and Ice Breakers, and Bay Reefs, but catching should improve in coming days. Captain Brian Wazlavek of Lil' Angler II took over the lead in the Lewes Harbour Tog Tournament with a 7.5 pound white chin he captured at Site 6. Tom Wood moved to Second with his 7.2 pounder, and Clara Hollingsworth has Third with her 6.9 pound tautog. The Tourney continues through October 31st. The annual Lewes Harbour Striper Tournament starts October 20th. The event will run until November 20th. Striped bass traditionally migrate around the October full moon, which occurs this month on the 29th. If this season is like past years, many of the largest bass are caught at the end of October and the first week of November. Tournament participants can pay to enter each day they fish, or pay a flat fee and fish as many days as they want. Few flounder have been hooked in the past couple weeks, and the season closes October 24th. The sea bass season is closed until November 1st, but fishing was good prior to the Monday shutdown. Scott Ayars stopped by with a nice catch of bass, including the pool winning knothead, he had on a Saturday wreck trip to 120 feet of water with Captain H.D. Parsons. Scott said most patrons had their limits. There were also some big bluefish boated. Fishing should be good after the reopening, since the wrecks will have had a chance to reload.
October 11, 2012
- Bay Reefs Starting to Produce Tog
Tog catches have been getting better with cooling air and water temperatures. The Ocean reef sites have been pretty good for blackfish. Captain Carey did some pile hopping at Sites 9 and 10 Friday aboard Grizzly for 17 tautog, 14 triggers, plus an assortment of croakers, blowfish and sea bass. Bay reefs are also starting to yield some blackfish. Captain Brent on the Katydid fished Sites 4,5 and 6 yesterday for 17 keepers. He said some of the rubble was loaded with sea bass, but almost all were shy of minimum size. His guys also caught some impressive triggerfish. Fred Nelson nailed a near record 6.23 pounder on Site 6. In addition to the reefs, the Outer Wall and Ice Breakers also produced tog, as long as the water was clean. Some keeper tog were pulled from the Inner Wall as well. Wind and rain have prevented many anglers from getting out the past few days, and there's been no change to standings in the Lewes Harbour Tog Tournament. Tom Wood still holds the lead with his 7.2 pounder. The Tourney runs through October 31st. Sea bass seekers had success on the Del Jersey Reef Site, over the wrecks of the Poole and the Radford. Other wrecks just inshore of the area gave up bass too. Katydid's crew captured 205 bass while wreck fishing last Thursday. Delaware's sea bass season closes October 15th, but then reopens November 1st. Bottom bouncers in Delaware bay are still finding a few croakers, blowfish and kingfish on natural and artificial structure. Brian Hines boated a 1.2 pound citation kingfish aboard the Fishhawk Saturday. Bluefish remain plentiful in the lower Bay. Snappers were caught in current rips off Cape Henlopen and around the Outer Wall. Casting flashy lures resulted in aggressive strikes from feeding choppers. Some hand sized spot continue to be taken from the Cape Henlopen Pier. Good numbers of trout were hooked at Roosevelt Inlet and in Broadkill River. Fresh cut mullet was a favored bait. Red drum still linger around the inlet and in the Canal. Most have not measured within the 20 to 27 inch slot limit, but it's still pretty cool just seeing them in our area. Cape Henlopen surf casters had bluefish baiting with cut mullet. Offshore fishermen have had a tough time getting out to the canyons. The Quintessa made it to the Wilmington for an overnighter, with a break in the weather last Thursday. The crew returned with a swordfish, a big yellowfin, 26 dolphin and 5 golden tiles. John Gudknecht had the unusual catch of a Cottonmouth Jack. The wahoo bite was decent in 20 to 30 fathoms, with trollers reporting 'hoos at the Tea Cup, Massey's Canyon and the Hot Dog. Ed Sigda and the boys on Snow Goose trolled southeast of the Dog where they connected with several mahi that were oriented on floating stuff in the area.
October 4, 2012
- Tog Action Picking Up
Tautog catches have been improving since the season's opening. Tog were reported from the Ice Breakers and Outer Wall, and also on ocean reef sites 9, 10 and 11. It seems better numbers of keepers have been caught on Ocean structure, but Bay spots should produce more with cooling water. Captain Pete on Top Fin had a nice batch of blackfish Saturday, including a 9.4 pounder he put in the box himself. Captain Brent's toggers aboard Katydid captured 37 keepers in the Ocean Tuesday. Wednesday's group on Katydid kept 28 tog. Standings in the annual Lewes Harbour Tog Tournament show Tom Wood in the lead with his 7.2 pounder. Clara Hollingsworth is Second with a 6.9 pounder, and Bob Murphy's 5.1 pound tog holds Third. The Tourney runs through October 31st, and offers cash prizes. With relatively warm water still in the area, other species are mixed in with tog. Fred Ruff wrestled a 4.61 pound triggerfish from remains of the China Wreck. Buddy Masten muscled in what may be a new state record triggerfish on Sunday. Buddy boated the jumbo 6.34 pounder while togging at the Ice Breakers. The existing record trigger weighs 5 pounds 15 ounces. Some good sized sheepshead still linger around the rocks as well. Paul Long landed a near record 14.65 pounder at the Ice Breakers on Saturday. A few flounder continue to come from the rip on the shoal outside the Outer Wall. The season closes October 24th. Plenty of snapper bluefish remain near Cape Henlopen. They pop up under working birds during moving tides, usually the last half of incoming current. Boaters have had a blast chasing the little choppers and catching them on light tackle. Bucktail jigs and flashy metals were favored lures. Sea bassing is holding up. DNREC added a few extra days to the fall bass season. It will now be open through October 14th and reopen November 1st. Last Saturday, bassers aboard Katydid boxed a 175 bass limit, plus a nice pollack. Dave Popovich nailed a 3.31 pound knothead on that trip. Captain Brian on Lil' Angler II worked some wrecks Monday for more than 200 keeper bass. Sea bass, croakers, trout and a few flounder were found on bottom structure between Site 10 and DA Buoy. Boats trolling the 20 to 30 fathom corridor connected with wahoos. Mike Ambler and John Markey pulled a purple and black Ilander ahead of a ballyhoo near Massey's Canyon for a 46.5 pound 'hoo. Tuna haven't been too plentiful, but the Olson boys found some offshore. A long ride to the Lindenkohl Canyon was worth it for Wes, Shane and Sean Olson, and Jimmy McCoy. They boated four quality yellowfins from 63 to 71 pounds while chunking overnight in 500 fathoms.
September 28, 2012
- Upcoming Tog And Striper Tournaments
The Annual Lewes Harbour Tog Tournament begins October 1, 2012 and runs through October 31, 2012. Contestants must register prior to fishing. Anglers can pay $25 and fish as many days as they want during the event, or pay $3 each day before they go fishing. All entry money goes into a pool, and at the end of Tourney, the pool is split among the registered anglers who catch the three heaviest tautog weighed in at Lewes Harbour Marina during the contest. 50% of the pool goes to the heaviest Tog, 30% to the Second heaviest Tog, and 20% to the Third heaviest Tog. The Annual Lewes Harbour Striper Tournament starts October 20, 2012 and goes on through November 20, 2012. Participants must register before fishing, and can pay $25 to fish any number of days during the Tourney, or pay $3 prior to each individual day of fishing during the contest. All entry money collects in a pool, and at the end of the event, that pool is split among the registered anglers who catch the three heaviest Stripers weighed in at Lewes Harbour Marina during the Tournament. 50% of the pool is awarded for the Heaviest Striper, 30% of the pool goes to the angler who catches Second Heaviest Striper, and 20% goes to the Third Heaviest Striper. All contending fish in either Tournament must be caught on hook and line and weighed by the registered angler who caught it on the Lewes Harbour Marina Scales during regular store business hours within the Tournament dates. All Delaware State and Federal fishing regulations apply. Please be safe and have fun!
September 27, 2012
- Tog Season Reopens
Delaware's Tautog season reopens this weekend, Saturday September 29th. Anglers should be aware that as of August 11, the minimum size was reduced from 16 inches to 15 inches. The creel limit this fall will be 5 tog per person per day, 15 inches or greater. We'll have crabs and sand fleas available at the store for blackfish bait, and also keep rope, wreck anchors and toggles on hand for toggers. The water is still warm, close to 70 degrees, so tog fishermen are likely to encounter triggerfish and sheepshead in the next couple weeks, since they frequent the same structure. Matt Johnson recently scored a 4.31 pound jumbo trigger aboard the Lil' Angler II. The Inner and Outer Walls, Ice Breakers, Reef Sites and wrecks are all probable hangouts for blackfish. Ocean bottom fishermen will also encounter sea bass on reefs and wrecks until that season shuts down for two weeks from October 12 to 31. Catching has been pretty decent for crews willing to brave rough seas the past week. Captain Brent ran Katydid to wrecks in the 25 to 35 mile range for 105 keeper bass Saturday, and 165 keepers Monday. Luis Mispireta decked a 3.49 pound citation knothead on that trip. The guys also boxed some big ling and a flounder. Scott Ayars fished with Captain Ricky Yakimowicz Saturday for a nice catch of bass and a 4.3 pound fluke. Those fishing lower Delaware Bay still found a few trout, kingfish and croakers around the Outer Wall and on Site 8. Snapper blues continue to work over baitfish near the Outer Wall lighthouse. Captain Brian hosted a hardy group from Minnesota for some bluefish action on this past blustery Sunday aboard Lil' Angler II. They bucktailed over 50 blues near the Wall, and also released some short stripers. Spot are still here, and folks fishing Lewes Canal, Broadkill River, and the Cape Henlopen Pier with bits of bloodworm or Fishbites on small hooks had fair numbers of eating size panfish. Mullet have been thick along Lewes Beach. They may be grouping up before making their exit for the season. Many guys have been castnetting a supply to freeze to use for bait later later when fresh ones aren't available. Wind made it tough to get offshore, but Goeff McCloskey and his crew braved big waves Saturday aboard his 28 foot center console. The pounding was worth it when Phil Falgowski landed a 61.4 pound wahoo just inshore of the Baltimore Canyon.
September 21, 2012
- Sea Bass on the Wrecks
Wind caused a problem for anglers this week, so not many boats ventured out. Today's conditions were better, even though there was a considerable easterly heave in the Ocean. The Katydid pounded her way to an inshore wreck, and Captain Brent was pleasantly surprised by how cooperative the sea bass were. His fares limited out with 150 chunky bass, and released many more. He fished structure in the region a few days earlier, and had to work much harder for a fair catch, even though they were quality bass. Joe Pergeorelis put a 3.1 pounder in the box that trip. Perhaps the weather change during the week prompted fish to move, and bass may be staging on other wrecks in coming days. Flounder have been scarce this week, but while they were making their way out along the shipping lane last week, flukers on Katydid scored 12 keeper flatties Thursday near DA Buoy. Captain Brent put the 800th keeper of the year aboard Katydid himself. He followed up the 5.1 pounder with a 7.8 pound citation winner. Boaters working live bottom west of DB Buoy had good action today. Carl Esterly brought in a bucket full of big croakers he took about a mile inshore of the Buoy. In addition to hardheads, he had trout, sea bass and bluefish while using cut mackerel on bottom rigs. Back in the Bay today, Captain Jack on the Fishhawk set up at the Star Site, where his folks put together a nice catch of blowfish. There are still good numbers of tasty puffers in the Bay, and fares on the Pirate King had puffers today as well. Bluefish remain at the Bay mouth too, feeding on plentiful baitfish. Schools of mullet were thick along Lewes Beach today. Usually they bunch up like that prior to their exodus, so they may be getting ready to scoot. Offshore action was spotty today, with only a few white marlin reported from the Washington Canyon. Captain Les on Martha Marie trolled the 19 Fathom Lump today and told of false albacore and dolphin.
September 13, 2012
- Still Flounder Around
Fluke are on the move this time of year, but the fishing can be good if you find groups staging in spots along their offshore migration routes. Edges of the ocean shipping lane offer likely structure for flatties to stopover on. Flounder have been found between DB and DA Buoys in recent days, and they should linger there for a little while yet. Plenty of baitfish are available in the area, and usually, gamefish stay with a food supply. Captain Brent ran Katydid to DA Buoy yesterday, where his patrons enjoyed fine flatfish action. They captured 16 keepers to more than 5 pounds. Those fish brought the number of keepers brought aboard this season to near 800. In addition to the fluke, the guys had several nice sea bass to over 2 pounds. Mate Dave said there was a huge barracuda lying underneath DA Buoy, but the big critter couldn't even be coaxed into striking a live blue runner that was caught right there and deployed on a hook. He guessed the cuda was already full from snacking on the multitude of baitfish hanging around the buoy. Another customer stopped by who had landed a pair of flounder over 20 inches and some decent sea bass while drifting Site 11 yesterday. Sea bass croakers and trout have been scattered along the sides of the channel between DB and DC Buoys. In the Bay, croakers, spot, kingfish, blowfish, porgies, trout and triggerfish were taken from Reef Site 8. Snapper blues are still plentiful, feeding heavily on abundant silversides, anchovies and finger mullet. A few false albacore and Spanish mackerel have been mixed in. Redfish continue to surprise anglers at Roosevelt Inlet and in Lewes Canal. Stripers and flounder were caught where Canary Creek empties into the Roosevelt Inlet basin. There's been a good bite of eating size spot at the Cape Henlopen pier for folks lining the rails using bits of bloodworm on small hooks.
September 6, 2012
- Variety Time
September is a great time of year on the water. Summer crowds have thinned with vacations over and kids returning to school. The weather is warm, and there are plenty of daylight hours left for fishermen to get out and pursue the variety of species available now. Delaware Bay and the Ocean hold quite an assortment of different fish as Fall approaches. As an example, despite windy conditions, Captain Brent anchored Katydid on Reef Site 8 yesterday, and put together a boxful of all kinds of tasty critters. His anglers kept 70 blowfish, a dozen triggerfish to 4.35 pounds, croakers, blues, spot, sea bass, and a 4.45 pound spadefish landed by Lenny Else. Trout are still here, and can be caught on the Star Site, around the Inner and Outer Walls, and in Roosevelt Inlet. Dave Dunlop got a 4.04 pound weakfish in Lewes Canal. Flounder are around yet. The Coyle family got together aboard Katydid last Friday for some fluking on ocean rubble, and returned with a good catch. Brett Coyle boated a 5.4 pounder, Tom Coyle caught a 5.3 pounder, and Connor Coyle had a 4 pounder, plus a 2 pound croaker. Joe Walker had the honor of catching the 750th keeper brought aboard the Katydid this season, then followed it up with a 7.8 pound citation winner on the next drift. Dianna Healy had a 6.53 pound flattie at Site 11 on the Rockfish Ed II. Tony and Gene Vansant worked structure Sunday for several quality flounder, and Gene's jumbo 4.5 pound triggerfish. The Lil' Angler II fished Ocean structure Sunday for a nice catch of sea bass and big ling, and even some bonus mahi mahi. Snapper blues remain plentiful at the mouth of the Bay, feasting on abundant baitfish in the area. The mullet run is going on en force, and there are loads of shiners and bunkers around as well. Captain Carey on the Grizzly told of good action with blues while casting Crippled Herring jigs to fish working under birds near Cape Henlopen. One of his anglers captured a false albacore that was traveling with the blues. Other boaters reported Spanish Mackerel too. The beach at Cape Henlopen has been reopened to fishermen, and shore casters there have also been catching blues. Spot, kingfish, croakers and pompano have been roaming the surf too. There have been scattered reports of red drum over past seasons, but there seems to be a lot more here this year. Puppies have been taken from Lewes Beach, Rehoboth Bay and Indian River. Carl Meyer caught a 20 incher near the train bridge on Lewes Canal. Delaware anglers may keep 5 red drum per day between 20 and 27 inches. The minimum size for stripers in Delaware Bay and it's tributaries went back to 28 inches as of September 1st. Some legal stripers were tempted with mullet at the mouth of Canary Creek and by drifting eels around the Canal drawbridge. Offshore boaters had scattered catches of billfish and dolphin. Grizzly trolled Baltimore Canyon Sunday for a pair of white marlin and a limit of dolphin. Tranquila spent the night in Wilmington Canyon, and released a big blue shark and a hammerhead estimated at around 300 pounds. Candy's Choice overnighted in 500 fathoms of Poor Man's, where Dillon Filepas decked a 70 pound swordfish. The following morning, the crew deep dropped for a limit of golden tiles, including a 41.7 pounder for Dave Filepas. They also put 30 rosefish, 3 mahi, a barrelfish and a lesser amberjack in the box. There you have it, variety both inshore and offshore.
August 30, 2012
- Big Ocean Croakers
Captain Ricky Yakimowicz said he really got into the big hardheads yesterday. Lower Delaware Bay has held plenty of croakers, but the majority were small, between 8 and 10 inches. However, when Captain Ricky anchored up on some marks northwest of DB Buoy in the Ocean, he was pleasantly surprised when 12 to 17 inch "Cadillacs" started coming over the rail. Ricky fished himself and culled 2 pails full to take home for smoking. He said he was pretty selective, and if the croaks didn't stretch from one side of the bucket to the other, they went back. It seems that flounder are on the move, and places in the Ocean where flounder were found in good numbers last week, held few in recent days. Flatties had gathered in deep water near DA Buoy, which is normally a staging area before their push offshore. Anglers checking out that spot in the past few days had little success. Catching had been pretty decent. Last Friday, Captain Carey hosted the guys from Hazzard Electric aboard the Grizzly. They put 11 keepers in the box and released 43 other flounder. John Pulli checked in a 6.54 pound fluke he took from Reef Site 11. Offshore bottom fishing produced nice specimens. John and Andrew Schneider traveled to the Norfolk Canyon for some deep dropping, and returned with a dozen Blueline Tilefish, plus a pair of Snowy Groupers weighing 13 and 37 pounds. Back in Delaware Bay, some flounder were still lingering around structure. Flatties were found on the Brown Shoal reef sites 6 and 7. Guys fishing close to the rocks of the Outer Wall also had flounder. Flatfish were lying right at the edge of the stonepile, and casting jigs tipped with fresh cut bait or Gulp! was the most effective way to get their attention. Snapper blues continue to provide action for lower Bay boaters. Packs of feeding choppers slashed through schools of shiners on shoals around the Outer Wall during the moving current of either tide. Wheeling and crashing birds usually gave away their presence. Light tackle afficionados had a blast catching the fish while tossing Kastmasters, Gators, Stingsilvers, bucktails and Gotcha Plugs. Trolling Clarkspoons and Tony Acettas on light gear also enticed blues. Bay bottom bouncers continued to connect with hardheads, kingfish, spot, blowfish and trout on dropoffs inside and outside the Outer Wall, and near the Inner Wall and Ferry Jetty. The Star Site and Broadkill Reef also produced. Triggerfish were hanging out on wrecks at the Bay mouth. Striped bass gathered at the junction of Broadkill River and Roosevelt Inlet. Rockfish could be seen at night in the lights of the Coast Guard Station, boiling on balls of silversides. Mac McNaught told of great fun hooking and releasing many 15 to 20 inch linesiders while flyrodding there. Big toothy critters are still prevalent. Captain Brian on the Lil' Angler II had Bret Rankin from Montauk Fishing Gear along for some catch and release sharking. They put Bret's BTR Series reels through their paces on several large sand tigers. Brian was impressed, and said the reels passed with flying colors.
August 23, 2012
- Fine Fluking
This summer has offered some of the better flounder fishing in recent years. Artificial and natural structure in both the Ocean and Delaware Bay have produced plenty of flatfish. There isn't the open bottom fishery in the Bay like there used to be, possibly because fluke are now drawn to the cover and food supply presented by the network of artificial reefs. However, anglers who have learned how to work the rubble, and understand the effects of tidal currents have been rewarded with some fine fluking. Chris Vann celebrated his 40th birthday with his buddies while reef fishing aboard the Katydid last Friday. The party resulted in 34 keepers to 5.1 pounds. Martha Marie's anglers had some good fishing last Friday. "Pizza John" Perrin put 3 in the box himself. Flukers aboard Katydid captured 21 flatties Sunday, bringing the number of keepers on the boat this season to over 700! Captain Pete's guys on Top Fin took home 16 quality flounder Sunday. Brooke Drury brought in a 4.77 pounder she hooked on Site 8 with a live bait. Captain Carey had his family out Sunday for a little fun fishing on the Grizzly, and they came in with 8 nice flatfish and a bunch of croakers. Monday, Steve Mattson and family joined Captain Carey for 15 fluke and lots of croakers. Craig Moore managed a 7.75 pound doormat on that trip. On Tuesday, Joe Walker, Joe Walker Jr, Tony Vansant and Barry Gerhard bucktailed ocean reef structure for 14 nice flatties. Joe just missed a citation with his 6.9 pounder. Joe, Joe Jr, Barry and Harry Glenbocki went back for more on Wednesday, and limited out with 16 plump flounder. Although most of the catching has taken in the Bay and Ocean, some flounder continue to come from Lewes Canal and the Cape Henlopen Pier. Brenda Powell checked in two nice fish she caught with minnows at Roosevelt Inlet. Bottom bouncers are still finding plenty of croakers of varying sizes inside and outside the Outer Wall, and on Sites 5 and 8. Numerous small trout, and some of legal size, along with kingfish, spot and blowfish were hanging out in the same areas. Snapper blues were often seen chasing baitfish through current rips around the Wall and near Cape Henlopen Point. The little choppers are a blast to catch with lures on light tackle. Inshore bottom fishermen found decent numbers of legal sea bass on natural structure between DB and DA Buoys. Offshore bottom dropping produced action with tilefish. Billy White, along with Captains Chris Thurman and Evan Falgowski, hosted Mike Parker from Outdoors Delmarva for a day of tilefishing in Baltimore Canyon aboard Quintessa. The trip was a great success, and the guys came back with 16 golden tile, including 35 pounders for Captain Ted Moulinier and Hank Draper. On the previous trolling trip on Quintessa, Ron Uschok whacked a 29 pound wahoo.
August 16, 2012
- Flounder and Hardheads
Delaware Bay structure continues to produce some pretty decent flounder action. Reef Sites 5,6,7 and 8 have yielded good numbers of flatties, with many keeper sized. Success has alot to do with presentation, and drift conditions are important. A light breeze against the direction of the current allows for slow coverage of the strike zone. Sometimes using the engines helps keep the boat where it needs to be. Bucktails and short leadered jig rigs are effective for rubble bouncing, but be prepared to lose tackle. Cut baits such as squid, bluefish and croaker work well, and smelts, shiners and Gulp! artificials also get the nod. Lots of small fish seek cover on reef site junk, and offer a ready food supply for flounder roaming the areas. Fishermen noted that they found little spot, croakers, ling, trout, blues, silver perch, sea robins, pigfish, sea bass and others on the deck that fluke spit up when brought aboard. So, it stands to reason that offering up live baits such as spot will get the attention of resident flatfish. As an example of how good the flounder catching has been this season for crews that are dialed in on working structure, guys on the Katydid kept 29 fish to 6 pounds on Saturday, bringing the boat's total number of keepers for the summer to over 600! Dennis Fish and friends joined Captain Carey on the Grizzly Saturday to put 27 flatties to 6 pounds in the box. Captain Pete's fishermen had 13 flounder and 42 blues Saturday aboard Top Fin. Captain Vince limited out a recent 2 person charter on Miss Kirstin, with 8 nice flatties from the Star Site. There is a load of bait in Delaware Bay, with schools of bunker, silversides and anchovies showing in many locations. During moving tides, hordes of snapper bluefish herded bait up against the shoal off the tip of Cape Henlopen. Baitfish forced to the surface were easy picking for blues below and birds above, and the ensuing melee involved diving gulls, terns and pelicans all vying for their share. Snapper blues were seen feeding around the Outer Wall and on the Star Site as well. Casting bucktails or metal spoons and jigs is a fun way to catch the scrappy choppers. In addition to surface action with blues, bottom bouncers got into plenty of croakers both inside and outside the Outer Wall, and on Reefs 5 and 8. Clams, squid, shrimp and Fishbites were favored by hungry hardheads. Size of the croakers has increased, with more fish over 12 inches being landed. Captain Ted's boats at Angler's Fishing Center have been returning with nice batches of hardheads, along with kingfish, spot, blowfish and spike trout. Captain Jim on the Hawkeye has had several successful half day trips, returning with a nice mix of panfish. Triggerfish have been hanging around Bay reefs and wrecks, and Captain Brian's fares on Little Angler II have had triggers mixed in with their croakers. All the panfish activity in the Bay has attracted larger predators, and there have been numerous sharks around. Fishermen have tangled with sand tigers, browns and other species. Captain Brian on Lil' Angler II has tagged and released many big sand tigers. Captain Pete on Top Fin was sharking outside the Outer Wall Wednesday when he hooked a 5 foot sandbar shark that as bitten in half by a much more sizeable toothy critter. Kinda' makes you think twice about taking a swim...Ocean bottom bouncers did well on flatfish. The Old Grounds southeast of DB Buoy gave up flounder, and rough bottom in the vicinity of DA Buoy also held fluke. Captain Charlie's flukers on Tranquila scored 14 quality keepers while drifting near DA Thursday. Captain Les had some good Ocean fluking on Martha Marie this week too. Reef site 10 continues to give up some impressive flounder. Matt Baker checked in a 9.91 pound trophy doormat he decked there while drifting live spot. Site 11 also offered some decent fluking over the past week.
August 9, 2012
- Good Bay Bottom Fishing
Delaware Bay bottom bouncers have enjoyed fun fishing recently. There are plenty of croakers both inside and outside the Outer Wall, as well as on Reef Sites 5 and 8. Size of the hardheads has improved, with some fish over 12 inches reported. Clams, squid, bloodworms, shrimp and Fishbites were popular baits. Spot, kingfish, spike trout, blowfish and triggerfish were also part of the mix available, and were hooked using the same offerings. Snapper bluefish have been numerous too. They could be seen crashing schools of shiners in rips on the shoals inside and outside the Outer Wall. Casting bucktails or flashy metal lures would result in strikes from the rampaging little choppers. Flounder action has been good for those who know how to work the artificial reefs. Sites 6,7 and 8 were productive. Bucktails and bottom rigs both got bit. Captain Brent fished an afternoon 4 hour trip on Katydid Wednesday at the Star Site. During the first part of ebb tide, his anglers put 20 quality flounder in the box, out of 64 that they caught using squid, smelts and shiners. Ocean flounder fishing was decent too. Brent ran Katydid to Site 10 for his morning trip Wednesday, and returned with 23 nice flatties to 6 pounds. The Old Grounds southeast of DB Buoy, and bottom structure west of DA Buoy also yielded flatfish and sea bass. Captain Pete on Top Fin told of good tautog catching on an ocean wreck Wednesday. His fares culled a nice batch of keepers from many that they caught. Tuna activity has slowed since the hot chunk bite a couple weeks ago. A few yellowfins were taken by trollers between the Hambone and 30 Fathoms. Captain Les on Martha Marie pulled a Joe Shute lure at the Cigar Wednesday for a 50 pound yellowfin. Captain J.W. Hocker on the Miss Caroline trolled near the Tea Cup over the weekend to put a nice wahoo on ice, and release an estimated 200 pound blue marlin. Deep water bottom fishing was productive. Bill Swords and his crew on Swordsfish dropped in Washington Canyon Saturday for 11 golden tilefish, including Jake Kaplan's 43.5 pounder, 6 gray tile, and 35 knothead sea bass. Andrew Schneider was dropping in the Norfolk Canyon Saturday when he hooked an 18.6 pound citation blueline tilefish.
August 2, 2012
- Marlin Mania
The offshore billfish bite has been very good, just in time for the 39th Annual White Marlin Open, to be held from August 6 to 10. Crews told of beautiful cobalt blue 80 degree water full of life in 1000 fathoms between the Poor Man's and Baltimore Canyons. Two tone porpoises and tunas aired out and fed as shearwaters dove on bait among scattered weeds and sulphur. Double digit white marlin release days were common among boats running the distance. Blue marlin and even sailfish were also hooked. The scene should be set for an interesting Tournament. Tuna action in 20 to 30 fathoms has cooled off. There was a scattered chunk bite on the Hot Dog and in the 30 Fathom Notch, but nothing reliable. Trollers told of a handful of wahoos in the same area. Offshore bottom fishing has been productive. Patrons on Katy Did deep dropped Saturday for a big catch of gray tile to 18 pounds, golden tile to 25 pounds, several blackbelly rosefish and a pair of barrelish. Inshore bottom bouncers did well with flounder. Captain Pete hosted Nevin Byler and his group aboard Top Fin last Friday for a nice catch of 20 keepers to 5.83 pounds while working Site 10. Joe Walker, Joe Walker, Jr, Tom Coyle and Tony Vansant fished Site 10 for their limit of 16 on Friday. Tony used a bucktail and croaker strip combo to tempt a 7.81 pound beauty. Captain Charlie's flukers on Tranquila put 16 keepers in the box near DA Buoy Saturday. Tony and Diana Vansant, Steve Millman and Brian Plummer fished reef structure Saturday for 12 quality flatties to 6.2 pounds. Wayne and Matt Baker, Chip Graves and Adam Lovenguth used live spot at Reef 10 for their 13 flatfish, including Adam's 6.76 pounder. Reef rubble has yielded some weighty flounder specimens this season, but Joe Walker, Jr brought in the heaviest so far. Joe was jigging a bucktail with cut bait at Site 10 when it was inhaled by an 11.36 pound doormat. Congratulations to Joe on his biggest flounder to date. Delaware Bay reefs have produced flatties as well. Captain Pete on Top Fin had 6 keepers to 5.8 pounds during a 3 hour Bay trip Wednesday. After Thursday's half day, Top Fin returned with 7 flounder, including young Adam O'Connor's 5.58 pounder. Delaware Bay fishermen also noticed an increase in the size of croakers caught this past week. More nice hardheads in the 10 to 12 inch range showed up around the Star Site. That area also gave up kingfish, blowfish, sanpper blues and legal trout to 16 inches. Triggerfish were taken along the Outer Wall. Fallyn Smith checked in triggers of 4.19 and 3.48 pounds from the rocks. Vic Gross got the first sheepshead of the season at the Wall, a citation worthy 8.14 pounder.
- Summertime Mix
Delaware anglers have been enjoying a summertime mix of fish available in the region. Bottom bouncers caught flounder, sea bass, trout, croakers, spot, kingfish, blowfish, snapper blues, tautog and triggerfish. Offshore fishermen continued to find yellowfin tuna, dolphin, wahoo, and marlin. The Old Grounds and reef sites 10 and 11 remain the places to be in the Ocean for flounder and sea bass. Bucktailers and those using traditional bottom rigs tipped with squid, shiners, smelt, cut bluefish or Gulp! caught decent numbers of fish. Captains Brent and Dave on Katydid worked the Ocean grounds Thursday for 23 keeper fluke, including Ryan Mayer's 7.87 pound citation winner. Tuesday, flukers on Katydid pulled 17 keepers from Site 10. Captain Pete took Mr. Chung Ro's group to Site 10 Sunday to put 15 nice flounder in the box. In Delaware Bay, reef sites 5,6,7 and 8 produced flatfish. Joe Walker and Tom Coyle drifted Site 8 for 8 good keepers Tuesday. Boaters drifting or anchored on Sites 5 and 8 caught numerous small croakers, along with kingfish, puffers, snapper blues and some legal trout. Triggerfish also came from the reef sites, as well as from wrecks at the Bay mouth and the Ice Breakers and Outer Wall. A small piece of clam, squid, shrimp or a sandflea worked for triggers. After a slowdown due to heavy weekend boat traffic on the Hot Dog, tuna chunking action bounced back. Some crews told of double digit catches of yellowfins around the Dog Monday and Tuesday. Tuna were also reportedly found in the notch of the 30 Fathom Line.
July 19, 2012
- Still Hot At The Dog
Recent tuna action has been reminiscent of that years ago, when there used to be reliable chunking for yellowfins on the inshore lumps. Anglers have enjoyed some of the better fishing we've seen in awhile. Bluefins that were thick on the Hot Dog moved out around the middle of last week, when water temperatures rose above their comfort levels. They were replaced by numerous yellowfins that took up residence due to a daily feeding of butterfish chunks. Perhaps they'll keep showing up for the butterfish buffet as long as crews keep chunking on a regular basis. Some boats have done very well. Anglers on Quintessa, with Captains Chris Thurman and Evan Falgowski, got in the hot bite at the Dog. Saturday, they returned with 5 nice yellowfins in the 45 to 50 pound class. Sunday, the boys boated 22 yellowfins. And, on Tuesday, they put 19 more in the box. Wes Olson and his team limited out at the Hot Dog Tuesday, with 9 plump yellowfins aboard the Deep Penetration. Riley Zimmerman and Racheal Strawser each had 48.5 pound yellowfins on their chunking trip to the Dog. Although chunking has accounted for most of the tuna, trollers still found a few willing to pounce on ballyhoos or spreader bars. John Markey and Mike Ambler trolled between the Hot Dog and Hambone Saturday for a 40.8 pound wahoo and a 45 pound yellowfin. Keith Mohring and friends trolled the Baltimore Canyon for 6 dolphin from 10 to 20 pounds. On the inshore scene, flounder pounders continued to have success on natural structure between DB and DA Buoys. A recent fluke trip aboard Katydid produced 36 keepers, limiting out all patrons aboard. On Tuesday, flukers on Katydid captured 14 keepers to 6.14 pounds while working the Old Grounds and Site 10. Today, Thursday, Katydid returned with 23 more keepers, including Ryan Mayer's 7.87 pounder. Jake Wiles whacked a 6.5 pound flounder aboard the Lil' Angler II. Bob "Buckwheat" Bryant brought in the largest flatfish we've seen so far this summer. His 31 1/2 inch doormat weighed 10.92 pounds, and was pulled from an ocean wreck. John Mazulla muscled in a 7.96 pound citation flounder on the Indian. Flounder action was decent in Delaware Bay for those who know how to work the artificial reef sites. Presentation is key, and sometimes it's necessary to keep the boat in gear or deploy a sea anchor for the proper drift. Of course, you should be courteous and considerate of boaters fishing close by. Matt Baker, Chip Graves had a limit of quality flatties to 6.33 pounds using live spot on Site 7. Tog season reopened July 17th, but blackfish haven't been to cooperative in the 80 degree Bay water. However, Captain Pete on Top Fin took Mr. Choi's group to an Ocean wreck with cooler temps today, and put together a catch of 26 keeper tautog, most in the 3 to 5 pound range. Triggerfish like the hot water. Captain Ted had 17 triggers during a half day trip to a Bay wreck aboard the Indian on Wednesday. Chuck Coverdale caught a 1 pound porgy on that trip. Other species that we don't usually see have been attracted to warm water in the Bay. Dan Riley was shark fishing on the Coral Beds, using a 16 inch bluefish for bait, when it was eaten by a big cobia. During the fight, a huge shark appeared and grabbed the cobia. Fortunately, the cobia escaped, and was boated in one piece. Back at the Lewes Harbour scales, the battle scarred fish weighed 48 pounds. Schools of bunker have been roaming the Bay, and fishermen have noted an increase in catches of croakers, kingfish, spot, small trout, blowfish and snapper blues. Hopefully the presence of all the baitfish and the improved panfish activity point to a productive season ahead. Slot stripers continue to come from Lewes Canal. Drifting eels around the Drawbridge or casting Storm Shads along the marsh bank got the attention of rockfish in the 20 to 26 inch range.
July 12, 2012
- Bay Flounder Heating Up
Although the Ocean flounder bite has been good recently, fluke action on Delaware Bay kicked in this past week. Boats working the artificial structure of reef sites 5,6,7 and 8 did well with flatties when conditions were right. Squid strips, shiners and smelts on bottom rigs worked, and bucktails tipped with Gulp! or cut bait caught their share. Dave Walker checked in a 6.86 pounder he got with a jig. Flukers on Katy Did scored a great catch while rubble bouncing Sunday. Captains Brent Wiest and Dave Walker, Fred Robinson, Sam Scott, Richard Adams, Jeff Kerner, Bill Wiest, John Furbush, Clara Hollingsworth, Nancy Nortonheimer and Joe McNeal teamed up for 39 keepers, plus a black drum and a trout. Joe had the largest flatfish, a doormat weighing 9.28 pounds. Captain Brent hosted the Cannon and Sheffield families for some flounder fishing, returning with 25 keepers. Matt Baker, Chip Graves and Nate Evans used live spot to tempt 11 quality fluke from a Bay reef site. Chip caught a 5.76 pounder, and Nate nailed a 6.33 pound beauty. As mentioned earlier, flounder fishing in the Ocean has been productive too, with natural bottom structure of the Old Grounds giving up plenty of fluke, along with some decent sea bass. Reef 10 yielded flatties too. Pete Geng got an 8.4 pound trophy there aboard Top Fin. Michelle Schnaitman got a 5.2 pounder at Site 10, and John Schnaitman, Jr took a 6.06 pound flounder. John Mazzula muscled in a 7.96 pound citation aboard the Indian. Tuna fishermen continue to find success at the Hot Dog. Chunking the northeast corner of the lump produced both yellowfins and bluefins. Yellowfins responded to hand fed chunks of butters or sardines on 50 pound fluorocarbon leaders, usually early in the morning. Bluefins ate baits deeper in the column, even on the bottom. Jigging with Butterfly or Hammered Diamond Jigs was effective as well. Bill McMahon, Steve Schad and Rick Peters chunked a 75 pound bluefin at the Dog, and released 8 other bruisers. Jim Weidman and friends had fast chunking action at the Hot Dog Tuesday aboard the Grizzly. Captain Carey Evans said they were hooked up constantly from the time the first butter went in the water at 6 am until he stopped for a break at 10:15. They kept 5 yellowfins plus their "over and under bluefins", and released numerous other bluefins. Back inshore, striper seekers fishing Lewes Canal found slot size specimens between the Drawbridge and Railroad Bridge. Casting Storm Shads worked well. Drfiting eels or bottom fishing with clams also produced rockfish.
July 5, 2012
- Tuna at the Dog
Bluefins have taken up residence at the Hot Dog, and crews working the east side of the structure caught some nice tuna. Anchoring and chunking with butterfish and sardines proved productive. Fish responded to baits presented at different depths, but those closer to the bottom got bit most. Butterfly and hammered diamond jigs sent deep in the water column were effective too. Yellowfins were mixed in, but it seemed they stayed higher in the slick, and preferred hand fed chunks. Captain Carey hosted Brian Arnold's group aboard the Grizzly for some great tuna action on July 1. They boxed 2 yellowfins, a 90 pound bluefin, and their under 47 inch bluefin. They also fought and released several 100 plus pound bluefins before calling it a day. Carey said the trick to tempting yellowfins was offering baits on 50 pound fluorocarbon. Bruce, Brad and Josh Buchalter, and Gerry and Scott Wert enjoyed fine fishing at the Dog on July 2nd. They kept 3 yellowfins and Scott's 88 pound bluefin, and released other bluefins as well. Captain Carey on Grizzly returned to the Hot Dog July 3rd with just one angler. Jim Weidman had a banner day, reeling in a pair of yellowfins and 8 bluefins up to 100 pounds. Other captains told of good bluefin chunking at the Dog, and still some trolling catches too. Boats pulling ballyhoos way, way back on the Hambone and Chicken Bone hooked bluefins, many over 50 inches. Yellowfins continued to pop up in 40 fathoms southeast of the Dog, but not in the numbers of previous weeks. Phil Falgowski and his buddies fished in the Baltimore Canyon where they had 5 gaffer dolphin, a 50 pound yellowfin and a 300 pound blue marlin release. In addition to good tuna fishing, inshore bottom bouncing was hot too. Flounder were taken from the Old Grounds between DB and DA Buoys, and on reefs 9 and 10. Anglers drifting squid, mackerel strips, smelts and shiners did well. Flukers also had success jigging bucktails tipped with Gulp! Kevin and Tammy Parker, Lance Cochran and "Flint" Sherman had their limit of 16 fine flatfish to 5.7 pounds on a trip to the Old Grounds. Buckwheat and Bobby Bryant, Bob Fleming and Steve Reynolds rounded up 13 keepers to 5.75 pounds at Site 10. Captain Brent's fares on Katy Did kept 28 flatties to over 5 pounds while rubble bouncing on July 3rd. A couple days earlier, Brent's anglers came back with 33 quality keepers. Dennis Fish and friends iced 19 fluke aboard the Grizzly. Several big flounder were weighed in during the week. Steve Parseghian pulled in a 9.42 pounder. Matt Shoup scored a 9.3 pounder using a bucktail tipped with Gulp! Matt Baker boated a 6.25 pound fluke. Diana Vansant decked one weighing 6.22 pounds. Matthew Maskell fooled a 5.04 pounder with a squid and minnow sandwich. Flounder catching is improving in Delaware Bay. Steve Warren used live peanut bunker to get his limit near the Ferry Jetty. All the fish were over 4.25 pounds, and the heaviest was just under 9 pounds. Jack Henriksen and friends on his "Legal Eagle" had 11 keepers while drifting a reef site on July 4th. Bay reefs have also started to produce legal sized croakers. Using clams, bloodworms or Fishbites on small hooks at Site 5 resulted in hardheads that mostly ranged 8 to 12 inches. Blowfish, kingfish, spot, snapper blues and triggerfish were found on reef junk too. The slot size striped bass season is now open in Delaware Bay and it's tributaries. Anglers may keep 2 stripers between 20 and 26 inches per day until August 31. The slot limit does not apply to coastal waters, Indian River Inlet or the Inland Bays, where a 28 inch minimum size remains in effect. Striper were plentiful in Lewes Canal. They could be seen working baitfish in the evenings between the Drawbridge and Train Bridge. Anglers casting Storm Shads or Rat-L-Traps caught their slot size keepers. Other keeper bass fell for clams, squid heads or eels fished on the bottom.
June 28, 2012
- Hot Flounder Bite in the Ocean
The Ocean flounder bite has been very good in the past week. Flatties congregated around the structure of reef sites 10 and 11, and on the edges of many wrecks. The live bottom and natural contours of the Old Grounds between DB and DA Buoys held fluke too. Drifting squid and mackerel strips, minnows, shiners, smelt and Gulp! on bottom rigs worked well. Guys jigging bucktails caught plenty of fish too. Captain Charlie on the Tranquila hosted Greg, Josh, Justin and Jena Hayer, along with Tori Bell and Emily Olexy for some fluking near DA Buoy last Friday. The group returned with 17 quality keepers and a nice batch of sea bass. On Saturday, Katy Did had one of the most impressive catches to hit the dock in awhile. The 10 anglers aboard limited out, with 40 plump flatfish, including 2 over 9 pounds. Captain Brent Wiest boated a 9.5 pound doormat, and Paul Pergeorelis put a 9.3 pounder in the box. Captain Pete Haines hooked a 7.18 pound citation fluke as part of his limit on Top Fin. Captain Pete went rubble bouncing again Monday for 15 keepers to 6 plus pounds. Pete also did a couple shark trips to the mouth of the Bay, and told of solid action with Browns and Duskies in the 5 to 6 foot range. Captain Brent on Katy Did drifted wreck and reef junk on an afternoon trip Wednesday for 18 flounder. He concentrated on the same mix of structure today to secure a 20 fish limit for his fares. Blake and Donna Reed, Josh and Henry Sharp, and "Flint" fished the Old Grounds today for their limit of 20 plump flatties. Wes Olson weighed in an 8.25 pound beauty he captured today on the Old Grounds, southeast of DB Buoy. Although Delaware Bay flounder fishing in general has been slow, some fishermen found nice fish. Ron Schmier and Len Shaffer scored five beauties, including Ron's 8.51 pound citation winner, while employing 6 inch Gulp! Swimming Mullets over Reef Site 5. Indian River Inlet anglers have been getting in on fine flounder fishing too. Small spot have been abundant in the River, and flounder funneled through the inlet for their share of the desirable baifish. Folks freelining live spot along the bottom have done well with flatfish. Other good news tells of continuing tuna catches offshore. Wayne Wilson and his crew trolled 40 fathoms outside the Tea Cup for 5 nice yellowfins. The boys on Knot Right fished the West Wall of the Baltimore for 9 yellowfins, then moved to the East Wall to deep drop for 20 tilefish. The Katy Did iced 8 yellowfins and 36 tiles on a trip to the Baltimore Monday. Dave Popovich battled a big blue marlin for some time on the Quintessa, and unfortunately the jumbo billfish made a last minute dash under the boat and broke off before the leader could be touched for an official release. The crew also released a white and boated a yellowfin on that trip. Bluefin tuna have popped up on structure in 20 to 30 fathoms. They were seen and caught in the Dumpsite, on the 19 Fathom Lump, at Massey's Canyon, and today, in 30 fathoms outside the Hot Dog.
June 21, 2012
- Big Bluefin!
A big bluefin caused a buzz on the dock this week. Dave Cook and Sean Herlihy teamed up to best a 162.6 pound bruiser, the heaviest tuna brought back so far this season. The fish had a 66 inch fork length. The guys were trolling a ballyhoo skirted with a blue and white Joe Shute lure way, way back, when they connected with the tuna near the 19 Fathom Lump. Other trollers encountered bluefins inshore as well, but most of those were in the 30 to 50 pound class. Captain Alan Steele saw bluefins busting bait at the Chicken Bone Wednesday afternoon, and trolled up his keeper on the way home from offshore. He said the same thing happened on a previous trip when bluefins in the Dumpsite rose to the surface to feed late in the afternoon. Keep in mind the limit on bluefin tuna is one per boat per day from 27 to less than 73 inches curved fork length. Yellowfin action continues good, with catches reported from several locations between 40 and 100 fathoms from the Tip of Baltimore Canyon all the way down to Washington Canyon. Crews told of sounder screens red with baitfish and flocks of working birds frequenting the corridor. The 40 to 50 fathom area between the Hot Dog and Poor Man's Canyon was particularly productive. Captain Larry Coyle said he came across a temperature break in the region that went from 65 to 71 degrees, where he trolled up a half dozen tuna, and had several more bites. Shawn Gallagher and his gang on Total Chaos came on a bunch of birds working 66 degree water in 45 fathoms west of the Baltimore, and landed 5 yellowfins to 50 plus pounds. Ed Sigda and the boys on Snow Goose enjoyed fast fishing while pulling spreader bars inshore of the Baltimore, putting 6 tuna in the box. John Joe Kabino, Evan Falgowski, Matt Shoup and Rhett Passwaters teamed up for 7 tuna on Tuesday. Captain Carey's group on the Grizzly had a great trolling trip Wednesday, returning with 8 nice yellowfins. On the inshore bottom scene, sea bass and flounder were available. Captains Brent and Dave on the Katy Did anchored up over a few wrecks Wednesday, and put together a limit of 225 bass and many plump ling for their 9 fares. Jigs worked well for knotheads that were sometimes suspended well above the structure. Bass were taken on the open bottom between DB and DA Buoys, but the majority were shy of the 12 1/2 inch minimum. Fluke were hanging out on the Old Grounds. Wes Olson and his buddies had 8 nice keepers there Tuesday. Taylor Deemer used an orange jig with a squid strip to tempt a 7.68 pound doormat while drifting the Grounds with Captain Ricky Yakimowicz. Ricky mentioned there were numerous chub mackerel around, and that they could be captured with sabiki rigs or jigs and tubes. The tinkers make excellent fresh cut bait for fluke and sea bass. Delaware Bay bottom bouncers had spotty catches of flounder, spike trout, kingfish and blowfish around the rubble of reef sites 5,6,7 and 8. Triggerfish made an early appearance on Bay structure thanks to warm weather. Captain Ted had nice triggers on trips aboard the Indian. Mike DuFour decked a 4.02 pound triggerfish aboard the Martha Marie. Small boaters drifting Lewes Canal are still finding keeper flatfish. John Bickleman celebrated Father's Day with his daughter Lexie by landing a 6.28 pound flattie from the Canal. Jenny Manning outfished the men on Father's Day with her 4.64 pounder caught in the Canal. Spot have shown up in Indian River. Boaters using bits of bloodworm or Fishbites on small hooks near Buoy 20 hooked spot which they could use as live baits for stripers and flounder in the Inlet.
June 14, 2012
- Mako Time
Sharkers report good numbers of blue whalers, sandbars, duskies and makos inshore so far this season. The toothy critters have been frequenting structure, mainly in the 20 to 30 fathom corridor. Wrecks such as the Misty Blue, Jacob Jones, Northern Pacific, Dry Docks, Hooper, San Gil and Marine Electric are all popular stopovers for migrating pelagics. Bottom contours that cause current changes and hold baitfish also attract sharks. The 19 Fathom Lump, Elephant Trunk, Tea Cup, Massey's Canyon, Chicken Bone, Hambone, Hot Dog, Sausages, South Paw and The Fingers are likely spots to set up on. Alex McClure was sharking at Massey's Canyon Sunday aboard the Joint Venture with Captain Jeff Hoepfl when he hung into the largest mako we've had brought to the dock so far this season. The big blackeye inhaled a mackerel fillet, and with some quick work by the crew, was subdued after a relatively short battle. Back at the Marina scales, it weighed in at 221.5 pounds. The guys also trolled up their limit of a single bluefin in the Dumpsite outside Massey's. The boys on Big Herring drifted between Massey's and The Dumpsite for a 92 pound mako and a dolphin, then trolled a 40 pound bluefin from acres of tuna busting on the surface. Corey Walker and his buddies took a 93 pound mako, and released another mako, a blue shark and a brown shark in 66 degree water at the Hambone. They also put a gaffer dolphin in the boat. Tuna action continued good for offshore trollers. Captain Tom Cornell's crew on High Hook pulled skirted ballyhoos in Baltimore Canyon Friday, and returned with 13 yellowfins. Shawn Gallagher's guys on Total Chaos went 3 for 6 on yellowfins in the tip of Poor Man's. They also had a mako on the troll and tangled with a big blue marlin on light gear for awhile. In addition, they ran over a big Thresher that was lounging just below the surface, which didn't do the running gear any good. Johnny Mancuso, Kyle Hamilton, John Hazzard and Bubba Hastings ran Johnny's Palmetto center console on it's maiden voyage to Baltimore Canyon, and were rewarded with five 40 pound class yellowfins. Captain Chris on Quintessa worked the West Wall of Wilmington Canyon for 8 nice tuna, including Billy White's 61.5 pound sickle fin. Gunnar Zorn and his anglers on the Dawg Haus really got into tuna while trolling Washington Canyon, putting 19 yellowfins in the box. The first bigeye of the season, a 131 pounder, was boated in the Wilmington Canyon by Matt Boomer on the Four Eights out of Ocean City. Back closer to the beach, bottom bouncers between DB and DA Buoys found loads of sea bass, however not many met the 12 1/2 inch minimum. Maybe they'll be big enough by the end of summer. Fluke were mixed in, and some decent flatties were decked by anglers deploying buctktails with strip baits or Gulp! In Delaware Bay, boaters fishing around the artificial reef sites had a few flounder, trout and kingfish. Surfcasters on Broadkill Beach caught some weakfish using peelers and chicken, but trout have spread out since water temperatures rose into the 70's. Small boaters in Roosevelt Inlet hooked trout using Bass Assassins, Gulp! and Fin-S Fish. Lewes Canal is still giving up an occasional flatfish to flukers using minnows, shiners or Gulp! on small tandem rigged jigs.
June 7, 2012
- Decent Sign of Flounder in the Bay and Ocean
Even though flounder catches in Lewes Canal this spring haven't met anglers' expectations, it appears there may be some good fluke fishing ahead for folks fishing Delaware Bay and Ocean structure. Captain Ted's flukers aboard the Indian had 6 keeper flatties to 5 pounds while pile hopping at Site 5 a few days ago. Matt Baker anchored on Site 5 Sunday, to deal with wind and a fast drift, and managed 3 keepers in the 21 inch range while on the hook. It's likely flounder will turn on around most of the Bay's artificial reefs in coming days. Ocean bottom bouncers found good numbers of flatfish on the Old Grounds, southeast of DB Buoy. Captain Ricky's patrons on Thelma Dale IV got into specimens upwards of 6 pounds while bucktailing and fishing strips of cut bait on rough bottom over the weekend. Flounder were still available in Lewes Canal and Broadkill River, but as mentioned earlier, anglers had to really work for every fish. Chris Teeter managed to put together a limit of flatties to 21 inches, along with his single trout limit while drifting Gulp! and minnows in the Canal Sunday. Trout continue to please fishermen with their return to Bay waters. Spike weakfish were caught around the submerged jetties of Roosevelt Inlet, and along Broadkill Beach. Bait fishermen chose chicken, peeler crabs and soft crab aprons as offerings. Those fond of casting lures found success with 4 inch Bass Assassin Sea Shads, Fin-S Fish, Gulp! Swimming Mullets, and Speck Rigs. Last part of incoming tide, and dawn or dusk were good times to try for trout. Sea Bass action is holding up, but it seems the farther off you go, the better the quality of bass. Captain Brent ran Katy Did to an offshore snag Sunday for a nice batch of big ling, pollock, and knothead bass, including Craig Lester's 4.37 pounder. Plenty of bass were residing at reef site 11, but many of the keeper sized fish have been picked off. Bass are spreading out onto the open bottom as well. The Old Grounds southeast of DB Buoy produced good numbers of sea bass. Bassers reported seeing free jumping Thresher Sharks in the same area, and although some brutes have been caught from boats out of other ports, we haven't had one brought to our dock yet. During the Mako Mania Tournament in Ocean City, Dave Nolan decked a 576.5 pounder at The Fingers. Jeff Guest brought in a 110 pound mako he got at the Sausages aboard Port-A-Bella. The crew on Jenny Lynn had a mako and several blue sharks while drifting near the Jacob Jones. Wes Olson sharked at the Triple Wrecks for a mako, a blue whaler, and a bonus batch of big sea bass. The warm water responsible for attracting pelagics into the 40 to 60 fathom corridor inshore of Baltimore Canyon the past couple weeks has been pushing south. Trollers told of getting into tuna and dolphin while working the same depths near Poor Man's Canyon. George Merrick said he fished aboard the Boy's Toy in 40 to 65 fathoms along the 150 line Sunday. The crew had 13 yellowfins and some gaffer dolphin. Josh Gessler released the first white marlin of the season reported by a Delaware boat on that trip as well.
May 31, 2012
- Good Tuna Bite
Offshore anglers have been treated to some good early season action. Warm water that pushed into Baltimore Canyon held lots of life. Boaters reported seeing porpoises, ocean sunfish, flying fish and other bait concentrated along temperature breaks. Much of the activity took place in 40 to 60 fathoms between the West Wall of the Baltimore and Poor Man's Canyon. Yellowfins showed in good numbers, and some crews racked up impressive catches. The biggest bites happened when trolling spreads were covered up with multiple fish at once. Anglers on the Reel Chaos experienced wild fishing two days in a row over the weekend, returning with 14 tuna on Saturday, and 24 more on Sunday. Plenty of dolphin were mixed in, and the first few wahoos made an early appearance as well. On Sunday, Grant Clubb released the first white marlin of the year aboard the Chain Reaction. Blue marlin were also hooked by trollers looking for tuna. Makos were attracted by all the activity in the area too. Several crews told of big blackeyes chewing on yellowfins that were hooked up. Sea bass still held the attention of inshore bottom fishermen. Reef Site 11 was a popular spot, and twenty fathom structure such as the Dry Docks had bass too. Captains noted that it often took more stops during the day to put a catch together than earlier in the season. A lot of keeper sized fish have been pulled from the common places, and it involves more work to put bass over the 12 1/2 inch minimum in the box. Bottom bouncers seeking flounder started to find fish around Delaware Bay structure. Captain Carey's flukers on the Grizzly scored 8 keepers on a half day trip Sunday, while drifting reef rubble in the lower Bay. Lewes Canal gave up flatties as well. Bill Koran captured a 6.29 pounder in the Canal. Lee McClellan managed a 7.45 pound citation doormat from the Canal. Flounder slayer Nick Psaroudakis nabbed a 6.4 pound specimen while drifting minnows. Nick's young daughter Paige is taking after her Dad, and pulled her first flounder from the Canal, a plump 20 incher. In addition, she landed her first trout, also measuring 20 inches. The numbers of trout in the Bay this spring have been surprising, and perhaps the species is on it's way to a comeback. Folks fishing Roosevelt Inlet from shore and small boats caught many weakfish while casting 3 to 4 inch soft plastic artificials and Gulp! lures. Bait fishing with chicken or peeler crab also produced sea trout. Last of incoming tide during early morning or evening hours was best. Keep in mind the 13 inch minimum size and one trout per person limit. Most fish have been between 12 and 15 inches, but some larger specimens have shown up. Debora Wineland was surfcasting from Broadkill Beach using chicken when she connected with a 4.5 pound beauty. The surf striper bite at Cape Henlopen cooled off, but some decent rockfish were hanging around the Outer Wall and Ice Breakers. Top Fin Captain Pete haines took a busman's holiday to the Wall where he hooked a 17 pound linesider while tossing a Yo-Zuri plug. Nick Sharp nailed a brace of bass scaling 21.1 and 21.8 pounds that grabbed Gulp! eels he was working in the dark.
May 24, 2012
- Canal Tourney Results
A record 360 flounder afficionados participated in last Friday's annual Canal Flounder Tournament, making the event a great success. In addition to competing for sizeable cash prizes, anglers vied for the all important bragging rights until next year's Tourney. Twenty percent of entry fees were donated to Camp Awareness, promoting education about outdoor activities to area youth. A decent number of flounder were caught, with the best bite occurring after the mid morning tide change on the first of ebb current. Flukers reported success with the usual complement of offerings including minnows, shiners, smelt, cut bunker and shad, and Gulp! Boaters faced difficulty when the northeast wind breezed up and made it hard to maintain a proper drift direction after noon. However, guys in the right place at the right time scored some nice flatties. Zach Becker was the big winner with his 6.11 pound doormat. Jim Joseph secured Second with a 5.48 pounder. Dan Baldwin boated the 4.82 pound Third place fluke. Shea Lindale landed a 4.63 for Fourth. Buck McLamb managed a 4.38 pound flatfish to fill Fifth Place. Jeff Becker bested a 4.21 pounder for Sixth, and Dan Schurman wrapped up Seventh with his 4.15 pound flounder. Many thanks from us at Lewes Harbour Marina and the Dewey Beach Lions to all who took part to make the day a big hit. Black drum action is in full swing, and should continue through the June full moon. Capt. Chris took the Pirate King II to the Coral Beds Saturday night, where his drummers decked 7 good fish while baiting with clams. Thirteen year old Trent Achey caught his first two drum on that trip, a pair of 30 pounders. Corey Davies captured a 66 pound drum. Other big boomers were bought to the scale as well. Kathy Rodgers reeled in a 67.7 pound whopper, and Kyle McLaughlin muscled in a 69.3 pound brute. Tom Payton boated behemoths of 66.2 and 71.5 pounds aboard the Angler with Captain Ted. They were part of an 8 drum catch Wednesday night. The much anticipated sea bass season is finally open. DNREC's Secretary issued an emergency regulation Friday to open the season Saturday May 19th, ahead of the originally scheduled May 22nd start date. The measure was supposed to make Delaware's regs consistent with just released Federal Sea Bass laws, however, the move didn't really matter since strong northeast winds prevented boats from getting out over the weekend. Many boats had trips scheduled for Tuesday, and with good weather, they were able to travel to Reef Site 11, where crews found plenty of bass willing to bite. Captain Brent's bassers aboard Katy Did enjoyed scorching action, putting a 9 man limit of 225 bass in the box before 9 am. Fares on the Lil' Angler II iced 104 sea bass. Captain Pete's group on Top Fin had a big catch too, including a 3.1 pounder for Mr. Yu. Captain Vince limited out his two man party on Miss Kirstin. Captain Charlie on Tranquila hosted the "Fishin' Bitches" for a good day of bassing. Captain Brent did it again Wednesday, returning with another 225 bass. Anglers working Broadkill Beach and Roosevelt Inlet encountered numerous weakfish. It's been great to see trout making a comeback. The feisty beauties were caught with peelers, squid, clams and bloodworms. Trout responded to a variety of artificials as well, sometimes even better than bait. Bass Assassin Seashads, Fin-S Fish, D.O.A.s, Tsunamis, Storm Shads, Gulp!, Speck Rigs, and many others drew strikes. Even though you can only keep one fish per day, many anglers enjoy just catching and releasing since the trout hit lures readily. Those who like casting lures have also done well with stripers. Boaters drifting along the Outer Wall and Ice Breakers hooked keeper rockfish at dusk, during the nighttime hours, and in the early morning. Popular offerings included Bomber, Stretch 12 and YoZuri plugs, Storm Shads, bucktails, Rat-L-Traps, and Gulp! Eels. Glen Howard and Nick Sharp were at the wall around midnight Monday when they got their limit of quality linesiders. Joe Morrissey, Mike Flemming, Alejandro Cornejo and Jason Leach fished the rocks Tuesday night for their limit of bass, including Jason's 26.6 pounder.
May 17, 2012
- Looks Promising for Trout
Commercial netters have had good catches of weakfish over the past few weeks, and now that water temperatures have risen, hook and line anglers have caught trout too. Trout are showing up again in some of their regular springtime haunts from years ago, and fishermen are happy to see them. Adam Ford was working a squid tipped bucktail off Broadkill Beach when he hooked a 6.1 pound tiderunner. Frank Gaworski and Barracuda Bob McNamee got into several trout while casting Tsunami lures from a small boat in shallow water along Broadkill Beach. The largest was Frank's 3.45 pounder. Most of the others were spikes in the 13 to 16 inch range. Bob also had a 4.77 pound flounder on an artificial, mixed in with the weakfish. Several other customers told of catching trout along Broadkill Beach and around Roosevelt Inlet. Most were tempted with lures like Gulp! Swimming Mullets, small bucktails, Bass Assassin Sea Shads, Fin-S Fish, Storms and other soft plastics. Current regulations allow you to keep one weakfish 13 inches or longer per day. Even with the restrictions, many anglers just enjoy catching and releasing the hard fighting beauties. Striper action continues good. Beach casters had bass in the surf from Cape Henlopen to Gordon's pond while soaking clams or bunker. Early morning, evening and after dark hours were most productive, with best bites at the top and bottom of the tide. Judah Lynam landed 15 rock over 33 inches while fishing the beach Friday and Saturday nights using bunker. Dave Furio checked in a 21 pound rockfish. Lacey Moffett showed up the boys by catching her limit of linesiders measuring 34 and 36 inches at Herring Point with clams. Mike Shockley scored a 21.2 pound striper on Broadkill Beach. Black drum settled in on the Coral Beds. Captain Les on Martha Marie drummed Thursday night for 8 fish, and Friday night for 6 more. Kaila Tatman caught her first drum, weighing 32.5 and 37 pounds. Captain Brian had 4 drum on Lil' Angler II Wednesday evening, including a pending IGFA live release record. Togging is closed until July 17, but John Deeney finished the last day of Spring season by boating a 10.25 pound blackfish aboard the Grizzly. Flounder have been pulled from Lewes Canal when the water is clean. Candace Kidwell got a 3.5 pound flattie in the Canal. As of this writing, nearly 300 anglers were signed up for Friday's Canal Flounder Tournament, and we'll post results next week. The report from offshore brings news of tuna. Chris and Greg Wagner told of a temperature break that changed from 58 to 65 degrees over 3 miles in 100 fathoms at the tip of the Baltimore Canyon. That's where Ron Steen muscled in an 80 pound bluefin that pounced on a Green Machine bird bar. Other crews found yellowfins between the Baltimore and Poor Man's.
May 10, 2012
- Surf Still Strong
Striper action on the beach has been better than in many past seasons. Bass began to be caught by anglers working the Cape Henlopen surf during the days leading up to the full moon, and the catching has continued through this past week. Best bites have been at the top and bottom of the tide, paticularly if those times coincided with daybreak or dusk. Clams and bunker were the baits of choice. The Herring Point access area has been popular because of structure offered by the Navy Jetties. However, fish were taken along the beach both north and south of there. Limit catches were fairly common, and many of the rockfish have been good sized. Jack Austin landed bass this week weighing 23.8, 24.1, 28.8 and 34.8 pounds. Stripers were caught from Broadkill Beach too. Roger Guderian got an 18.8 pounder there using bloodworms. Rock also showed along the Outer Wall, and boaters casting artificials got into good fish too. Brian Seglem checked in a 35 pounder that inhaled a red and white plug he was throwing. Bombers, Yozuris, and Stretch 12s have been effective lures. Light colors worked best during the day, and dark patterns were preferred during low light hours and at night. Bucktails tipped with plastic worms and Storm shads got bit too. Bites along the wall happened about the same times as those on the beach, with high and low tides at dawn and dark most productive. Black drum catches have been fair, but it hasn't busted wide open yet. Captain Ted ran the Angler to the Coral Beds off Fowler Beach Monday night, and returned with 5 boomers to nearly 80 pounds. Wes Cromer weighed in a 72 pounder he battled for quite some time on light tackle. Drum should be available through the June full moon. Toggers getting in on the end of the Spring season had success along the Outer Wall. John Toomey took an 8.9 pounder on the Grizzly. Booker Bookwalter boated a 7.5 pounder on the Angry Angler. Bob Trento bested a 9.91 pound tautog on Katy Did. Tog season reopens July 17th. Flounder fishermen continue to pick at flatties in Lewes Canal, but keepers are scarce. Dirty water hampered catching. However, Lex Robertson managed a 5.12 pounder while working a Spro jig and minnow combo. Hopefully the fluke will get their act together before the Canal Flounder Tournament Friday May 18th. In offshore news, Jon Kitchen called to report that a recent trip to 400 fathoms of Poor Man's resulted in 6 bluefin tuna. The crew kept a 38 pounder.
May 3, 2012
- First Drum, Stripers In The Surf
We had the first catch of black drum at the docks brought in after a Wednesday night trip aboard the Lil' Angler II. Captain Brian and his crew anchored up in shallow water on the Coral Beds, and boated four boomers to 35 pounds while baiting with surf clams on fishfinder rigs. Saturday's full moon should kick off a stretch of good drum action, that normally lasts through the early June full moon. We'll be stocking surf clams, but suggest you reserve them by Tuesday to make sure you get what you need. Other big news is the striper bite that's been happening in the Cape Henlopen surf. Beach casters caught many nice bass during the week while using clams and bunker. Early morning seemed best, especially when it coincided with high tide. The beach near the Herring Point jetties was popular, and long casts weren't necessary for success. Often, rockfish were in close. Several surf anglers stopped by the shop with limits of linesiders. Some of the better bass included a 19.5 pounder for Steve Fisher, a 22.1 pound striper for Jamie Kosiek, 24.1 pounder for Mike Popovich, a 24.5 pound rock for Chris Van, and a 25.4 pound trophy for Dave Popovich. Bill Love landed a 27.1 pound striper from the Cape wash. Mason Newsham managed a 31.6 pound lunker from the beach near Herring Point. A few stripers were hooked by boaters tossing plugs and jigs around the Inner and Outer Walls. Striped bass were also active in Indian River Inlet. Guys on the north and south rockpiles throwing Bombers and Storm lures at night connected with good sized bass. There was an epic striper run in Indian River Inlet during this same time last year, and jetty jocks are hoping for a repeat. Togging remained good along the Walls and Ice Breakers. Anna Neely nailed a 9.5 pound tautog aboard the Katy Did. Another recent group on Katy Did returned with 5 citation fish, among their limit in the box. Sam Scott scored a 9.15 pounder, Bob Murphy a 9.07, Bill Wiest a 7.55, Steve Kiibler a 7.4, and Ben Strahl stuck a 7.24 pound tog. Tony Glen got a 9 pound 2 ounce blackfish as part of a limit take aboard the Grizzly. Tog should cooperate through the season closure on May 11th. The Lewes Canal yielded some flounder but most were shorts. Dirty water hindered catching. Water temps have risen to the upper 50's and the Canal and Broadkill River should come alive soon. On warm days with clean water, there have been decent flatties caught. Young Dylan Churchill captured his first keeper fluke measuring 18 and 24 inches while using a shiner tipped orange jig. Anglers on the pier at Cape Henlopen had flounder, but again, most were shy of the 18 inch minimum. Sonny McClure had one keeper out of seven he took from the pier Thursday night. Don't forget the Canal Flounder Tournament Friday May 18th. Commercial netters continue to report good numbers of different year classes of weakfish in Delaware Bay, so perhaps we'll see a better hook and line fishery this season, even though the creel limit remains at 1 trout per person per day. Researcher Dewayne Fox came by to tell of several big thresher sharks he and his crew encountered while netting for sturgeon. He said they'd seen threshers to more than 400 pounds over the past week, while working south of Indian River Inlet. Sport sharkers should hook their first threshers soon. The crew of the Wrangler, out of Ocean City Fishing Center, landed the first bluefin tuna of the season. The 70 pounder ate a trolled ballyhoo in 500 fahoms of Baltimore Canyon. The season's first Mako, a 96 pounder, was taken between the Baltimore and Poor Man's Canyons aboard the Reel Life out of Indian River.
April 26, 2012
A bruiser blackfish was hot news at the dock Saturday. Clark Koehn weighed in a 17 pounder that he wrestled from an upper Bay artificial reef site. Clark was fishing aboard the Miss Shyanne with Captain Dave Russell when he decked the 29 inch jumbo tautog. Another big tog was taken aboard the Grizzly yesterday. Alex Levantovsky landed a 12.4 pound white chin while fishing a wreck at the Bay mouth. Togging in general has been pretty good, when weather conditions allow boaters to get out. Rodney and his crew on the Angry Angler culled limits of quality tog from many they caught Friday and Saturday at the Ice Breakers. Scott Riniker and his buddies celebrated Scott's bachelor party by putting a limit of chunky tog in the box aboard Katy Did at the Outer Wall Saturday. Captain Brent's toggers had 15 nice fish yesterday. The catch was topped off by brutes weighing 9.41 and 9.62 pounds that Chris Van captured on consecutive drops. Flounder fishermen continue to pick at flatties in the Lewes Canal, but it has yet to bust wide open. Flounder were also taken from the Cape Henlopen pier. Sonny McLure brought in a pair of keepers and released several others while tossing small chartreuse jigs tipped with shiners at night from the boards. Shane Townsend stopped by with a 6.59 pound doormat fluke he caught while fishing at Wachapreague. Don't forget the Lewes Canal Flounder Tournament Friday May 18th. A few stripers were beached by surf fishermen. Dave Furio soaked a bunker head at the Navy Jetties for his 17 pound bass. Jetty jocks at Indian River inlet had stripers while casting black or purple MirrOLures and Bombers at night on the south side. J.J. Jones told of good white perch action in Broadkill River. Working a shad dart tipped with a small minnow where ditches dump into the main river resulted in perch up to 14 inches.
April 19, 2012
- Canal Coming to Life
After a little stretch of warmer days and nights, flounder catching improved in Lewes Canal. Harry Aiken, John Bister and Ken Williamson drifted Gulp! and shiners in Broadkill River Tuesday, ending up with 7 keepers from 2 to 3 pounds. Michelle Berezansky brought in a pair of 20 inch fluke she pulled from the Canal Tuesday. Last of the incoming and most of the outgoing tides have been productive. Delaware's flounder season is open from now through October 23rd, with a minimum size limit of 18 inches and a daily limit of 4 fish per person. The annual Lewes Harbour Canal Flounder Tournament is scheduled for Friday May 18th. Entry fee is $25 per angler to be paid in cash at Lewes Harbour Marina before the Tourney. Tautog action bounced back with nicer weather as well. Ocean reefs 9 and 10 continued to produce, but numerous fish also came from the Walls and Ice Breakers. Dr. Jeff Kerner captured a 7.64 pound tog as part of a limit catch aboard Katy Did Friday the 13th. Katy Did was back at the dock early Saturday and Sunday with limits too. Captain Carey on the Grizzly told me his groups had many quality tautog over the weekend. Margaret Fisher decked a 7.5 pounder Saturday. Sunday's toggers scored 3 citations over 7 pounds, including Dick Yohe's 8.75. Captain Pete's regulars on Top Fin enjoyed good togging. He was anchored on structure when I talked with him as this was being written, and he said the bite was on, with some big fish in the box. Rodney, George and Booker stopped by Saturday with a limit of chunky blackfish to 6.4 pounds they took from an Ice Breaker at the end of flood tide. Bob and Andrew brought in a limit of plump tog from the Inner Wall Sunday. In addition to green crabs, we were able to get live sand fleas to offer for tog bait this past week. The warming trend after a mild winter made the mole crabs available sooner than normal. Stripers have been scarce in the lower Bay, but plenty of rockfish were caught from Port Mahon north. The channel between 4L and 6L Buoys was a hotspot for bunker chunkers. Black drum should begin to cooperate soon in traditional areas like the Coral Beds off Slaughter Beach. We'll be carrying surf clams through the spring, but suggest you reserve bait early in the week.
April 12, 2012
- Kinda Quiet
Cool and windy weather has not helped the fishing situation. On the few fishable days, boaters that could make it to Reef Sites 9 and 10 got into tautog. Some tog came from the Outer Wall as well, but bites were limited to tides with clean water. Water temps dropped in Lewes Canal, and slowed flounder activity. That should improve as conditions stabilize. There were reports of some stripers taken in the Canal by anglers in small boats casting Rat-L-Traps, Fin-S Fish and small Storm Shads to the shadow lines of lighted docks. Guys working the rocks at Indian River inlet during the period leading up to last week's full moon caught stripers. Casting Bomber plugs from the south side during nighttime flood tides did the trick. Commercial netters had black drum in Delaware Bay, and boomers should be caught on hook and line soon. We'll be carrying fresh surf clams throughout the spring, but we ask that you call to reserve bait by Tuesdays in order to ensure you get what you need for trips later in the week. We get deliveries on Wednesdays, and try not to order much more than we need, due to a limited cooler life of the bivalves.
April 5, 2012
- We're Back!
Hello again. Amanda and I have returned from our Florida Keys vacation and we're back at it in the shop every day from now on. It was another windy winter down south, so much of our fishing was confined to inshore patch reefs. We did end up with some decent catches on days that we were able to go. We brought a selection of yellowtail, mangrove and mutton snapper fillets north with us, along with smoked king mackerel and amberjack. We missed not being allowed to keep groupers with the season closure, and we released several nice ones. Hopefully the regulations will help and we'll be able to once again enjoy the tasty fighters while we're wintering in the Keys. As for what's happening locally, boaters had success with tog and stripers throughout the unusually mild winter. Flounder had even made an early appearance. Weather has been more normal over the past couple weeks, which unfortunately means cool and windy, and fishing action has been up and down with conditions. On good days, some nice catches were recorded. Captain Carey had Don Kopp and his group out for two trips on the Grizzly. They put 27 keeper tog in the box Friday, and 20 more on ice Saturday. Be aware that as of April 1st, the creel limit for tautog is 3 fish per person, with a 16 inch minimum size. Steve Keretzman and Scott and Kyle Peterson fished with Captain Pete on Top Fin Saturday for 14 quality tog and a big ling. Mr. Kim's group limited out aboard Top Fin on Tuesday. Captain Brent's toggers on Katy Did checked in some nice blackfish. Paul Pergeorelis boated a brace of citations weighing 9.11 and 7.6 pounds. Mark Adams had a 7.66 pounder. Catches have been more consistent on the ocean reef sites 9 and 10, but on days with clean water and less current, tog were taken from the Star Site in Delaware Bay. Some tog came from the Outer Wall, but again, it was conditions dependent. Fishing should improve along the rocks as water temps warm. Right now, it's about 52 degrees. Popular baits have included green crabs, frozen sand fleas, clams and shrimp. Stripers are in the Bay and should turn on at any time. Roger Guderian got a 36 inch 19 pound rock while soaking a bloodworm in the surf at Broadkill Beach. Striper catches were reported up the Bay by boaters using fresh bunker along structure edges between the lower end of Joe Flogger Shoal and #2 Buoy off Port Mahon. We're carrying fresh bunker, eels and sea clams at our store when available. Flounder have come from Lewes Canal. As with other fishing, it's better with a period of stable weather and clean water, and the action will pick up in coming weeks. The annual Lewes Harbour Canal Flounder Tournament will take place Friday May 18th. It is a boat tournament open to both powerboats and kayaks. Entry fee is $25 per angler, to be paid by cash at Lewes Harbour Marina in advance of the Tourney. Five dollars of the entry money will be donated to the Camp Awareness Youth Program. The remaining money will be split among winning anglers, so the more fishermen(and fisherwomen), the bigger the prizes. Best of luck to everyone this season!
December 30, 2011
- Best Wishes For The New Year
The 2011 calendar is coming to an end, and it appears that striper catches in the Bay are winding down too. Fishing was good the week before Christmas, but not many bass were brought back in the past few days. Water temperature is down to 45 degrees. Yesterday, the Lil' Angler II returned with a pair of keepers caught on eels east of The Valley. Herky Billings trolled up 5 rock at Overfalls, but only one was legal. John Hazzard and Kyle Hamilton had one nice striper about 24 pounds. Many other crews came in fishless. There are still reports of striped bass moving south along the New Jersey coast, but whether or not they'll hook into the Bay depends on conditions. They should bite bait and artificials until the water hits 40 degrees. Tog will likely cooperate in the Bay for a little while longer, then the Ocean becomes a better bet. Cod have been making quite a comeback, and anglers targeting them this winter should find success. Amanda and I are heading to the Florida Keys New Years Day. We spend most of the year making sure everybody else goes fishing, and we look forward to finally getting in some time on the water for ourselves. We'll hopefully have some fish pictures to share through our website photo gallery. Be on the lookout! Thanks so much to all our customers and everyone who stayed tuned to the Report this season. Here's wishing you lots of fun fishing experiences in the New Year!
December 22, 2011
- Christmas Rockfish
It's beginning to look a lot like rockfish for Christmas. Now that we're officially into winter, Striper catches have still been as good as, if not better than they've been all fall. Seems like those fish that were taking their time moving down the Jersey coast are finally filtering into Delaware Bay. Fishing pressure has been light, due to Holiday obligations for many anglers, but those who ventured out in the last few days were rewarded with some great action. Yesterday morning, Captain Carey Evans called me from the Grizzly, already on his way home. He had his limit of 20 fish by 9:30 am. He said the bite was on fire during the ebb tide at Overfalls, and there were hardly any other boats around. The bass weren't concentrated in just one spot, and Carey mentioned they made long drifts over the shoals. There must have been plenty of stripers in the area. Most of the fish ate live spot, but others fell for eels as well. Carey told me they released some nice ones too. The last one they let go weighed 26 pounds. The day before, Tuesday, Captain Chet's bassers on the Lil' Angler brought back 10 quality rock in the 15 to 20 pound range. Hale Bennett, Ashley Farren and Captain Dave Potter trolled Stretch 25 plugs at Overfalls for their limit of linesiders. The largest was Ashley's 23.6 pound trophy. The majority of stripers caught in recent days have been keeper sized. Last week, there were many sub legal sized bass around, and normally, there are a lot of resident shorts this time of year. But it's likely the larger fish are part of the group still migrating through. In addition to live baits and trolled plugs, these fish respond well to bucktail jigs. Adding wiggle to the lures makes them even more attractive. Threading on a Skippyfish, Gulp! Sinking Minnow or Culprit worm does the trick. There should be fine striper fishing into the New Year. Tautog action remained good as blackfish stage on wrecks at the Bay mouth. On an early week trip, Captain Pete on Top Fin had a regular group that took home over 50 tog. Captain Carey's guys on the Grizzly also had 50 plus keepers that same day. Best wishes for a Fishy Christmas!
December 15, 2011
- Stripers Still Coming
After a little lull in striped bass catching, action perked up as more migratory fish from up north moved into the area. It seems like fresh groups push into the Bay for a few days, then swim on to be replaced by more. The new fish have been carrying lots of hitchhiking sea lice. Most bass now are of a smaller size class than earlier in the run. Many are shy of minimum length, and a majority of keepers are in the low 30 inch range. Although, an occaisonal lunker still hits the dock. Ron Mistretta muscled in a 35.1 pounder at 8 Buoy on the Katy Did. Kory Moore's first striper was a good one, weighing in at 33.3 pounds. With water temps near 50 degrees and flirting with the 40's, rockfish have been responding well to bucktail jigs. You'd think with colder water, fish would prefer a slower moving live bait, but this time of year, artificials get a lot of attention. Dave Walker, Brent Wiest and Chris Van had 30 rock while tossing bucktail jigs tipped with Skippyfish at Overfalls and 8B Buoy on Tuesday. They managed to cull their limit of 6 keepers. Bass fishermen aboard Katy Did Monday bucktailed 13 keepers. However, eels and spot still get bit, especially in deeper water. Captain Ted's bassers aboard the Angler had all keeper sized stripers up to 25 pounds while drifting eels in The Valley yesterday, December 14th. Trollers towing Stretch 25 plugs on the 12 foot hill at Overfalls continued to capture fish too. With moderate weather, striper fishing should hold up through the end of the month. The tautog bite has been good too. Blackfish have been staging on wrecks at the Bay mouth. Toggers aboard the Angler did well Tuesday, returning with 70 chunky keepers. Captain Pete anchored Top Fin at the Wall Tuesday for nice batch of tog, including Bruce Min's 9.62 pounder. Pete worked a wreck Wednesday for 40 more keepers.
December 8, 2011
- Good Blackfish Bite
Slower currents and decent water quality set the stage for some good tautog action this past week. Water temperatures remain in the low 50's, and Delaware Bay artificial reefs continue to give up tog. Sites 6, 7 and 8 have been productive. Captain Chet's toggers on Lil' Angler II took home over 20 keepers Friday, among which were a 7.35 pounder for Mike Piasecki, and a 7.9 pound citation for Dennis Reardon. There was a hot bite on the Star Site Sunday. Tog fishermen on the Lil' Angler II brought in 62 chunky blackfish. Mike Crouse captured a 7.43 pounder, Joe Pergeorelis put an 8.23 in the box, and Doug Mickowski muscled in an 8.5 pounder. Tog sharpies aboard the Grizzly had their 50 quality fish limit by noon. Mo Wilson wrestled a 10.75 pounder, Robert Wilson wound in a 10.25, and Maurice Wilson managed an 8.75 pound tautog. Martha Marie's gang got a nice mess of tog, including Captain Les Clemmer's 8.19 pounder. Corey Newkirk nailed a 9.21 pounder at Site 8 aboard Katy Did. On Monday, the crew aboard Katy Did was togging again, and returned with 46 keepers, including Joe Walker's 6.16 pounder. The Lil' Angler II came in with 32 blackfish. The Grizzly got 30 tog, with two citations over 7 pounds. Top Fin's toggers kept 16 nice fish, and patrons on the Angler had good success Monday, with some individual limits on the boat. Ocean tog fishing was good too, with nice catches on Site 11. Boaters traveling off to Site 11 encountered large schools of bluefish and stripers under birds, between the shipping channel and the reef. Fish were caught by casting bucktails and metal jigs, or trolling Stretch plugs. Remember that any rockfish caught in Federal waters must be released. Wreck fishing for sea bass is shaping up in deeper water. Fares with Captain H.D. Parsons had numerous knothead bass to over 6 pounds during a 12 hour trip to a snag in 160 feet Saturday. Several slammer bluefish and cod came over the rail as well. Richard Adams reeled in a 12 pound codfish. Striper catches at the Bay mouth fell off some over the weekend, but it's likely we're in between batches of fish. There has been a mass of bass moving down the coast, and hopefully conditions will be favorable for them to hook into the Bay before continuing south. Some sizeable stripers are still hanging around. Tom Lenhard landed a 35.7 pounder in The Valley Monday aboard the Adventurer. Seth Hetherington hooked a 36.2 pounder Monday with an eel at 8B buoy. There's been a good bucktail bite recently, but the vast majority of striped bass in the area right now are shy of the 28 inch minimum length. Dave and Joe Walker, and Brent Wiest released about a dozen bass, and kept 4 plus a big blue while tossing jigs tipped with Skippyfish tails at 8B just before dark Tuesday.
December 1, 2011
Bay water temps are finally starting to drop through the mid 50's. Tautog action has been up and down with changing conditions, but there have been some decent catches off the Star Reef and the Brown Shoal Reefs. Daniel Caldwell decked a 9.7 pound citation tog at the Star Site aboard the Pirate King II. The Walls and Ice Breakers also gave up fish on days when the water was clean, and the current wasn't smokin'. Chris Dawson happened to be at the Outer Wall when things were right, and was rewarded with the tog of a lifetime. On Sunday, Chris wrestled a 19.7 pounder, and won! The 30 incher ate a "white legger" crab at the elbow, and was the heaviest blackfish we've had checked in at Lewes Harbour Marina so far this year. Striper fishermen were out en force over the Thanksgiving Holiday weekend because of the nice weather and reports of good catching. The Lewes launch ramp was very busy. Trailers were parked out onto Pilottown Road, and returning boats were lined up all the way to the inlet. It was reminiscent of the good old days of sea trout fishing in the early 80's. The heavy boat traffic seemed to put off the bite somewhat, but those who got on the grounds early did ok. On Saturday, Captain Brent's bassers aboard Katy Did had 10 quality keepers while drifting eels and spot on Overfalls. Most of those fish were in the box before 8 am. Captain Carey's guys on Grizzly had 7 keeper stripers, including Ron Allen's 33 pounder. Herb Guest got a 25.9 pound rock at Overfalls. Drew Ambler landed a 24.9 pounder. Matt Hete drifted an eel at 8A Buoy for his 30.1 pound citation striper. Chuck Flickinger was eeling on Overfalls when he connected with a 36.5 pound trophy. David Biles boated a 34.9 pound linesider at Overfalls, and Kurt Wilber worked The Eights for a 35 pound citation winner. Although live bait fishing has become more popular in past weeks, trollers pulling Stretch and Bomber plugs continue to catch their share. Bucktailers have been taking bass as well. RJ Gooner was trolling at Brown Shoal when he landed stripers weighing 16.6 and 18.3 pounds. Kevin Parker and his crew iced a limit of linesiders to 27 pounds by drifting eels at Brown Shoal Saturday morning. It sounds like there are still a lot of stripers moving south along the Jersey beaches. The bulk of migratory bass have yet to move into Delaware Bay, and hopefully conditions will be such that they get pushed in for more great fishing though the next few weeks.
November 24, 2011
- Striper Tourney Results
The 2011 Lewes Harbour Striper Tournament ended November 22nd. Many beautiful striped bass were caught and checked in during the event that started October 22nd. However, local trolling specialist Evan Falgowski was the big winner, taking First and Second Places with bass weighing 46.2 and 37.3 pounds. Evan's brother, Ryan Falgowski, had the Third Place 36.2 pound fish. Congratulations to the fishin' Falgowski family for their victory. Thanks to all who participated in the annual contest to make it a continuing success. Big rockfish are still coming from structure at the mouth of Delaware Bay. Drifting live spot and eels has been effective, but those trolling Stretch 25+ and Bomber CD25 plugs took their share as well. Doug Mickowski muscled in a 41.8 pound monster while drifting an eel in deep water at 8 Buoy aboard Katy Did. Alex Neiss nailed his first ever striper, a whopping 41 pounder, while eeling in The Valley. Tammy Parker put girl power to work for her 38.9 pound rockfish. Scot Anderson trolled a pink Stretch 25+ at Overfalls for his 35.7 pounder. Jonathan Raimondi reeled in a 35.4 pounder in The Valley aboard Tranquila. Greg Wagner wrestled a 34.6 pound trophy in The Valley. Larry Lytle eeled at The Eights for his 34.6 pound lunker. Skipjack Skipper Chris Thurman showed 'em how it's done by decking a 34.3 pounder in The Valley. Mike Hynson had a 33.9 pound linesider at 8 Buoy. Joel Robinson registered a 33 pounder he caught in The Valley on the Pirate King II. Evan Falgowski fooled a 32.5 pound bass with a Bomber plug in the Outer Wall rip. Eric Buckingham boated a 30.8 pound bass aboard the Angler. Abraham Pangan put a 30.4 pounder in the box aboard Tranquila. Rhett Passwaters pulled a Stretch Plug at Overfalls for his near citation 29.7 pound rock. Kenny Ferro fought a 28.3 pound striper on the Angler. Judy Esterly eeled up a 28.1 pound beauty. Derek Johns decked his 27.6 pounder on the Adventurer. In addition to striper action, Bay fishermen enjoyed success with tautog. Captain Pete on Top Fin told of good trips to the Star Site. First time togger Kathy Vu was off to a fine start with the 11.39 pound blackfish she boated aboard the Lil' Angler II. John Leader landed a 7.6 pound tog. Captain Carey reported red hot togging for the sharpies aboard Grizzly on a Bay reef Monday. They kept 55 tog, including a 10 pounder for Lenny Zalewski, Alex Leventovsky's 9.5, a 9.25 for Ray Mazanec, and William Guzman's 8.75 pounder. Carey said, in addition, the guys had seven other tautog over the 7 pound citation size while using "white legger" crabs. The Ocean surf has been pretty quiet, but shore bound anglers did have success with ling on the Cape Henlopen Pier. Cut mullet or clams worked for the tasty red hake. Stripers were taken by casters tossing 3 and 4 inch Storm Shads where Canary Creek opens up into Roosevelt Inlet.
November 17, 2011
- Reelin' in Rock
Striper fishing remains good at the mouth of Delaware Bay. Numerous big bass have been taken from deep water rips of The Valley by boaters drifting eels and spot. Trollers pulling Stretch 25+ and Bomber CD25 plugs on Overfalls also had success with rockfish. Chartreuse, gold and pink have been good colors. Bucktailers hooked fish too in shallower rips. Tipping jigs with Gulp! eels or Jerk Shads, or Skippyfish tails adds enticing action. Chopper blues ranging 8 to 12 pounds mingled with stripers, and pounced on offerings intended for the bass. Several anglers reported releasing nice sized flounder that also grabbed striper baits. With cooling water temps, spiny dogfish have shown up. They've been particularly pesky at Overfalls, but not so much so between the deeper areas between 8 and 8A Buoys. Last Saturday, Miss Kirstin returned with 4 rock to 22.1 pounds and a bluefish. The Pirate King had 5 bass to 22.4 pounds and a pair of big blues. Captain Ted himself caught a 28 pounder, part of the Indian's take of 7 quality stripers. Stanley Smith scored a 30.1 pound striper with an eel in The Valley. Jeff Griffin got a near citation 29.6 pound rock in the same locale. Brian Stephens and his crew trolled up a limit of 6 fish between 20 and 30 pounds at Overfalls. Catching was good during Sunday morning's flood tide. Capt "Mole" Barnes checked in with 4 bass, including his 17.8 pounder, a 25.4 pounder for Bob Persch, and Mark Swift's 26.7 pounder. Captain Vince's eelers aboard Miss Kirstin limited out with 10 fish between 18 and 20 pounds at Overfalls, and were back at the dock by 11:30 am. Bassers on Katy Did decked 10 rock to 29.8 pounds drifting eels and spot in The Valley. Robert Goracci got a 33.3 pound lunker aboard the Pirate King. On Monday, the Skipjack scored 7 stripers to 20 pounds and a slammer blue. Tuesday, Katy Did came back early with a limit of 8 to over 20 pounds while deploying spot and eels in The Valley. John Joe Kabino pulled a Cabo Sunset Stretch 25+ at Overfalls for his 34.2 pound trophy. Ron Rowles reeled in a 27 pounder and Bill Matthews managed a 19 pounder while drifting eels at 8B Buoy. Striper seekers on Grizzly got 9 keepers for the box and released 2 others. Joe Legrand landed a 29.25 pound linesider during a previous trip aboard the Grizzly. Wednesday, Skipjack Captain Chris Thurman showed 'em how it's done by putting a 34.3 pounder in the box. Bob Bessel boated a 27.1 pound bass on that same trip to The Valley. Tautog fishing continued decent on days with good conditions. Strong currents and dirty water were problems following the Full Moon. The Walls and Ice Breakers still yielded tog, as did Bay reef sites. George Magaw checked in a 7.54 pound citation blackfish from the Outer Wall Sunday. Toggers on the Angler had nice catches Tuesday. Captain Carey had a great Wednesday of togging at the Ice Breakers aboard Grizzly. His fishermen landed 58 plump keepers, including a 10.25 pound citation specimen for "General Lee".
November 10, 2011
- Rockfish on Lures and Live Bait
Since their arrival last week, stripers have spread out across the mouth of and up into Delaware Bay. Rockfish initially seemed to be concentrated on Overfalls Shoal, but were recently reported on other traditional structure as well. The shoal at 8B Buoy gave up bass to crews trolling plugs and also to those drifting eels and spot or jigging bucktails. Deep water rips in The Valley between 8 and 8A buoys were productive primarily for eelers. The 100 foot depths near 8 Buoy held some big fish, but could only effectively be worked at near slack current. Trolling Stretch plugs or casting bucktails in the rip outside the Outer Wall also produced rock. Chunkers had fish along the edges of 60 Foot Slough, but fresh bunker has been a rare commodity. A rundown of some of the past week's catches offers an idea of how the fishing's been. Last Thursday, K.B. Brittingham checked in a 25.3 pounder that took a Stretch 25. Captain Dave Potter's crew on Scuba Doo had bass of 23.5, 25, 25.1 pounds, plus Richard Mihalik's 30.8 pounder, while trolling red and white Stretches. On Sunday, Joe Hoepfl pulled a pink Stretch 25 on Overfalls for his 23.2 pound rock. Chris and Pat Irelan teamed up for stripers of 19.9 and 22.8 pounds while towing chartreuse Stretches. Bruce Buchalter brought in a 27.7 pound bass that grabbed an eel at 8B. Monday, Scott Davis decked a 28.5 pound linesider drifting an eel in deep water at 8 Buoy. Mike Mell chunked up a 25.3 pounder using bunker in 60 Foot Slough. Matt Shoup scored a 35.8 pound lunker while trolling a chartreuse Stretch 25 at 8B Buoy. Mike O'Neill nailed a 30.4 pounder at 8B. Josh Farr's 34.8 pound trophy fell for an eel on Overfalls. Steve Scarfo and Joe Harris pulled Cabo Sunset Stretch 25's at Overfalls Tuesday for a limit going 16.4, 19.3, 21.1 and 30.1 pounds. Will Emmert and Ralph Short worked Overfalls with Stretches for bass weighing 31.9 and 23.8 pounds. Shawn Gallagher got a 27.9 pounder at the Eights. Drifting eels in The Valley produced a 17 pounder for Andy Shepard, a 15.7 for C.J. Stephens, a 23 pounder for Craig Stephens and Robbie Stephens' 25.3 pound rock. Woody Gunther drfited eels between 8A and 8B for a 33.6 pounder, then went back Wednesday for another citation bass scaling 33.0 pounds. Steve Scarfo, Sr scored stripers of 21 and 22.9 pounds while trolling Cabo Sunset Stretch 25 plugs at Overfalls Wednesday. Bob Van Pelt eeled up a 22.9 pound rock. Mac McNaught muscled in a 30.8 pound bass and Dave Max had a 25.9 pounder on the Indian. Mike Baiocco boated a 28 pound striped bass. Marty Horton had a 33.2 pound citation winner in The Valley aboard Candy's Choice. Trolling specialist Evan Falgowski showed his stuff again with a 37.3 pound trophy. The trolling trio of John Hazzard, Johnny Mancuso and Lee Abel captured impressive bass of 24.1, 33.3 and 30.0 pounds. John and Paul Elwood pulled in stripers weighing 22.4, 22.3 and 28 pounds. Buck McLamb used eels at The Eights for a limit of bass that went 20.3 and 13.6 pounds. John Joe Kabino trolled Stretches at Overfalls for his 26.3 pounder. The Katy Did brought in 5 stripers to 23.6 pounds Wednesday. Mike Baiocco was back at it again today, boating a 34.2 pound bass at 8B Buoy. Striper fishermen on the Indian today had 5 rock to 27 pounds. The Angler returned with nice stripers to 28 pounds as well. Standings in the Lewes Harbour Striper Tournament list Evan Falgowski in First with his 46.2 pounder, and Second with a 37.3 pound bass. Ryan Falgowski holds Third with a 36.2 pounder. The event is shaping up to be a real family affair. The Tourney goes on through November 22nd. Tautog action has been good in the Bay when conditions are right. Captain Pete on Top Fin has had several successful togging days on the Outer Wall. Captain Carey's toggers on the Grizzly had a stretch of good trips. Last Thursday's group had 34 tog including Rob Lammey's 7.12 pounder. Friday's guys had 40 and Sunday's anglers kept 47. Monday, Grizz returned with 33, including a 7.5 for Alex Levantovsky. On Monday, Katy Did's crew captured 39 keepers. Captain Chet on Lil' Angler II has been working upper Bay reefs for some good catches. Today, fishermen on the boat put 47 chunky keepers in the box. Richard Foster recently recorded a 7.4 pound tog on the Lil' Angler II. Bob Fahringer boated a 9.4 pound blackfish, part of a 44 keeper catch at the Brown Shoal reefs on the Pirate King. Bill Wiest wound in a citation 8.2 pounder aboard Katy Did. Captain Ted said his Wednesday fares aboard the Angler saw some of the best catching this season, coming back with 80 keepers. Joel Robinson reeled in a 7.71 pound tautog. If the weather gives us a break, there should be plenty of good fishing for both stripers and tog, along with big bluefish in the coming weeks. Jimmy Bunting reported he had stripers and plenty of slammer bluefish while chasing birds off Ocean City a couple days ago.
November 3, 2011
- Stripers Are Here!
The big bass have arrived, right on cue. Timing was good for a strong northeast blow this past weekend to push migratory stripers into Delaware Bay, and fish showed up over shoals at the Bay mouth, just on the heels of the front. Halloween Monday offered the first fishable weather, and local striper sharpies were chomping at the bit to get out and try for rockfish. Evan Falgowski, Garrett Shipley and Lee Abel headed to Overfalls Shoal, where they met with success while trolling Stretch 25+ plugs. The crew caught 9 fish in all while working the running tides. Their 6 bass limit included 35.8 and 28.8 pounders for Garrett, Evan's 34.5 and 30.1 pounders, and Lee's rock weighing 22.9 and 17.2 pounds. Dave Lynam drifted a live mullet at Overfalls to land a 26.8 pound striper. Boats that fished Wednesday found more fish. Chris Wagner was pulling a chartreuse Stretch 25+ plug on Overfalls Wednesday when he connected with a 42.6 pound trophy bass. Evan Falgowski was back at it Wednesday, recording his heaviest striper so far. The lunker linesider he trolled up at Overfalls weighed 46.2 pounds and measured 50 inches long. Patrick Irelan and Jimmy Young towed chartreuse Stretches at Overfalls Wednesday for 4 rockfish to 23.5 pounds. Tuffy Tribbitt used a live eel to tempt his 29.6 pound near citation striper at Overfalls Wednesday. Other boaters had bass while drifting spot and eels, as well as by trolling diving plugs. Fish were also reported by chunkers baiting with bunker on traditional structure. Chilly nights have caused water temps to fall into the mid 50's, which is to the liking of fall rockfish. More northeast wind is forecast for the weekend, which may prevent boats from getting out, but it should help move additional baitfish and gamefish into the area. The action should only get better as more stripers slip into the Bay. The Lewes Harbour Striper Tournament is on now and runs through November 22nd. The annual event offers cash prizes. Participants must register at the store in advance of fishing. The leaderboard so far shows Evan Falgowski's 46.2 pounder on top. Garret Shipley is in Second with a 35.8 pounder. Evan also holds Third with his 34.5 pound striped bass. The Lewes Harbour Tog Tournament ended October 31st. Captain Brent Wiest captured First and Third places with his tautog that scaled 9.62 and 9.33 pounds. Bob Murphy held onto Second with a 9.5 pounder. Thanks to all who entered the contest to make it a success. Togging is still pretty good on the rock Walls and Ice Breakers, with clean water. Bay reefs continue to produce too, as long as conditions are ok. Captain Ted's fares on the Angler had a nice catch at Site 7 Monday. Young fisherman Jacob Gier celebrated his 9th birthday by boating a 7.85 pound citation tautog aboard the Angler. Sea bass season reopened November 1st, and bassing was good at Site 11 and on wrecks in 15 to 20 fathoms.
October 27, 2011
- Record Sheepshead
The string of supersized sheepshead continues. More big sheepshead have been checked in this Fall than during any season in recent memory. The largest so far was a 15.5 pounder that Randy Jensen tangled with at the Ice Breakers on Saturday. That jumbo striped porgy was one pound four ounces heavier than the current Delaware State Record set by Fallyn Smith in 2008. Randy's catch was verified and approved by officials from the Division of Fish and Wildlife, and should replace the existing mark. On Monday, another near record sheepshead hit the dock. Alex Levantovsky was fishing aboard the Grizzly on the Brown Shoal reefs when he landed a 14.8 pound lunker. Captain Carey Evans decked an 11.75 pounder during the same trip. Both fish ate sandfleas. Art Shapiro scored an 11.59 pound sheepshead, and John Klase captured a 10.44 pounder on a Sunday reef trip aboard Martha Marie. Whatever sheepshead still in the Bay will likely start exiting as water temperatures drop. Temps are now in the low 60's and falling. Another species normally normally associated with Spring fishing reappeared this fall. Black drum were mixed in on the same structure as tautog. The Grizzly was anchored on the Brown Shoal reefs last Monday, where fares put 40 tog in the box, plus a pair of drum in the 25 pound class. Anthony Mortarulo was surprised when a 50 pound boomer grabbed a crab he was using for blackfish at the Ice Breakers. Tautog action has generally been good when conditions are right. Some days were tough due to wind and dirty water. Strong currents from a King Tide around the new moon presented problems as well. Tog came from the rock walls and Ice Breakers, and the artificial reef sites. Upper Bay sites such as numbers 3,4,6 and 7 were probably more productive than lower Bay locations, but recently, some fish were pulled from Site 5 in Broadkill Slough and reef 8, the Star Site. Captain Ted toggled the Indian in at the Inner Wall Sunday, where his patrons put 32 tautog on ice. David Stradling got an 8.63 pound tog at the Outer Wall Sunday. Captains Brent and Dave ran Katy Did up the Bay Sunday and returned with 45 plump blackfish. Tom Arnold took an 8.14 pound citation tog aboard the Miss Kirstin Sunday. The leaderboard for the Lewes Harbour Tog Tournament shows Brent Wiest still in First with a 9.62 pounder and Third for his 9.33. Bob Murphy's 9.5 pound tog holds Second. The contest ends October 31. No news on migratory stripers yet, but they should show at any time. Normally there's a push of fish as the full moon in November approaches. Lee Abel was seeking stripers by trolling Overfalls Shoal this week. What he ended up with was the unusual catch of an oversized 11.75 pound Stargazer that grabbed a Stretch 25 plug pulled along the bottom. Stripers continue to be caught in Lewes Canal. Soaking clams and eels between the drawbridge and the train bridge was productive. Casting Storm Shads between the Glade and Gordon's Pond yielded rockfish too. The Lewes Harbour Striper Tournament is on now, and runs through November 22nd. The event offers cash prizes for the three heaviest striped bass brought in by preregistered entrants during that time. Sign up at Lewes Harbour Marina before fishing. Offshore action is still happening. Captain Joe Joachimowski on the Knot Again trolled 40 to 50 fathoms between the Baltimore and Wilmington for some yellowfins, a big dolphin and a 50 pound wahoo. Overnight chunkers had best success. Steve Moore and his group on JoJo overnighted in the Wilmington Friday and returned Saturday morning with a limit of 24 yellowfins taken during a wild predawn bite. Wes and Shane Olson chunked the Wilmington overnight Saturday and iced their limit of 6 yellowfins on the Bad Habit. Wes said there was a load of squid and tinkers in the lights, and tuna fed heavily. The guys also released several other yellowfins, and landed a 70 pound swordfish, plus, they lost a much larger sword.
October 20, 2011
- Tautog on the Reefs
Tog action continues to be pretty decent along the rock breakwaters off Lewes, but in recent days, artificial reef sites in the Bay have started to yield good numbers of blackfish. Captain Chet ran Lil' Angler II to an upper Bay reef site Sunday, and returned with 36 chunky keeper tautog. Captain Carey on the Grizzly set up on reef rubble at Brown Shoal Monday, where his fares scored 40 keeper tog to 7 pounds, and a pair of black drum in the 20 to 25 pound range. Mike Williams had a 25 pound drum aboard the Katy Did Friday. Avery Adams decked a 9.21 pound citation tautog on Katy Did Sunday. Captains Dave Walker and Brent Wiest, along with Bob Murphy and Chris Van pile hopped at Brown Shoal Monday. They put 34 quality tautog in the box, including Brent's 9.33 pounder. The trio of Dave, Brent and Murph has recorded 10 citation tog to almost 10 pounds in just the past week. The Angler headboat was on the Brown Shoal reefs Tuesday, and Captain Ted's patrons brought back a nice batch of blackfish. Captain Pete's toggers on Top Fin had a good catch of tog on the Brown Shoal rubble Tuesday. John Lee landed a jumbo 10.32 pound sheepshead aboard the Top Fin Monday. Reefs and wrecks in the Ocean are giving up tog, and with relatively warm water, still some triggerfish. Lex Robertson checked in a whopping 4.83 pound trigger he took off an Ocean wreck on the Spectacle. The current leaderboard for the Lewes Harbour Tog Tournament shows a respectable lineup. Captain Brent Wiest is in the top spot with his 9.62 pounder. Bob Murphy moved to Second Place with a 9.5 pound tautog. Brent also holds Third Place for a 9.33 pound blackfish. The Tourney runs through October 31 and offers cash prizes. Stripers have been active in the Lewes Canal. Boaters using clams and eels near the drawbridge and train bridge caught rockfish, some of which were above the 28 inch minimum size. Striped bass were also hooked by casters tossing small bucktails, Storm Shads, Rat-L Traps and surface poppers along grassy edges of the Canal.
October 13, 2011
- Big Sheepshead
Delaware Bay Tautog fishermen usually encounter a few sheepshead each fall while working the rocks, however, this season, anglers have experienced exceptional numbers of the big striped porgies. Ki Ju Park was togging at the Outer Wall Friday when he hooked into a 14.3 pound jumbo sheepshead. That fish was actually heavier than the existing Delaware State Record, but according to tournament requirements, the difference wasn't enough to replace the current record holder. Another near record sheepshead was taken Monday at the Ice Breakers aboard Grizzly. William Levantovsky landed a 14.15 pound lunker that almost put him in the top spot. Some years earlier, William caught a 13 plus pound blackfish aboard the Grizzly that earned him a Junior Angler record status. Scott Batz was using sand fleas at the Inner Wall Monday when he connected with a whopping 13.32 pound sheepshead. Jim Burkins bested an 11.76 pound brute at the Outer Wall Monday. Andy Lano and David McDaid teamed up for a pair of sheepshead scaling 10.6 and 10.0 pounds at the Haystacks. Steve Kramer captured a 9.43 pounder at the Wall aboard the Indian on Tuesday. Derek Seward scored a sheepshead at the Breakers that weighed 8.37 pounds. Tautog action has been good most days along the Inner and Outer Walls and Ice Breakers. Currents ran strong around the full moon, and some days, anglers had to wait until the tide broke before the bite came on. Green crabs and sand fleas were the popular baits, but tog also took shrimp and clams. An effective and fun method of catching blackfish in some of the shallower areas along the rocks is to deploy baits on a jighead. It's best done using a spinning outfit with a tip light enough to cast a 1/2 ounce jig, but having enough lifting power to wrestle a tautog from the bad neighborhood where it resides. The jig and crab combo can be tossed in close to the rocks and is less likely to get snagged when it settles to the bottom. The strike is different than with a traditional rig, as the fish will often just slurp up the the offering and swim away. Captain Ted has been taking the Indian to the Walls the past few days for nice catches of tautog. On Sunday, he had a boat limit of 50 blackfish. Toggers on Top Fin had successful trips to the rocks as well. Andy and Anthony Lano, along with "Beaver" Ruff combined for their limit of 30 chunky tog at the Walls Saturday. Captain Carey took Grizzly to the rockpiles for a couple four hour excursions Saturday. He returned from the morning trip with 23 tog and a sheepshead. The afternoon patrons said 20 tautog and a sheepshead were enough for them. Carey's young son Josh caught his first tautog Saturday, and now he's got tog fever just like his dad. Although the rock breakwaters have yielded most of the fish, and some decent ones like Joe Jelks' 7.04 pounder, tog are starting to be taken on Bay reef sites and wrecks too. The Lil' Angler II had a nice box of blackfish while pile hopping Sunday. Standings are shaping up in the Lewes Harbour Tog Tournament. Bob Murphy holds the lead with a 9.5 pound white chin. Captain Dave Walker is in Second right now with a 7.89 pounder. Jim Myers has Third with a 6.68. The Tourney runs through October 31st and offers cash prizes. Participants must register at Lewes Harbour Marina in advance of fishing. Sea Bass season finished up with a bang. Bassin' over the past few weeks has been the best seen in awhile. On Saturday, the lady anglers aboard Katy Did crushed the bass, ending up with their limit of 200. In addition, they had cod, tog and bluefish. As the season wound down, catches were best on wrecks in 100 to 120 foot depths, but bass continued to be found on the Old Grounds south of DB Buoy and at Reef Site 11. Rachel Evans checked in a 3.67 pound sea bass she boated aboard the Thelma Dale IV. Bassers even found an occasional flounder. Jeff Scurti decked a 6 pound fluke aboard the Thelma Dale IV Sunday. When the season reopens November 1st, better action will likely take place in deeper water. Offshore bottom bouncing has been just as fine as the inshore fishing. Bill Swords and his crew dropped in the Baltimore Canyon for a mess of golden and blueline tilefish, and blackbelly rosefish both Saturday and Sunday. The Skipjack fished Wilmington Canyon over the weekend and returned with 17 golden tile, 14 gray tile, 8 dolphin to 18 pounds, a pair of yellowfin tuna to 55 pounds, and 3 blackfins. Carl Meyer and the guys on Reel Tease went 2 for 3 on swordfish in the Wilmington Saturday night. Other boats in the Spencer Canyon had good catches of yellowfins trolling and chunking in 500 fathoms both in the daylight and after dark.
October 6, 2011
- Tog Season Opens
Tautog fishermen have had fair catches since the season opened September 29. Murky conditions hampered anglers many days, but when the water was relatively clean, tog bit ok on the Inner and Outer Walls and Ice Breakers. Randy Jensen, Marc Uhde, George Magaw and Mike Tippit combined for 18 tog on the Outer Wall Saturday. Clark Gross checked in a 6.92 pounder he pulled from the Wall. Captain Pete's toggers aboard Top Fin returned from the Wall with 18 tog and 2 triggerfish on Saturday. A few sheepshead were taken around the Ice Breakers, such as the 9.27 pounder landed by George Wilder. Bay water temperature is around 65 degrees, and with cooling temps and cleaner water, the tog bite will improve. The Lewes Harbour Tog Tournament is going on now and runs through October 31. The event offers cash prizes for the three heaviest blackfish weighed in by contestants, who must register in advance of fishing. Regarding other bottom fishing, sea bassing was real fine last week. Captain Ted on the Indian said he still had a "good sign of sea bass" on the Old Grounds a few miles south of DB Buoy. He felt more fish had been grouping up in the area prior to their move offshore. Some days, current was the biggest hindrance facing anglers, causing drifts that were too fast. Captains Brent and Dave on the Katy Did had a successful string of wreck trips last week. Monday they had a limit of 125 bass, a jag of blues and a nice cod that fell for a jig. Tuesday Dave and Brent took a busman's holiday to put some fish in their freezers, along with Joe Walker and Joe Walker,Jr. They went wreck hopping for 100 bass, a mess of blues and a cod. Wednesday's group had 194 bass, including a 3.67 pounder for Nancy Stacy. They also boxed 4 cod, the largest being a 12.5 pounder decked by Richard Adams. Thursday saw another 175 bass limit, plus 8 triggerfish and 40 blues. On Friday, the guys made several stops on snags in depths ranging from 75 to 155 feet. Brent said current was an issue. They culled keepers from numerous short fish at each spot. Dave mentioned that he noticed bigger bass seemed to be hanging above the wrecks. Stopping the rig before it hit bottom, or working a jig higher in the water column often resulted in better sized fish. With persistence and adjustments to technique, due to their observations, the anglers finished the day with 215 sea bass, 7 cod, 6 ling, 6 blues, 2 triggerfish, 1 fluke and a single tog. Offshore, boats trolling Baltimore Canyon found billfish and tuna. Bill Matthews and his buddies took 2 yellowfins and released a white in the Baltimore last Thursday. Shawn Gallagher and his crew spent a rough overnighter in the Baltimore Friday. They trolled 5 yellowfins to 55 pounds and a gaffer dolphin before nightfall. They also had a white marlin that grabbed a butterfly jig in the dark. Jim Short and the boys on Not Right worked 50 fathoms inside the Tip of The Baltimore Friday afternoon for 6 yellowfins and a white. Boats fishing Poor Mans reported hot dolphin action on floating wood near the Triple 0's Friday.
September 22, 2011
- Sea Bass
Inshore bottom fishermen have had a tough time of it the past couple weeks, contending with runoff and debris from heavy rains, strong currents brought on by moon phases and ground swells from offshore storms. However, for those willing to travel a little farther, bottom action with sea bass has been pretty good. Wrecks and obstructions in the twenty fathom region seem to be where the bass are hanging out. Fishermen aboard the Pirate King had a great wreck trip Saturday, returning with a load of sea bass, big ling and even a few cod. Captain Dave Walker, Joe Walker and Dave Popovich made the run to twenty fathoms Wednesday and were rewarded with their limit of 75 plump bass, including citation knotheads of 3.41 and 3.48 pounds. The guys said it was constant double headers, and it didn't take long to cull their box full of keepers. They also had about 30 bluefish. There are still some sea bass on the open bottom between DB and DA Buoys, but there's more volume of fish on the snags a little more offshore. Delaware's sea bass season is open until October 12, when it is shut down through October 31. It reopens November 1 and runs until the end of December. A few flounder continue to come off the Old Grounds south of DB Buoy, as they make their move offshore. Some are real quality specimens, such as the 11.39 pound citation doormat intercepted by Gary Ebling on Saturday. Some flounder were still found in Delaware Bay as well. Flatties were reported from the Horseshoe area northeast of Brandywine. Boats anchored there also encountered kingfish, blowfish, bluefish and surprising numbers of legal sized weakfish. Maybe it's a sign that we'll see more trout next spring. Bluefish ranging in size from little snippers to 2 pounds have been scattered over much of the Bay. Blues have often been seen busting baitfish in the rip outside the Outer Wall, and the choppers can be caught by drifting shiners or cut mullet on bottom rigs, or by casting small bucktails and metals like Kastmasters, Gator spoons and Stingsilvers. Surf casters at Cape Henlopen also got into blues using cut mullet. Spot are still inside the Bay, and folks at the rails of Cape Henlopen Pier had plenty of the tasty panfish while baiting with bits of bloodworm and Fishbites. Many anglers are looking forward to the opening of Tautog season on September 29. Tog, along with some lingering triggerfish and sheepshead should be found along the Inner and Outer Walls and Ice Breaker rockpiles, as well as on Bay artificial reefs and wrecks.
- Snappers In The Surf
Finger mullet have been moving through the shallows inside Cape Henlopen, and the abundance of baitfish has attracted numerous small bluefish. Surf casters on the Cape had good numbers of snappers while fishing with cut fresh mullet. The predicted cool down in weather may signal more bait to migrate, in turn attracting other predators such as stripers, flounder and bigger blues. Boating fishermen in the Ocean caught a few croakers near DB Buoy, but not in numbers anything close to last week. Hardheads have suddenly become hard to come by. However, sea bass have been a little more cooperative. Decent numbers of keeper bass came from bottom structure between DB and DA Buoys. Wrecks in that vicinity, and Reef Site 11 also gave up bass. Ling and small blues were mixed with bass. Keeper flounder have been scarce since the passage of Irene, but a few continue to end up in the coolers of bottom bouncers. Fresh strips of cut mullet or bluefish, and live spot have been effective for larger flatfish. In Delaware Bay, a few flounder continue to be pulled from reef sites 6 and 7. Mike Connolly and his buddies found 4 keeper fluke outside the Outer Wall on Saturday. Some flounder remain in shallow water. Kayakers working jigs near the Cape Henlopen Pier ended up with some nice flatties. Angela Wallace checked in a 4.42 pounder she caught at Roosevelt Inlet using Gulp! Spot action continued good from the Cape Henlopen Pier. Bloodworms and Fishbites produced plenty of the tasty panfish for folks at the rails. Stripers were available in Lewes Canal. A pair of fishermen stopped by the shop yesterday morning to buy eels, then returned in the afternoon with two 30 inch rockfish. They released 15 other bass while drifting near the drawbridge. The guys also had a bonus keeper sea trout they caught near the boat ramp just before they hauled out for the day. Offshore, white marlin were stars of the show. Good numbers of whites were encountered by crews working 40 fathoms between the Rockpile and Washington Canyon.
September 8, 2011
- Big Hardheads
Boats that worked rough bottom surrounding DB Buoy had good catches of big croakers over the past week. These golden beauties are a much nicer class of fish than what was here earlier in the season. Some of the "Cadillac" sized specimens have been as large as 20 inches. Captain Carey's anglers aboard the Grizzly culled 245 chunky hardheads from many they caught on the obstruction northwest of DB Buoy Saturday. Clams, squid, shrimp, bloodworms and Fishbites were all productive offerings. Keeper size flounder have been hard to come by, but flukers picked a few from the Old Grounds and Delaware Bay reef sites. Peter Luketic landed a 4.07 pounder on the Angler Sunday. Some impressive flounder were pulled from Indian River Inlet by guys drifting live spot and mullet. The big flatties stage in inlets this time of year gorging on migratory schools of mullet and spot. Mullet showed up thick along Lewes Beach and inside Cape Henlopen the past couple days. The abundance of baitfish attracts gamefish to near shore areas, and some nice flatfish came from shallow water along the shore and in Roosevelt Inlet. Mike Shockley managed a 6.9 pounder while casting a Gulp! from the beach Saturday evening. Angela Wallace checked in a 4.42 pound flounder she took from Roosevelt Wednesday using a minnow and Gulp! combo. The multitudes of mullet drew attention from bluefish too, and snappers were plentiful inside Cape Henlopen and around the Inner and Outer Walls. Offshore boaters reported a few yellowfin tuna among masses of false albacore in Baltimore Canyon over the weekend. White marlin action was decent for those targeting billfish. Rick Fischer and his crew went 3 for 5 on whites at the 461 Lump Saturday. They also filled the box with 37 dolphin that they bailed from a weedline in the area. There was a good white bite in the Washington Canyon Sunday, and marlin were reported during the week at the Rockpile as well. Normally, the period leading up to the September full moon kicks off some good swordfishing. Squid and tinker mackerel bunch up in the deep and are available for swords to work over by the moonlight. Wes Olson found that to be true Friday night when he and his son hooked four swordfish aboard his "Bad Habit", while drifting live squids through the Bight of Baltimore Canyon. They put one nice swordy in the bag to take home, and released the others. Deep water bottom fishermen had a successful trip Saturday aboard the "Skipjack". Captain Chris Thurman had a decent drift on the edge of the Baltimore, despite strong current, and got the tilefish good. The anglers ended up with 20 tilefish, many in the 20 pound range. Captain H.D. Parsons ran a productive headboat tile trip to the Baltimore on "Thelma Dale V" over the weekend. Fares loaded up on good sized golden tilefish. Sea bass have been gathering on inshore structure. Patti Schneider earned a citation for the 3.45 pound knothead she wrestled from the Triple Wrecks aboard "Patient Lady".
September 1, 2011
- After Irene
Before the passage of Hurricane Irene, the ocean flounder bite was good. On Friday, just ahead of the storm, fishermen on Katy Did caught more than 70 flounder south of DB Buoy. They ended up with 8 keepers, including trophies of 8.09 and 7.47 pounds for Jeremy Armolt. Catching in Delaware Bay was decent too. The Lil' Angler fished the Brown Shoal reefs Friday, with the storm on the way. The take included a 6 pound flounder for Mike Bayshore, plus 4 other keepers. In addition, the guys had over 20 blowfish and a bunch of croakers. Patrons on the Angler and Pirate King loaded up on hardheads Thursday and Friday before the blow. Irene made her presence known over the weekend with high winds and torrential rain, and even a destructive tornado that caused considerable damage to a couple housing developments in Lewes. We were greeted by beautiful weather Monday after she left the area, but it seems the introduction of all that fresh water and the runoff from the Delaware River that will ensue has put what's hopefully a temporary damper on fishing action. Boaters that went out Monday through Wednesday reported a slow pick on spots that had been productive prior to the bad weather. A few short flounder and some snapper bluefish were taken on reef sites 6,7 and 8. Crews working the other side of the Bay supposedly found some croakers on Crow Shoal. Tog catches were actually pretty good during the last couple days of the season for guys toggled into the Outer Wall. That season reopens September 29th. Slot stripers were taken before the size change was implemented. Clams on the bottom near the Lewes Drawbrige were productive offerings. Rockfish also bit Stingsilvers, Kastmasters and Fin-S-Fish cast in the evenings near the Coast Guard Station. Striped bass caught in Delaware Bay and it's tributaries must once again meet a 28 inch minimum in order to be kept, and the limit remains two per angler. The storm didn't seem to bother the spot. Plenty were landed by folks on the rails of the Cape Henlopen Pier using bloodworms and Fishbites. Ocean bottom bouncers had some sea bass and big croakers up to 20 inches while working rough structure northwest of DB Buoy Wednesday. On the offshore scene, a major white marlin bite like what took place the past two seasons has yet to materialize. Boats did get into yellowfins while trolling 50 fathoms near the 42100 line inshore of Poor Man's Canyon.
August 18, 2011
- Fine Flounder Fishing
Ocean flounder action has been very good for anglers who are proficient at working the artificial structure of reef sites 9, 10 and 11. Flounder have also been hanging around area wrecks as they stage to begin moving offshore. The stone and live coral bottom of the Old Grounds between DB and DA is holding good numbers of fluke too. Guys using bucktails tipped with strip baits have done well. Yesterday, flukers on the Katy Did put 30 quality keepers in the box while rubble bouncing in the Ocean. Captain Brent Wiest wound in a 7.42 pounder, "Bully Bob" Trento took a 7.88 pound citation doormat, and Captain Dave Walker decked one weighing 6.68 pounds. Wes Olson, "Beaver" Ruff and Barney and Matt Gallagher teamed up for 13 hefty flounder to 5.56 pounds and a bonus 13 dolphin while drifting souheast of DB Buoy Tuesday. The Saturday group aboard Skipjack scored 10 thick flatties and a bunch of plump ling. Drifing the reef sites in Delaware Bay has yielded flounder too. Joe Walker whacked an 8.77 pounder at reef site 7. However, croakers remain he star of the show. Hardhead action has been hot on the Star Site, reef 8. A summertime mix of kingfish, spot, blowfish, porgies, snapper blues and small trout have mingled with croakers. Bloodworms, clams, shrimp, squid and Fishbites will catch them all. Plenty of spot were caught from the Cape Henlopen Pier with bloods and Fishbites. Inshore trollers hooked dolphin and wahoo between 20 and 30 fathoms. Shawn Gallagher got a 30 pound 'hoo in Massey's Canyon, and Keith Orendorf landed a 15.2 pound mahi. On the offshore scene, there was a decent white marlin bite in he Wilmington Canyon. Tuna fishing was spotty, but some yellowfins and bigeyes were taken the past couple days among groups of whales feeding on bait in the Bight of the Baltimore. Ryan Cene was fishing on the Finomenal, with Captain Fred Wick, on Tuesday when he hooked up to a large tuna at 2 pm. Five hours later, after 7 pm, he finally put the stubborn 182.5 pound bigeye in the boat. Ryan's group had already had a good day before he did battle with the bigeye. They had released a white marlin, and iced a nice pair of yellowfins and several dolphin.
August 11, 2011
- More Croakers!
If you're interested in catching croakers, now's the time to go. Boats drifting and anchored on Reef #8, the Star Site, have had all the hardheads they could handle over the past few days. Size of croakers in the box has been increasing too. Good numbers of fish over 12 inches have shown up, and those of even larger "Cadillac" proportions have been mixed in as well. Bottom rigs baited with clams, bloodworms, shrimp and Fishbites have been irresistable to hardheads. Croakers fight hard and provide great fun for anglers of all ages. They're also good table fare. They make for a fine fish fry, and can be turned into delicious fish cakes as well. In addition to hardheads, bottom fishermen encountered blowfish, kingfish, spot, snapper blues and small trout. Flounder action in the Bay has been fair, with flatties reported among rubble of most of the reef sites. Flukers on Katy Did worked the Brown Shoal reefs Wednesday for 10 keeper flatfish. The Ocean flounder bite was good today. Wes Olson and his crew kept their limit of 12 fat flatfish to 5 pounds while drifting southeast of DB Buoy. Edwin "Max" Maxwell jigged up his limit of quality flounder, including the plump pool winner, while fluking with Capt. Ricky Yakimowicz. Offshore tuna catches have been spotty. A few yellowfins came from 100 to 200 fathoms of the Baltimore, usually taken by trollers there at first light. Captain Bill Swords and his guys on "Swords Fish" had a simultaneous hookup of a large blue marlin and a jumbo bigeye in the Bight of the Baltimore this morning. The blue jumped off after a short ride, but they spent several hours with 22 pounds of heat on the bigeye before a heartbreaking separation of the line. Some large bigeyes have been boated by crews fishing this week's White Marlin Open. Chip Caruso landed a 279 pound bigeye aboard the Pipedreamer with Captain Max Morris and Mate Danny Prettyman. Captains Brent and Dave on Katy Did fished offshore Tuesday. They came across a truck tire covered with growth floating in the Baltimore. That piece of flotsam yielded 15 dolphin and 31 triggerfish. The guys finished off the trip by deep dropping for 10 nice tilefish to 33 pounds.
August 4, 2011
- Croakers Are Here
Delaware Bay fishermen have been picking at croakers over the past few weeks, but there have been no appreciable numbers until the past couple days. Anglers had good catches today in the northwest corner of reef #8, the Star Site. Captain Charlie Helmer's group aboard Tranquila kept 70 nice hardheads. Patrons on the Angler got into croakers too. Baiting with clams, bloodworms and Fishbites on size 4 hooks did the trick. In additon to croakers, there have been plenty of spot around. The tasty panfish were found at Site 8, along the inner wall and Cape Henlopen pier, in Roosevelt Inlet, Broadlkill River and Lewes Canal. Bits of bloodworm or Fishbites on small hooks or sabiki rigs were effective. Blowfish, kingfish and snapper blues were mixed with hardheads and spot on the Bay reefs. This is normally the time of year when some big flounder are caught, and true to form, a few weighty specimens hit the dock this week. The most impressive was an 11.72 pound welcome mat landed by Captain Vince Keagy, who runs the Miss Kirstin. The 31 inch fluke attacked a shad dart with a strip of squid at Site 7, and was brought to the boat on 12 pound test line. Vince said he's been fishing Delaware Bay for 35 years, but that was his heaviest one so far. Jack Henriksen, Ricky Mills and John "Dynamo" Deiner worked the Brown Shoal reef for 8 keeper flounder last Friday, including Jack's 5.21 pounder. Tood Mills took a 5.13 pounder off Site 7. Ocean fishing produced some nice flatties too. Last Friday, guys on the Grizzly got 11 keepers at Site 10. Among them was a 6.5 pound beauty for Jonathan Thompson. On Sunday, flukers an the Lil' Angler scored 14 flounder to take home out of 57 caught. Wayne DeMarco decked a 5.77 pounder. Bobby and Buckwheat Bryant, Brad Hawkes and Steve Reynolds put 12 in the box at Site 10 Monday. Bobby boated a 5.5 pounder. Joe Walker and his crew captured 12 quality flatfish at Site 10 Tuesday, including a 7.14 pound citation for Tom Coyle, and Bobby Bryant's 6.05. Katy Did returned from Site 10 Wednesday with a dozen nice flatfish. The yellowfin chunk bite at the Hot Dog cooled off after the middle of last week, but recently, tuna were taken trolling at the Dog. On Tuesday, Captain Alan Steele and his anglers on Big Herring trolled the Dog for 9 yellowfins and 2 dolphin. Trollers also found some wahoo between 20 and 30 fathoms. Adam Grove got a 27.6 pound 'hoo near the Tea Cup. Billfish have been hanging out in the Baltimore Canyon. Captains Brent and Dave on the Katy Did had 4 white marlin releases for their anglers in the Baltimore Sunday. They topped the trip off with a pair of dolphin and some tilefish. Captain Jeff on the Joint Venture had a successful overnighter to the Baltimore, coming back with 2 good sized yellowfins, a dolphin and an 80 pound swordfish. He also released a white marlin.
July 28, 2011
- Chunk Bite at the Hot Dog
Yellowfins have been hanging out at the Hot Dog, and crews chunking with butterfish and sardines have had good success with tuna ranging from 20 to 40 pounds on average. Jason and Howard Burris, along with Matt and Mario Disabatino and Jason Hanny had a great trip to the Dog Sunday. They chunked tuna to the boat then got them really fired up by tossing in handfuls of live minnows. The guys boated 9 nice yellowfins, one of which was a 32.5 pounder Matt subdued with his fly rod. Captains Brent and Dave took Katy Did to the Dog Monday for some good chunking action. Wes Major, Jim Curry, Dave Carlin, Thomas Borrell, Jim Mays, Jim Martelli and Erminio Savelloni put 13 yellowfins and a pair of dolphin in the bag. In addition to those hooked by chunkers at the Hot Dog, tuna were taken by trollers at the Hambone and Massey's Canyon. Those pulling ballyhoo and spreader bars also hooked bluefins, wahoo, dolphin and white marlin. Offshore bottom fishing has been good. Captain Pete Floyd and the crew on Candy's Choice dropped in the Baltimore for 30 tilefish, including a 36.3 pounder brought in by Pete's Grandson, Scott Davis. Inshore bottom fishing improved over the past few days. Flukers on Katy Did decked 11 quality flounder today at Site 10, with several over 3 pounds. Among the catch was a 5.8 pounder for Michael Walker, and a 6 pounder for Jerry Cuff. Bucktails were effective for the flatfish. The Angler headboat had a mix of flounder and ling near DB Buoy during the week. In Delaware Bay, fishermen picked at flatties around artificial reefs 5,6,7 and 8. Joe Walker, Bobby Bryant, Tom Coyle and Veryl Burns limited out at the Brown Shoal reefs with 16 flounder to 5 pounds today. Increasing numbers of spot have been caught inside Cape Henlopen, around the piers and walls, and in Roosevelt Inlet and Lewes Canal. Bloodworms and Fishbites were favorites of the tasty panfish. Some croakers have been mixed in with spot, but the large schools of hardheads that hopefully will arrive, have yet to show. Tautog and triggerfish continue to come from the Outer Wall and Ice Breakers, although the bite was slower during the hot weather. Slot size stripers were caught around the drawbridge on Lewes Canal by small boaters using eels and clams.
July 21, 2011
- Flatties in The Bay
Delaware Bay flounder catches have been fairly good the past week, despite full moon tides. It's not like everybody is muggin' them, but most anglers end up with a couple fish to take home. The Angler headboat has been returning with keepers from their 6 hour trip. Much of the action has centered around reef sites 5,6,7, and 8, but some fish have come from open bottom between G Buoy and Brown Shoal, and in the Broadkill Slough. Harry Laws landed a 4.65 pound flatfish at the Beach Ball. Barry Gerhard and his crew drifted the Brown Shoal reefs for 8 keepers, including 4.05 and 4.13 pounders boated by Barry's grandson, Sam Hazlett. On Saturday, Captain Carey's flukers on the Grizzly got 14 keepers while fishing the Brown Shoal rubble. Julian Weaver wound in a 5.54 pounder at the Star Site on Top Fin. Jack Henriksen and John Deiner kept 4 fish to 4.16 pounds out of 9 they caught at the Star Site. Ginger Henriksen had a 3.89 pound flounder that move her into Second Place of the Lewes Yacht Club Tournament. Flatties are still hanging out in Lewes Canal. Nick Psaroudakis and his buddies put 7 in the box just a couple days ago while drifting the Canal. Todd Meredith used minnows and Gulp! near the Cape Henlopen Pier to capture 3 keepers to 21 inches. Flounder catches were decent in the ocean too. The Old Grounds and Reef Site 10 gave up legal size fish on days with favorable drift conditions. Jeff Scurti scored a 6.51 pound doormat on a recent trip to DB Buoy aboard Katy Did. Stripers were active along the Outer Wall in the evenings and could be tempted with topwater plugs. Rockfish were also hooked near the drawbridge on Lewes Canal with eels and clams. Fin-S Fish and other small soft plastics cast at night to the shadow line from the lights of the Roosevelt Coast Guard station produced linesiders too. Tog and triggerfish were pulled from the rocks of the Wall and Ice Breakers. "Booker" Bookwalter checked in a 7.56 pound citation tautog he wrestled from the Wall while baiting with box crabs. Captain Pete's toggers aboard Top Fin had 17 keeper blackfish today. Cape Henlopen pier anglers told of spot on bloodworms and Fishbites. A handful of croakers were taken around the Star Site and in Broadkill Slough. Numerous hardheads have been reported south of here and hopefully the masses will show up soon. Inshore tuna fishermen continued to enjoy success. Keith Orendorf and friends trolled Massey's Canyon Friday for a nice bluefin, 3 yellowfins and 3 dolphin. They also released several other sub-legal yellowfins. On Sunday, Donna Means decked a 51.6 pound bluefin and Lewis Means landed an 18.6 pound dolphin at the 12 Fathom Lump aboard Joint Venture.
July 14, 2011
- Yellowfins Move Inshore
Great news for fishermen that had been running to the Canyons to catch yellowfins. Tuna showed up closer to home this week, and boats found them in good numbers at the Hot Dog. There were lots of fish short of the 27 inch minimum size, but also plenty of keepers from 20 to 40 pounds. Some dolphin and billfish were mixed in on the same structure. The gamefish had been feeding on sand eels hanging out in the area. Tuna were taken by trollers pulling skirted ballyhoos, and a variety of artificials. Tony and Diana Vansant, Steve Millman and John Davis had a nice trip to the Dog Wednesday, returning with 8 yellowfins to 40 pounds and a gaffer dolphin. Tony also caught a white marlin that put on quite a show. Captains Brent Wiest and Dave Walker on Katy Did also trolled the Hot Dog Wednesday, and ended up with 9 keeper yellowfins. In addition to yellowfin tuna, bluefins were close inshore. Captain Vince Keagy an the Miss Kirstin pulled cedar plugs between Delaware Light and the 12 Fathom Lump for a keeper bluefin and 3 dolphin. Bluefins were also reported at Massey's Canyon, the Hambone and the Jackspot. Tuna were still taken offshore. On Saturday, the crew on Katy Did made a long run from Lewes to the Bight of Washington Canyon and were rewarded with 7 quality yellowfins to 52 pounds. They released 12 other tuna in just an hour's trolling. Offshore deep dropping produced some nice tilefish. Frank Frabizzio checked in a 38 pound golden tile he captured in the Baltimore Canyon. Inshore bottom bouncers had flounder at Site 10 and on the Old Grounds. Captain Carey's Saturday group on the Grizzly kept 11 out of 53 fluke they caught on the Old Grounds. Delaware Bay flounder fishermen found flatties at the Star Site, however, getting the right drift during full moon tides was difficult. Tautog action was pretty good at the Outer Wall and Ice Breakers. Triggerfish and sheepshead were mixed in. Guys tossing topwater plugs along the Wall in the evenings had fun with slot size stripers. Spot catches were good from the Cape Henlopen pier.
July 7, 2011
- Bouncing For Flounder
Flounder catches have been pretty good for guys who know how to work rough bottom structure. The rocks and sea trees of the Old Grounds between DB and DA Buoys, as well as the rubble of reef sites 9 and 10 have been holding fluke, and savvy fishermen have found that modifications to standard rigging helps them catch more flatties amongst that kind of cover. According to Captain Ricky Yakimowicz, short leaders are the key. He said a 3 to 4 ounce bucktail with a hair teaser on a 4 inch leader about a foot ahead of the jig works well. He mentioned that flukers also had success employing a rig with a sinker as heavy as necessary to maintain contact with the bottom, and a hair teaser hook on a short dropper about 6 to 8 inches above the weight. The jigs or hooks get sweetened with a strip of squid, shark, bluefish, a shiner, smelt, Gulp! or any combination of these. Anglers should constantly bounce the rigs as they drift through the chunky grounds and be alert for the quick strike of a flatfish lying in ambush. The jigging action seems to provoke more aggressive strikes than when baits are drug casually over the bottom, and flounder just hang on while deciding to swallow or not. The short leadered setups are also less likely to get snagged. Some days when the drift was too fast or in a bad direction, crews that anchored and cast rigs upcurrent so they walked across the structure did well. Jigging produced some nice specimens during the week. Dave Walker bucktailed a 6.21 pound doormat at Site 10 aboard Katy Did. Jim Woods got a 6.97 pound fluke on the Katy Did. Flounder came from Delaware Bay artificial reefs too. Laura Kemper and Lisa DiVincenzo checked in 3 nice flatties to 22 inches they got with Gulp! at the Star Site. Jamie Moore managed a 3.92 pounder at the Star Site. Harriet Paul put a 5 pounder in the box aboard Lil' Angler. Curtis Hawkins captured a 6.02 pound trophy on the Angler. Clayton Horvath had a 7.6 pound welcome mat while working a wreck with Capt. Chuck of First Light Charters. Joe Walker and his crew had 8 quality keepers at the Star Site Wednesday. Among the catch was a 5.39 pound beauty boated by Joe's granddaughter Candace Way. Tautog fishermen had decent catches at the Outer Wall and Ice Breakers using green crabs, sand fleas, shrimp and box crabs. Faith Roth reeled in a 7.29 citation tog at the Wall. Triggerfish and sheepshead have shown up in warm water. Kyusok Yi captured a jumbo 12.54 pound sheepshead at the Ice Breakers. Tuna catches have slowed compared to the good bite over the past two weeks. However, chunkers did catch some bluefins in Massey's Canyon. Yellowfins popped up in the Baltimore and Poor Man's Canyons, but not in numbers like before. Good sized dolphin have been taken. Craig Lester landed a 28.2 pound mahi in the Baltimore aboard Swords Fish.
July 1, 2011
- Offshore Action
Tuna fishing continues good. Boats running offshore at the beginning of the week had plenty of yellowfins in the Baltimore, but the bite shifted south as the week wore on. By week's end, best catches came from Poor Man's and the Washington. On Monday, the crew on Katy Did crushed 'em while trolling the 250 line of the Baltimore in 75 fathoms. They put a limit of 21 keepers to 51.7 pounds in the bags, and released a white marlin. On Friday, Captains Brent and Dave on Katy Did went back offshore and told of good activity near the Lower Lump of Poor Man's. They had 3 nice yellowfins and 5 gaffer dolphin. Bill Swords and the guys on Swords Fish trolled Poor Man's Friday for 5 yellowfins, a gaffer dolphin and a Mako on mono. Some big dolphin have shown up in the warm water. Chris Ragni and Jimmy Kersey checked in a pair of monster mahis scaling 38 and 32 pounds that were taken at the 461 lump. Billfishing has been good as well with many whites released. "Rockfish Ed" Healy released two big blue marlin in one trip offshore earlier this week. Back inshore, fluke fishermen working artificial reef structure found flatties on days with favorable drift conditions. Last Sunday, flukers on Katy Did returned with a boat limit of 36 keepers including Bob Murphy's 8.02 pounder. Thursday, Katy Did drifted Site 10 for 24 keeper flatfish. The Grizzly got 13 keepers at Site 10 on Thursday. Anglers using bucktail and teaser rigs tipped with squid strips and shiners did well on legal sized fish. Flounder came from reefs in Delaware Bay too. Joe Walker, Tom Coyle, Larry Coyle and Barry Gerhard fished the Star Site Tuesday and scored 12 nice keeper flatties. Small boaters still had flounder in Lewes Canal, and also around the Inner Wall and Ferry Jetty. Gulp! was the hot bait. Tautog season reopened July 1, and toggers told of success along the Outer Wall and Ice Breakers. Captain Carey on the Grizzly had 25 tog and 15 triggerfish on an Ocean wreck opening day. Some impressive citation fish were recorded Friday. William Bonniwell boated an 11.69 pound blackfish with Cpatain Ted on the Indian Friday. Aaron Brommer brought in a 10.59 pounder aboard the Martha Marie. The slot size striper season in Delaware Bay and it's tributaries also opened July 1. Anglers are permitted to keep 2 striped bass between 20 and 26 inches only, from now until August 31. Minimum size in the Ocean and Indian River inlet remains at 28 inches with a two bass per person daily limit. Rockfish were caught by casters tossing Rat-L-Traps and Storm Shads at the Outer Wall and Ice Breakers. Those employing eels, clams or cut tuna bloodline captured slot stripers in Lewes Canal.
June 23, 2011
- Hot Tuna
Tuna action has been hot both inshore and offshore. Bluefin tuna have been plentiful on traditional twenty fathom structure such as the Hambone, Chicken Bone, Sausages, Massey's Canyon and other lumps along the edges of The Fingers. Bluefins also came from the Jackspot, Twin Wrecks and the 19 Fathom Lump in the Dumpsite. Trolling skirted ballyhoo and artificials such as cedar plugs, Green Machines and squid spreader bars was effective. Recreational anglers are reminded that only one bluefin tuna measuring between 27 inches to less than 59 inches curved fork length may be kept per vessel per day. Offshore yellowfin catches have been the real highlight. Numerous tuna were spread in 70 to 100 fathoms between the Baltimore and Wilmington Canyons, with a concentration between the 350 and 380 lines. Crews that were on the grounds for first light found slicks, birds and schools of tuna aggressively working squid and baitfish. The best bite was early, but sometimes fish fed throughout the day. A lot of skipjacks and yellowfins short of the 27 inch minimum were mixed in, but plenty of keepers ranging 20 to 50 pounds were caught, along with the occassional 70 to 90 pounder. Tuna responded to trolled ballyhoo, spreader bars and green machines behind birds. Jim Short and the boys on Knot Right were on the spot Saturday for the early morning bite and trolled up their limit of 18 yellowfins to 60 pounds, after being covered up multiple times. The Grizzly had a great overnight trip Saturday. During the darkness, the anglers released 8 large dusky sharks, then when it came light, it was full on with tunas. They ended up with a limit of yellowfins to take home. Captains Brent Wiest and Dave Walker took Katy Did offshore Monday and returned with 11 yellowfins to 45 pounds. Paul Pergeorelis also put a 14.8 pound dolphin in the box on that trip. The Katy Did went back to 70 fathoms Wednesday for 16 more keeper yellowfins and many additional short ones. The anglers had some extra excitement when a 10 foot long Hammerhead shark ate two of their tunas. Back inshore, on the bottom fishing scene, flounder fishing was decent on the Old Grounds between DB and DA Buoys. Catching was better on days with favorable drift conditions. Three to 4 ounce bucktail jigs tipped with squid strips or cut mackerel worked well. Fluking is shaping up in Delaware Bay too. Anglers who know how and when to work the artificial reefs were successful. Joe Walker, Tom Coyle, Larry Coyle and Joe Coyle drifted at Brown Shoal Wednesday for 12 keepers, including three in the 6 pound class. Will Burdett boated a 6.49 pound flounder at reef 5 aboard the Lil' Angler II. Flounder continue to come from Lewes Canal. John Northeimer checked in a 5.26 pounder he took from the Canal using Gulp! Small boats drifting the Canal had good numbers of flatties, although they had to cull through many throwbacks. Shad darts, speck rigs and other small jigs sweetened with Gulp!, minnows or shiners were effective. Some big flounder were landed from the Indian River inlet jetties. Ryan Wieber brought in an 8 pound 11 ounce doormat that took a Gulp! along the rocks. David Wyszynski was tossing a Storm Shad from the jetty for stripers when a 6 pound 4 ounce flounder inhaled his lure. Fishermen on the Cape Henlopen pier had a few flounder, along with spot and small croakers. Boats drifting along the rocks of the Outer Wall and Ice Breakers got into staripers while casting Storm lures and Bomber plugs in the evening and at night. Stripers were caught on popping plugs along the Canal marsh banks between the Freeman Highway Bridge and Gordon's Pond.
June 16, 2011
- Flounder Action Picking Up
Delaware Bay flounder action showed promise for some good fishing this summer. On days when drift conditions were favorable, Bay reef sites yielded decent numbers of flatties. It was a little tough around the full moon, but prior to it, flukers enjoyed good catches. Captain Brent's fishermen aboard Katy Did kept 10 flounder out of 57 they caught on Sunday at Reef 5 in Broadkill Slough. Mark Adams got the first sheepshead of the season on that trip, a 5.45 pounder. Other reports of flounder came from the Old Grounds between DB and DA Buoys in the Ocean. Three or four ounce bucktails tipped with squid strips were productive. On a recent trip to the Old Grounds, guys on the Grizzly got 41 flatties, returning with 9 keepers. Seven of the fish were over 22 inches. Flounder continue to come from Lewes Canal as well. John Davis checked in a 4.75 pounder he caught using Gulp! Fishermen on the Cape Henlopen pier had a few flounder, along with spot. Black drum were still active on the Coral Beds around the full moon, but the run will likely wind down soon. Rick Bortz and a buddy had four boomers from 25 to 40 pounds at the end of flood tide Monday evening. The offshore tuna bite remained good over the past week. Water temps have been warmer than usual due to current eddies moving in. The Skipjack came back Sunday from an overnighter to the Wilmington Canyon with 8 yellowfins and a mako. Darryl Boyer and his crew trolled Iland Lures and ballyhoo in the Baltimore Canyon Saturday to release 3 white marlin. They also put a dolphin in the box and tangled with a very large blue marlin that eventually left with all the line off of a TLD50II reel. Angelo Delapo fished 81 degree water in 250 fathoms near the tip of the Wilmington Wednesday on the Spoiled III. His anglers released two of five white marlin that pounced on Green Machines and spreader bars they were towing in search of tuna. Sharking is still going on. Captain D.J. Churchill and the boys on "Tighten Up" boated a 418 pound thresher between DB and DA Buoys. Captain Tom Smith put Herb Guest and the guys aboard "Port-A-Bella" on makos of 120 and 148 pounds during two days of drifting the Elephant Trunk.
June 9, 2011
- Good Tuna Bite
There has been a good tuna bite so far this season. Bluefins normally show up this time of year, however, it's encouraging to hear of numerous yellowfins that have been caught over the past week. Wes Olson and crew trolled Green Machines and spreader bars inshore of the Wilmington Canyon for 3 yellowfins to 36 pounds. Captain Tom Cornell's guys aboard High Hook had 8 yellowfins in 40 fathoms between the Wilmington and Baltimore Canyons. They finished the day with an 88 pound bluefin that George Durant decked near Massey's Canyon. Jim Short and the boys on Knot Right put 4 forty pound yellowfins in the box while trolling the Wilmington Canyon. Angelo Delapo's anglers aboard Spoiled III trolled up five keeper yellowfin and their one allowable bluefin. Jimmy Reed, Mike Cannon and friends worked the West Wall of the Baltimore to ice eight yellowfins. Bill Swords and his buddies trolled up 4 nice yellowfins then switched to deep dropping for a good catch of golden tiles. Yellowfins were spread from 40 to 60 fathoms in several spots between the Wilmington and Poor Man's Canyons. Bluefins seemed to be more prevalent inshore, between the Hambone and Hot Dog, on the Chicken Bone and at Massey's Canyon. All of the trollers reported many short tuna and skipjacks. False Albacore made an early arrival, and schools of big albies roamed the same structure as the yellowfins and bluefins. Chopper bluefish were feeding on the Hambone and other inshore lumps too. Sharking has been decent. Herb Guest and the guys on Port-A-Bella brought in a 150 pound mako. They had that shark and several others while drifting the Elephant Trunk. Sea Bass action was fair at Reef Site 11. Bassers had to weed through mostly short fish to end up with some to take home. Anchoring was more productive for keepers. Cod have been mixed in on the the same structure as bass, and offered a pleasant bonus for bottom bouncers. Ocean flounder fishing came on in the past couple days. Captain Ricky Yakimovicz reported good fluking in 80 feet of water between DB and DA Buoys. Fishermen using 3 to 4 ounce bucktails tipped with a strip of fresh bait did well. Shark, mackerel, bluefish and skate were great cut baits. Delaware Bay flounder fishing was fair, with a few keepers coming from reef sites 5,6,7 and 8. Flounder continue to be pulled from Lewes Canal. Gulp! artificials have been highly effective all spring. Flatties were caught at the Cape Henlopen Pier too. Black drum were caught at the Coral Beds over the weekend, but that fishing will likely wind down soon. Jordan Stradling scored her first drum, weighing 34 pounds, on Saturday night. Stripers roamed the rocks of the Ice Breakers and Outer Wall, and could be tempted with buctails, Storm Shads and Bomber plugs. The bite was best in the evenings or after dark. Evan Falgowski was surprised when two big drum grabbed Stretch Plugs he was using for stripers near the Haystacks.
June 2, 2011
- First Thresher Shark
The season's first thresher shark was brought to the dock on Memorial Day, and it was a whopper! Captain Ted Moulinier took the Pirate King to his favorite sharking grounds northwest of DB Buoy, and returned with a 487 pound longtail. Captain Brian Wazlavek and Alex Capozio shared winding time on the reel. The crew attempted to wrestle the big shark aboard after it was caught, but it was too heavy to get over the gunwale, so they towed it home. The mammoth thresher attracted plenty of attention at the Marina, and yielded quite a pile of delicious steaks. Other threshers were reported along the Buoy Line and in the Fingers. Makos were also taken at the Hambone and in the Fingers. Bluefish were plentiful in the same areas, and trollers caught choppers in the 8 to 15 pound range. Bluefish were also found on the lumps southeast of Delaware Light. There was a good tuna bite over the weekend. Yellowfins showed up outside The Rockpile, between Poor Man's and Washington Canyons. There were a lot of small fish below the 27 inch minimum, but crews were able to cull out decent numbers of keepers. Some tuna were in the 30 to 40 pound range. Bluefins were mixed in with yellowfins, and most boats had their limit of one. Mark Stephens and his buddies trolled up 10 keeper yellowfins and released many others at the "800 Square" of the Washington Sunday. It's encouraging to see good tuna action, and hopefully it will be a great offshore season. Bill Swords and friends enjoyed some fine offshore bottom fishing. They had 16 tilefish to 35 pounds, plus nice sea bass and ling while deep dropping in the Baltimore Canyon. Sea Bassers at Reef Site 11 picked away at fish, and anchoring seemed more productive than drifting. Hobby Isaacs iced the biggest bass we've see so far this year, a 5.62 pound knothead. Chuck Coverdale caught a 3.59 pounder on the Angler. Back inshore, flounder are still coming from Lewes Canal. Thurman Stanley caught an 8.1 pound doormat right in front of the store Tuesday morning while fishing with a chartreuse Gulp! Ethan Boyle used a white Gulp! to catch his 3.46 pounder. Flounder also came from the Cape Henlopen Pier. Some flounder have been caught in the Bay east of Fourteen Foot Light, and on Reef Site 7. Croakers have started to move into the Bay as well. Surfcasters on Broadkill Beach caught small hardheads, and fishermen on the Cape May Ferry Jetties had them too. Black drum lingered at the Coral Beds. Ogden Lester landed a 68.6 pounder on the Miss Kirstin, and Phil Spare scored a 72.1 pound boomer on Joint Venture.
May 26, 2011
- Flounder Tourney Results
The Lewes Harbour Canal Flounder Tournament was a great success. Over 300 anglers participated in the event, and many flatties were caught. Frank Zeccola was the big winner with a 7.25 pound doormat. Nikki Rice nailed Second with her 4.35 pounder. A 4.32 by John Mitchell took Third. Ron Webster wound in the the Fourth Place 4.31 pounder. Ed Bush boated a 4.17 for Fifth. Bobby Smith scored Sixth with his 4.11, and Tom Hudson had Seventh with a 4.04 pound fluke. In addition to cash prizes awarded to the top finishers, more than $1,500 was raised for Camp Awareness Youth Programs. Many thanks to all who took part in the Tourney. Brian Clark captured a 5.94 pound flatfish in the Canal, but unfortunately it happened the day before the Tournament. Flounder fishing was good at night for sharpies working the Cape Henlopen pier using small jigs tipped with shiners or herring. Waders inside the Cape and between the piers also hooked flounder. Frank and Sue Gaworski had three keeper flounder and released several others, along with some nice weakfish and puppy drum while tossing Bass Assassins around the old Broadkill Jetty. The striper bite in Indian River Inlet last week was the best most area fishermen have seen in a long time. Schools of big, migratory post spawn bass pushed through the inlet with each flood tide and fed aggressively on bunker, shad, small trout, kingfish or whatever happened to be in front of them. It was a bonaza for both jetty jocks and boaters. As word of the action spread, the crowds grew, and it was common to see casters lining the rocks elbow to elbow the full length of both jetties, most of them with bent rods. Upwards of a hundred boats drifted the inlet at the same time. The best catching took place at night. Although tempers flared among some anglers in the crazy scene, fishermen who kept their cool were rewarded with rockfishing rarely seen. Gary Kaminski checked in a brace of bass weighing 32.5 and 34.1 pounds he caught with bucktails. Harry Blades and Shane Townsend had limits while drifting Storm Shads on multiple trips to the inlet. Their take included Shane's 31 pounder and Harry's 23.2 pound rock. Bill Lux brought in a 29.1 pounder using a bucktail tipped with herring. Dominic Coviello fooled his 28 pound striper with a white bucktail. Mason Newsham trolled a Stretch 30 plug to nail a 27.8 pound linesider. Joe Bowski bucktailed bass of 24.3 and 17.6 pounds. Jim Weber wound in a 25.5 pounder with a Storm Lure. Phil Chandler had a 23 pounder, and Ricky Chorman captured a 24.5 pound rock. Brock Kauffman caught a 22.3 pounder on an eel. Drew Rose was casting a Bomber plug when he connected with a 20.3 pounder. Striped bass also came from Delaware Bay. Timmy Barnett, Chad Tingle and Vince Lahr trolled Stretch plugs along he edge of Hen and Chickens Shoal for their limit of lunkers to 31.5 pounds. Other crews reported rock while casting Storm Shads and Bomber plugs around the Ice Breakers and Outer Wall. Joe Zaleski boated a 35 pound bass while soaking a bunker chunk at Site 2. A few stripers were taken from the surf at Herring Point and in Roosevelt Inlet by anglers using bunker and clams. Black Drum continued to come from the Coral Beds and submerged pilings off Slaughter Beach. Martha Clemmer landed a 71.5 pound behemoth, one of four boated Thursday night aboard Martha Marie. The Miss Kirstin returned with 5 drum Friday evening. Grizzly's guys got seven on Saturday night. Paul Grim decked a 68 pounder on the Indian. Jake McNitt managed a 66.9 pound drum on the Pirate King II. John Mancuso muscled in a 61.1 pound boomer. Kahekili Gomez was drumming on the Joint Venture when he hooked his 67.8 pounder. Many drum have been pulled from the surf at Broadkill Beach. Clam or peeler crab on a short leadered fishfinder rig produced plenty of puppies from 10 to 25 pounds at the end of ebb tide and beginning of the flood. There was much excitement over the opening of sea bass season Sunday. Boaters had good catches at Reef Site 11, and on wrecks in 100 to 120 foot depths. The crew on Katy Did returned with a limit of quality bass and several cod on Sunday. Captain Pete Haines and Bob Witte iced their limit of nice bass Sunday aboard Top Fin. Bassers on the Lil' Angler II had good catches as well. Bill Swords and his buddies had a box of big bass and a bunch of cod aboard Swords Fish. It's encouraging to see cod in such numbers again. Crews working structure in twenty fathoms in search of sharks and tuna encountered plenty of big bluefish. Wes Olson said it was all the slammers you wanted at the Hambone. Blues were also caught by sharkers at the Fingers and Jackspot. Jon Kitchen reported that an overnighter to the Carteret Canyon produced a blue shark, three small yellowfin tuna, a pair of big dolphin and surprisingly, three wahoo. Warm water has been working it's way inshore, and trollers tell of catching bluefins along temperature breaks this side of the canyons.
May 12, 2010
- Drum Action Started
Black drum turned on in Delaware Bay this past week. Best of the action occurred in shallow water off Slaughter Beach. Boats anchored near the submerged pilings and baiting with surf clams did well. Bites occurred during both daylight and nighttime hours. Some crews reported double digit catches over the weekend. Fish have generally been small males in the 10 to 30 pound range, but a few big boomers have been brought back to the dock. Rebecca Hollingsworth boated a 70.5 pounder aboard the Martha Marie. Doug, Jeff and Lucas May, Mike Goshen, and DJ Kline had 4 drum to 35 pounds on the Pirate King. Rocky Morgan was surprised when a 47.5 pound drum grabbed a green crab he was using for tog bait along the Inner Wall aboard the Indian. Will Wiedmann landed a pair of drum to 20 pounds while soaking clams in the surf at Broadkill Beach. Drum fishing should continue good through this month with peak time around the full moon. We will be carrying surf clams but suggest you call to reserve bait early in the week to ensure you have clams for the weekend. Flounder fishing has been decent in the Lewes Canal and in shallow water near the Cape Henlopen Pier. Minnows, shiners and smelt were popular offerings. A strip of herring or bunker on a small jig was effective too. Scot Anderson checked in a 4.63 pounder he caught in the Canal. Jay Fleming pulled a 4.3 pounder from the pilings at the Cape Henlopen Pier. Good news is that the minimum size for flounder in Delaware dropped from 18 1/2 inches to 18 inches as of May 11. The creel limit remains at 4 per angler per day. Remember the Lewes Harbour Canal Flounder Tournament Friday May 20th. Stripers showed up along the Outer Wall. Chad Tingle and Timmy Barnett took their limit of rockfish to 38 inches while casting Storm Shads along the Wall at night. Striped Bass bit in Indian River Inlet as well. Mike Graham, Don Hallacher and Justin Hallacher had their limit of 6 bass from 18 to 27 pounds while tossing Storm Shads in the Inlet Sunday night. Stripers also still came from the surf. Curt Stephens captured a 16.3 pound linesider using clams in the wash at Cape Henlopen. Togging was very good up until the season closure on May 11th. Tog were taken from Bay reef sites, the Inner and Outer Walls, and the Ice Breakers. Chip Kelly wrestled a monster 16.6 pound blackfish from Site 6. Toggers on Top Fin had their limit Sunday morning, including a 9.67 pounder for Pae Bae. The Grizzly returned with limits both days of the weekend. Captain Ted's tog anglers on the Indian limited out and were back at the dock by lunch time on the last day of the season. Jim Sieja scored a 12.32 pounder on the Indian. Don Straughn sneaked in his citation 8.97 pound tog before the season ended. Sheila Stohler got a 7.16 pound citation winner.
May 5, 2011
- Canal Flounder Tournament
The annual Lewes Harbour Canal Flounder Tournament, sponsored by the Dewey Beach Lions Club takes place Friday May 20, 2011. This is a flounder only tournament, and all state and federal regulations apply. Fishing must be done from a boat that is not moored to land. Fish must be caught on hook and line. Entry fee is $25 cash per angler. There is no limit to the number of anglers per boat, but safety should be kept in mind. Five dollars of the entry fee will be donated to the Camp Awareness Youth Fishing Tournament, benefiting young area anglers. The remaining money will collect in a pool, and be split among anglers weighing in the six heaviest flounder as follows: First Heaviest-35% of the pool, Second Heaviest-25%, Third Heaviest-20%, Fourth Heaviest-10%, Fifth Heaviest-5%, Sixth Heaviest-5%. The angler who catches the Seventh Heaviest flounder will receive a $100 Lewes Harbour Marina Gift Certificate. The more anglers that enter, the larger the dollar values of the prizes. Anglers must register at Lewes Harbour Marina before 7am May 20, 2011. No sign ups will be accepted after the start time of 7am on that day. Fishing hours are from 7am to 3pm May 20, 2011. The boundaries for fishing are the Rehoboth Bay Canal entrance to the Oyster Rocks ramp on Broadkill River. You may fish within Roosevelt inlet, but not past the red and green markers at the entrance. No fishing permitted in Delaware or Rehoboth Bay. Flounder may be weighed at the Lewes Harbour Marina scale any time between 7am and 4pm May 20, 2011. No weigh ins after 4pm on that date. It is strongly recommended that flounder be weighed in live, and brought to the scale soon after it is caught. In the event of a tie for weight, the flounder weighed earliest takes the higher prize. Joe Morris can disqualify any questionable flounder if he feels the fish was not caught during the Tournament. Anglers fishing must give the right of way to any vessel underway in the Canal.
April 28, 2011
- Flounder In The Canal
Water temperatures have been slowly rising with warmer days and nights, and flounder action has improved in the Lewes Canal. Anglers reported fair numbers of keeper flatties while using minnows, shiners, smelt and herring. The Berkely Gulp! artificials have proven effective as well. Young fisherman Ronin Max used a minnow on a green jighead to tempt a 21 inch 3.5 pounder from the Canal on Monday. Rebecca West weighed in a 5.33 pound flatfish she pulled in using cut herring. Remember the annual Lewes Harbour Canal Flounder Tournament Friday May 20. Folks fishing the rails at Cape Henlopen pier had flounder at night on Speck Rigs and other small jigs tipped with cut bait. Bluefish and stripers were also caught from the pier. Shore casters at Roosevelt Inlet hooked bluefish, stripers and flounder as well. Stripers were reported too from Broadkill Beach by guys employing bloodworms and cut bunker and herring. Will Wiedmann was surprised when a 14 pound black drum grabbed the chunk of herring he was using to try and catch stripers on Broadkill Monday. Commercial netters have been getting numerous drum in Broadkill Slough, so boat fishermen should have success on the Coral Beds soon. Wind has been a problem for boaters most days, but when crews were able to get out to the reef sites, they found tautog cooperative. Last Saturday, Captain Brent's toggers on Katy Did returned with a limit of nice blackfish. The Angler headboat also had a good catch Saturday. Captain Chet's group on the Lil' Angler limited out on Monday. Tyler and Austin Brown were on board, and scored citation tog of 7.14 and 7.3 pounds on their first Delaware Bay tautog trip. Captain Pete's patrons had a limit aboard Top Fin Tuesday. Ok Chiu Kim boated a 9.88 pound bruiser. In addition togging has been good along the Inner and Outer Walls. Bob Murphy and Edwin Maxwell culled a limit of quality tog from many they caught at the Inner Wall Monday, including Max's 8.26 pound citation winner. Striped bass continue to be caught along the Ocean beaches. Bert Long brought in a 19 pound rock using bunker in the surf at Herring Point. Jack Austin beached a 28.6 pound bass with bunker at Conquest Road. Jack said he released some large smooth dogfish, and a couple pretty good sized brown sharks.
April 21, 2011
- Stripers Hit The Beaches
Fair numbers of striped bass showed up in the surf this past week. Fish were caught at Cape Henlopen and along Broadkill Beach by shore casters soaking cut herring, bunker, clam and bloodworm baits. Matt Wiedmann stopped by Tuesday with a pair of nice rockfish taken at the Navy Jetties on herring. Drew Stuchlik, Will Wiedmann and Fritz Geiger fished the beach near Gordon's Pond during outgoing tide Tuesday. They had 12 stripers up to 40 inches, plus the first two bluefish of the season. Larry Taylor reported that he and his fishing buddy scored seven keeper sized rock using fresh herring from Broadkill Beach. Stripers were also pulled from Roosevelt Inlet. Surf fishermen did well, but windy conditions made it difficult for boaters to get out. It's likely striped bass will be found now on the same structure at the Bay mouth where they roamed in the Fall. On days boats were able to get out on the Bay, anglers found tog along the Inner and Outer Walls. A jighead tipped with a chunk of green crab worked. Joe Ryan got his limit of tog at the Inner Wall. Tautog were also taken over Reef Sites 5, 6 and 7. Captain Brent's toggers on the Katy Did returned with their limit of fish to 8 pounds last Thursday. Seo Won Park weighed in a 9.88 pound citation blackfish he boated aboard the Top Fin. Small boaters picked at flounder in the Lewes Canal. Water temps have risen into the low 50's and action should improve daily. A few keeper flatties came over the rail at the Cape Henlopen Pier during both day and nighttime hours as as well. Flukers told of success using speck rigs and other small jigs tipped with herring, shiners, minnows and Gulp! Don't forget the Annual Lewes Harbour Canal Flounder Tournament Friday, May 20th.
April 14, 2011
- Tautog on the Reefs
Tautog action has been pretty consistent over artificial reefs in Delaware Bay. Sites 6 and 7 near Brown Shoal have been productive, but tog also came from up the Bay at Site 4, and on the Broadkill Slough site, number 5. Captain Chet's toggers on the Lil' Angler culled a limit of nice keepers from a catch of several fish on Wednesday. Many of the blackfish were just shy of the 15 inch minimum. The tog took green crabs, clams and shrimp. Stanley Raffensberger from Halifax, PA reeled in an 8.28 pound citation winner. A few tog have been pulled from the rocks of the Outer Wall, and that bite will improve with warming water temps. A handful of flounder came from Lewes Canal during the past week. Cut herring, minnows, shiners and Gulp got the attention of sluggish flatties. A few flounder were also hooked by fishermen on the rails of Cape Henlopen Pier using small jigs tipped with herring at night. Again, that catching will pick up as temperatures rise. The annual Lewes Harbour Canal Flounder Tournament will take place Friday May 20th. Striped bass catches have been spotty, although some were landed by surfcasters using bloodworm from Broadkill Beach. Louie Maysky checked in his limit of two rock weighing 10 and 14 pounds. Those fish grabbed Creek Chub poppers in Massey's Ditch. The herring run is on at the spillway in Milton. The alewife and bluebacks will strike small darts and sabiki rigs. Be aware that the Delaware recreational limit for herring is 10 per angler per day.
April 7, 2011
- Tog and Stripers
Amanda and I got back from the Florida Keys last week and have been in the shop daily, getting ready for the season ever since. This winter's weather was much warmer than last, and we enjoyed good fishing. We took a side trip to Guatemala where we were spoiled by the extremely personable and attentive staff at Buena Vista Sportfishing Lodge in Iztapa. We got into big Pacific sailfish and dorado, and Amanda caught her first blue marlin. She had the 300 pounder to the boat for photos and the release in fifteen minutes. The captain was thoroughly impressed. Back here in Delaware, Bay water temps have finally risen into the upper 40s, and tog and stripers have been taken on days when weather conditions allow boaters to get out. Tog action had been pretty good over ocean wrecks and reef site 10. Some big blackfish were brought in, such as the 20.24 pound jumbo tautog decked by Dennis Muhlenforth. Captain Carey's guys on the Grizzly had 14 tog and a keeper cod on a recent trip to Site 10. Today, Captain Pete's toggers aboard Top Fin limited out while using green crabs over a Bay reef. Kent Suh scored a 7.87 pounder. The Lil' Angler was also togging in the Bay today and returned with a limit of fish including Sam Green's 10.11 pound citation winner. Striped bass have been on the move in the Bay, but Mike Barnes, Bob Persch, Terry Myers and Mark Swift found some north of Brandywine Shoal. They were anchored in 15 feet of water using clams when they boated three bass in the 15 pound class. The date of this year's annual Lewes Harbour Canal Flounder Tournament has been set for Friday May 20. The event offers cash prizes and part of the proceeds benefit Camp Awareness youth programs.
December 30, 2010
- Thanks for a good season and best wishes for the New Year!
It's hard to believe 2010 is gone. Conditions have not been very favorable the past couple weeks, with cold temperatures, strong winds and a post Christmas blizzard putting a damper on the fishing. Some boats finally made it out today, but catches were slim. Captain Brent's guys aboard Katy Did had a few keeper tog, but Brent said the warmest ocean water temperature he found was 40 degrees. He mentioned that Bay water temps were in the low to mid 30's. Anglers on the Pirate King experienced similar results, with not many keepers. Thanks to all of our customers and those who followed the web reports for a good season. Amanda and I are heading to the Florida Keys to do some fishing ourselves. We'll post some photos in the gallery. Best wishes for great fishing in the New Year! Joe.
December 14, 2010
- Baby It's Cold Out There!
Air temperatures were in the teens here this morning, and several days of cold, blustery weather over the past week have caused Bay water temps to drop to 39 degrees. A break from the wind allowed boaters to get out last Friday and Saturday, and stripers were caught at the mouth of the Bay. The best bite took place during the morning incoming tide in The Valley. Crews caught bass by drifting eels and jigging artificials. Capatin Carey's guys on the Grizzly got into the rockfish pretty good, putting 11 keepers in the box, and releasing several others. Sam Bednash boated citations of 22 and 20.25 pounds. Bucktails tipped with white Gulp! were the key to success. Patrons aboard the Lil'Angler II captured 11 keepers while drifting eels in The Valley Friday. Fishermen on the Katy Did decked 7 keepers. Randy Tyndall and his buddies bucktailed up their limit of six nice rockfish in The Valley on Friday. Other boaters reported trolling up stripers on Overfalls while pulling Stretch 25 plugs. Paul Matthews put a 23.1 pound citation bass in the boat while trolling Friday afternoon. Saturday's bite wasn't as good, but the Grizzly still managed 4 legal bass out of 15 caught. Trollers on the Miss Caroline took 11 keepers while towing Stretch plugs southeast of Overfalls. With water temperatures below 40 degrees, very little tog action has been reported on Bay reef sites. Toggers had to move to structure in the Ocean, where temps were a little warmer. The Lil' Angler II had a nice catch of over 20 keeper tautog on site 10 Saturday. Tog fishermen on the Martha Marie had similar results at site 10. Tog were also taken in deeper water at reef site 11. Bill Swords ran offshore to the tip of the Washington Canyon for some deep bottom dropping Saturday. Bill's anglers iced 45 quality sea bass, but he said big bluefish and sharks ate at least that many more keepers. They also managed to pull 8 blueline tilefish away from the ravenous predators, and kept some of the chopper blues for the table. It's hard to say what will happen after all this cold weather, but it may shut down the shallow water fishing. The water temperatures are considerably lower than this time last year.
December 2, 2010
- Massive Striper Ties State Record
Chunking in the upper Bay has yielded many impressive striped bass this fall. However, among Delaware anglers, none was as awesome as the 51 1/2 pound trophy checked in by Tyler Smith of Dover. The monster bass ate a chunk of bunker Sunday November 28, along a structure edge "north of The Anchorage", in Tyler's words. The Smiths are quite the striper sharpies, and pretty proficient at chunking for bass. They've had several fish over 30 pounds, including Kelvin's 42.5 pounder he caught last week. Fresh bunker remains tough to get, but bait has become a little more available in recent days. The edges of Blake's Channel have been productive spots to set up for chunking. Wes Olson and his crew chunked the Punk Grounds for 5 keepers to 17 pounds. Boaters drifting live spot and eels continue to catch fish at the 8 Buoys Triangle, in The Valley, on Overfalls and at Prissy Wicks. Bass were reported taking bucktails as well. Trollers tempted rockfish on Overfalls and at Brown Shoal by pulling Stretch 25+ and Bomber plugs. Numerous nice linesiders were brought to the dock this past week. Dennis Weidner wound in a 24.5 pounder. Jack Kane caught a 21 pound rock. Tom Flickinger fought a 20.7, and Lisa Albert had a 20.3 pounder on the Playin' Hooky. The Burkey Brothers, Andrew and Phil boated bass of 26.3 and 22.5 pounds on the Angler. Bill McMahon muscled in a 27.8 pound bruiser using an eel at Overfalls. Mark Quillen got a 25.2 at 8A aboard the Skipjack. Andy Lano landed a 27.8 pound lunker at 8A Buoy. Captain Holly Ann Firuta got a 20.2 pound citation winner on her Miss Sunshine. John Gudnecht got a brace of big bass scaling 20.6 and 24.7 pounds while drifting live spot near 8A Buoy. Russell Rauch reeled in a 26.6 pound rock. Clem Legates captured a 25.3 pound striper at 8B on Hobby's Toy. Tautog action has been good when proper conditions prevail. Wind against the current and dirty water have been challenges many days. Captain Pete's guys on Top Fin returned with 42 blackfish from a Bay reef Sunday. Hwa Park put a jumbo 13.7 pound tog in the box on that trip. Toggers on the Grizzly got 40 keepers to over 9 pounds. Harold Becker weighed in a 9.2 pound citation blackfish.
- Blues and Bass in the Surf
Surfcasters had been waiting for a decent shot of stripers and bluefish from the beach, and they got their wish early in the week. Good numbers of chopper blues and some nice rockfish were caught at Cape Henlopen. The stretch between the Point and Gordon's Pond was popular, with the area around the jetties at Herring Point being pretty productive. Fresh bunker was the bait of choice, but it has been hard to come by. When fresh couldn't be found, anglers still caught with frozen menhaden and mullet. Beaches to the south gave up fish too. Blues and rock were caught near the old Coast Guard Station and at 3R's Road. Some of the nice stripers pulled from the wash included Sharon Brendle's 18.2 pounder, Jim Wahl's 20 pounder and Judah Lynam's 25 pound citation rockfish. Boat fishermen had success with stripers when weather allowed them to get on the water. It has been a very windy Fall. Structure across the mouth of the Bay continued to yield bass. Fish were taken at the 8 Buoys Triangle, in the Valley, and at Overfalls. Bass were also hooked up the Bay on Brown Shoal. In recent days, there was a good bite on Prissy Wicks Shoal, likely indicative that more migratory stripers are hooking into the Bay around Cape May, staging there on their way south. And, with the activity in the surf, it's no surprise that stripers and blues were caught by boaters on Hen and Chickens Shoal. Trolling Stretch 25 plugs remained an effective approach. Color patterns that worked included gold and black, menhaden, Cabo Sunset, and pink. Drifting live eels and spot resulted in rockfish as well. Many of the spot available this season haven't been as large, so, deploying them on smaller hooks and lighter leaders has proved to be a more effective presentation. Chunking with bunker also produced blues and rockfish. Randy Tyndall brought in a limit of stripers and several big blues he got while anchored on Hen and Chickens using cut bunker. The Smith boys chunked up some big bass while fishing the IRBA Turkey Week Striper Tournament. Kelvin Smith scored a 42.5 pound trophy, Steve Smith landed a 33.8 pounder, and Tyler Smith took a 23.5 pound striper. The Falgowski brothers continued to put nice linesiders on the dock too. Among the many fish they trolled up this past week were stripers of 22.2, 23.0 and 33.1 pounds. The Lewes Harbour Striper Tournament ended November 23rd. Cory Falgowski's 43.6 pounder hung in there for First Place. Jeff Gardiner took Second with his 39.6 pound rockfish, and Corky Falgowski finished Third with a 36.9 pound bass. Many thanks to all who participated in this year's event.
November 19, 2010
- 19.5 pound TOGZILLA!
Tautog action was very good on Bay reef sites during the past week. Many crews enjoyed fine fishing while soaking green crabs over sites 6,7 and 8, but one of the most impressive catches took place aboard the Katy Did Sunday, with Captain Brent Wiest. Patrons returned with 94 blackfish, among which were a 9.7 pounder for Wayne DeMarco, a 10.7 by Mike Crouse, and Robert Weller's 12.3 pound citation winner. The highlight of the day came when Paul Pergeorelis pulled in a monster 19.5 pound white chin. That was the largest tog we've ever had brought in to Lewes Harbour Marina, and one of the heaviest ever caught in Delaware. Also on Sunday, Jack Henriksen and friends had 72 keeper tog on the Lil' Angler. The guys on Miss Kirstin kept 34 tautog Sunday. Captain Carey's toggers aboard Grizzly all had limits and were back at the dock before noon Saturday, Sunday and Monday. Captain Pete's Thursday group on Top Fin brought back 50 blackfish. Doug Rahe decked a 10.33 pound tog on Miss Kirstin. John Strong scored a 9.62 pound tautog on the Miss Rilee. Steve Cardano caught an 8.92 pounder aboard Miss Sunshine. Greg Pearson got an 8.1 pounder. Mark Swift landed a 7.6 pounder at Site 6 on the Screamin' Seaman. The striper bite was decent, but it doesn't seem like the bulk of the migratory schools are here yet. Although, the fish at the Bay mouth continue to be big. Rockfish were reported on Overfalls, at the 8 Buoys Triangle, and in the Valley by fishermen drifting eels and spot, and those trolling Stretch 25+ plugs. Stripers were also caught at Brown Shoal. Bill Yost boated a 29.5 pound bass at Overfalls on the Angler. Anglers on Skipjack scored 11 nice bass last Friday at Overfalls and in the Valley. David Lauer and Daniel Reinfried had twin 20.6 pounders, and Gary Brenneman a 22.6 on that trip. Don Kopp captured a 30.75 pound striper on the Grizzly. On Sunday, Billy Lewis landed a 36.2 pound lunker linesider aboard Martha Martha Marie. Justin Reel reeled in a pair of citation stripers scaling 21.3 and 21.8 pounds on Katy Did. Jay White wound in a 20.8 pounder on Top Fin, and Bruce Harman had a 31.1 pounder. Bill Wiest wrestled a 23.1 pounder at 8B Buoy. Dave Haldeman and John McMahan trolled up a limit to 21.2 pounds using parachute jigs at 8B Buoy. Lou Nicoletti landed a 27.8 pounder, and David Brinley boated a 30 pounder on the Pirate King II. Phylicia Schwartz showed up the boys with a 25.9 pounder. Red Moulinier landed a 22.3 pounder on the Indian. Tim Hosler had a 20.6 pounder. Josh Beck bested a 32.6 pound bass. Ryan Spidle hooked a 38.4 pound striper. Chuck Mohacey muscled in a 23.9 pound rockfish. Luke Seymore sacked a 26.4 pound bass, and David Seymore a 22.4 pounder aboard the Pirate King II. Bobby Fitzwater had a 20 pounder. Bassers aboard Skipjack boated 8 stripers Thursday while drifting spot at Overfalls and in The Valley. Boaters told of many bass and bluefish under birds on structure outside the three mile limit. Stripers were seen feeding actively at McCrie's Shoal and on the Five Fathom Bank, but fishermen are reminded that no striped bass may be retained from waters beyond three miles from shore. Fishermen also reported bird plays along the beach, indicative of blues and bass moving down the coast. Surf casters got in on action with bluefish and stripers between Cape Henlopen and the Navy Jetties Friday. Don Dunphey checked in a 32 inch 11 pound blue he caught on bunker from the beach at Herring Point. Drew Stuchlik and William Wiedman nailed 8 slammers from 10 to 12 pounds and a 15 pound rockfish in the surf at Cape Henlopen Friday.
November 12, 2010
- Relentless Northeast Wind
Strong winds prevented most boaters from leaving the dock in recent days, but a few crews braved rough seas at the Bay mouth yesterday and were rewarded with some nice stripers. Patrons on the Angler pulled in 11 bass while eeling at 8B and Overfalls. Robert Dixon decked a 24.6 pound linesider on the Pirate King. Fishermen on the Indian fought 8 big rockfish, 5 of which were citation sized. Jim Cregan caught a 21.1 pounder, Noel Rodriguez reeled in a 21.8 pounder, Jeff Hertzog had a 24.3, Paul Hertzog landed a 25.5 pounder, and Ed Dobos captured a 27.6 pound rock. Earlier in the week, trollers got into some quality stripers while pulling Stretch 25+ plugs at Overfalls Shoal. Mike and Mason Newsham pulled plugs during outgoing tide for a brace of bass weighing 32.9 and 27.9 pounds. The next day, Mike, Mason and Geoff Klopp trolled up a limit of stripers scaling 12.7, 18.3, 19.5, 20.7, 29.8 and 30.8 pounds. Striped bass bit in Indian River with the northeast wind. Dave Walker and Brent Wiest fished there Tuesday using live spot, bucktails, Storm Shads and Stretch plugs. They released over 20 rock, and kept their limit, including Dave's citations that weighed 23.1 and 25.3 pounds. Standings in the Lewes Harbour Striper Tournament as of this writing show Cory Falgowski in First with his 43.6 pounder. Jeff Gardiner has Second with a 39.6 pound rock, and Corky Falgowski is Third with a 36.9 pound linesider. The Tourney runs through November 23rd.
November 5, 2010
- Big Bass
Some impressive stripers have been checked in during recent days. On Wednesday, Cory Falgowski brought in the biggest bass so far, a 43.6 pounder that took a trolled plug. Cory's Dad Corky caught a 36.9 pound rockfish that same day. Jason Burris weighed in a 34.9 pound linesider that ate a live spot. Jeff Gardiner fooled a 39.6 pound rock with a diving plug. Ryan and Evan Falgowski had stripers of 29.9 and 28.6 pounds. Trolling Overfalls Shoal with Stretch 12, 18 and 25 plugs along with diving models from Bomber, Storm and Rapala has been productive. Trolling plugs and drifting live spot at Prissy Wicks Shoal yielded bass too. Stripers were also reported in the rip outside the Outer Wall and at Brown Shoal by fishermen drifting spot and eels. Most structure that traditionally attracts striped bass should give up fish now that water temperatures have fallen into the 50's. Cory Falgowski currently leads the Lewes Harbour Striper Tournament with his 43.6 pounder. Jeff Gardiner is Second with that 39.6, and Corky Falgowski has Third Place with the 36.9 pound bass. The Tourney is on through November 23. Tautog action remains good. Captain Ted's guys on the Indian returned from a recent trip with 51 tog, including Mike Strain's 8.63 pounder. On Wednesday, the group aboard Katy Did limited out with 70 nice blackfish. Delaware Bay reefs 6 and 7 were popular among toggers, but sites 4,5 and 8 offered up tautog too. Tog came from the Inner and Outer Walls and Ice Breakers too. The Lewes Harbour Tog Tournament finished with Tom Emig taking the top prize for a 9.22 pounder. Herbie Shorthose had Second Place with an 8.94 pound tog. Scott Bucka stuck it out for Third with his 8.67 pounder.
October 28, 2010
- Stripers are Here!
Stripers showed up with the full moon, right on cue. The Falgowski brothers have been dialed in on the rockfish arrival over the past few years, stating that they normally catch their first fish between October 22nd and October 25. True to form, the boys put the first bass on the dock Sunday the 24th. Ryan, Evan, Kyle and Cory combined for stripers of 28.6, 17.9, 15.6 and 22.9 pounds while trolling Stretch and Bomber plugs on Overfalls Shoal. Jeff Gardiner got a 29.7 pounder trolling Sunday, and Lee Abel boated a 23.6 pounder. Ryan and Evan were back at it Monday and Tuesday, with stripers weighing 25.8, 26.4 and 27 pounds. Crews fishing with bunker caught nice stripers while anchored along the edges of 60 Foot Slough. Wes Olson had a 25 pounder there. Tyler Smith used a chunk of bunker in Blake's Channel to tempt the 32.4 pound striper that leads the Lewes Harbour Striper Tournament. Jeff Gardiner currently holds Second with his 29.7 pounder. Lee Abel has Third with a 29.2 pound bass. Stripers should spread out onto traditional structure across the lower Bay as more appear. The Lewes Harbour Striper Tournament runs through November 23rd. Tautog action remained good, with both the rock breakwaters and reef sites producing nice catches. Captain Pete's Guys on Top Fin ended up with 48 tog Saturday, including Bob McNeely's 7.9 pounder. Joe Shaffer fished aboard the Grizzly Saturday and added his 10 keepers to the boat's total take of 60 tautog. Billy Chee's group scored 57 blackfish Sunday on the Top Fin. Alex Levantowsky landed an 11.75 pound sheepshead while togging on the Grizzly Monday. Captain Vince's patrons on Miss Kirstin put 19 tog in the box Monday. More citation sized fish have been caught as the season progresses. Kevin Cross checked in a 9.8 pounder he got at the Inner Wall. Debra Fleagle decked a 9.46 pound tog on the Miss Sunshine. Weston Mace wrestled a lucky 7.77 pounder from the Wall. Jordan Flaherty got a 7.62 pound tautog on a Bay reef site. Tony Vansant took a 7.53 pound tog. Ray Fogle landed a 7.05 pounder on the Two-Na Time. There are a few days left in the Lewes Harbour Tog Tournament, that finishes October 31. Current standings show Herbie Shorthose in First with an 8.94 pounder. Scott Bucka's 8.67 pound blackfish holds Second. Jim Doyle has Third with an 8.45 pound tautog. Too bad Brent Wiest wasn't entered in the Tournament Thursday when he boated a 10.67 pound balckfish aboard the Katy Did. Croakers are still hanging out in Delaware Bay. Jim McBride reported a good catch of nice sized hardheads near #10 Buoy recently.
October 21, 2010
- Reefs Coming Alive
Tautog action had been good on the rock breakwaters off Lewes, but Bay reef sites began producing good numbers of fish in recent days. Successful crews concentrated on sites 6 and 7 at Brown Shoal, however, tog were taken from site 5 in Broadkill Slough, and reef 8 the Star Site as well. Last Wednesday, the guys aboard Katy Did decked 45 blackfish. Bill Wiest wrestled in an 8.46 pound tog and an 11.41 pound sheepshead. Jamier Myers muscled a 12.5 pound sheepshead onto the Grizzly. On Thursday, Captains Dave Walker and Brent Wiest, along with Bill Wiest, Bruce Bennett and Lee Abel braved foul weather for their limit of 50 tautog. On Sunday, Toggers aboard Katy Did had a boat limit, including Chuck Stinemire's 7.25 pounder. Captain Ted on the Indian hosted Chuck Coverdale and friends for 26 nice keeper tog. Dave Walker and Brent Wiest anchored over a reef site Monday for their limit of 20 tog. Bob Fitzwater, Pete Antonelli, John Mancuso and Brandon Hamilton worked the Outer Wall for 30 blackfish on Monday. Captain Carey's Monday group on Grizzly put 60 blackfish in the box. Mike Newsham, David Schellenger and Scott Bucka toggled into reef rubble Tuesday to score 30 tog. Scott had one weighing 7.4 pounds. Doctor Mike Junck, Bob Witte and Ken Brittingham fished with Captain Pete on Top Fin for 26 tog on Wednesday. Mike Newsham, Geoff Klopp, Scott Bucka and Ricky Yakimowicz captured 40 quality tautog on Wednesday while working a Bay reef. Scott got an 8.67 pounder and Ricky reeled in a 9.25 pound tog. Jim Doyle landed an 8.45 pound blackfish Wednesday aboard Katy Did, which put him currently in Third Place of the Lewes Harbour Marina Tog Tournament. Scott Bucka's 8.67 pounder holds Second. An 8.94 pounder caught by Herbie Shorthose remains in the lead. The Tourney runs through October 31. Croakers are still in the Bay. Boaters had good catches of hardheads at reef site 6 using clams during the week. Stripers should show up soon, with the passage of this month's full moon. Tyler Smith reported some nice bass up the Bay for guys fishing with fresh bunker along the edge of Blake's Channel.
October 13, 2010
- Tautog Action Shaping Up
Delaware Bay water temperatures have fallen to around 65 degrees, and tautog action has improved. However, tog still seem sensitive to changes, and don't always bite when temperatures are yoyoing up and down. Fishermen continued to complain of dirty water due to wind, strong currents and runoff from last week's rain, however, the bite was better than during the opening part of the season. Cleaner water was noticeable at the end of flood tides and beginning of the ebb. Best reports have come from toggers working the rocks of the Inner and Outer Walls and Ice Breakers. Stone structures have produced better than the artificial reefs and wrecks, but those snags should yield blackfish soon. Herbie Shorthose and Jordan Corbin fished the Outer Wall Saturday for their limit of 20 tog, including Herbie's 6.67 pounder. Herbie checked in an 8.94 pound blackfish Tuesday to take the lead in the Lewes Harbour Tog Tournament. The Tourney runs through October 31 and offers cash prizes. Guys on the Grizzly had a good trip Friday, returning with 44 keeper tautog from Bay structure. Saturday's anglers on the Grizzly captured 78 keeper tog. The group aboard Lil' Angler II put 30 tog and a pair of triggerfish in the box Saturday. Richard Greenwood also got a 1.04 pound citation citation kingfish on that trip. Ted Garman and friends pulled 19 quality blackfish from the Outer Wall Saturday. The Katy Did scored a boat limit of 80 tog Sunday. On Tuesday, Captains Dave Walker and Brent Wiest, along with Meghan Howlett and Bill Wiest, teamed up for their limit of 40 tautog to 5.77 pounds. It looks like togging is starting to shape up. Bay bottom fishermen also still found croakers between reef sites 6 and 7 and Buoy 10, and on the dropoff outside the Outer Wall. The hardheads ate clams, squid, bloodworms and Fishbites. Ocean bottom bouncers had sea bass and croakers northwest of DB Buoy. Patrons on the Angler Headboat had good catches there Saturday. Reef Site 11 gave up sea bass and a few legal flounder. The boys on Tranquila had bass and a keeper fluke there Saturday. On Friday, Captain Brent's charter aboard Katy Did kept 125 bass while anchored on a wreck near Site 11. Guys on Katy Did put more than 60 bass in the box on the last day of the season. Sam Green also got an 11.8 pound slammer bluefish along with his bass. The Delaware sea bass season closed October 12, and flounder season ended October 13. Sea bass season will reopen November 1 and stay open until December 31.
October 1, 2010
- Tog Season Opens
Tog season reopened September 29, however, stormy weather has prevented anglers from venturing out in search of blackfish. Toggers were able to try on opening day, but wind and rain kept boats at the dock Thursday and Friday. Water temperatures are still in the low to mid 70's, and boats that fished the Walls, Ice Breakers, wrecks and reefs reported only a few keeper tautog and some triggerfish on Tuesday. Catches will improve with falling temps. The annual Lewes Harbour Tog Tournament starts October 1 and runs through October 31. Contestents can enter for $2 daily, or $20 and fish as many days as desired. Entry monies collect in a pool, and the cash is split among the three heaviest tog at the end of the event. Prior to the wind, croakers were available in good numbers at reef site 6 and near 9 and 10 Buoys. Snapper bluefish were hanging around the Outer Wall, and could be found chasing baitfish in current rips. Casting spoons or bucktails would result in strikes from scrappy snappers. Lots of mullet have been moving through the Lewes Canal and along Bay and Ocean beaches, and their motion should attract stripers and bigger bluefish soon. Anglers on the Cape Henlopen pier continued to catch spot. Again, before the blow, boats trolling the Hambone, Hot Dog and 19 Fathom Lump connected with tuna. Bluefins in the 50 to 100 pound range were hooked by crews pulling ballyhoo way back in the early morning hours. Yellowfin tuna were mixed in. Guys on the Skipjack trolled up 3 yellowfins to 52.5 pounds Sunday morning at the Hambone. Hopefully tuna will still be there when the weather settles.
September 23, 2010
- Fall Has Arrived
The arrival of fall, in conjunction with a September full moon, should kick off some good fishing. Croakers have been more prevalent in Delaware Bay, with decent numbers of hardheads found on mid Bay structure changes between reef site 6 and 14 Foot Light. Croakers were caught using squid, clams, bloodworms and Fishbites. Spot have also been taken from the Lewes Canal and Cape Henlopen pier using bloodworms and Fishbites. Sea bass action has been good at Reef Site 11 and over surrounding wrecks. Sunday, Captain Brent's guys on the Katy Did kept 111 bass to 3 pounds and released many more on a wreck near Site 11. They also had the bonus catch of a 13 pound dolphin that was hanging around a bass pot float. Flounder continue to be found on the Old Grounds as well as in Delaware Bay, but the ratio of keepers has been slim. Anglers fishing live baits have caught some better sized fluke. Jen Falgowski captured a 5.37 pound flattie while drifting live mullet near the Outer Wall. She had a pair of flatfish weighing 3 and 3.64 pounds at the Wall on live mullet the day before as well. May anglers are looking forward to the reopening of tautog season September 29, and toggers will be trying the Breakwaters, reefs and wrecks in search of tasty blackfish.
September 16, 2010
- Many Throwback Flounder
There are still a few weeks left until the close of Delaware's summer flounder season on October 12. Catching has been pretty good on the Old Grounds, however the majority of fish have fallen short of the 18 1/2 inch minimum size. For example, the guys aboard Lil' Angler II caught 51 flounder while working rough bottom between DB and DA Buoys Wednesday, but only 3 were legal. Other fishermen gave similar reports of plentiful flatties, but few keepers. Although, sea bass, croakers and snapper bluefish have been mixed in, so usually anglers go home with some stuff in the box for dinner. Some nice bass have been caught, such as Sam Green's 3.22 pound knothead. False Albacore have shown up inshore, and trollers told of getting into turkeys while pulling, cedar plugs, spoons, feathers and mini Green Machines between Delaware Light and DA Buoy. The falsies are strong fighters and alot of fun to catch, but not much as table fare. Their oily, dark flesh does make great cut bait for bottom fishing and dolphin bailing. Reports from offshore were spotty, but one group that made a multi day trip to the north did well. The crew of the Banshee spent two days and nights in the Lindenkohl Canyon and returned with 21 longfin tuna, a swordfish, a mako and 80 dolphin. In Delaware Bay, a few flounder continue to come from reef site 8. Croakers were captured on sites 6 and 7, and on the edges of the Lower Middle. Spot were caught in the Lewes Canal and from the Cape Henlopen pier with bloodworms and Fishbites. Finger mullet have made sporadic appearances along Lewes Beach and at Canary Creek.
September 9, 2010
- Good Bottom Bouncing
September is a transitional month, when fish begin moving out of Delaware Bay and staging along the coast before continuing on their migrations later in the Fall. Bottom bouncing has been pretty good in recent days along the edges of the shipping channel leading out away from the Bay and on the Old Grounds surrounding DB Buoy. Anglers have encountered croakers, bluefish, sea bass and flounder. Captain Ted Anchored the Pirate King north of DB Buoy in windy conditions Wednesday, and had a nice catch for his patrons. They put a mix of about 80 hardheads, bass and blues in the box. When drift conditions were right, flounder were taken from structure changes between DB and DA Buoys and the rubble of reef site 10. Captain Brent's guys on the Katy Did got 15 keeper fluke at site 10 Monday. Brent ran the Lil' Angler Tuesday and returned to site 10 for 16 more legal flatfish. Flounder were still available in Delaware Bay, and favored the cover of artificial reefs 4,6, and 7. Tom Kemper caught a 6.2 pound flattie and Brad Pecoraro pulled a 5.75 pounder from site 8. Anglers in the Lewes Canal and on the Cape Henlopen Pier had spot. Nice stripers were also hooked in the canal by anglers using bunker, eels and clams near the drawbridge. Striper and bluefish action was also very good at Indian River inlet. Offshore, the billfish bite is still crazy. The crew of Cerveza did an overnighter to 1000 fathoms south of the Norfolk Canyon, and released 42 white marlin Sunday afternoon and 25 whites and 2 sailfish Monday morning. Many boats had great marlin fishing during the week, and this has got to be one of the best seasons on record. Vince Scheivert, David Bargeron, Jake Boyer, Gary Socco and Tim "Wingding" overnighted in the tip of the Baltimore Sunday. They boxed a load of dolphin and released a white marlin. Highlight of the trip was a big hammerhead shark battled on a twenty pound test spinning outfit and released. Wahoos have been roaming the 20 to 40 fathom corridor. Bill Thornton had 6 wahoo trolling southeast of the Hot Dog. The crew of Snow Goose released a sailfish at the Dog, and Donnie Weitzel decked a 24.3 pound wahoo. Jog Beaudet was trolling 35 fathoms aboard Triple Play when he hooked a 27.7 pound wahoo. Some nice dolphin have been frequenting inshore structure as well. Bill McMahon Trolled up a 20.7 pound mahi at the 19 Fathom Lump.
September 2, 2010
- Phenomenal White Marlin Fishing
The white marlin action offshore this past week was probably the best seen by anglers in this area. Big groups of whites were working bait in the Washington Canyon, and boats that encountered these schools enjoyed some wild fishing. Monday August 30 will likely be remembered as one of the most spectacular days of white marlin fishing ever. A group of boats got into fish balling and cutting bait in 700 fathoms of the Washington, and experienced crews hooked and released an incredible number of whites. The Billfisher scored an amazing 57 white marlin releases, shattering the previous one day record of 27, set by the Cerveza in September 2007. The Cerveza's crew also beat their own record by releasing 33. Both the Reel Joy and the Makara had 32. The Tar Heel released 30 whites and a blue marlin. Legasea released 27, Osprey 22, Pumpin' Hard 58 had 19, and the Sea Slammer released 15. Even though that was the most impressive day, numerous whites were hooked in days prior to and following Monday. Boats also found white marlin in 50 to 60 fathoms inshore of Poor Man's, between the Rockpile and the Triple Zeros. The boys on Fish Whistle released 5 whites and a sailfish in 60 fathoms Saturday. Boats trolling twenty fathom structure found yellowfin tuna, wahoo, dolphin and false albacore. The Hambone and Hot Dog held decent numbers of fish. Captain Brent on the Katy Did had 2 yellowfins and 6 dolphin at the Hambone Saturday. Among the mahi was Jose Guevara's 23.6 pounder. The Skipjack returned from trolling the Hambone and Hot Dog over the weekend with 5 yellowfins to 42 pounds, a 35 pound wahoo, 3 mahis to 21 pounds and a load of false albacore and skipjacks. Grizzly trolled the Dog Monday for 4 yellowfins and Dave Wilson's 52.5 pound wahoo. The Ocean City Girl's group put 14 yellowfins in the box at the Hot Dog Tuesday. Back inshore, flounder catches were good over the weekend, but slowed through midweek. Fluke hung close to the structure of Bay and Ocean artificial reefs. Captain Carey on the Grizzly hosted Joe Shaffer and relatives Saturday for 18 keeper flounder and 52 throwbacks, while drifting the Brown Shoal reefs. Greg Pearson, Ted Garman, Todd Garman and John Leader put 8 keepers to 6.3 pounds in the box at Brown Shoal Saturday. Joe Walker, Bobby Bryant, Tony Vansant and Joe Walker, Jr. combined for a limit of 16 quality flatties at Site 10 Saturday. Bobby was the hot hook on big fish up to 6.39 pounds. Alan Danoff and family fished with Captain Pete on the Top Fin Wednesday. They had 3 keepers on their half day trip, including Mara Danoff's 7.58 pound citation doormat. Croakers remained elusive in Delaware Bay for the most part, but a few hardheads were caught around the Inner Breakwater. Croakers were a little more cooperative in the Ocean. Fish were found on the Old Grounds and at Site 11. Bottom bouncers also told of numerous sea bass in the same areas, however most were shy of the 12 1/2 inch minimum size. In the Lewes Canal, spot were plentiful, and some guys have been catching and stockpiling them to use as live baits for stripers later this fall.
August 27, 2010
- Fine Fluking
Flounder action was better this past week than it has been for awhile. Anglers' efforts were hampered by wind a few days, but when conditions were good, so were catches. Delaware Bay tidal currents ran hard around the full moon, so fishermen had a limited window either side of tide changes to properly drift structure. Fish hung tight to reef site rubble, and when strong currents prevented proper bait presentation, some crews did well by anchoring and walking offerings through the junk. Bucktails tipped with strips of fresh bluefish or Gulp! cast upstream and worked along the bottom are effective in that situation. Reefs 6 and 7 near Brown Shoal were productive. Reef 8, the Star Site, also held flatfish. The influence of currents wasn't as strong in the Ocean, and boats could work sites 9 and 10 throughout the tide. Rough bottom of the Old Grounds, between DB and DA Buoys, produced flatties too. Last Friday, three generations of fishermen did a number on flounder at the Old Grounds. Andrew, Wade and John Bondrowski teamed up for 10 keepers to 6.33 pounds, plus 9 nice sea bass. Larry Burkins and his buddy boated 7 keeper fluke at Site 10 while drifting Gulp! and squid. The catch included Larry's 7.04 pound citation flattie. Tony Vansant, Larry Pleasenton, Louie and Tugboat Dan combined for 9 quality keepers on Site 10. Captain Chet's group had a great trip last Saturday on the Lil' Angler, returning with 13 chunky flounder from Site 10. Captain Pete's fishermen on Top Fin ended up with 9 keepers. On Sunday, Captain Brent's patrons on Katy Did had an awesome catch of 18 big fluke while rubble bouncing. Joe McNeal scored a pair of doormats weighing 7.56 and 6.92 pounds. The Katy Did did it again Thursday, capturing 19 flounder at Site 10, where Billie Jo Hunter had a 6.97 flattie and a 3.13 pound sea bass. In the Bay, Joe Walker and friends worked site 6 last Friday for 7 legal flatfish. Captain Ted on the Indian enjoyed a hot croaker bite outside the Outer Wall during flood tide Sunday morning. When the tide turned to ebb off, the flounder turned on, and his guys ended up with 8 keeper fluke for their half day trip. Hobby Isaacs, Dave Popovich and George Durant drifted sites 6 and 7 Thursday to put 6 flounder in the box. Croakers haven't cooperated as well the past few days, but there still seems to be plenty of hardheads around, and they have been better sized. The Star Site and the dropoff outside the Outer Wall did produce some decent catches. Clams, bloodworms, shrimp and Fishbites were good baits. Spot action was good in the Lewes Canal, and from the Cape Henlopen Pier. Rockfish and white perch also came from the Canal. Leon Deshields checked in a 1.11 pound citation perch he caught with a bloodworm in the Canal. Casting RatLTraps along the Canal marsh banks produced slot sized stripers. Remember, the slot season ends August 31. On the offshore scene, billfishing has been hot. White and blue marlin had been cutting bait balls in 500 to 1000 fathoms between the Baltimore and Poor Man's Canyons. Some experienced crews racked up impressive numbers. The Billfisher, out of Ocean City, released 26 whites Monday. It sounds like marlin moved inside the edge the last few days, with whites reported in 50 to 100 fathoms inshore of Poor Man's. Tuna catches were spotty. The Skipjack returned from an overnighter to the Wilmington with 5 yellowfins and a wahoo caught on the troll. The guys also bailed dolphin. Captain Carey and the boys on Grizzly enjoyed some great deep water bottom fishing in the Baltimore Saturday. They had a mix of 18 golden and blueline tilefish. Tom Foltz boated a 35 pound golden, and Dave Moncrief had the unexpected bonus of a 44.5 pound snowy grouper.
August 19, 2010
- Croakers and Flounder
Croakers continue to cooperate for area bottom fishermen. Hardheads have increased in size over the past week, with some approaching 14 to 15 inches. The Star Site was still a good bet for croaks, but nice sized fish were also found at many other spots. The dropoff outside the Outer Wall in 50 to 55 feet of water held hardheads. Reef sites 5,6 and 7 attracted croakers too, and fish also roamed the Anchorage between F and G Buoys. On some days, anchoring on the rubble of reefs produced better action than drifting. Clams, bloodworms, Fishbites, Gulp! and shrimp worked well as baits. Bottom bouncers also encountered spot, blowfish, kingfish, ling and snapper blues as well. Anglers on the Cape Henlopen pier had croakers too, but spot were the main attraction. Patrons pulled hand sized spot over the rails in big numbers, and many filled coolers with the tasty panfish. Fishermen seeking spot did well in the Lewes Canal and Broadkill River too. Bloodworms and Fishbites were the offerings of choice. With the moon waxing away from it's new phase, currents have backed off, and flounder catches started to improve. Captain Vince's guys on the Miss Kirstin kept 6 chunky fluke today while drifting sites 6 and 7 at Brown Shoal. They also had several throwbacks. Lex Robertson reported 7 keepers and many shorts while working the Old Grounds earlier in the week aboard the Spectacle with Doc Peoples.
August 12, 2010
- Good Bottom Fishing
Delaware Bay bottom bouncers enjoyed great croaker action in recent days. Hardheads have shown in more places than before, and have increased in size. The bigger fish were hanging right tight to structure on artificial reefs 5,6,7 and 8. However, croakers were found on dropoffs inside and outside the Outer Wall, as well as on The Shears and in Broadkill Slough. Hardheads were also located between F and G Buoys in The Anchorage. The occasional kingfish, blowfish, spot, spike trout and snapper bluefish were mixed in with plentiful croakers. Clams and bloodworms were popular natural baits, but the artificial Fishbites bloodworm alternative and Gulp! bloodworms were responsible for plenty of strikes as well. Good numbers of spot were caught in the Lewes Canal and from the Cape Henlopen Pier on bloodworms and Fishbites. Flounder have not been real cooperative over the past week. Fishermen reported some keepers from reef sites 6 and 8, but they were few and far between. Strips of bluefish, smelt and Gulp! were effective for legal sized flatties. A few nice fluke were checked in. Neal Crosley brought back a 5.72 pounder he caught on a squid and minnow combo outside the Outer Wall. Gene Hill had a 4.39 pound flounder on the Angler. Offshore anglers continued to tangle with billfish. Both white and blue marlin were found in 500 to 1000 fathoms outside the Baltimore Canyon. Captain Howard Lynch on the Fin Ness released 10 whites in 1000 fathoms of the Baltimore Thursday. Boats checking out floating stuff found dolphin on lobster gear markers along the edge. Live minnows worked well for finicky dolphin around the balls. Bill Swords and his buddies worked the Baltimore Wednesday for 44 mahis to 15 pounds and 10 tilefish to 25 pounds.
August 5, 2010
- Big Billfish
Some impressive billfish have been brought to the scales during the first few days of this year's White Marlin Open. Brian Roberts is leading the board with a 97.5 pound white he landed aboard the Shelly II. Top of the Blue Marlin category is held by James Kontos, with a 1010.5 pounder caught on Let It Ride. Another grander was boated during the tournament last year. Those fish will be tough to beat, but it's not over until it's over. Billfish action has been good in Poor Man's Canyon. Nice sized yellowfins and dolphin have been mixed in. Bill Swords and his buddies fished the east side of Baltimore Canyon, where they bailed 49 dolphin and then switched to bottom dropping for 13 tilefish. They capped the trip off with a 100 pound mako. True albacore were taken by trollers working 500 fathoms of the Baltimore. Tuna and dolphin were reported inshore of the canyons as well, scattered between 40 and 50 fathoms. Andy and Chuck Shelton, John Leavitt and Jim Riley trolled east of the Elephant Trunk for a 45 pound yellowfin and several nice mahis. Anna Delapo decked a 19.4 pound dolphin, Jay Leibforth got a 22.1 pounder, and Pablo Alvarado had a 22.8 pounder while trolling 40 fathoms aboard the Spoiled III. Back inshore, flounder action picked up. Gulp! continues to be the hot lick for fluke. Aidan Grube got an 8.46 pound doormat while drifting a bucktail/Gulp! combo at Site 8. Joey Walker wound in a pair of big flatties scaling 8.68 and 5.25 pounds while using Gulp! at Site 10. Captain Pete Haines on Top Fin not only takes patrons where flounder live, but also showed he knows to catch them himself. Pete landed two citation fish this week weighing 7.41 and 8.44 pounds. Young Evan Armstrong traveled from Pittsburgh, PA to tangle with a 5 pound Delaware Bay flounder on the Indian. Guys on the Miss Kirstin returned with 6 nice flatfish from Site 6 today. Croaker fishing was good, with numbers of hardheads coming from Reef Sites 5 and 8. Clams, bloodworms and Fishbites were favored baits. Spot were plentiful in the Lewes Canal and on the Cape Henlopen Pier. They also like bloodworms and Fishbites. Stripers were taken in Lewes Canal by anglers fishing with clams or squid heads. Captain Chuck Cook of First Light Charters has been working the rocks of the Outer Wall at night in his center console, and catching stripers while casting MirrOLures and eels.
July 29, 2010
- Flounder Action Improving
Flounder action improved somewhat over the past week. Boaters proficient in working structure pulled some decent flounder from Delaware Bay and Ocean reef sites. Captain Carey on the Grizzly got 10 keepers for Dave Beebe and friends last Friday, and put 11 in the box for Scott Karr's group on Sunday. Carey caught a 5.5 pounder himself Tuesday, and mentioned that he saw several large spadefish on the Brown Shoal reefs. The guys aboard the Lil' Angler had 10 keeper fluke Sunday on a Bay reef. Captain Ted on the Indian got his guys into some flatties at the Star Site Tuesday, and they returned with 5 nice ones. Captain Pete Haines and Bob Witte combined for 7 plump, legal flounder while rubble bouncing on the Top Fin Wednesday. Bill and Kyle Lux stopped by Friday with a pair of good sized flatfish they caught while casting Gulps at the Inner Wall. Aiden Grube decked an 8.49 pound trophy at Site 8 while drifting a bucktail and Gulp! combo. Tony Vansant and his buddies scored 10 quality fluke on an ocean reef Tuesday. The largest among that catch was Larry Pleasenton's 7.49 pound doormat. In other bottom fishing business, croakers continued to come from reef site 5 in Broadkill Slough, and reef 8, the Star Site. However, the best bite has been in the evenings. Fishbites, bloodworms and clams were favored offerings for the scrappy panfish. Spot, kingfish and blowfish were mixed with hardheads. Good numbers of spot were caught in the Lewes Canal and Broadkill River as well. The canal also produced slot stripers for anglers soaking clams on the bottom near the drawbridge. On the offshore scene, many fishermen have been scouting for billfish, with the White Marlin Open coming up. White marlin were reported in the Baltimore Canyon, along with occasional shots of yellowfin tuna. Dolphin have been plentiful in the warm water. Most lobster gear buoys and other floating stuff has attracted mahis. Jason Burris and friends fished the Baltimore and brought back 32 dolphin, a nice yellowfin, 2 golden tile and some triggerfish. Bruce Bolasny took Sweet Sharon to the Baltimore, where Jake Kaplan hooked his first dolphin, weighing 13.3 pounds.
July 22, 2010
- Hot Weather
If the fish catching was as hot as the weather, we'd be in good shape. But, it hasn't been too bad. There have been some good yellowfin tuna bites between the Baltimore and Poor Man's Canyons. Fish have popped up in 70 to 100 fathoms, mostly from the 150 line south. Crews trolling spreader bars, Green Machines and skirted ballyhoos hooked nice sized tuna from 40 to 70 pounds. Some boats had numbers in double digits. White marlin were reported in the same area. Other billfish came from warm water in the Baltimore as well. Anglers aboard the boat Lil' Man released 3 sailfish and 3 white marlin, along with 3 yellowfins they put in the box. Dolphin have been prevalent in the warm water too. Mahi have been hanging out under lobster gear buoys and any other floating stuff. Ed Sigda and the guys on Snow Goose returned Thursday with 13 nice dolphin they pulled off some floats in the Baltimore. Dolphin ventured inshore with the heat as well. Bill Fintel was trolling a spoon behind a planer at the East Lump Thursday when he caught a 21.1 pound bull. A few bluefins lingered inshore, but it seems most moved on because of higher water temperatures. Julie Nelson decked a 55.8 pounder Saturday while trolling a green machine spreader bar at the Chicken Bone aboard Spoiled III. Ocean bottom fishermen found fluke on the Old Grounds and other rough bottom south and southeast of DB Buoy. Wes Olson checked in with a limit of quality flatfish including a 5.4 and a 6.4 pounder. Wes caught those and several others using a Gulp! and shiner combo. In Delaware Bay, flounder action has been up and down. Joe Walker and friends fished reef site 5 Wednesday, putting 10 keepers in the box. They returned to the same spot Thursday, but only had 4 legal fish. Boaters picked at fluke on other reef sites too, with reports of some flatties at sites 6, 7 and 8. The Star Site Reef holds good numbers of croakers, but they're not real big. Most range from 8 to 10 inches. There have been spot, kingfish and blowfish mixed in. The panfish preferred bloodworms, Fishbites, clams and shrimp. Spot moved into the Lewes Canal as well, and varied from smaller bait sized to eaters larger than your hand. The spot bit best at the end of incoming tide on bloodworms and Fishbites. Slot stripers were also caught in the Canal by guys fishing clams on the bottom. Tautog action cooled off in the hot weather. A few blackfish were taken along the Outer Wall. Triggerfish were feeding in the rocks, they could be caught using sand fleas and shrimp. Sheepshead were also roaming the rocks. Herbie Shorthose pulled a whopping 12.89 pound sheepshead from the Ice Breakers.
July 15, 2010
- Croakers, finally!
We've been waiting for croakers to show, and finally, there were some decent catches today. Captain Ted on the Indian had 65 keepers at the Star Site on his morning trip. The hardheads bit on clams, bloodworms and Fishbites. Hopefully, these are the first of many croakers to come. Flounder catches have been spotty, but some nice fish were checked in. The biggest so far was a 10.7 pound doormat decked today by Edwin Maxwell. The big fluke was caught at Brown Shoal aboard the Thelma Dale IV with Captain Ricky Yakimowicz. The fish ate a teaser tipped with bluefish, ahead of a 3 ounce bucktail. Eric Burnley stopped by monday with three nice keeper flounder up to 5.3 pounds. he said he tried several spots for his fish, including reef sites 6 and 7, and G Buoy. Fluke were found in the Cape May Channel during the week, but were also reported way up the Bay. It has been a dry summer so far, and it stands to reason that fish would move farther north because of increased salinity. Anglers told of good flounder catches from the Cross Ledge on up. Leon and Riley Zimmerman, along with Bob Clouser had an unusual encounter while flounder fishing near G Buoy in the Anchorage. They spotted a hammerhead shark and tossed it a live spot, which the 6 footer ate immediately. After a fun battle and some photos, the big shark was set free. Rocky structure at the Bay mouth has harbored tog, triggerfish and sheepshead. Mike Vespa, Sr. and Mike Vespa, Jr. teamed up for some chunky sheepshead weighing 6.6 and 6.8 pounds while toggled into the Ice Breakers. Mike, Sr. also boated a 7.5 pound tautog. Herbie Shorthose celebrated his birthday on July 14 by catching a 7.32 pound citation tog at the Ice Breakers. Boats trolling the Five Fathom Bank area had a summertime variety. Guys on the Skipjack pulled small spoons at the Cod Lump, 4 FB Buoy and South Shoal Saturday for 60 snapper blues, some bullet mackerel and peanut dolphin. Spot made an appearance in the Lewes Canal, with the tasty panfish, and sought after baitfish preferring bits of bloodworm or Fishbites on sabiki rigs. Captain Dave Walker reported yellowfin tuna and white marlin in the Baltimore Canyon. The tuna bite had been way up the line, between the Spencer and Lindenkohl Canyons, so it was good to hear that the yellowfins moved closer.
July 8, 2010
- Tuna and Flounder
There was a good bluefin bite for boaters working twenty fathoms this past week. Tuna showed up just inshore of the twenty line, south of Massey's Canyon, and crews trolling artificials and ballyhoos found bluefins of mixed sizes on lumps in that area. Cedar plugs, Green Machines and rainbow colored spreader bars were effective. Larger fish fell for ballyhoos skirted with Iland Lures or heavy JAG witches trolled way back. As more boats worked the area, bluefins were found on structure changes from the Twin Wrecks to the South Paw, and then on the Chicken Bone, Hambone and along the bottom contours of Massey's Canyon. Plenty of decent sized dolphin were mixed in. Captain Tom Smith and crew of the Port-A-Bella fished July 3rd and returned with a nice bluefin and 3 dolphin from twenty fathoms. Jonathan Clarkson came all the way from Utah to troll the Hambone with Bill Wiest, and he had the first king mackerel of the season, a chunky 16.3 pounder. The guys also boated a 44 pound bluefin while pulling a ballyhoo Ilander combo way back. Eleven year old Saige Marie Cook caught her first bluefin, a 25 pounder, and dolphin in Massey's Canyon aboard "Spoiled III" with Angelo and Anna Delapo. Bill Swords took "Swords Fish" to twenty fathoms on July 5th, where Chris Martorana scored an 18 pound dolphin and a 55.3 pound bluefin. Captain Bob Wilson on the "A.J." trolled Green Machines at the Chicken Bone to tempt 3 Mahi Mahi, including a 16 pounder for John Brandt. They also had the surprise take of a 34 pound yellowfin tuna. The crew aboard "Triple Play" decked a 51 pound bluefin at the Hambone Thursday. The offshore yellowfin bite moved up the line, and the best tuna action occurred between the Spencer and Lindenkohl Canyons. Some tuna catches were reported after dark by crews chunking overnight, but most yellowfins were encountered by crews trolling early and late in the day. Captain Dave Walker and the boys on "Reel Naughty" had an awesome day with tuna in 450 to 480 feet of water between the Spencer and Lindenkohl Canyons. They iced 9 yellowfins from 40 to 50 pounds. There were also marlin and dolphin in the 75 degree water. Back inshore, flounder fishing is shaping up. Eddy Corado caught a 5.8 pound flounder at the Old Grounds aboard "Tranquila". Kevin Matthews brought in a 6.06 pound flatfish he nailed on an ocean wreck. Tony Vansant, Tucker Chance and Fred Wright teamed up for 8 quality faltfish on Site 10 Wednesday. Tony's 6.93 pounder was tops for the day. In Delaware Bay, young Garrett Miller had a pair of fine keeper flounder aboard the Indian at the Star Site. Michelle Arnold checked in a 3.23 pound flattie, part of a double header she had on Brown Shoal. Lisa Divincenzo decked a 5.67 pounder at the Star Site while drifting smelt. Joe Walker and Joe Walker, Jr had their limit of fluke on the Brown Shoal Reefs Tuesday by using squid strips on spinner hooks. The heaviest flatties scaled 5.84 and 6.43 pounds. Sharon Beck boated a 7.24 pound doormat at the Brown Thursday. Captain Brent Wiest on the "Lil' Angler II" reported a good bite at the Brown Thursday, returning with 6 keepers from a half day trip. Boats toggled in to the Outer Wall and Ice Breakers caught tautog and triggerfish using green crabs, sand fleas, box crabs and shrimp. Casting RatLTraps and live eels around the Ice Breakers during evening and nighttime tides produced slot-size stripers. Slot rockfish were also taken from Lewes Canal by anglers using clams and eels around the drawbridge.
July 1, 2010
- Flounder in the Ocean
Some nice catches of flounder were checked in last week. Bobby Bryant and the crew aboard "Nervous Wreck" worked reef site 10 for ten quality keeper flatties. Most action occurred while drifting strip baits during the first of flood tide. John Schnaitman scored an 8 pound doormat, Tom Richardson reeled in a 7.68 pounder, and Bobby boated a 6.14 pound flatfish. Joe Walker, Tom Coyle, Tom Richardson and Bobbie Bryant, Sr. teamed up for another fine catch of 9 keeper fluke. Joe's 8.08 pounder was top fish that day. It took a strip bait dressed with a green hair teaser at Site 10. The guys aboard "Lil' Angler II" had 6 keepers at Site 10, including a chunky 6.29 pounder for John Fryer. Captain Pete on "Top Fin" hosted flounder regulars George Slick, Grant Aulenbach and Art Shapiro, and they combined for 7 keeper flatties to 5 pounds, plus a bonus codfish. Captain Ricky Yakimowicz has been drfiting the Old Grounds for fluke, with good success. Many anglers did well using 3 or 4 ounce bucktails tipped with strips of mackerel. On a recent trip, Paul Pergeorelis kept three fish to 20 inches, and Scott Ayars won the pool with a 5 pounder. In Delaware Bay, boaters who knew how to work artificial reef structure found legal flatties at Sites 5,6,7 and 8. Flounder continued to come from Lewes Canal, Broadkill River and Roosevelt Inlet. Gulp! Swimming Mullets in white, pink and chartreuse have been the hot offering. Shallow water along Lewes Beach and on the flats inside Cape Henlopen yielded fluke too. Stripers have been active at night around rocky structure at the Bay mouth. The Ferry Jetty, inner wall, outer wall and ice breakers gave up bass. Guys casting Storm shads, RatLTraps and Bomber plugs got bit. Live eels also produced. The striped bass slot limit went into effect today, allowing anglers to keep two fish between 20 and 26 inches per day from Delaware Bay and it's tributaries. Stripers within that limit should be available to fishermen drifting eels near the drawbridge in the Lewes Canal. Bottom fishing with clams or bunker will also yield rock in the Canal. Today marked the reopening of tautog season as well. Windy weather hampered the efforts of toggers, but blackfish were pulled from the Outer Wall. Bay reefs and wrecks should harbor tog too. Water temperatures have warmed quickly, and triggerfish and sheepshead have already been taken along the rocks. Herbie Shorthose checked in a 7.89 pound sheepshead that ate a sandflea at the Ice Breakers. Ate Cape Henlopen Pier, folks lining the rails had flounder, spot, croakers, and even a few triggers that had been grazing on growth attached to pier pilings. Bailey Harrison caught a 3.09 pound triggerfish form the pier. Thresher sharks still roamed the outside edge of the Buoy Line. Kevin McCambley, Derrick Wilbert, Brian Fitzgerald, and Paul Kiley joined forces to best a 287 pounder aboard the Indian while sharking northeast of DB Buoy. That was the third big longtail taken aboard Captain Ted Moulinier's boats in the last three trips. The first big shot of yellowfin tuna that had been swimming the edge between Poor Man's and Washington Canyon's seemed to have moved on. Yellowfins popped up occasionally in the Baltimore, but no concentrations of fish have gathered in any one spot. Water temps have risen and are uniformly warm most places offshore. Dolphin have been available on lobster gear buoys and other floating stuff. Several white marlin were reported in Poor Man's Canyon. Bluefin tuna have shown up in decent numbers along the twenty fathom line, south of Massey's Canyon. Crews trolling ballyhoo, cedar plugs, green machines, and Drone spoons behind planers caught bluefins within the legal size range.
June 17, 2010
- Yellowfins Are Here
The offshore season kicked into gear, and the first reports of tuna, dolphin and billfish came in from shop customers. Jimmy Reed and Mike Cannon trolled one hundred to three hundred fathoms of South Poor Man's Friday, and scored 6 yellowfins in the 40 pound class. Pink and rainbow colored plastics behind birds and spreader bars tempted fish from 66 degree water. Charlie Horning, Walt Schrade and the guys on "Fish Whistle" found yellowfins along the 862 line between 75 and 95 fathoms Friday afternoon. They boated 7 tuna from 25 to 42 pounds while towing spreader bars and small daisy chains on flatlines. Charlie's crew had 10 yellowfins on the 900 line a couple days later. The gang aboard Spoiled III had a fantastic trip to 1000 fathoms of the Washington Canyon Saturday. Captain Angelo Delapo came across acres of wooden boards floating in cobalt blue, warm water. He commented that the area looked like a lumber yard, and that's where the crew concentrated their efforts. The decision paid off, and they were rewarded with 13 gaffer dolphin in the 15 pound class, including a 16.9 pounder for Julie Nelson. They also iced a pair of 30 pound yellowfins while trolling skirted ballyhoos. The highlight of the day was an estimated 500 pound blue marlin that charged in and grabbed a horse ballyhoo/pink and white Ilander combo on the shotgun line. Chris Dispoto battled the big blue one for quite some time before it was brought to the boat and set free. Ed Sigda and the boys aboard "Snow Goose" put out a spread of lures when they arrived at the 19 Fathom Lump Friday morning, and shortly thereafter hooked a 32 inch bluefin on a cedar plug. Ed mentioned that the structure was covered with clounds of sand eels in water that ranged from 67 to 69 degrees. After they had their single bluefin limit, the anglers set up for sharking in the same area. While chumming, they released two makos and a sandbar. They also had a big thresher on that managed to come unbuttoned. Other boaters told of scattered bluefin and bluefish catches while trolling Massey's Canyon, the Dumpsite, Chicken Bone, Hambone and Sausages. Just a reminder that new bluefin retention limits went into effect June 12. Angling Category HMS Permit holders may now keep only 1 bluefin between 27 and 59 inches per boat per day. Charter vessels may retain one measuring 27 to less than 47 inches, and one from 47 to less than 57 inches per vessel per day/trip. Deep water bottom fishing was good. Bill Swords and friends dropped Saturday for 7 golden tilefish to 35 pounds, a pair of gray tile and 38 big sea bass. Brian Murray had a 3.61 pounder, and Jake Knox nailed a 4.33 pound knothead. As a bonus, they had 8 gaffer dolphin too. Inshore bottom bouncing was fair with strong currents surrounding the new moon. Keeper sea bass remained elusive for the most part. Boats that made multiple anchor stops on small pieces of structure at Site 11 ended up with some decent bass. Guys on the Tranquila had a catch of bass and a nice codfish Tuesday. Fluke have been showing on the Old Grounds. Anglers working strip baits on Spro bucktail jigs got some legal size flatties. Scott Ayars scored his limit of 4 quality flatfish while fluking with Captain Ricky Yakimowicz Saturday. In Delaware Bay, flounder catches were sparce. Although he didn't have many keepers while rubble bouncing during the week, Captain Pete on "Top Fin" did return with some good sized fluke. George Slick scored a 7.34 pound citation doormat. Scott Peterson pulled in a 5.04 pounder, and Art Shapiro landed a 4.63 pound flatfish. The best flounder game in town continues to take place in shallow water. Gulp! artificials in white, pink and chartreuse have been the hot lick. The soft artificials by themselves on a leadhead, speck rig or bucktail jig have been highly effective, but some anglers combined them with minnows or shiners for extra punch. Plenty of fish came from the Lewes Canal, Broadkill River and Roosevelt Inlet. The keeper ratio was slim, but anglers who put in their time ended up with some decent fluke. Tristin Sowers got a 4.15 pound flattie in Broadkill River. George Miller brought in a 5.79 pounder he caught at Canary Creek. Larry Taylor took a 5.61 pounder from the Canal on a pearl white Gulp! Swimming Mullet. Flatfish were also spread out in skinny water close to Broadkill and Lewes Beaches, and on the Henlopen flats. Big rays were also numerous in those areas. Anglers walking the beach and casting minnows on small jigs in the wash reported getting bit by flounders just as they were pulling baits out of the water at their feet. Fly fishermen wading either side of the Cape Henlopen fishing pier hooked flounder while casting Clousers and other small weighted patterns. Patrons on the pier had flounder too, along with a few croakers and spot. The panfish preferred bloodworms and Fishbites. Striped bass have been hanging out along the Outer Wall. Boaters casting lures and live eels in the evening and after dark got into good bass. Bombers, RatLTraps and Stretch 12+ plugs were effective offerings. Rock were also active in the Lewes Canal. Guys drifting eels around the drawbridge had success with keepers. Anchoring and baiting with clams on the bottom also resulted in rockfish. The July and August slot season will offer anglers the chance to keep two stripers between 20 and 26 inches per day from Delaware Bay and it's tributaries.
June 10, 2010
- Threshers on the Buoy Line
Thresher sharks have moved up along the Delaware shipping lane, and have been reported in the vicinity of DB Buoy. Captain Brian Wazlavek hosted the "Polish Library" from Wilmington, aboard the Pirate King II, for a sea bass trip Sunday, and the guys enjoyed quite a bonus catch. Dick Robinson tangled with a 190 pound Thresher for an hour and a half before bringing it to the gaff. The big longtail ate a mackerel/squid sandwich northwest of DB. Other impressive threshers were taken recently on structure between 20 and 30 fathoms. A 525 pounder was landed aboard the "Rain E Daze", and a monster 627.6 pounder was brought in by the crew of "Playn-Hooke". That fish was hooked near the Hot Dog, and was just 14.4 pounds shy of the Maryland state record. A 612.2 pound thresher was also captured near the Dog on the "Cah-Ching". Mako action has been good, with blackeyes showing in many of the same areas as the threshers. The Marine Electric wreck, Fingers, Hot Dog, Sausages, and Triple Wrecks have all produced. A few bluefin tuna were reported by trollers trying near the Sausages. Currently, HMS permit holders in the Angling or Charter/Headboat categories fishing recreationally may keep one bluefin between 27 and 73 inches curved fork length per boat per day. Bottom fishermen had limited success with sea bass at Site 11 and on the Old Grounds. Boats that anchored several times during the day on small structure were able to put together some decent catches of bass, but the majority of folks working broader areas found mostly short fish. Captain Ricky Yakimowicz told of some keeper fluke while working the Old Grounds. Reef Site 10 will likely give up flatties soon as well. In Delaware Bay, a handful of legal flounder were pulled from Reef Sites 6 and 7 near Brown Shoal. Jeremy Scott had a 4.94 pounder on the Martha Marie. But, the best shot at flatfish still remains in shallow water. Alan Herr and Tim Craley stopped by with 7 quality fluke to 4.5 pounds they caught while casting Gulps! in the Lewes Canal. Alan came back a couple days later with a 6.28 pound flattie that ate a Gulp! Jerk Shad in the Canal. Aaron Strausbaugh checked in a 7.09 pound doormat he pulled from the Broadkill River. Flounder were also hanging out close to shore along Broadkill and Lewes Beaches, but numerous rays grabbed baits intended for flatties. Fly fishermen using Clouser patterns on flats either side of the Cape Henlopen Fishing Pier also found flounders. Patrons fishing from the pier had fluke as well. Speck rigs and other small jigs tipped with Gulp! or shiners worked well. The first few small crokers were caught on the pier. Some little hardheads were also hooked near the Ferry Jetty. Striped bass have taken up residence along the rocks of the Outer Wall. Boaters casting artificials in the evenings connected with some nice stripers. Bombers and RatLTraps were favored hard baits. Spear fishermen have also encountered big rockfish. Nate Landis shot a 36.4 pound trophy linesider while swimming the Wall.
June 3, 2010
- First Makos
The first mako checked in at Lewes Harbour Marina hit the dock on Memorial Day. Ron Baker and crew on the "Reely Hooked" brought back the Blackeye from the Fingers. Jeff Hoepfl and the guys aboard "Joint Venture" reported the release of two makos the day before near the Triple Wrecks. Captain Dave Walker and the boys on "Reel Naughty" had a pair of makos in the vicinity of the Marine Electric. Decent numbers of sharks have shown up on traditional twenty fathom structure, and spots such as the Fingers, Sausages, Hambone and Massey's Canyon will likely produce action. Threshers will probably frequent the same areas, but those sharks are found closer to shore as well. The area between DB and DA Buoys in the shipping lane is a good spot to try. Threshers are often found with concentrations of sea bass or baitfish such as bunker. Bluefin tuna should show up soon in the same twenty fathom region as the sharks. Sea bass catches fell off after the full moon. Some anglers speculated the slowdown was due to spawning. When the bite was on, some nice bass were taken. Jolly Paily checked in a 3.73 pounder he caught at Reef Site 11 on the Martha Marie. Bass fishermen working Site 11 also found some good sized flounder. Ken Brittingham brought in a 6.5 pound doormat he got on the Grizzly. Harry Weaver used a Crippled Herring Jig to fool his pool winning 5 pounder at Site 11 aboard the Thelma Dale IV. Flounder continue to come from shallow water too. J.T. Tharp captured a 5.35 pound falttie in Roosevelt Inlet. Seven year old Dillon Peden caught three flounder to 19 inches using minnows at Roosevelt Inlet. Jeff Timmons tempted a 6.19 pounder from Roosevelt also. Fly fishermen wading near the pier inside Cape Henlopen had flatfish while casting Clousers and other small weighted patterns in the evening. Boaters drifting along the Outer Wall caught stripers while tossing Stretch 12 and Bomber Plugs, Storm Shads and bucktails. Evening and nighttime were best. A few striped bass continued to come from the surf. Michael Walsh pulled a 16.5 pounder from the wash at Herring Point. The black drum bite at the Coral Beds cooled off, however, drummers still had good success at Tussey's Slough and the Pin Top. Mark Riley had a 68 pounder on the Martha Marie, Shelly Giuffie got a 67.8 pounder, Richard Frederick fought a 65.5 pound boomer, Dan Cornell caught one weighing 64.3 pounds, and Ronald Demantt decked a 63 pounder. Drum will probably thin out after this week.
May 27, 2010
- Flounder Tourney Results
The 2010 Canal Flounder Tournament was a total success, with 300 anglers fishing the event. That was the largest turnout so far. Many flatties were caught, but most were short of minimum size. However, some impressive specimens hit the scales. Matt Sanderson was the big winner with his 7.15 pound doormat. D.J. Churchill captured Second with a 5.39 pounder. Alan Herr had a 4.69 pound fluke, for Third place. A 4.52 pounder caught by Jeff Purdy put him in Fourth place. Mike Newcomb nailed a 4.19 pound flounder for Fifth place, and Rich Owen's 3.95 pound flatfish held on to take Sixth place. Lance Wheatley took Seventh with his 3.77 pounder. The Dewey Beach Lions Club sponsored the tournament, and $1500 was donated to the Camp Awareness youth program. We extend our thanks to all who participated. The Lewes Canal also yielded nice flounder other days during the week. Aaron Strausbaugh stuck a 6.83 pounder the day before the Tourney. Six year old Rylee Caras showed her dad how it's done by catching a 2.72 pound flattie in the Canal. The long awaited reopening of sea bass season lived up to expectations. Fishermen found big numbers of hungry sea bass at Reef Site 11. Other artificial and natural structure bewteen 60 and 90 feet depths also gave up bass. Crews reported fish feeding eagerly, spitting up gobs of sand eels and crabs. Boats drifting Site 11 seemed to do better than those at anchor. Surface temperatures were close to 60 degrees, but water temperatures on the bottom remain cool, and several cod were caught by the bass fleet. Decent numbers of keeper flounder were also landed in the Ocean, offering encouragement for a good fluke season. Guys on the Grizzly had a big opening day with sea bass. Harry and Michael Weaver, John Brandt, John Cope, Matt Klohr and Corey Gassert had their limit of 150 nice knotheads, plus 6 codfish. The crew of Skipjack hosted the "Fishin' Bitches", and the Ladies returned with 130 sea bass and a cod. Tommy Otto got a 3.26 pound bass on the Martha Marie. Art Shapiro landed a 3.56 pounder on the Lil' Angler. Thresher sharks have made an appearance, along with the sea bass. Captain Brent Wiest and his dad Bill brought back the first thresher of the season at Lewes Harbour Marina. The 166 pound longtail ate a mackerel east of Delaware Light. The first mako of the year came into Ocean City. The blackeye was caught inshore of the Washington Canyon aboard the Nontypical. It's likely a mako will be landed in Delaware soon. Black drum fishing is in full swing, and should be especially good in the days following tonight's full moon. Catching has been consistent on the Coral Beds off Fowler Beach during evening incoming tides. A drum bite has also developed in the Brandywine area, near the Pin Top, and in Tussey's Slough. Jim Weidman was tired out after winding in 12 drum at Tussey's aboard the Grizzly. He harvested a limit of 60 pound class fish, and released the rest. Captain Carey Evans suggested handling fish that are to be released by using a gaff in the upper lip. Surf clams and peeler crabs were favored offerings. If you need fresh clams, please call early in the week to reserve bait, because they go fast. The Indian has had some big boomers on night drum trips. The largest weighed 82 pounds. Andy Grudza got a 72 pounder while fishing aboard the Indian. Larry Gardner caught 3 drum weighing up to 76 pounds while fishing on the Grizzly. Anglers fishing on the Jam-Man scored 8 drum Saturday evening, including an 84.6 pounder for Jedidiah Fices and a 65.6 pounder for Raymond Eichelberger. Kathy Rodgers reeled in a drum that tipped the scales to 69.3 pounds. Larry Wilson wound in a 76.5 pounder, and Dave Horan had a 66.3 pound black drum. Boaters drifting along the rocks of the Outer Wall and Ice Breakers got into stripers while casting artificials at sunset. Bomber, Stretch 12, and Bunka Boy plugs were popular. Storm Shads, bucktails and lead heads tipped with twisters were also effective. Rockfish also came from the surf. Casters near the Herring Point jetties hooked bass while soaking bunker and clams.
May 20, 2010
- Thresher Sharks Have Arrived
The season's first thresher sharks were caught this past week. Captain Brent Wiest and his dad Bill Wiest brought back a 166 pounder Thursday morning. Threshers were reported at the Jackspot and the Twin Wrecks. Blue sharks have been seen with the longtails, and it's likely that a mako may be taken soon as well. Water temperatures range from 54 to 59 degrees. As threshers move north, numbers of them frequent the Delaware shipping lane. Many sharks are hooked in sight of DB Buoy. The sea bass fleet will be hitting it hard Saturday when the season opens. Threshers hang out in a lot of the same spots where sea bass congregate, feeding on the Black Wills. Bass may be found on rough bottom of the Old Grounds, or the artificial structure of Reef Site 11. Many wrecks between ten and twenty fathoms should be housing sea bass, since they've been left alone for several months. Delaware Bay black drum fishing has been good. Most boats have been anchoring in shallow water along the inside edge of the Coral Beds off Fowler Beach. Afternoon outgoing tides produced bites, but drum bit after dark on flood tides too. Surf clams are the bait of choice, but drum will eat peeler crabs too. Dan McDermott boated an 83.5 pound behemoth aboard the Grizzly. Kathy Rodgers reeled in a 69.3 pound citation boomer at the Coral Beds. Janet Grow got a 60.9 pounder while drumming on the Pirate King. Drum action should peak around the May full moon. If you need fresh surf clams for your trip, please reserve them early in the week. Stripers continue to roam the surf. Drew Stuchlik and Judah Lynam limited out with four big bass Saturday. The largest was Judah's 32.8 pound bruiser. Their success came while soaking bunker heads near the Herring Point jetties. Stripers were also caught by boaters casting artificials along the rocks of the Outer Wall at sunset. Bomber and Stretch 12 plugs, along with Storm Shads were effective. Flounder came from Lewes Canal, Roosevelt Inlet and the Cape Henlopen Pier. Gulp! Swimming Mullets worked well. Aaron Strausbaugh checked a canal doormat the tipped the scales at 6.83 pounds. The Canal Flounder Tournament takes place May 21, and there's been a good response so far. A portion of the proceeds benefit Camp Awareness youth programs.
May 13, 2010
- Stripers on the Wall
Striped bass made an appearance along the Outer Wall off Lewes. Stripers were taken by guys in boats drifting and casting artificials to the rocks. Swimming plugs like Bomber 17A, Mann's Stretch 12+, Rapala, Storm Kickin' Stick, and MirrOLure were popular. Soft plastics such as Storm Shads and Berkley Gulp Jerk Shads were also effective. The old standby white bucktail tipped with a plastic worm accounted for rockfish too. Todd Manning reported catching some nice bass, releasing rock up to 38 inches. This is the first wave of stripers to settle in on the Wall this spring. Some big, post spawn fish moving through the area will likely stage on the structure for awhile, but stripers of various sizes should hang out should hang out along the rocks for the rest of the season. Black drum activity is on the upswing. Catching should be good around this week's new moon. It's traditionally a nighttime fishery, but many drum were taken during daylight hours last May, and it's likely there will be a daytime bite again this spring. Boomers were caught this past week on the Coral Beds off Slaughter Beach. Shallow areas near the submerged pilings were productive as well. Surf clams were the bait of choice. The shop will be carrying fresh clams during the drum run, but we suggest that you reserve baits early in the week because of limited availability. Orders are placed with the supplier Monday for delivery Wednesday. Flounder continued to come from Lewes Canal. Clean water was the key to success, and unfortunately, windy conditions kept things murky much of the time. Many of the flatties were throwbacks, but decent numbers of keepers were landed by both small boaters in the Canal and shore fishermen at Roosevelt Inlet. Minnows, shiners, smelt and squid strips were favored for fluke. Gulp! Swimming Mullets in white, chartreuse or pink worked well too. The Canal Flounder Tournament takes place Friday May 21. It is a boat fishing tourney, and the entry fee is $25 per angler, $5 of which is donated to the Camp Awareness Youth Fishing Program. Prizes will be awarded for the seven heaviest fluke. Anglers must register at Lewes Harbour Marina before the day of the Tournament.
May 6, 2010
- Big Drum
The first big black drum of the season hit the dock at Lewes Harbour Marina Sunday morning. Lucas May boated an 85.5 pound boomer at the Coral Beds, while using clam aboard the Jam-Man Saturday night. Captain Carey on the Grizzly caught a 26.5 pound drum at the Coral Beds about noon Sunday. Black drum activity will continue to improve through May, and usually peaks around Memorial Day. We'll have fresh surf clams during the season, but we suggest you reserve bait in advance. Nice stripers showed in the surf. Trevor Gouert used cut herring on Lewes Beach to catch a 16.5 pound rockfish. Curt Stephens, Drew Stuchlik and Charles Fouraker found the bass at Cape Henlopen Saturday. Curt captured a 19.7 pounder, Drew had a pair of 38 inchers, and Charles landed a 22.1 pound citation linesider while soaking clam and bunker baits. Joel Robinson was casting a Storm lure from the Jetty at Indian River when he hooked a 22.4 pound striped bass. Bubba Hastings told of nice stripers he caught while casting Purple Demon MirrOLures near Burton's Island. Stripers were also taken by boaters casting plugs and jigs along the Outer Wall off Lewes. Tautog action remained good. The rocks of the Inner and Outer Walls and Ice Breakers gave up blackfish. Tossing a jighead tipped with green crab in close to the wall is a fun and productive way to tempt tog. Reef Sites 6,7 and 8 also yielded nice tautog. Captain Chris Ragni caught a 9 pound tog and Rick Shelton had a 7.26 pounder aboard Jam-Man. Chris Zeke Cichoki pulled an 8.94 tog from the Wall. David Sipple earned a citation for an 8.8 pounder. Sam Reed got an 8.5 pound blackfish on the Indian. Jeff Saylor took an 8.11 pound tog on the Lil' Angler II. Charles Minehan managed a 7.4 pounder at the Wall. Flounder fishing was good in the Lewes Canal, when the water was clean. Jigs tipped with minnows, shiners or smelt worked well. Anglers on the Cape Henlopen Pier caught flounder too, with some of the better bites at night. A leadhead with a pink Gulp! swimming mullet and a strip of fresh herring or bunker did the trick. Pier casters also had bluefish. The Lewes Harbour Canal Flounder Tournament will take place May 21.
April 29, 2010
- Bluefish Show Up
Small bluefish have shown up along the beach in the past week. Decent numbers of blues were also taken from the Cape Henlopen Pier. Fresh bunker and herring were favored baits. Pier anglers also did pretty well with flounder. Pink Gulp! swimming mullet tipped with with herring was a winning combo. Some of the best action occurred in the evenings or after dark. Flounder also came from the Lewes Canal. Minnows, shiners, smelt, herring and bunker were popular offerings. The Annual Canal Flounder Tournament will be held Friday May 21. Tog catches were good, when boats could get out on the Bay. Blustery winds hampered efforts much of the week. Reef Sites 5,6,7 and 8 gave up tautog. Nicholas Dzwonchyk decked an 8.56 pounder over a Bay reef aboard the Lil' Angler II. Blackfish also came from the Ice Breakers and Outer Wall. Phil Falgowski captured a 9.47 pound citation tog at the Wall. A few stripers were caught near Roosevelt Inlet. Trevor Gouert checked in a 16.5 pound rock he hooked from Lewes Beach while using cut herring. Black drum should become more prevalent, following the full moon that occurred Wednesday. The Coral Beds off Slaughter Beach are a popular drum hangout. Other productive spots east of the shipping channel include the Pin Top, Tussey's Slough and the Horseshoe. The shop will have fresh surf clams on hand during the drum run, but it's recommended that you call to reserve bait before your trip.
April 22, 2010
- Flounder in the Canal
More keeper sized flounder came from the Lewes Canal this week. Water temps have been in the low 50's, and some of the better action occurred at the end of incoming tide and the beginning of outgoing, when the water was cleanest. The Broadkill River and Cape Henlopen Pier yielded flatties as well. Minnows, shiners and smelt were popular offerings, but sometimes fish responded better to fresh cut baits like bunker or herring. Shad darts, bucktails or plain lead head jigs tipped with a strip of meat or Gulp! were also effective combos. The Annual Lewes Harbour Canal Flounder Tournament happens Friday May 21. Cash Prizes will be paid out for more places this year, and a portion of the proceeds will benefit Camp Awareness youth fishing programs. The tautog bite has been very good. Blackfish were taken from the Inner and Outer Walls and Ice Breakers. Reef Sites 6,7 and 8 also produced tog. Green Crabs, shrimp, frozen sand fleas and clams caught tautog. Remember that the limit is three fish 15 inches or longer per angler this time of year. Limit catches have been common among toggers this past week. Jim Meyers and James Ambriola checked in with nice tog both Friday and Saturday, including citations of 8.47 and 7.55 pounds. Evan Falgowski had a 7.57 pound Tautog. On Friday, Bob Witte released a pair of female tog ripe with eggs that weighed over ten pounds each aboard Top Fin. STripers thinned out up the Bay, and have presumably moved on to the spawning grounds. Prior to their departure, Randolph Behm brought in a 20.1 pounder he boated on the Black Bart near Fourteen Foot Light. The first reports of Black Drum from Delaware Bay have been filtering in, but we haven't checked any in at the shop yet. We are carrying fresh surf clams now, and will through May, but it's a good idea to call ahead and reserve them to ensure you have bait for your trip. Snapper bluefish have shown up in the surf and are scattered along the beach. Blues seem to be more prevalent south of Indian River. Herring bunched up in the spillway at Milton this week and could be caught on small darts and sabiki rigs.
April 15, 2010
- Tautog on the Reefs
Delaware's artificial reefs produced good numbers of tog this week. Site 10 in the Ocean continued to be productive for both blackfish and the occasional cod, but Delaware Bay reef sites came to life as well. The Star Site and both #6 and #7 at Brown Shoal yielded nice catches of tautog. Green Crabs, clams, shrimp and frozen sand fleas worked as bait. Live sand fleas have not been available yet. Tog were also taken along the rocks of the Outer Breakwater and Ice Breakers. A few of the quality blackfish brought in this week included an 8 pounder for Kyle Falgowski, Brian Seglem's 8.38, and a 9.5 pound tog for Ralph Plummer. Striper action cooled off some, but bass were still found on structure changes along the lower edge of Joe Flogger Shoal, and northeast of #19 Buoy. Anchoring and using clams or bunker was the preferred method. The Pirate King recently returned with four nice rockfish, including a 22.5 pounder for Carl Nilsson. Stripers should show across the mouth of Delaware Bay soon. It's also time for black drum to move in on the Coral Beds off Slaughter Beach, and other traditional grounds like the Pin Top, Horseshoe, and Tussey's Slough. A few more keeper flounder came from the Lewes Canal, and that fishing will improve in the coming weeks. Decent numbers of big flatfish have already been captured by boaters working near the VFW on Indian River. Minnows, shiners and strips of fresh herring or bunker were effective. Combining those baits with a pink Gulp! swimming mullet made them even more attractive. Remember May 21 as the date for the Annual Lewes Canal Flounder Tournament. Cash prizes will be offered and a portion of the proceeds benefit Camp Awareness youth fishing programs.
April 8, 2010
- Hot Striper Bite
Delaware Bay striper action has been some of the best we've seen in recent seasons. Numerous bass have been caught by boats fishing up the Bay between Miah Maul and #1 Buoy, however fish have also been found recently in other locations. The edge of Joe Flogger Shoal, west of the channel between Fourteen Foot Light and Miah Maull, has been productive. Anchoring and deploying surf clam or cut bunker baits on fishfinder rigs has been the preferred method for taking spring striped bass. Although, water temps have risen above 50 degrees with unseasonably hot weather, and it's likely casting or trolling artificial lures will yield rock too. Captain Chet's gang on the Lil' Angler II fished up the Bay yesterday and returned with a limit of 18 good bass they caught in short order with clams. They stopped at a reef site on the way home for some nice tog, including a 10.5 pounder for Marvin Crouse. Captain Vince's guys aboard Miss Kirstin kept 4 quality rockfish on the edge of Joe Flogger. Tautog activity has picked up. Captain Ricky Yakimowicz had a limit of blackfish for his boat Monday on reef site #10. Fair numbers of cod continue to be mixed in. Clams, green crabs and shrimp were baits of choice. Captain Pete on Top Fin had Billy Chee and friends out Sunday for a good catch of tog. Small boats toggled into the Outer Wall and Ice breakers have begun to catch decent numbers of fish as well. I cleaned a limit of tog to 7 pounds from the Breakers for a group of anglers Wednesday. Keeper flounder were taken by boats drifting minnows, shiners, cut herring and Gulp! in the VFW Slough at Indian River. Reportedly, a handful of flounder were caught in the Lewes Canal. The annual Lewes Canal Flounder Tournament will take place May 21, offering cash prizes for the three heaviest fluke. It will be sponsored by the Dewey Beach Lions Club, and a portion of the proceeds will be donated to Camp Awareness youth fishing programs.
April 1, 2010
- Spring Fishing Has Sprung
Amanda and I just returned from our winter break in the Florida Keys. It was colder, windier and wetter than we ever remember. We didn't fish as much as we wanted because of the weather, but when we did get out, catching was good. We did well on mutton snappers up to 19 pounds, along with mangrove snappers, yellowtails, Spanish, cero and king mackerel. Shallow water grouper season was closed, but we released many nice blacks, gags, reds and even a goliath. We made it offshore to deep drop a couple times, and returned with tilefish and nice snowy grouper to 35 pounds. Amberjack fishing was awesome, and Butterfly jigging and vertical jigging bucktails over deep wrecks produced AJ after AJ until our arms couldn't take any more. Here in Delaware, stripers have been plentiful in Delaware Bay. Captain Carey's guys aboard Grizzly had 27 keeper sized bass while dunking clams up the Bay near Miah Maull last Sunday. Carey said bunker were thick and gannetts dove everywhere. This is certainly a promising sign, and rockfish should be caught at many other locations in the Bay soon. Black drum won't be far behind, and if this season is as good as last, we're in for some great action. Tautog have been caught on Ocean structure, and should bite in the Bay soon with warming temps. White perch are active in tidal waterways like Petersfield Ditch near Broadkill Beach. They'll respond to bloodworms, nightcrawlers, grass shrimp and small minnows. A bit of bait on a small shad dart can be deadly for these tasty panfish. We'll be carrying worms, bunker, surf clams and green crabs in the coming weeks. With a fantastic forecast on tap for Easter weekend, things should bust loose. Temperatures are supposed to be in the 70's with light winds, so get out and go fishing!
December 19, 2009
- Christmas Rockfish
At this writing, we're in the midst of a nasty winter storm. Stripers must have sensed it's coming, because the bite has been good all week leading up to this weather event. Yesterday, Captain Alan Steele and his crew trolled up over 30 bass on Brown Shoal while pulling Stretch 25+ and Storm plugs. They kept nine nice fish. Other trollers reported good action while pulling plugs on Overfalls. Ryan Falgowski checked in a 30.1 pound linesider that blasted a Stretch 25+. Guys on the Lil' Angler scored 10 nice keepers , including a 24.2 pounder for Jim Savage. They released several other fish while drifting eels and bucktails on Overfalls, and at 8B Buoy. Bud Peters and his friends limited out aboard the Grizzly on Friday. Troy Little landed a 21.75 pounder during that trip. Captain Carey had the gang from the I.G. Burton Truck Shop earlier in the week on the Grizzly for another limit of quality rock, including citations of 20.75 pounds for Robert Ryan, and 22.5 pounds for Robert Rexrode. Captain Ted on the Pirate King has been having good success and a lot of fun catching bass on Butterfly Jigs. Patrons have been doing well with jigs too, and Captain Ted himself captured a 21.3 pounder while jigging. The method can be deadly, and often causes a reactive strike from stripers that may not even be hungry but can't resist the erratic action of the lures. Big bluefish are suckers for jigs too. Water temperatures have been falling, and cold water runoff from all the snow and ice associated with this storm will probably cause a further drop. But, there are plenty of bass and baitfish at the Delaware Bay mouth, and we should have rockfish at least through Christmas. The tautog bite has been up and down, but toggers on the Grizzly managed a limit of blackfish at Reefsite #10 on Monday. Biggest of the bunch was an 11 pound 4 ouncer for Alex Levantowsky.
December 3, 2009
- Full Moon Brings Bass
Striped bass action was very good around the recent full moon. Crews told of hot catching at 8B Buoy, in The Valley, and at Overfalls. Drifting live spot was productive, but the supply of those baits is about exhausted. Eels produced fish too. Guys using artificials also did well. Bucktails tipped with plastic worms were effective. Gulp! Sand Eels and Jerk Shads also tempted rockfish, as did Shimano Butterfly jigs and other metal lures like A27 diamond jigs that imitate sand eels which are plentiful at the Bay mouth. Stripers and bluefish have been full of sand eels. Some anglers caught stripers by baiting up with sand eels that other caught fish spit out on the deck. Trolling Stretch 25+ and 18+ plugs yielded plenty of rock too. Bright color patterns like chartreuse and Cabo Sunset worked well when water clarity wasn't good. Chrome/blue was also good. When fresh bunker was available, some big bass fell for chunk baits. Harry Aiken checked in a 45.8 pound lunker he caught on a "lump up the Bay" Thanksgiving Day. Even though some large linesiders still remain in the Bay, there have been a lot of short fish around in recent days. Captain Chris on the Skipjack hosted the "Fishin' Bitches" Monday, and they culled a limit of 20 keepers out of 38 bass caught. Their bites came while using a mix of spot, eels and bucktails during ebb current at 8B Buoy and Overfalls. The same day, the guys aboard Miss Caroline were back at the dock early with a limit of 10 rock to 19 pounds they took while pulling Stretch 25's at Overfalls. On Wednesday, fishermen on the Tranquila caught nearly 50 stripers, and kept 11. Dave and Joe Walker, and Brent Wiest also had at least 50 Striped bass Wednesday, and kept their limit of 6 quality fish. Plenty of fat slammer bluefish were mixed in with rockfish. A fair number of flounder were also hooked by striper fishermen. Some were pretty impressive, like the 30 inch 8.82 pounder Billie Jo Hunter had aboard the Lil' Angler. A fish like that would likely weigh well over 10 pounds in the Summer. The full moon may have been good for striped bass, but it had had adverse effects on tog fishing. Strong currents and dirty water made it tough for toggers along the Inner and Outer Walls and Ice Breakers. Water temperatures are still above 50 degrees, and once the currents let up and the water clears, blackfish should bite on the rocks again. Surf fishermen tangled with big bluefish while casting cut bunker and mullet from the beach at Herring Point.
November 24, 2009
- Stripers for Thanksgiving
Striper action rebounded after the bad northeast blow, but as has been the pattern, another storm followed shortly thereafter, preventing fishermen from getting out again over the past two days. Stripers were showing in the usual places. Bites occurred at 8B Buoy and in the Valley for guys drfiting eels. Bucktailers and boats trolling Stretch plugs had rockfish on Overfalls. Striped bass that are here now are smaller than those from the initial run, with crews reporting many throwbacks. However, there are still some good sized bass around. John Koster caught a 27.5 pounder while trolling a Stretch 25+ aboard the Grizzly. Richard Kairer got a 27.2 pounder while eeling at Brown Shoal on the Skipjack. Joe VanValkenburgh landed a 25.3 pound bass on the Martha Marie. Adam Bellen boated a 22.5 pounder while trolling Overfalls. Captain J.W. Hocker and crew on the Miss Caroline trolled up a dozen keepers to 18.5 pounds during incoming current on Overfalls Saturday Morning. On Sunday, Evan and Ryan Falgowski and Lee Abel took 5 keepers and released two dozen other stripers while pulling plugs on Overfalls. Ryan Tiernry checked in a 22.2 pound rock. Kerry Hostetter had a 20.5 pound linesider at Overfalls on the Miss Kirstin. We still have live spot, but once these are gone, that's it for the year. The conditions look fishable on Wednesday and Thanksgiving Day, but the forecast calls for strong west winds Friday and Saturday. Beachfront spots such as Hen and Chicken Shoal will be in the lee, and might offer an option for those who can make it out. The Lewes Harbour Striper Tournament finished up with Evan Falgowski taking the top spot for his 44.8 pound lunker. Grant Aulenbach had Second with a 35.4 pounder. Third place went to Jeff Gardiner for his 33.1 pound rock. Tautog continued to cooperate along the rocks of the inner and outer walls and ice breakers. With cooler temperatures, tog came from Bay reef sites too, if the water was clean. David Tyler took an 8.8 pound tog off the outer wall. Richard Roach got an 8.24 pounder on the Lil'Angler. John Leader landed one weighing 7.6 pounds. We still have plenty of green crabs and Asian box crabs, which have proven deadly blackfish bait.
November 12, 2009
- Best Fishing in Recent Past
The striper catches we've seen in the last several days are some of the best experienced in the past few seasons. And of course, just when it gets really good, another nor'easter blows in. At this writing, winds were gusting to 50 knots, and strong winds, rain and coastal flooding were predicted to continue into the weekend. Hopefully, this weather event won't drive out the mass of bass that is here now, and it might possibly move more bait and stripers into the Bay. Rockfish showed up in good numbers after the last extended northeast blow. Up until the weather change, fishing was great, with several citation sized stripers checked in each day. Some real heavyweights hit the scales, like Evan Falgowski's 44.8 pounder, trolled up with a Stretch 25+ plug near Overfalls Shoal. Evan's fish moved him into First Place of the annual Lewes Harbour Striper Tournament. Grant Aulenbach is currently in Second with a 35.4 pound rock he got while eeling on the Top Fin. Jeff Gardiner's 33.1 pounder, also hooked with a Stretch 25+, holds Third Place. Many crews reported limits of quality bass while working 8B Buoy and the Valley, and also in deeper water near 6 Buoy. Overfalls Shoal was also productive, as was Brown Shoal. Drifting eels was the favored method, but trolling Stretch 18+ and 25+ plugs worked well too. Last Thursday, guys on the Pirate King returned with 12 keeper bass. On Saturday, the gang aboard Lil' Angler scored 11 stripers, including a 30.5 pounder for Earl Roach. Gerald Sensening had 31.1 pound bass and Jeff Martin a 29.4 pounder aboard the Miss Rilee. Jack Henriksen, Dick Keck, Dick Cecil and Joe Ferrer fished with Capt Pete on the Top Fin Tuesday, and took home 8 stripers, including Joe's 30.8 pounder. The Grizzly had a good day on big bass, with a 28.75 pounder for Jay Lightner, a 26.9 for Brent Lanan, and a 23.5 for Ken Brown. Captain Tom on the High Hook found some trophy bass at Overfalls for his group. Mike Rendenna reeled in a 31.5 pounder, Harold Ellis had a 28.9 pounder, Daniel Cornell caught a 23.5 pounder, and Greg Kelly got one weighing 22.4 pounds. The line at the fish cleaning table is an indicator of how good the fishing has been. I was cutting stripers Tuesday evening until 9 pm. We've written at least 60 citations for striped bass over 20 pounds in just the past week. Here's a list of some of those; Richard Wilkinson Checked in a 32 pounder, Earl Gill 30.8 pounds, James Weber 30.4, Clint Murray 30.2, Nathan Milburn 30.1, Bill Mathews 29 pounds, Kenny Blakely 28.9, Ryan Falgowski 28.7, John Baily 28 pounds, Bob Wulffleff 27.8, Charles Fair 27.5, Phylicia Schwartz 26.7, Brian Hughes 26.6, Mike Deluca 25.4, John Elwood 24.7, Richard Miller 24.3, Rick Aument 23.8, Dave Potter 23.4, Charles Fair,Jr 23.3, Bruce Chandler 23.2, Carol Marceron 22.7 pounds, Frank Magni 22.6, Angelo Delapo 22 pounds, Dave Hazzard 21.9, Ronald Reese 21.8, Tony Vansant 21.7, Bill Wiest 21.7, Michael Walker 21.5, Joel Bullard 21.4, Mike Crouse 21.2, Dave Lynam 21.1, Brent Wiest 20.8, Chuck Mohacey 20.7, Bob Cohen 20.4, Kristen Jones 20.3, Robert Chambers 20.1, and Phil Spare at 20 pounds. Not to be overlooked, tautog action has been quite good as well. The rocks of the Inner and Outer Walls and Ice Breakers continue to give up plenty of blackfish to toggers using green crabs, sand fleas and box crabs. The reefs and wrecks are also starting to produce with cooler water temps. Cheryl Seaman brought back a brace of big tog from the Wall weighing 9.2 and 8.5 pounds. Robert Roth got an 8.9 pounder. Mark Uhde had an 8.1 pound tautog. Aaron Strausbaugh caught a 7.8, and Chris Walls a 7.5. Brendon Holtzman had a 7.1 pounder. On a recent trip aboard the Grizzly, Wallace Moore released an 8.75 pound blackfish, Bob Witte released an 8.5 pounder, and Alex Levantowsky released a 7.75 pounder.
November 5, 2009
- Hot Action With Big Stripers
Big stripers really turned on around the recent full moon. Numbers of bass showed up at 8B Buoy, in the Valleys and on Overfalls Shoal. Live bait fishermen initially did very well while drifting spot, however, in the last few days, eels have proven pretty effective as well. This is good news, since the supply of spot is rapidly drying up. Crews trolling Stretch 25+ and Stretch 18+ plugs are catching their fair share of rockfish too. Bright color patterns incorporating shades of chartreuse have been favored. Stripers were also taken by guys casting bucktails and Gulp! Sand Eels and Jerk Shads. Hot action kicked off during nasty weather at the beginning of the week when the Skipjack scored 18 keeper bass at 8B Buoy Sunday while drifting live spot. Paul Stoltzfus had 5 fish during that trip, and Michelle Arnold got 4 to 18 pounds. Bill Hershey boated a 22.3 pounder. Paul Pergeorelis put a 23 pounder aboard the Lil' Angler while using an eel at 8B that day. Sean Olson checked in a 28.3 pounder he tempted with a chunk of bunker. The Skipjack went back to 8B and The Valleys Monday and scored 12 more keepers, including Mike Newcomb's 24 pound bass. The guys on the Angler got 8 keepers to 22 pounds. On Tuesday, fishermen on the Lil' Angler landed 6 nice stripers and 3 keeper flounder. On Wednesday, the Lil' Angler had a flounder, a big bluefish, and 10 quality rockfish, including twin 23.3 pounders for Ed Szcerba and Jim Doyle. Many citation striped bass were checked in during the week. The list included; a 32.5 pounder for Charles Schleyer, caught on the Angler with an eel, Ed Sigda's 31.1 pounder that ate a spot at 8B, a 30.1 pounder Bee Linzey livelined with a spot on Overfalls, the 29 pounder Jesse Billing trolled up with a Stretch 25+, Rick Cohee's 27.2,a 26.7 pounder for Kevin Blouch, Brian Seglem's 25.5, a 25.4 for Joe Harris, 25.2 and 21.6 pounds for Tony Vansant, 20.4 pounders for Lee Abel and Louis Hirst, a 20.1 for Hobby Isaacs, and Mason Newsham's 20 pound citation rock. Dennis Swartz had a 24 pounder, Carey Rutherford got a 22 pound rockfish, Jon Joyce landed a 21.7, Steve and James Malishchak teamed up for bass of 21.2 and 20.5 pounds, and Bob VanPelt boated a 20.6 pounder. The annual Lewes Harbour Striper Tournament is in full swing, and runs through November 24. At this writing, Grant Aulenbach had moved into the lead with a 35.4 pound lunker landed aboard the Top Fin. Jeff Gardiner is in Second with a 33.1 pounder trolled up at Overfalls with a Stretch plug. Dave Walker has the Third Place bass, weighing 29.5 pounds. Tog fishing was a little slow around the full moon because of strong currents and higher than normal tides, but picked up as the week wore on. Nice blackfish were caught along the rocks of the inner and outer walls and ice breakers using green crabs, Jonah crabs, Asian Shore Crabs and frozen sand fleas(live fleas have been hard to come by).Scott Handy had an 8.03 pound tautog on the wall. The Lewes Harbour Tog Tournament finished up with a 9.98 pounder caught by Herbie Shorthose taking First Place. Mike Newsham's 9.54 pounder was Second. Michael Osberg had an 8.92 pounder for Third.
October 29, 2009
- More Stripers and Tog
It seems like more stripers are arriving, and we've had a few fish checked in at the store each day. Guys drifting eels and spot at 8B Buoy and in "The Valleys" caught some nice bass. Those casting bucktails or trolling Sretch 25+ and 18+ plugs in the rip outside the Outer Wall and on Overfalls got into rockfish too. Some of the largest linesiders were landed by guys anchored at the mouth of 60 Foot Slough and in the Bayshore Channel and chunking with bunker. Fred Stokes was drifting an eel at 8B Buoy aboard the Angler when he connected with a 24.4 pound rock. John Floyd and K.B. Brittingham trolled Stretch plugs in the Outer Wall and Ice Breakers rips for stripers of 21.8 and 20.7 pounds. Ryan Falgowski trolled up a 24.6 pound rockfish to give him the lead in the Annual Lewes Harbour Striper Tournament. Jeff Gardiner was trolling Sretch plugs on Ovefalls Shoals when he landed a pair of striped bass going 18.7 and 16.3 pounds, which gave him Second and Third places so far in the Tournament. The Tourney runs through November 24 and offers cash prizes. Tautog catches have been good along the Outer Wall and Ice Breakers. Herbie Shorthose, Drew Messick and "Booker" toggled into the Ice Breakers Wednesday for a limit of 30 quality tog to 6 pounds using Asian crabs. Captains Dave Walker and Brent Wiest fished a snag Wednesday with green crabs for their limit of 20 tautog. Patti Lush landed a 7.1 pound citation blackfish because she was wearing her lucky hat at the Outer Wall. The reef sites have been more productive recently, with tog taken on #5 in the Broadkill Slough, #6 and #7 at Brown Shoal, and #8 the Star Site. The Lewes Harbour Tog Tournament ends October 31, and as of this writing, Herbie Shorthose was in the lead with his 9.98 pounder, Mike Newsham held Second with a 9.54 pounder, and Terry Popowski had Third with a 7.82 pound tautog.
October 22, 2009
- Stripers Showing Up
It looks like all the northeast wind helped move the first stripers into Delaware Bay. Kris Battaglini was drifting in the rip outide the Outer Wall on Tuesday when he connected with a 28.1 pound striped bass. Kyle Falgowski and Jacob Webb were trolling Stretch plugs near Overfalls Shoal Wednesday when they hooked into some nice bass as well. Kyle landed a 27.6 pounder, and Jacob boated one weighing 22.2 pounds. Joey Fiorentino nailed a 20.5 pound rockfish while drifting an eel near 8A Buoy. Sean Olson weighed in a 33.2 pound linesider he caught on bunker at the C&B. As anglers direct more efforts toward stripers in the coming days, we should have additional reports from those drifting live baits and chunking bunker. We have live eels and spot on hand now, and will have fresh bunker when we can get it. Trolling can be a good way to locate fish that are scattered upon arriving in the Bay. Once a concentration of stripers is found, trolling is an effective method for keeping offerings right where the fish are hanging out. Often, stripers congregate in rips where moving current rushes over a shoal or bottom structure change. Pulling a Stretch 25+ plug upcurrent of and parallel to a rip, so the boat is off the structure but the lure is following it, can prove deadly. Of course, this can't always be accomplished if other boaters are drifting across the same rip. Please exercise consideration for other fishermen on the water. The same applies when drifting baits. After finishing a drift through a rip, it's best to motor slowly around the area where the fish are situted rather than speeding back through it to make another drift. Bass can get spooky in shallower spots and get a case of lockjaw with too much disturbance from motors roaring overhead. Northeast wind may have prompted stripers to move, but it left mud in the eyes of Delaware Bay tautog. Bay water was dirty for a few days following the blow, but has been getting cleaner with each tide change. Tog action has been most reliable along the rocks of the Outer Wall and Ice Breakers for boaters soaking green crabs. Good numbers of keepers above the 14 inch minimum came from the rocks, and several crews told of limit catches. Bill Fintel brought back an 8.8 pound citation blackfish from the wall. Richard Guretsky had a 7.5 pounder at the wall. With clearing water, tog were reported on Bay reef sites and wrecks as well. Mason Newsham checked in a 6.11 pound tog he pulled from a wreck at the Bay mouth. Water quality was better in the ocean. Captains Dave Walker and Brent Wiest fished a snag Tuesday and returned with 20 keeper blackfish. Dave and Bruce Bennett went back to the same spot Wednesday, and scored another 17 keepers. Captain Tony Vansant, Larry Burkins, Larry Pleasanton and Joe Pisarski had a great trip Wednesday. They put 40 keeper tautog in the box while anchored on some ocean rubble. The Lewes Harbour Tog Tournament is on now and runs through October 31. Tautog specialist Herbie Shorthose is currently in First Place with a 9.98 pounder. Mike Newsham holds Second with a 9.54 pounder. Terry Popowski has Third with a 7.82 pound tog captured on the Grizzly. Kevin Blouch checked in a fish not seen too often in Lewes. Kevin caught a 5.5 pound red drum while togging on the Angler with green crab for bait. Offshore sharking is still good when the boats can get out. The Skipjack overnighted in the Baltimore Canyon Wednesday and released six blue sharks and two makos. The crew kept a 275 pound mako landed by Randy Doyle. The guys also trolled up a 52 pound yellowfin and had half a dozen golden tilefish to 20 pounds while deep dropping.
October 15, 2009
- More Northeast Wind
As I'm writing this, it's raining and blowing hard from the northeast. The same mix of weather is forecasted to prevail all through the weekend. We've had more than our share of wind this fall, and I hope the trend fades soon. If there's a bright side to look forward to, in past seasons, after an extended northeast blow at this time of year, Delaware Bay structure loaded up with Tautog, and stripers began moving along the coast. Prior to the bad weather, anglers noticed an improvement in tog action. On Sunday, October 11, Capt. Pete took a group of regulars to the Outer Wall and returned with 43 tautog and 9 triggerfish. Billy Chee had a pair of tog weighing 7.06 and 7.63 pounds. Pae Bai got the biggest blackfish, an 8.62 pounder. Mike Cathell checked a 10.9 pound sheepshead he caught at the Ice Breakers, along with several nice tog. Herbie Shorthose and "Beaver" Ruff worked the Ice Breakers for a limit of 20 tog to 6 pounds. Hugh Black brought back a 7.36 pound tautog from the Outer Wall. Mike Erisman captured the largest blackfish of the season so far, a 14.5 pounder that ate a sandflea at the Ice Breakers. Unfortunately, Mike wasn't entered in the Lewes Harbour Tog Tournament. However, Mike Newsham was, and moved into First Place with a 9.54 pound white chin pulled from a wreck at the Bay mouth. Mike's crew had several tog and triggers on the wreck at the beginning of ebb tide using green crabs and Gulp! Peeler Crabs. Jen Getz is now in Second Place with a 6.84 pounder she got on the Lil' Angler. Bob Witte's 6.64 pounder landed aboard the Grizzly holds Third. The Tourney runs through October 31, and offers cash prizes. Other bottom fishing was good prior to the blow as well. On a recent trip, Captain Ted's guys on the Indian put 90 croakers to 17 inches in the box, along with some snapper blues and a couple trout. The bite took place along bottom contours in 60 to 80 foot depths about a mile outside the Outer Wall. The anglers were using clams for bait. Surf fishermen had plenty of small bluefish at Cape Henlopen and Herring Point using mullet. We'll have crabs for tog bait throughout the fall, and eels and live spot for stripers as long as we're able to get them.
October 7, 2009
- Plenty of Bluefish
Fall is bluefish time, as schools of choppers in varying sizes feed up for southward migrations. Boaters fishing the current rip outside the green marker end of the outer breakwater have caught lots of snapper blues the past few days. The rip between the outer and inner breakwaters also held fish. The scrappy blues have been working over balls of anchovies and silversides that get caught in the turbulence of current running over the shoals. Diving and dipping terns and gulls often give away the presence of baitfish and blues. Drifting through the rips and using minnows, shiners or strips of cut bait on a bottom rig will work. However, the blues respond readily to lures, and casting artificials is a fun way to catch fish. Small metal lures like Kastmasters, Hopkins, Stingsilvers, Krocodiles and Gotcha Plugs are effective. Bucktail jigs, Storm Shads or Gulp! Swimming Mullets on leadheads are good too, but don't last long because of the blues' sharp teeth. Bluefish have also been prevalent in the surf along the ocean coast. Cape Henlopen Point and the Herring Point Jetties were popular spots. Mullet have been moving along the beach, and these are the bait of choice among surf fishermen. Some prefer to use whole finger mullet on mullet rigs with a wire shank that runs through the bait, and a split double hook that attaches at the tail end. Others like to employ a hi-lo fireball rig with long shank hooks and chunks of mullet. Tautog season is open, and off to a fair start. Toggers reported catches along the outer wall and ice breakers while using green crabs and sand fleas. Tautog also came from the Bay reef sites and wrecks at the Bay mouth. Triggerfish were mixed in. There was a lot of current around the recent full moon, and tog only bit during a small window during most tidal periods. Dirty water also presented problems for tog fishermen. Water temperatures remain in the upper 60's, and tautog will become more active as it cools down. Some crews have had decent days. Captain Carey's guys on the Grizzly returned with 30 keepers after togging the outer wall Monday. Bob Witte had a 6.64 pounder, and Alex Levantowsky landed a 6.18 pounder to move into First and Second Place of the Lewes Harbour Tog Tournament. Herbie Shorthose is currently in Third with his 5.94 pound tautog. The event runs through October 31. Anglers can pay $2 in advance of fishing per day, or $20 in advance, and fish as many days as they want until the end of the tourney. Entry money collects in a pool, and is split 50%, 30% and 20% for the three heaviest tog weighed in by pre-registered contestants. Croakers are still in the Bay. Hardheads were caught by boats drifting the Star Reef Site and bottom contours about a mile outside the outer wall. Normally, this time of year offers some great wreck fishing for black sea bass. However, as of October 5, National Marine Fisheries Service announced an emergency closure of the recreational black sea bass fishery in federal waters north of North Carolina for 180 days. The commercial fishery remains open. NMFS made this decision based on preliminary harvest estimates that predict recreational anglers "may" have reached their 1.17 million pounds quota by the end of June. This action was taken even though the black sea bass stock was deemed fully rebuilt to 103% of its rebuilding goal. The data on which NMFS based this decision was collected through the Marine Recreational Fishing Statistics Survey(MRFSS), which was originally implemented by NMFS to track general trends in recreational fisheries. Through time, NMFS began using the information gathered to compile recreational harvest figures. The survey was not meant for that purpose, but NMFS relied on the survey to monoitor quotas in its management process. There are serious questions about the data collected, and the management action based on flawed information does not rpresent the "best science available", as mandated by the Magnuson Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act. Its difficult to believe that many sea bass were caught when most bait and tackle shops and charter and headboats have experienced a large percentage drop in business. That would certainly indicate htere was less fishing effort. Natural factors like weather limit trips too. The closure will have a profound effect on bait and tackle shops, marine dealers and for-hire boat operators that depended on sea bas as a staple fall and winter fishery, especially now, in a struggling economy.
September 24, 2009
- Tog Season Opens September 29
Area bottom fishing has been decent, with a mix of croakers, snapper blues, sea bass, triggerfish and a few legal flounder. But many anglers have been looking forward to the opening of Tog season on Tuesday September 29. Currently, water temperatures are between 70 and 72 degrees, and tautog will become more active as those numbers drop. Anglers will likely find blackfish along the rocks of both the inner and outer walls and ice breakers, and on the Delaware Bay artificial reef sites. Wrecks and snags outside the mouth of the Bay will house tog as well. Crustaceans are favored food for tog, and our shop will stock green crabs and sand fleas for bait during the Fall. When available, we'll also have some specialty baits such as Asian shore crabs and Jonah crabs. Windy weather has been a problem for boating anglers in recent weeks, and as this is being written, once again a strong northeasterly flow is predicted over the weekend. On good days, Delaware Bay fishermen found good numbers of croakers on the edge of "The Pit" near #4 buoy. Bottom contours about a mile outside the outer wall held hardheads, as did 40 foot depths along the eastern edge of the Anchorage near G Buoy. Clams, squid, bloodworms, shrimp and Fishbites were baits of choice. Snapper blues, the occasional kingfish and short flounder mingled with croakers. With mullet being present in the Lewes Canal, along Lewes Beach and the coast, shore fishermen got in on action from snapper blues, small stripers and flounder feeding on migrating baitfish. Surf casters inside Cape Henlopen hooked small blues using cut mullet. Judy Greenwood got a 7.61 pound citation flounder with a minnow/squid sandwich where Canary Creek joins Roosevelt Inlet. The Lewes Canal continues to give up a few keeper flounder and stripers. Sea bass have been gathering on Reef Site #11 and some of the inshore wrecks. Throwbacks far outnumber legal size fish, but persistent anglers cull out enough keepers to make the trip worthwhile. Clams, squid and fresh cut baits work well, but sometimes, the biggest bass fall for jigs. Butterfly jigs, other metals and leadhead bucktails tipped with Gulp! can be deadly. Fall is a great time for offshore anglers, with defined temperature breaks between warm and cool bodies of water, and changing weather systems serving up plenty of chances for tuna, dolphin, wahoo and billfish. Yellowfin catches were good for crews trolling ballyhoo and spreader bars in 30 to 40 fathoms between the Tea Cup and Baltimore Canyon. Most of the tuna were between 20 and 30 pounds. The temperature change in that area that had been holding fish was pushing south, taking the tuna with it. The 30 to 50 fathom corridor between the Baltimore and Poor Man's Canyons has generally been pretty fishy. Features like the Hot Dog notch and other structure in the region are likely places to find not only tuna and dolphin, but also wahoo. This is prime time for the slim speedsters. Some crews have been targeting them specifically by rigging their spread with wire, and pulling baits deeper behind weights or planers at faster trolling speeds. Ballyhoo/Ilander combos are good offerings, as are heavy, straight running lures like C&H Wahoo Whackers. Bill Zolper checked in a nice pair of 'hoos at the shop Thursday. The heaviest was a 38.5 pounder landed by Shawn Brittingham. Fifty to 60 pounders are not uncommon, and a 101 pound monster was decked Sunday by Mason McMullen aboard Rhonda's Osprey. The billfish bite has been real good. White marlin have been working bait balls in 40 to 50 fathoms from the 850 line to the 000's, between Poor Man's and Washington Canyons. Double digit days have been common among experienced crews. Big boats capable of deploying multiple dredges and sporting well rehearsed deckhands racked up some impressive numbers. But, small boaters got in on the bite as well, and some center console guys caught whites while pitching baits with spinning rods.
September 8, 2009
- Yellowfins Show Up
Looks like there may have been some benefit to all the recent northeast wind. Yellowfin tuna finally made an appearance inshore, with decent numbers of fish caught Saturday and Sunday just outside the Hot Dog. Most of the tuna were taken trolling ballyhoo and spreader bars, but captains reported marking bunched up schools of fish, and if they stick around, it could provide the opportunity set up and jig or chunk. Other inshore temperature features offered up some fishy situations as well. A temperature break just west ot the Elephant Trunk produced tuna. The guys on Skipjack trolled a pair of yellowfins there Saturday. A little farther south along the thirty fathom line, trolling boats encountered a weedline holding gaffer dolphin. It's likely wahoos would be mixed in and its a good idea to have a Drone Spoon or Wahoo Whacker below the surface behind a planer to capitalize on any 'hoos that might be hanging out. Even closer to the beach, on Saturday, Jeff Hoepfl and crew found some floating stuff outside Delaware Light. They had 7 nice mahis including Jeff's 16.8 pounder and an 18.8 pounder for Phil Spare. Dolphin gathered offshore around lobster gear that had been left untouched for days due to wind. Better catches were reported from Poor Man's and Washington Canyons. Dolphin weren't always visible around the balls near the surface, but sometimes lurked in the depths below. Sinking a weighted live bait deep resulted in some fish that otherwise would be passed by. The billfish bite was good. White marlin were reported generally from 40 to 60 fathoms inshore of the Baltimore and Wilmington Canyons. Whites were also found along the thirty line near the Tea Cup. Inshore trollers hooked false albacore, skipjacks, bonitos, bluefish and Spanish mackerel on lumps and ridges between 10 and 20 fathoms. Bottom fishing was good on the Old Grounds southwest of DB Buoy when conditions were right. Some quality flounder were captured, like the 10 pound 5 ounce doormat landed aboard the Thelma Dale V with Captain Rick Yakimowicz last week. Flatties also came from reefs 9 and 10. Triggerfish hung out on inshore wrecks. The group with Captain Les on the Martha Marie returned with over 50 big triggers from an ocean snag on Saturday, including a 3.53 pounder for Jaime Welch. Croaker action improved at the mouth of Delaware Bay. Captain Ted on the Angler located a bunch of hardheads at the edge of "the Pit" near #4 Buoy Sunday. He found more at #6 Buoy, which is a little closer, on Monday, and said it looks like the fishing should hold up for awhile. Flounder had been coming from Overfalls and Middle Shoals, but the closure of New Jersey's fluke season over the weekend caused crews to search out other spots not in that state's waters. Snapper bluefish were prevalent, and could be found feeding under birds outside the Outer Breakwater off Lewes, and off Cape Henlopen point. Casting bucktails or metals to breaking fish is effective and fun. Small blues were also caught in the Henlopen surf using cut mullet or bunker. Spot remain plentiful in the Lewes Canal and Broadkill River. Bits of bloodworm or Fishbites on small hooks or sabiki rigs will get their attention.
August 27, 2009
- Good Billfish Bite
With another tropical storm system on the horizon, anglers face an iffy weather weekend. Even though the passage of hurricane Bill last week didn't do much for the tuna action, marlin have been fired up. Crews fishing just inshore of the Baltimore had a good white bite the past few days. The area between 60 and 70 fathoms about five miles south of the Canyon tip was where most of the activity took place. Many boats had numerous shots at white marlin and reported multiple release days. Some blue marlin were mixed in. Inshore trollers pulling spoons between DA Buoy and Delaware Light caught false albacore and a few Spanish Mackerel and Bonito. Bottom bouncers continued to enjoy good success with flounder on reef sites 9, 10 and 11. Joe Walker, Bobby Bryant and "Buckwheat" Bryant limited out on fluke to 6.2 pounds at Site 10 Wednesday. Larry Coyle and Tom Coyle worked Site 10 and some bottom structure between DB Buoy and Site 11 Tuesday for their limit of keepers, including Larry's 6.21 pounder, and a flattie of 6.86 pounds for Tom. Delaware Bay fluking has been ok, but not as good as it's been in the ocean. However, some nice fish still came from reef sites 6,7 and 8. Kaela and Krysta Gray drifted site 7 with their grandfather Joe Walker and returned with 4 nice flatfish to 4.13 pounds. Some bigger croakers showed up outside the outer wall. Try looking in 60 foot depths about a mile east of the breakwater. Clams and Fishbites were favorites of the hardheads. Spot have been plentiful around the Cape Henlopen Pier, and in the Lewes Canal and Broadkill River. Bits of bloodworm, nightcrawler or Fishbites on small hooks and sabiki rigs worked well. Many anglers took the tasty panfish home to eat, while others have been stocking their live cars with spot to use as baits during striper season.
August 20, 2009
- Hardheads and Flounder
Area anglers continued to enjoy fine bottom fishing. Croakers are plentiful in Delaware Bay, with larger hardheads hanging out around structure. The Star and Broadkill reef sites were productive, and small boaters casting around the inner wall and ferry jetty had some big croakers as well. Fishbites, bloodworms, clams and shrimp were favored offerings. Hand sized spot were mixed among croakers in shallower areas. Spot action was best around the Cape Henlopen pier, and in the Lewes Canal and Broadkill River. Bloodworms and Fishbites on small hooks or sabiki rigs did the trick. Flounder catches remain steady, with the largest flatties taken around heavy cover of the artificial reefs. Sites 6 and 7 at Brown Shoal were productive, as well as the #8 Star Site. Reef sites 10 and 11 in the ocean gave up good numbers of flounder also. Drifting boats caught fish, but sometimes, when drift conditions weren't right, anchoring worked well. Walking rigs along the bottom or casting bucktails upcurrent and bouncing them along were effective techniques. Some crews racked up decent numbers of keepers. Captain Pete's group on Top Fin limited out with 20 keeper flounder Saturday at site 10. Captain Les on the Martha Marie got a 6.07 pounder at site 10. Shawn Williams decked a 6.05 pound flatfish, also at site 10. Flounder favored fresh meat, and strips of spot were good producers, along with shiners and smelt. Bucktails tipped with Gulp! Belly Strips, Sand Eels and Jerk Shads also took their share. Matt Jester jigged up a 6.57 pound fluke at DB Buoy. Boats working the Old Grounds had flounder and sea bass. Most bass were below the 12 1/2 inch minimum, but increasing numbers of keepers were reported. Triggerfish were found on many of the inshore wrecks. Sand fleas, shrimp or pieces of clam on small hooks tempted triggers. Cobia have also been reported around Delaware Light, the Weather Buoy and DA Buoy. They'll respond to live eels and spot or a bucktailtipped with a Gulp! Eel. Tuna action was slim, but fair numbers of dolphin were avaialable. Pete Russo landed a 16.7 pound Mahi on the Skipjack, and John Ribinsky got a 17.8 pounder on the Tranquila. Dan Iacangelo trolled up a 16.8 pound dolphin in the Wilmington Canyon aboard the Black Bart. A mix of false albacore, skipjacks, bonito, bluefish and Spanish and king mackerel was available on many of the inshore lumps. They're fun to catch while trolling with light tackle. Clark spoons behind in line weights or planers work well for the bonitos and mackerel. False albacore will jump on a mini green machine behind a bird, or the old faithful cedar plug. Many offshore anglers feel that the predicted passage of Hurricane Bill off the coast this weekend may help the catching by pushing in different water holding tuna and billfish.
August 13, 2009
- Fine Bottom Fishing
If you can't catch a croaker in Delaware Bay now, you better take up golf! Hardheads of varying sizes are spread over most of the Bay, and the marina cleaning station was busy with wheelbarrow loads of tasty panfish during the weekend. Small croakers were just about everywhere, but larger specimens hung out around the concrete at reef site 5 in Broadkill Slough. Some nicer fish started to show up on dropoffs outside the Outer Wall as well. Mixed in with croakers were an occasional snapper bluefish, kingfish, spot, porgy and sea bass. Clams, bloodworms, shrimp, squid, Fishbites and Gulp! Bloodworms all attracted bites. Flounder action continued as hot as the weather, with structure yielding some quite impressive flatfish. An 11.14 pound doormat caught by Jake Knox topped the list of big fluke. Jake's fish ate a chartreuse Gulp! Swimming Mullet at reef site 10. Billy Wright boated a 9.35 pounder, Matt Millman got an 8.9 pounder, and John Brackbill bested an 8.74 pounder, all from site 10 too. Scott Peterson was fishing the Brown Shoal reefs aboard Top Fin when he connected with an 8.88 pounder. Chet Harer, Captain of the Lil' Angler II, showed his patrons how it's done by decking an 8.44 pounder at site 10. Joe Walker added a another citation fluke to his list for this year, an 8.14 pounder from an ocean reef.Cary Rutherford captured a 7.43 pound flattie from site 6 in the Bay. Captain Brent Wiest squeezed in a little fishing time between helping others catch fluke, and managed to put a 7.28 pounder in the box for himself. Brent's group on the Lil' Angler II returned with 20 keeper flounder Tuesday. In addition to the heavy cover of Brown Shoal and Star Reefs, open bottom gave up flounder as well. In the Bay, the area between reef sites 6 and 7, in the hook of Brown Shoal, was productive. Flatties were taken near A and G Buoys in the Anchorage too. The water was cleaner, and boat traffic was more spreadout in the ocean. Bottom contours between DB and DA Buoys were productive. Flounder showed a preference for fresh meat, and strips of spot and bluefish were top producers. However, smelt, shiners, squid, live spot and minnows caught fish too. Bucktails tipped with a Gulp! Belly Strip also did a number on flatfish. Inshore wrecks held triggerfish. Clam, shrimp and sandfleas were good offerings. Sometimes, triggerfish follow others that have been hooked right to the boat. Alert anglers who drop baits to them can put extra fish in the box. Joe Walker, Tony Vansant and Joe Walker, Jr got in on a good triggerfish bite at the Fenwick Shoal wreck. They kept 50 triggers, 9 flounder to 6.5 pounds, and a 5 pound spadefish. Inshore trollers picked at small bluefish, king mackerel and an occasional dolphin Between DA Buoy and Delaware Light. Drone and Clark Spoons behind an in-line weight or a planer were effective. Diving plugs such as Rapalas and Stretch 25s worked too. Some anglers reported cobia hanging around the weather buoy. It's good to have a rod ready with a live spot or eel, just in case you encounter a cobia on some floating structure. Tuna catches remained spotty. The most consistent action was with big bluefins and some yellowfins at the Lobster Claw of the thirty fathom line. Tuna were taken early in the morning by chunking with butterfish and putting sardine baits down on the bottom. Tuna also responded to Butterfly and hammered diamond jigs. Barney Gallagher brought back a 117.6 pound bluefin. Fred Wagner checked in a 145 pounder from the Claw. The Skipjack had 4 yellowfins and some dolphin on a Saturday overnighter. On a previous overnight trip, the guys on Skipjack chunked up 16 gaffer dolphin from 12 to 15 pounds. Decent numbers of dolphin were available between 20 and 40 fathoms.Garry Tilton got an 18.3 pounder while trolling the 19 Fathom Lump. Pete Russo scored a16.7 pound mahi on the Skipjack, and John Ribinsky boated a 17.8 pounder on Tranquila.
August 6, 2009
- Consistent Flounder Catches
Flounder catches have been consistently good. Even around the full moon, drift conditions were favorable, and boaters were able to effectively work structure. So, Bay reef sites gave up numerous flatfish. Sites #6 and 7 at Brown Shoal were popular, but flatties came from the #8 Star site as well. Even though the majority of effort was directed towards the artificial reefs, open bottom produced fluke too. Captain Carey on the Grizzly ended up with 10 keepers while drifting near A Buoy Saturday. Flounder also came off uneven bottom between the Brown Shoal reefs. Joe Walker and sons Joe and Michael had a limit on structure at Brown Shoal and were back at the dock before lunch time Saturday. Joe showed the boys he's still got it by decking a 7.72 pound citation winner. Captain Chet's groups on the Lil' Angler II had 19 keepers to 6.2 pounds one day, and 27 keepers another while rubble hopping. Captain Brent Wiest captured a 7.28 pound fluke. Ron Rowles landed a 5.95 flattie that was one of 11 brought back on the Skipjack that trip. Captain Pete's guys on Top Fin boxed 19 keeper fluke Friday. The Martha Marie returned with a dozen nice flounder Saturday. West Sarver scored an 8.5 pound doormat at site #7 while drifting a bluefish fillet. Anglers reported success using a variety of baits including squid, minnows, shiners and smelt. Fresh cut strips of spot or bluefish were particularly effective. In addition to good catching in the Bay, Ocean fluking was quite productive. Reef site #10 yielded some impressive flatties, such as "No No Billy" Wright's whopping 9.35 pounder. Tony Vansant, Larry Pleasanton and "Tugboat Dan" iced a limit of flounder at site #10 Wednesday. Reef site #11 and bottom contours between DB and DA Buoys gave up flatties too. Bouncing 2 to 4 ounce Spro Jigs along the bottom resulted in the downfall of many flatfish. Sweetening the lures with cut spot, smelt, sand eels or Gulp! Belly Strips was the key for tuning on fluke. Croaker catches were very good in Delaware Bay. Small hardheads were found just about everywhere, but larger croaks congregated around the rubble of Broadkill Slough Reef #5. Captain Pete's Tuesday group on Top Fin put 140 nice hardheads in the cooler and released almost as many. The Angler headboat has also had real nice catches for it's patrons. Shorebound anglers got in on the croaker bite too, with fish taken at Roosevelt Inlet and on the Cape Henlopen Pier. Clams, bloodworms and Fishbites were favorite baits. Spot have become plentiful around the pier, and in Lewes Canal and Broadkill River. Fishbites and bloodworms also worked well for spot. There are three weeks left in the striper slot season, and rockfish continue to be taken from the Lewes Canal. Casting eels around the drawbridge resulted in rockfish. Anchoring between the drawbridge and railroad bridge and bottom fishing with clams was also productive. Bluefin tuna moved up the beach and have been hanging out on the Lobster Claw area of the Thirty Fathom Line. Big tuna were taken chunking with butterfish and sardines, and also by working Butterfly and diamond jigs. Barney Gallagher boated a 117.6 pounder drifting a squid at the Claw. Fred Wagner checked in a 145 pound bluefin from the same spot.
July 30, 2009
- Plenty of Croakers
Croakers of varying sizes seem to be found just about anywhere in Delaware Bay. The majority have been small fish, between 8 and 10 inches. However, recently, bigger hardheads have moved onto structure in the Bay. The rubble of reef site #5 in Broadkill Slough held decent sized croaks in the 12 inch plus range, with the largest right on top of the piles of concrete. The Star Reef, and sites #6 and #7 at Brown Shoal also housed nice hardheads. Mussel beds west of G Buoy in the Anchorage produced too. Clams, bloodworms and Fishbites were favorites of the feisty panfish. Spot have shown up in good numbers as well, and were caught from the Cape Henlopen Pier and in Broadkill River. Bits of bloodworm on size 4 or 6 hooks worked well. Tog, triggerfish and sheepshead were caught along the rocks of the inner and outer walls and ice breakers. Flounder came from reef sites #6, 7 and 8. Wade Bondrowski checked in a 6 pounder he got at site #6. Gulp! continues to prove deadly on flounder, with Swimming Mullet and Sand Eel varieties being most popular. Flounder action was better in the Ocean than in the Bay this week. Bottom features between DB and DA Buoys gave up numerous fluke. Reef site #10 was also responsible for some nice flounder catches. Tuna action spotty during the week, but bluefins and some yellowfins came from the Hambone, Massey's Canyon and the Tea Cup. Angelo and Anna Delapo, along with Arnold Azamar and Michael Davidson teamed up for a great trolling trip at the Tea Cup last Saturday. They boated bluefins of 70 and 136.5 pounds, and had 4 gaffer dolphin aboard the Spoiled III. Good sized dolphin were common between twenty and thirty fathoms. Ned Baumbach bested an impressive 23.6 pound dolphin at the 19 Fathom Lump on Forever Young III. White marlin have shown up inshore, just in time for next week's White Marlin Open. Several boats reported sightings and hookups of billfish in thirty fathoms. Edward Bundy and Curtis Detwiler both recorded white marlin releases outside the Hot Dog Saturday on the Skipjack.
July 23, 2009
- Good Summertime Action
Fishing has generally been quite good. Inshore bottom bouncers have done well with flounder and croakers, and offshore boats have encountered bluefin and yellowfin tuna, along with dolphin and billfish. Although heavy structure continues to yield some of the biggest flounder, flatfish have also come from open bottom. The mussel beds west of G Buoy in the Anchorage were productive, as were the up and down contours in the hook of Brown Shoal. The channel edges between #19 and #25 Buoys gave up fluke too. Flounder also remained in shallow water. Steven Grove checked in a 6.57 pounder he got just outside Roosevelt Inlet. Flatties hung out close to the base of the inner wall too. Casting leadheads tipped with Gulp! Swimming Mullets along the rocks was effective. With Bay currents running hard around the new moon, drift conditions were better around the Ocean reef sites. Captain Chet's guys on the Lil'Angler II had a banner trip Sunday, returning from Site #10 with 26 keepers. The largest was a 5.95 pounder boated by Paul Pergeorelis. Flounder sharpie Joe Walker pulled a 9.07 pound doormat from Ocean reef rubble this week. Tony, Diana and Shane Vansant, along with Larry Burkins and Joe Pisarski combined for a limit of 20 flounder on a reef site. Diana outfished the boys with a pair of big flatties weighing 7.64 and 5.67 pounds. Anglers working 2 to 4 ounce Spro Jigs sweetened with cut bait or Gulp! got into good numbers of flounder between DB and DA Buoys. Frank Pogue landed an 8.5 pound fluke using a jig aboard Grizzly. Jim Skyman scored a 6.9 pounder. Delaware Bay croakers were bigger and more plentiful this week. Smaller fish were found most places in the Bay, but larger specimens were concentrated on the Broadkill Slough Reef Site. Croakers were also taken on mussel beds in the Anchorage. Clams, bloodworms, shrimp, Fishbites and Gulp! were favorites of hardheads. A group on the Angler kept 180 nice croaks out of about 350 they caught Thursday afternoon. Spot are showing up in increasing numbers around the Cape Henlopen Pier, and in the Broadkill River and Lewes Canal. Bloodworms and Fishbites were offerings of choice. Small boaters drifting eels around the Drawbridge and Railroad Bridge in the Canal had slot stripers. The Ice Breakers and Inner and Outer Walls attracted tautog and triggerfish. Joe Kossek weighed in a 10.12 pound citation sheepshead he caught at the Ice Breakers. Regarding tuna, big bluefins were trolled up at the Hambone, Chicken Bone, Massey's Canyon, 19 Fathom Lump, Tea Cup and Elephant Trunk. The fish didn't bite every day, and usually the best action usually took place before 6:30 a.m. Ballyhoos with blue and white skirts pulled way, way back or on planers, downriggers and Z-Wings were responsible for most catches. The heaviest bluefin to hit the dock this week was a 163.4 pound bruiser chunked up by Brian Ludwig and Jeff Snyder at the Hambone. Matt Purnell trolled a 154.5 pounder at the Elephant Trunk with Bill Swords. Chris Harmon had a 135.4 pounder on the Tranquila. Kili Gomez got a 118.5 pound bluefin while trolling near the 19 Fathom Lump aboard Joint Venture. Nice dolphin were mixed in with tuna. The Davis family had a half dozen gaffers at Massey's Canyon on the Skipjack, including a 16.4 pounder for Alan Davis, and a 17.5 pound mahi for Clay Davis. Yellowfins have been scattered, but Captain Larry Coyle and crew on the Makai found 3 yellowfins to 48 pounds plus a 19.4 pound dorado for Brian Gardner while trolling 40 fathoms between the Hot Dog and Poor Man's.
July 16, 2009
- Big Bluefins
Tuna action improved recently. It seems bluefins finally found the concentrations of baitfish hanging out between twenty and thirty fathoms. Bill Swords and crew were trolling ballyhoo at the Tea Cup, when Matt Clement landed a 125 pound bluefin. The guys also hooked two other big tuna, including a 68 incher they released. Shane and Wes Olson teamed up on a 113 pound bluefin at Massey's Canyon. That fish ate a sardine on the bottom. Other anglers had big bluefins while trolling the northeast corner of the Hambone. The best bites occurred early in the morning, and the largest fish took offerings pulled way, way back behind the boat. Blue and white Iland Lures worked well in front of ballyhoo. Pulling baits deep behind #32 planers or Z-Wings also resulted in tuna. Gaffer dolphin were mixed in. On the bottom fishing scene, flounder continue to be quite cooperative. Structure yielded good numbers of flounder for Delaware Bay and Ocean anglers. The Star Reef was productive. That's where Tammy Campbell caught her 7.82 pound citation fluke aboard the Top Fin. Flounder also came from sites #6 and #7 at Brown Shoal. Captain Ted's Wednesday morning half-day charter on the Indian returned from the Brown with 10 plump keepers. The Walker family and friends continued their assault on the flatfish population, with limit catches most days while working the Bay's artificial reefs. David Walker checked in a 7.16 pounder, and Larry Coyle landed a pair weighing 6.76 and 7.0 pounds using a Gulp! sand eel. In the ocean, reef site #10 was a favored spot, but flatties were found at reef site #11, and on the Old Grounds between DB and DA Buoys as well. Eighty seven years young Ken Teufel captured a 6.8 pound flounder on site #10 aboard the Lil' Angler II. Guys using 2 to 4 ounce bucktails tipped with squid, shiners, sand eels, smelt, cut bluefish or Gulp! had good success. Jig fishing is highly effective, and a fun way to catch flounder. Shallow water fishermen still had fluke in the Lewes Canal, Broadkill River, Roosevelt Inlet, and around the piers inside Cape Henlopen, but the number of keepers dwindled. Tossing shad darts or other jigs sweetened with minnows or Gulp! to the rocks at the base of the ferry jetty and inner and outer walls resulted in flounder and an occasional trout too. Todd Manning got a 3.62 pound trout at the inner wall with a Gulp! Structures such as the Bay reef sites and breakwaters also gave up tautog and triggerfish. Billy Shiner brought back an 8.18 pound blackfish from the inner wall. Garry Tilton took a 7.02 pound tog off a wreck at the Bay mouth. Jim Durnan shot a 9.25 pound sheepshead while free diving the outer wall. More tasty triggerfish are showing up with warming waters. If you notice a lot of small nibbles while bottom fishing the wrecks and reefs, try a smaller hook with a bit of clam or shrimp, and it might result in additional triggers for the box. Croakers were scattered across The Shears, but seemed to be more concentrated on reef #5 in Broadkill Slough. Clams, bloodworms and Fishbites were favorites of the hardheads. Croakers and spot were also caught on the Cape Henlopen Pier. Striper fishermen worked over slot-sized rock in the Lewes Canal. Drifting eels around the drawbridge and railroad bridge was popular, but bottom fishing with clams worked well too. Bass were also caught by casting topwater poppers, Rat-L-Traps and X-Raps along the marsh banks. Guys livelining spot at the outer wall hooked rockfish, and drifting spot in Indian River inlet also resulted in linesiders and bluefish. Louie Maysky checked in a 17.3 pound striper that te a spot in Indian River inlet.
July 7, 2009
- Flounder on Structure
Artificial reef structures yielded good numbers of flounder during the week. In Delaware Bay, sites 6, 7 and 8 proved productive. Plenty of flounder came from sites 10 and 11 in the ocean as well. Drift conditions had a lot to do with success rates. With wind and tide together, boats traveled too fast to effectively work the bottom. In that scenario, some crews found that anchoring was the ticket. Casting bucktail jigs tipped with shiners, cut bait or Gulp! up current and walking it over the rubble worked well from a stationary vessel, when you couldn't catch on a fast drift. Captain Chet on the Lil' Angler II is a proponent of anchor fishing for fluke, and has had good success, as evidenced by last Sunday's trip when his gang decked 11 keeper flounder. They also had 27 triggerfish,including Linda Bennett's 3.52 pounder. Captain Ted on the Indian has also done well with flounder while anchoring over rubble piles. Strong current around the full moon sometimes made drifting tough, but he was able to put together some nice catches of keepers on the hook. Flounder specialists the Walker family and crew enjoyed fine action while working the reef sites this past week. They had limit catches varying from 12 to 24 flatties each day. Some of their bigger fish included Joe Walker's 6.95 and 6.31 pounders, 6.76 for Joe Walker, Jr, Bobby Bryant's 6.6 pounder, a 6.42 pound fluke for Larry Burkins, and 6.46 pounds for Rob Karpovich. Tony VanSant and friends pulled a limit of 16 quality flatfish from an ocean reef last Monday. Bobby Bryant and his crew checked in yesterday with a limit of 16 fine flatties too. The Old Grounds and bottom structure changes between DB and DA Buoys also held fluke. Anglers picked a few keeper sea bass there as well. Flounder continued to come from shallow water. Frank Lenihan landed an 8.02 pound doormat in the Lewes Canal. Sand bottom near the Ferry Jetty was good, and guys casting jigs tipped with minnows, shiners and Gulp! along the rocks of the inner and outer walls caught flounder too. Joey Fiorentino nailed a 5.23 pounder using a Gulp! grub in less than 3 feet of water along Broadkill Beach Sunday morning. Bottom bouncers had croakers between the Star Site and The Shears, and on the reef in Broadkill Slough. Clams, bloodworms and Fishbites were favorites of the hardheads. The opening of a slot-size season offered the opportunity for striper fishermen to take home two striped bass between 20 and 26 inches per angler per day. the season applies to Delaware Bay and it's tributaries only. The 28 inch minimum is still in effect for ocean coastal areas and Indian River inlet. Anglers can retain rockfish on the Lewes Canal from the Route 9 bridge to Roosevelt Inlet, and in the Broadkill River, and those areas gave up numerous keepers. Rock responded to eels, clams, bunker and a variety of artificials including plugs, jigs and soft plastics. Boaters casting to the inner and outer walls caught stripers too. Tog season re-opened as well, and blackfish were reported from the Inner and Outer Walls and Ice Breakers. Wrecks and reefs gave up tautog too. Water temperatures have risen, and triggerfish were mixed in. The Grizzly had an excellent week of wreck fishing, with a nice mixed bag of triggers, tog and flounder. Captain Carey Evans said Rachel Henry had a 12 pound 4 ounce tautog, and Alex Lewantowsky landed a 9 pound 12 ouncer. Paul Berrier boated a 10.63 pound aboard the Lil' Angler II. The guys on Martha Marie celebrated July 4th with 19 keeper tog. Tuna action that had been good, cooled off. When it was still happening last Sunday, Angelo DeLapo and crew returned from the 461 Lump with three yellowfins from 38 to 42 pounds and a 14 pound dolphin. During the week, other boats fishing between Poor Man's and Washington Canyons reported scattered catches of yellowfins and gaffer dolphin. Makos frequented Poor Man's too, and several trollers told of hookups and biteoffs from blackeyes. Overnight boats also tangled with makos. There seems to be more makos around this year than in the past, and they're still hanging out in twenty fathoms too. Michael and David Walker had a 190 pounder at the Sausages. Jeff Hoepfl trolled up a 95 pound mako near the 19 Fathom Lump on Monday. There's a lot of life in thirty fathoms, with whales, porpoises, turtles, birds, baitfish and bluefish all along the line. However, the initial shot of bluefins seemed to push on through the area. Very few have been caught recently. But, it looks like more are coming. Customers stopped by and told of catching bluefins at the 26 Mile Hill off Wachapreague Friday. They said all the boats trolling around them caught tuna too, and the action had just gotten good in the past few days. With fish on the move, we could see more bluefins soon.
June 23, 2009
- Good Yellowfin Action
This yellowfin season is off to a much better start than last year's. Boats trolling offshore found tuna in Poor Man's, the Washington and the Norfolk Canyons over the past couple weeks. Many of the fish have been small, generally between 10 and 30 pounds, but their numbers have allowed crews to cull out enough keepers to end up with a good batch for the grill. The Skipjack overnighted in Poor Man's Saturday and returned with 14 yellowfins and a nice mako. The crew also released 17 other yellowfins. That tuna action took place while trolling skirted ballyhoo in a hundred fathoms at the canyon tip Saturday afternoon. Trollers also reported fish at the 461 Lump, The Rockpile and the "800 Square". The offshore scene looks encouraging and perhaps we may even see a shot of yellowfins between 20 and 30 fathoms if conditions are right. Mako catches have been better than usual as well. Good numbers of blackeyes came from the Sausages and Fingers area. Some crews released a half dozen or more makos a day. The big news was the capture of a new Maryland State Record Mako during the Ocean City Shark Tournament. Jim Hughes boated the 876 pound beast while drifting 500 fathoms between Poor Man's and Washington Canyons aboard the Nontypical. Another Maryland shark record fell last week as well. Brent Applegit got a 642 pound thresher while sharking in The Fingers on the Toy Boy. Inshore bottom bouncers have done well with flounder on the Old Grounds. Spro jigs tipped with a strip of squid, shark, bluefish or Gulp! are effective. Sea bass came from Reef Site #11. The majority of fish fell below the 12 1/2 inch minimum, but some nice knotheads ended up in coolers. Dave Gallen got a 3.07 pounder on the Skipjack, and Lucas May boated a 3.63 pounder aboard Jam-Man. Delaware Bay structure yielded some decent flounder. Gary Welsh was drifting the Star Reef Site on the Forever Young III when he connected with a 7.65 pound doormat. Charles Bruckner boated a 7.19 pounder at the Star Site on the Indian. Dr Mike Junck decked a 6.01 pound flattie at the Brown Shoal reefs aboard Top Fin. Other reports of flatfish came from the channel edges between #14 and #19 Buoys, and #9 and #10 Buoys. Fluke also continued to come from the Lewes Canal, Broadkill River and Roosevelt Inlet. Shallow water along Broadkill Beach and the Cape Henlopen, Cape Shores and Port Lewes Piers produced fish as well. John Northeimer checked in a 5.42 pound flounder that ate a chartreuse Gulp! in the Lewes Canal. Bill Rybinski used a chunk of soft crab to tempt a 4.9 pounder from Roosevelt Inlet. Keeper stripers were caught in the Canal with clams and eels. Stripers and a few trout were taken from Roosevelt Inlet as well. "Barracuda Bob" McNamee and Frank Gaworski had a pair of 3 pound trout and several stripers in the 20 to 26 inch range while casting Bass Assassin Sea Shads to the inlet jetty during flood tide. Just a reminder that the size limit for stripers in Delaware Bay and it's tributaries changes July 1. Anglers can keep 2 stripers between 20 and 26 inches per day from July 1 to August 31. Striped bass caught in the ocean or Indian River inlet will still be subject to a 28 inch minimum size.
June 18, 2009
- Tuna and Sharks
Bluefin tuna have arrived at the inshore grounds, and action has been good on structure such as the Hambone, Chicken Bone, Sausages and Massey's Canyon. Be aware that current regulations concerning bluefins allow the retention of one fish from 27 inches to less than 47 inches curved fork length, and one fish from 47 to less than 73 inches curved fork length per boat per day. This pertains to boats fishing recreationally under a HMS Angling or HMS Charter/Headboat permit. One bluefin tuna over 73 inches may be kept per boat per year. You must have a HMS permit to keep bluefin and yellowfin tuna, and sharks. They're available on line at www.hmspermits.gov/. Bluefins in both size ranges were reported by boats trolling the lumps. Green Machines, cedar plugs and spreader bars pulled not too far back resulted in numerous fish in the smaller size class. Larger tuna responded to ballyhoo and Iland Lure combinations towed way, way back. Brian Prout checked in the first tuna of the season at Lewes Harbour Marina, a 45 pound bluefin caught on the Skipjack. Yellowfin tuna were taken in Poor Man's canyon. The first blue and white marlin came from 1200 fathoms outside Poor Man's. Shark fishing has been good as well. Makos were found in the Fingers, and on the Hambone and Sausages. Drifting mackerel or bluefish fillets in a chum slick was the preferred method, but some crews reported blackeyes that ate trolled lures in the same areas where they were tuna fishing. Threshers also hung out in The Fingers, between DA Buoy and Delaware Light, in the Triple Wrecks area and at Reef Site #11. Jonathan "Bubba" Hastings was sharking at Site #11 with John Hazzard and Kevin Beam when he connected with a 163 pound thresher. Price Lindsay, Bucky Lindsay and David Anderson tangled with a 143 pound thresher at DA Buoy. Captain Brent Wiest bested a 140 pound longtail while drifting at DA Buoy with Captains Chet Harer and Dave Walker aboard the Lil' Angler. Michael Fritz decked a 168 pounder near the Triple Wrecks on the Snow Goose, with Ed Sigda and Bill Fintel. Closer to the beach, Delaware Bay flounder catches have been good. Flatties were reported near #10 Buoy and #16 Buoy. Fish also came from Reef Sites #6 and #7 at Brown Shoal. Al Greenfell got a 6.66 pound doormat on the Pirate King. Dr. Mike Junck had a 6.01 pounder, part of a catch of 8 quality keepers with Bob Witte, Allen Quillen, and Captain Pete Haines on the Top Fin. The Lewes Canal, Broadkill River and Roosevelt Inlet continued to produce flatfish. Shallow water along Broadkill Beach was also productive, as were the Cape Henlopen, Cape Shores and Port Lewes Piers. Small jigs with Gulp! Swimming Mullet were deadly in the shallows. John Northeimer nailed a 5.42 pound flounder in the Canal with a Gulp! John Weber caught a 4.95 pounder using a minnow in the Canal. Young Cameron Ballard boated a 4.07 fluke while drifting a shiner in the Canal. Michael Lindale landed a 4.83 pounder that grabbed a jig tipped with a squid strip in the Broadkill River. A few trout were taken from Roosevelt Inlet and skinny water along Broadkill Beach. Paul Caras, Jr checked in a 3.71 pounder that ate a Gulp!
June 8, 2009
- Makos and Threshers
Shark season is underway, and we had our first mako and thresher of the year checked in at Lewes Harbour Marina. Cory Walker and Charlie Boyles were sharking at The Fingers when they connected with an 87 pound mako and several big bluefish on Sunday. The crew of Jim Azato, Price Lindsay, "Boot" DeHoys, Jason Lesniczak, and Tom Wilkie teamed up on a 180 pound Thresher at Delaware Light on Sunday also. Both fish took mackerel baits. Other reports of sharks came from the Fingers area, the Sausages, and various wrecks between twenty and thirty fathoms. Large numbers of blue sharks have been hanging out on twenty fathom structure this spring. Blue whalers haven't been prevalent inshore for several years, so maybe this is a good sign regarding forage and water quality being favorable for pelagics. Our shop is carrying bunker and mackerel chum, plus mackerel by the pound or bulk flat for shark fishermen. Bluefish were plentiful across the Hambone, Chicken Bone and in Massey's Canyon. They didn't bite the same place every day, but remained in the general area. Some days the bite happened on the southern edge of the Chicken Bone, some days it was the northeast corner of the Hambone. Back inshore, Delaware Bay flounder action has been good. Flatfish made a strong showing in The Anchorage, with mussel bottom in 60 to 70 foot depths near G Buoy being the popular spot. Captain Ted's group on the Indian returned with 10 plump keepers from there Saturday. Paul Elwood checked in a 6.05 pound flattie he captured at G Buoy. Bruce Buckhalter and family came back with 8 good keepers. Ashley Oland outfished the rest of Judge Jack Henriksen's crew by putting a pair of flounder weighing 5.04 and 5.42 pounds in the box. Other productive areas included bottom changes at A and D Buoys. Fluke came from the reef sites too. Captain Pete Haines, Mike Junck, Bob Witte and Allen Quillen scored a limit of 16 fluke to 4.9 pounds while drifting the Brown Shoal reefs aboard Top Fin.Evan Falgowski weighed in a 5.41 pounder he pulled from reef #6. Bait choices among Bay fishermen included squid, minnows, shiners, strips of mackerel, shark and bluefish and Berkley Gulp! Flounder also continued to come from the Lewes Canal, Broadkill River and Roosevelt Inlet. Butch Emmert nailed a 6.52 pound doormat using a Gulp! swimming mullet in the Canal. Jeff Purdy got one 5.17 pounds while drifting minnows and shiners. Flatties also remained active in shallow water along Broadkill and Lewes Beaches, and around the Cape Shores, Port Lewes and Cape Henlopen piers. Shad darts, speck rigs, 2 and 3 inch Storm Shads and Gulp! baits worked well in the shallows. Paul Caras Sr. and Paul Caras Jr. teamed up for 5 quality keeper flatfish to 5.74 pounds while working Gulps! in shallow water. The black drum bite slowed after several weeks of good catches. Some nice fish were taken early in the week, like Charlie Goodermuth's 70 pounder, but numbers of drum dwindled as the days went by. A few boomers were caught at night on the coral beds and in Broadkill Slough, but the June full moon usually marks the end of the run. Striped Bass have taken up residence along the Outer Breakwater off Lewes. Boaters drifting the rocks at night, caught nice bass while casting Bomber plugs, bucktails, and Storm Shads. Striper slayers, the Falgowski brothers, have been puttin' a hurtin' on rockfish, catching and releasing several each night they fish. Ryan landed the largest so far, a 31.3 pound lunker. Captain Alan Steele bucktailed the Wall Sunday morning for a 42 inch 24.5 pound bass. Rockfish were also beached from the surf at Herring Point by casters using clams and bunker. Todd Diener was surprised when a 20.5 pound linesider grabbed a small piece of Fishbites on his rig in the wash at Herring Point. According to Nick Psaroudakis, offshore trollers found yellowfin tuna in 100 fathoms of the Washington Canyon. Big bluefins were reported from the Parking Lot. Bill Swords and Steve Millman did some deep water bottom fishing in the tip of the Washingtton and returned with big sea bass, ling and blueline tilefish.
May 27, 2009
- Canal Flounder Tourney Results/ Great Drum Catches
The Canal Flounder Tournament hosted by Lewes Harbour Marina and Sponsored by the Dewey Beach Lion's Club was a big success. The weather was beautiful and flounder were in a cooperative mood for the 275 participants in this year's event. Billy Hocker had the winning flattie, weighing 5.26 pounds. Dan Kimble captured Second with his 5.0 pounder. Darwin Fisher's 4.97 pounder finished Third, and Mike Zimmerman was a repeat winner from last year's Tourney with the Fourth Place 4.94 pound flatfish. Chris Moody from the Dewey Beach Lion's Club coordinated donations to the Camp Awareness Youth Fishing Program with a portion of proceeds from the Canal Tournament. Captain Billy Talbot and crew fished the Tourney exclusively with their two foot long Mity Might rod and reel combos and had two keepers out of a 26 they caught on the miniature outfits. Seven year old Jagger Ruff brought in a 2.7 pound flounder he caught. We thank all who took part in a great day of fishing fun. The Canal, Broadkill River and Roosevelt Inlet yielded lots of flounder, however, the majority were shy of the 18 1/2 inch minimum. Nick Psaroudakis Mike Hoffman and Bob Gantz managed to cull a limit of 12 keepers to 4.65 pounds from a large number of fish they caught in the Canal last Thursday. Flounder also came on strong in shallow water along Broadkill and Lewes Beaches. The shallows between the Cape Shores and Cape Henlopen Piers were quite productive as well. Brad Snitch checked in a 5.14 pound fluke he caught from the Cape Shores Pier on a chartreuse jig with a minnow. Butch Emmert brought back a 6.52 pounder he got on a Gulp! Dillon Mitchell nailed a 6.09 pound flattie in the Canal with a minnow, and Cody Dmiterchik also used a minnow to tempt his 5.6 pound flounder. Spec rigs tipped with shiners worked well for anglers casting and retrieving them slowly along the bottom from the recently reopened Cape Henlopen Pier. The bite seemed better after dark, at the edge of the lights. Flounder were also taken from 60 to 70 foot depths of the Anchorage near G Buoy. Mike Rebuck had a limit catch of four flatties to 5.05 pounds there aboard the Angler Saturday. Leon and Riley Zimmerman scored their limit of flounder near G Buoy Sunday. Flounder were reported north of D Buoy too. It is very encouraging to see a spread of flounder on the open bottom, easily accessible to most anglers. In recent seasons, fluke were concentrated around the reef sites, where they were difficult to get at. More good news came in the form of the the first weakfish we had seen brought in by customers this spring. Frank and Sue Gaworski caught 13 trout to 2 1/2 pounds during the last of flood tide Saturday morning. They were casting crystal shad Bass Assassins in shallow water along Broadkill Beach. Stripers were caught by boaters casting Bomber plugs along the Outer Wall and Ice Breakers after dark. Cory and Evan Falgowski weighed in bass of 22.8 and 21.7 pounds, part of their catch from Monday night. Rockfish were also taken around the Roosevelt Inlet Coast Guard dock at night. Black drum action continued to be red hot. Boomers bit on the Coral Beds off Slaughter Beach and in Broadkill Slough. Andy Lano and crew fished the Coral Beds Friday Afternoon for 10 drum, including Anthony Lano's 82.3 pound behemoth. They returned to the same spot Saturday for 8 more, when Mike Lano earned a release citation for a 48 incher. Darryl Bear got a 77 pounder in the Slough with Captain Vince on the Miss Kirstin. Captain Vince fished near Brandywine over the weekend, and had good drumming, including a catch of seven on Monday night. Donnie Knepp nailed a 65 pounder, Justin Ashby had a 61.2, Brian Ashby got one 58 pounds, and Ray Santiago landed a 52.2 pound drum. There has been a really good bite on the eastern side of the Bay, with catches at the Pin Top, Brandywine Slough, Tussey's Slough and the Horseshoe. Captain Les on the Martha Marie also experienced some good drum fishing. His Monday night group came all the way from Tennesee and had 9 fish, including a 65 pounder for Pate Langley, a 64 pounder for Robert Smith, and drum of 62 pounds each for Brandon Kasler and Alex Stegall. Michael Chamberlain landed a 73.5 pounder during an earlier trip on the Martha Marie. Michelle Swords was drumming on the Reel Passion when she decked her 73.7 pounder. James Rodek landed a 71.9 pound drum. Captain Carey's groups on the Grizzly got 14 drum Friday night at the Pin Top, and 16 more Saturday. They kept six fish to 68 pounds each trip. Captain Pete's Guys on Top Fin got into some good drum, such as George Barrell's 68.8 pounder and a 58.9 pound drum for Kevin Breisch. Jim Doyle decked a 65 pound drum with Captain Chet on the Lil' Angler II. Captain Brian on the Indian had 7 drum Saturday night, including his 64 pounder, a 75 pounder for Eric Zeigler, a 60 pounder for Dennis Herr, and a 54 pounder for Todd Kahl. Captain Chris had five drum on the Pirate King Saturday night, including a 74.8 pounder for Daniel McCoy. Daytime drum action has been just as good if not better than that after dark. Morning flood tides produced some terrific action. Captain Ted took the Pirate King to the Pin Top Monday for 15 big drum. Among them were a 79.8 pounder for David Biles, Isabella Porro's 78.7 pounder, Kenny Dear's 60.5, Ralph Tucker's 56.1, Allen Coverdale's 55.7 pounder, Charles Coverdale's 54.9, Bill Draper's 52.1 pounder, Charles Coverdale's 50.2, and Tim Coverdale's 50.1 pound drum. Captain Ted returned to the same spot Wednesday and had 13 more boomers. Henry Frederickson got a 65.4 pound drum and John Schock boated one scaling 51.9 pounds. Drum fishing has come into it's prime, and the shop will be handling fresh surf clams for a few more weeks, but we request reservations in advance to assure the availability of bait. Call 302-645-6227 early in the week to reserve clams for the weekend. Ocean trollers told of big bluefish in Massey's Canyon and on the Chicken Bone. Maw's Tails Hooches and Mops, Pony Tails and Stretch 25+ plugs were effective offerings. Chummers caught slammer blues too.
May 18, 2009
- Flounder Catches Promising
Delaware Bay flounder action is off to a promising start. With good drift conditions, Captain Ted on the Indian worked the rubble of Reef #5 in Broadkill Slough Tuesday, and found the flatfish hungry. The crew caught several flatties using strips of fresh shark belly and ended up with 9 plump keepers out of about 30 caught. Christine Stanley was the angler of the day, scoring her limit of flounder from 3.5 to 4.5 pounds. Edwin Maxwell had a brace of nice fluke, and Larry Petchel kept a pair, including one of 4.9 pounds. Earlier in the trip, Scott Brady boated a 22.5 pound drum. Captain Ted returned to the same spot the next day, when Mac McNaught nailed a 5.5 pound flounder. Flatfish have also become active on the flats inside Cape Henlopen and between the Cape Henlopen and Cape Shores Piers. The shallow waters are generally warmer and attract more early-season bait and gamefish than surrounding areas. Sonny McClure and friends culled 10 keepers from many caught in skinny water one evening last week. Small jigs or shad darts tipped with a shiner or strip of fresh cut bait work well on the flats. Fluking remains steady in the Lewes Canal with decent numbers of keepers. Best catching occurs with clean water,usually at the end of flood tide. The Broadkill River also yielded plenty of flounder. Strips of fresh cut bluefish or Gulp! baits were effective. Don't forget the Lewes Harbour Canal Flounder Tournament Friday May 22. The event offers cash prizes and a portion of the proceeds benefit the Camp Awareness Youth Fishing Program. Call 302-645-6227 for registration info. Small boaters and shore casters at Roosevelt Inlet had a mix of flounder, stripers and a few bluefish. An occasional trout was reported from the Broadkill River by guys using chunks of peeler crab. Stripers have been feeding on squid along the Outer Breakwater, and local anglers have had good success catching bass by casting Bomber 17A and Stretch 12+ plugs to the rocks of the wall. Best bites happened during early morning and evening hours with clean, moving water on the Ocean side. Todd Manning and Brian Seglem checked in a limit of linesiders to 17 pounds they took while tossing plugs Tuesday morning. Stripers are on other area structure as well, with fishermen telling of catches on the Inner Wall, Ferry Jetty and old jetty rocks on Broadkill Beach. Black drum catches were good. Scott Bucka and Kevin Flaherty set up in Broadkill Slough on Monday night and returned with two big boomers scaling 58.5 and 65 pounds. Larry Wilson landed a 60.9 pounder while drumming on the Big Herring Tuesday evening. Wayne Wilson and crew got six drum in the Slough Friday night. Daniels Ehm decked a 74.9 pounder aboard the Martha Marie, and Darryl Bear boated a 77 pounder on the Miss Kirstin. Captain Carey Evans on Grizzly fished Broadkill Slough Saturday night for three drum. He took the same group of anglers to the Pin Top Sunday, despite nasty weather, and boated 5, including a 69.5 pounder for Thomas Nickoles, and a 65.9 pound drum for David Wisniewski. We suggest you reserve surf clams if you're planning to fish for drum over the Memorial Day weekend. The most unusual catch of the week was a 72 inch sturgeon hooked and released by Andy and Anthony Lano while trolling a Stretch 25+ plug between the inner and outer breakwaters off Lewes.
May 11, 2009
- Hot Drum Bite
Black drum came on good around the full moon. Some of the hottest action took place at the Pin Top, north of Brandywine. Captain Carey Evans anchored Grizzly on the western dropoff of that structure during Saturday morning's flood tide. His crew had 17 boomers while soaking clams at that spot, harvesting 11 of the fish and releasing 6. The largest was a 74.1 pounder landed by Jeff Lauer. Mike Wyatt checked in a 51.1 pounder he boated aboard the Reel Passion, with Captain Wayne Wilson. Other good bites occurred in Tussey's Slough and the Horseshoe on the Jersey side of the Bay. Drum were also reported among much smaller crowds on the Coral Beds off Slaughter Beach. Captain Neil Bupp landed three fish there Friday evening and said he heard plenty of drumming in the area. The season is off to a good start and the drum should stick around through early June. We are carrying surf clams, but urge anglers to reserve baits in advance of their trip because the mollusks are sometimes in short supply due to varying delivery schedules. Spring togging ended up with good catches coming from the inner and outer walls and ice breakers. Captain Pete's gang on Top Fin enjoyed a fine Friday on tautog. Among their limit, Bill Haines had an 8.58 pounder and John Reed one 7.52 pounds. Captain Pete himself captured a 7.85 pound citation blackfish. Jam-Man toggled into the Ice Breakers Saturday for a nice mess of tog including a 7.9 pounder for Christine Johnson and a 7 pounder for Captain Chris Ragni. "Booker" Bookwalter brought back a 7.4 pounder from the wall. Shrimp proved to be an especially productive bait for spring tog. Tog season will be closed for the spawn, until July 1. The Lewes Canal, Broadkill River and Roosevelt Inlet yielded good amounts of flounder. The reduced 18 1/2 inch minimum size effective May 11 will allow for increasing numbers of keepers. Minnows and shiners on shad darts, spec rigs or other small jigs were productive, as were Gulp! Swimming Mullet and Gulp! Shrimp.The annual Lewes Harbour Canal Flounder Tournament sponsored by the Dewey Beach Lions Club will take place Friday May 22. The event offers cash prizes, and a portion of the proceeds will be donated to the Camp Awareness Youth Fishing Program. Call 302-645-6227 for registration info. Striped bass have settled in along the rock structures off Lewes. Guys tossing Bomber and Stretch 12+ plugs to the Outer Wall in the early morning and evening hours hooked stripers of varying sizes, many being keepers. Light colors seemed to work best, with red and white, yellow and mother of pearl patterns getting the nod. Working soft plastics, like shads and worms on leadheads, around the end of the ferry jetty at daybreak also produced rockfish. Bottom bouncers in the ocean found lots of sea bass at Reef Site #11, but most fell short of the 12 1/2 inch minimum.
May 3, 2009
- Tog on The Breakwater
The outer wall was the tautog hotspot over the weekend. Plenty of blackfish came from the rocks of the breakwater. Tog were also taken from the Star Reef Site and the rubble of the Broadkill Reef, but the best bite seemed to occur at the wall. Green crabs were the favored bait, however, shrimp proved effective as well. Some of the bigger fish checked in included Ralph Driscoll's 7 pounder, Thomas Kirk's 7.03, a 9.8 pounder by John Klase, and a 10.12 pound tautog by Steve Sullins. Andrew Currin caught an 8.35 pound tog, and Robert Moderacki got a 9.67 pounder. Action should be good for the remainder of the spring season, which closes May 11. That day also marks the change in the minimum size for flounder in Delaware waters from 19 1/2 to 18 1/2 inches. The Lewes canal has been yielding decent numbers of flatfish, many of which would have been keepers at 18 1/2, and anglers are looking forward to the reduced size requirement so they'll have a few fish to take home for dinner. Drifting minnows and shiners on small jigs during clean incoming water has been productive. Gulp! Swimming Mullet and Gulp! Shrimp worked well too. A few fluke have been captured from Delaware Bay. Deb Wilson brought back a pair of keepers she boated while drifting a squid and minnow combo at Brown Shoal. The Annual Lewes Harbour Canal Flounder Tournament will be held Friday May 22. The Dewey Beach Lions Club is assisting with the event this year and a portion of the proceeds will be donated to charity.Call the shop at 302-645-6227 for details. More reports of black drum sightings came from Broadkill Slough. The hook and line bite should come on around the full moon at the end of this week. Ocean wreck fishermen have encountered increasing numbers of sea bass moving onto inshore snags, and it looks like the spring bite is shaping up. The crew of the Lil' Angler had over a hundred keeper bass while working Reef Site #11 Sunday. The largest was a 3.22 pound knothead decked by "Pizza John" Perrin. If you are coming to Delaware to fish for the first time this year, remember the fishing license and F.I.N. requirement. They both can be obtained in advance on line at www.fw.delaware.gov and www.delaware.fin.com
Thanks for checking out our new website's fishing reports section. The site is still under construction and will be going through some changes in the coming months. By the time spring fishing season rolls around, we plan to be offering regular local reports with accurate and honest information. In addition, we'll offer helpful insight on how to find the best Delaware Bay and Atlantic Ocean action happening at that time, plus the hottest baits and techniques. We appreciate your interest and will do our best to keep you dialed in. Stay tuned, and best of luck in the New Year!!