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  • 217 Anglers Rd. Lewes DE 19958

Fall Action Offshore and Inshore

Lewes Harbour Marina - 9/26/2013 12:00:00 AM

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.

Flounder On The Move

Lewes Harbour Marina - 9/20/2013 12:00:00 AM

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.

Record Swordfish

Lewes Harbour Marina - 9/12/2013 12:00:00 AM

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.

Good Overnight Tuna Bite

Lewes Harbour Marina - 9/6/2013 12:00:00 AM

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.