We don’t seem to have any midsummer doldrums detracting from fishing here in South Jersey.
Good reports are coming from all regions.
Inshore fishing is picking up since the tropical storm and follow-up rumble of last week.
The Starfish party boat that sails from Sea Isle City had a good trip Friday, according dock manager and DJ John Nigro. He said Monday one of Friday’s four-hour trips had a social-distanced 15 fishers on board, and they caught 23 triggerfish.
John said it turned on after the chaos. He said the fishers were “really happy!”
He said they also are catching sea robin and at least one really nice keeper black seas bass.
He said they were doing three four-hour inshore trips Monday. He had another 15 fishers lined up for Monday evening.
Paul Thompson was 13 miles off the coast heading the Porgy 4 party boat back into the dock at South Jersey Marina in Cape May from the Old Grounds, where he took his crew of fishers, when the local scribe called.
Paul is fishing for summer flounder in the ocean.
He described the fishing as decent with fish up to 6½ pounds. He said he had three fishers among 23 catch their three-fish limit Monday with keepers “all around.”
Mark Swartz, of Margate, registered a 7¾-pound summer flounder at Ray Scott’s Dock in Margate.
The Jersey Coast Anglers Association wrapped its three-day statewide Heavy Hitters summer flounder contest Sunday, and it also showed that fluke fishing is still going strong.
Paul Haertel provided the stats for the event that allowed fishers to compete on one of the three days and had nine weigh stations throughout the state.
Matt Sorrentino caught the heaviest fish, 9.92 pounds, and led his team on the unnamed boat owned by Tony Pacitti that included Tony’s dad, David, and friend Joe Damiani to the three-heaviest fish championship. The total weight of 24.42 pounds earned them $14,684, including a sweep of the Calcuttas.
Dennis Machamer on the Mistress had a three-fish total of 20.24 pounds, and Anthony Pancini had a 9.64-pounder, both finishing second.
Haertel reported that all three of those weigh-ins were registered at Fisherman’s Den in Belmar.
Inshore fishing offers quite a variety.
Mike O’Neill is the captain of the Stray Cat charter/open boat that sails from Seaview Harbor Marina in Great Egg Harbor Inlet.
He said Monday he is “very busy” with yellowfin tuna at the 30-fathom line and white marlin at the Lobster Claw and summer flounder and black seas bass at a ledge off Sea Isle City.
He said they got “clobbered” by white marlin recently. He said they had five on and got two to the boat that were released.
He also reported Spanish mackerel and king mackerel just outside Dog Lump.
And Dan Ponzio had three tuna on his latest run with the Atlantic City charter boat War Dance. Noel Feliciano reported from One-Stop Bait and Tackle that they were in the 70-pound range.
Feliciano also reported that tautog, triggerfish, summer flounder and sheepshead are active. And crabbing is super, he added.
Sounds as though fishing is in midseason form.
White Marlin Open
The classic White Marlin Open based in Ocean City, Maryland, wrapped up its 47th edition Sunday at Harbour Marina with 433 boats entered and a record payout of $6.8 million.
The top prize was $1.85 million for a 97-pound white marlin on the boat Canyon Blues out of Chester, Maryland. A 77-pound white marlin caught on the Drillin and Billin out of Hatteras, North Carolina, was awarded $1.76 million.
A 114.5-pound tuna caught on the Restless Lady also topped the million-dollar mark at $1.4 million.