Sun., July 24, 2016
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Delaware Bay Report

Report from Tuesday, July 19.

| Port Elizabeth | Money Island | Newport | Fortescue | Avalon | Cape May | Last Week's Report |
THIS REPORT IS UPDATED EVERY TUESDAY
Port Elizabeth
Keeper flounder seemed cranked in here and there from the bay, said Sharon from The Girls Place Bait & Tackle. Kingfish, lots, were more often reported sacked from the bay. Locations could change, and kings had been reported schooling well at the Punk Grounds. They seemed to shift somewhat south afterward. When boaters found the schools, they could bail kings. Surf anglers could pound kings at different places, too. Weakfish schooled the bay, not necessarily with kings. The weaks included good-sized, and few anglers might target the trout in the one-weakfish bag limit. But boaters could get on a school and catch them. Some croakers seemed to arrive in the bay. Though the bay’s flounder fishing seemed iffy, the ocean’s flounder fishing was better. One customer pasted two 7-pounders from the ocean. Flounder fishing might’ve slowed in back bays. Sharon planned to fish for them there. On Maurice River, white perch fishing picked up, after slowing somewhat because of horseshoe crabs. A friend landed 40. Crabbers frequently bought supplies, and crabbing seemed not bad at all, pretty good. Baits stocked include plenty of minnows. Shedder crabs were a little difficult to keep stocked this weekend around the full moon. But that’ll probably change later this week. The Girls Place, located on Route 47, just after Route 55 ends, carries a large supply of bait and tackle, and is the long, one-story, yellow building on the right. It’s on the way to the bay.

Money Island
A few boaters fished during the weekend from Money Island Marina, Bruce said. Those who did, caught some summer flounder. The keepers were usually sizable like 22 to 24 inches, not just-keeper-sized. Two, three or four, something like that, were bagged per boat. Anglers fishing from the dock landed a few white perch, not a lot. Everybody’s invited to a pig roast and fishing tournament, Pigfish 2016, from 4 to 7 p.m. Saturday, August 6, at the marina. Food will include roasted pig, crabs, oysters, corn on the cob, salads and dessert. Click the link for details, and telephone to register: 856-447-3576. Proceeds will benefit the BaySave Foundation. The marina features a bait and tackle shop, a boat ramp, boat slips, dry-dock boat storage, fishing docks and gas. The fishing docks, $5 per adult and free for kids, can offer angling for white perch, small stripers, and croakers, at different times of year. A 12-foot aluminum boat with a 2.5 h.p. outboard is available to rent to fish the creek. Plenty of minnows were stocked currently, though Bruce in the last report here had said minnows were difficult to pot a moment during the previous week. He hit a mother lode of them yesterday. Baits like frozen spearing, tube squid, Pro Cut squid and mackerel are in full supply. Take advantage of a free boat-ramp pass for first-time users to introduce them to the marina’s amenities and quality of service. The pass is only valid when signed by marina owner Tony Novak. Boaters should avoid using the ramp within 90 minutes of low tides.

Newport
Crabbing kept getting better at Beaver Dam Boat Rentals, Paul said. He’d already been giving positive reports in past weeks, but the catches amped up more. “It’s warming up,” he said. More bushels were trapped than before, and considerably more half-bushels were. Crab sizes also improved, and a bunch more 6-inchers were nabbed than previously. A 7-1/2-incher is largest this year, so far, at the shop, and the customer with the year’s largest wins a free boat-rental next year, an annual prize at the store. The moon was full currently, so crabs should be shedding. Full and new moons can trigger the blueclaws to shed, and crabbing can slow then, because crabs won’t eat while shedding. But not all crabs shed on every moon, and the effects of any shed, if crabs are shedding, should be finished by the weekend, Paul hoped. Effects usually last a few days. Bunker caught best, but chicken might’ve been catching best today. Crew at the shop have noticed that chicken can work better during moons, and that seemed because of hormonal reasons. The moons can also trigger crabs to mate. Fishing on the creek was “eh,” but the first few white perch and croakers were reeled in that were big enough to keep. Customers crab and fish from rental boats towed up Oranokin Creek, running past the shop. Rental kayaks and canoes are available to paddle the scenic creek. Reserve rentals ahead, because they can book up. Beaver Dam can host groups like scouts for an educational day on the water. Events like birthday parties and family reunions can be hosted. Beaver Dam carries everything needed for crabbing, from bait, traps and nets to drinks, snacks and suntan lotion. Visit Beaver Dam’s website.

Fortescue
A few more photos of summer flounder from the bay were posted on the Facebook pages from a marina and a party boat from Fortescue in past days than before. The photos included boat limits of the fish from two trips, with several anglers apiece, on one boat Thursday and Monday.

Avalon
Fins and Feathers Outfitters fished the bay toward East Point, the number 1 buoy and Miah Maul on a trip, Capt. Jim said. Two keeper summer flounder were boated, and throwback flounder were released. The anglers also fished for sharks for fun on the outing, releasing 4- to 5-foot brown sharks. Browns are required to be released, and Jim had brought frozen bunker he had caught on the ocean previously so the anglers could shark if they wanted. They fished fillets of the baitfish on steel leaders. So the fishing was fun, and one weakfish was also landed, and no other fish were hooked, like sea robins or croakers. The weak bit a bloodworm on a top-and-bottom rig with a blood on top and a Gulp on bottom. The bay was 79 degrees, and Jim is supposed to pick up anglers at Lewes later this week to fish the Delaware side of the bay. Trips aboard are also fishing for flounder on the ocean and on the back bay near Avalon. Jim might also scope out the inshore ocean for pelagics like mahi mahi soon.

Cape May
Good reports about weakfish were heard from toward Miah Maul, said Joe from Hands Too Bait & Tackle. Little was heard about summer flounder from the bay. Flounder were picked from the ocean pretty well, and a few were bagged from the back bay. From the surf in town, kingfish and a few small weakfish were banked. Sometimes small flounder were beached. Croakers began to be reeled from the surf.

Last Week's Report
Port Elizabeth

A few summer flounder were boated on the bay, no great shakes, said Sharon from The Girls Place Bait & Tackle. That was according to a couple of people she spoke with at a marina, and Sharon had been away last week, heard only a little news. Some weakfish swam the bay, and nobody targeted them in the one-weakfish bag limit, really. If anglers caught weaks while fishing for other catches, “fine,” she said. Nothing was heard about flounder fishing on the back bay and the ocean. Many customers crabbed in the Dividing Creek area, and that went pretty well. Some of the ponds were drained in the Matt’s Landing area, limiting places to crab. All usual baits are stocked, and nothing ran low. The baits included minnows and shedder crabs. The bunker supplier’s boat had broken down a moment, but the supplier was back in action now. The Girls Place, located on Route 47, just after Route 55 ends, carries a large supply of bait and tackle, and is the long, one-story, yellow building on the right. It’s on the way to the bay.

Money Island

Weather was sometimes rough, but a few trips sailed from Money Island Marina, Bruce said. The trips boated a few summer flounder 22 to 24 inches. Weakfish remained in the bay, like before, and small croakers began to show up in the water. There was some activity. A customer who’d been landing drum and sheepshead from the bay didn’t fish in past days. His catches were mentioned in previous reports here. Fishing from the dock was improving, turning up white perch. Three or four anglers fished from the dock while Bruce gave this report yesterday. A pig roast and a junk-fish tournament will be held August 6 at the marina. The tournament will be for catches like oyster crackers for fun and kids. Take advantage of a free boat-ramp pass for first-time users to introduce them to the marina’s amenities and quality of service. The pass is only valid when signed by marina owner Tony Novak. Boaters should avoid using the ramp within 90 minutes of low tides. The marina features a bait and tackle shop, a boat ramp, boat slips, dry-dock boat storage, fishing docks and gas. The fishing docks, $5 per adult and free for kids, can offer angling for white perch, small stripers, and croakers, at different times of year. A 12-foot aluminum boat with a 2.5 h.p. outboard is available to rent to fish the creek. Bait stocked can include minnows, live grass shrimp and more, when in season and in demand. Minnows had apparently been spawning, and Bruce had difficulty catching them for four days, but hoped that was finished now. The grass shrimp supplier hadn’t been around lately, and the shrimp can become scarcer this season, because the bait can become difficult to keep alive in summer heat. Plenty of frozen baits are stocked, including tube squid, Pro Cut squid, mackerel and spearing.

Newport

Crabbing was definitely “up,” said Paul from Beaver Dam Boat Rentals. Lots of half-bushels and some three-quarters-bushels were trapped. The year’s first bushel was caught on Fourth of July, mentioned in the last report here. Eighty-percent of the boats Sunday trapped more than three dozen keepers apiece. There’s always a random boat that doesn’t fare well. Six-inch crabs were becoming more common, and 7-inchers were seen this past week. A 7-1/2-incher is biggest at the shop this year so far, and the customer with the year’s biggest will win a free boat-rental next year, an annual prize. Fishing was slow on the creek, and how the fishing will go can be unpredictable throughout the year. Fish including white perch, schoolie striped bass and croakers can bite well at times. But crabbing was going surprisingly well. Crabs were trapped even during moons this year so far, and sometimes the catches can slow then, because full moons and new moons can trigger crabs to shed and mate a few days, and the blueclaws refuse to eat then. Lots of pregnant female crabs were reported from elsewhere, including Delaware Bay. But that wasn’t an issue at Beaver Dam. Customers crab and fish from rental boats towed up Oranokin Creek, running past the shop. Rental kayaks and canoes are available to paddle the scenic creek. Reserve rentals ahead, because they can book up. Beaver Dam hosts groups like scouts for an educational day on the water. Events like family reunions and birthday parties are also hosted. The store carries everything needed for crabbing, from bait, traps and nets to drinks, snacks and suntan lotion. Visit Beaver Dam’s website.

Wildwood

Plenty of kingfish, some keeper weakfish and small blues could be found at places like off Cape May Point on the bay, said Capt. Jim from Fins & Grins Sport Fishing. Mixed-bag, summertime fishing, he said – lots of good action. Fins fishes every day, and reservations aren’t required but suggested. Telephone for availability.

Cape May

Customers who boated the bay landed more kingfish than summer flounder, said Joe from Hands Too Bait & Tackle. Kings schooled the bay and surf. Spike weakfish had been heard about from the surf, but not first-hand recently. However, a customer said someone found weaks near Cape May Inlet, and the customer was headed there to fish for them. Flounder fishing in the surf will mostly bank throwbacks. Joe fishes for them with a rig with a white Andros bucktail on bottom with a trailer above, baiting the bucktail, unusually, with a Fishbites artificial worm in chartreuse. Sometimes he’s used a red one, but chartreuse is best. On the trailer, he fishes a 3-inch Gulp swimming mullet. He couldn’t say how many times he sent anglers to fish the surf with the rig, he said, and they scored. Joe also fishes the rig in the back bay. Back-bay boaters scratched away at flounder, and fewer fished there than usual. Boaters at the Old Grounds on the ocean put together the best flounder catches. Ocean boaters also caught the flatfish at Cape May Reef and Reef 11, but the Old Grounds was the place to be. The Old Grounds fishing usually becomes good late this month, but was already productive for weeks now. The angling depends on conditions, like anywhere. Two anglers last week said they fished for flounder on the ocean on a local party boat, but the angling was slow, because the boat failed to drift, because of no wind. But another trip with four anglers fished the area on a smaller, private boat, catching eight keepers, because the boat was able to be power-drifted.