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Saltwater Fishing Report

Report from Thursday, December 18.

| Keyport | Atlantic Highlands | Neptune | Belmar | Brielle | Point Pleasant Beach | Toms River | Seaside Heights | Forked River | Surf City | Mystic Island | Absecon | Brigantine | Longport | Ocean City | Sea Isle City | Cape May | Last Monday's Report |
THIS REPORT IS UPDATED
EVERY MONDAY AND THURSDAY
Belmar
On the party boat Big Mohawk, blackfishing was fair on Wednesday, and good on the previous two days, Monday and Tuesday, Capt. Chris said. The pool-winning blackfish weighed 9-1/2 pounds or something on Wednesday, and up to 12 or 12 ½ on those previous trips. White leggers definitely caught best, and the bigger blackfish. But green crabs sometimes hooked blackfish. Green crabs are supplied, and the whites are available for $6 per dozen aboard. The Big Mohawk is blackfishing 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. daily.

Blackfishing came a couple shy of a limit aboard Sunday in 50 to 55 feet, said Capt. Scott from XTC Sportfishing. The fish weighed up to 7 pounds, and the angling wasn’t so good on a trip three days later, on Wednesday, with him and his brother. The trip fished in the same place, but the tautog just weren’t biting, for some reason, and the trip returned early, because seas started to become snotty. The ocean was 43 degrees, pretty cold. Frank’s seen no bluefin tuna that can show up close to shore this time of year. He was surprised, and was looking for them. There wasn’t much life to see, like no birds working the water.

With Parker Pete’s Fishing Charters, blackfishing was decent, Capt. Pete said. Experienced blackfishers caught well, and anglers new to the fishing learned to catch. The tautog inshore bit a little finicky. Farther off, when they bit, they were pretty aggressive, and water temperature probably made the difference, Pete thought. Up to 8- and 9-pounders were the biggest aboard recently, but some really large were still around. The angling the last few days was like, the blackfish bit, then the angling slowed, then it picked back up again, and so on. The blackfish bag limit will be lowered to four starting January 1, from the current limit of six. Parker Pete’s will keep sailing for blackfish, as long as they bite, and weather remains fishable. When the bag limit is lowered, trips will sail for blackfish and whatever hits, like ling. Don’t have enough anglers for a charter? Jump on Parker Pete’s website to subscribe to the emailed newsletter to be kept informed about last-minute, individual spaces available to fill in charters. Look for the place to sign up on the right side of the page. Several charters need a few anglers like that in the near future, one of the emails said. The dates include this Saturday and Sunday, Christmas Eve and December 28.