Shark River Inlet
The Katie H from Belmar was supposed to fish for tuna inshore today, Capt. Mike said. Bluefin tuna are biting there, and lots of boats are working the water, so a bite takes off early in morning an hour or two. Sometimes the bluefin trips mix in shark fishing. The Coast Guard was climbing on boats to inspect them on the bluefin grounds. Farther from shore, canyon tuna fishing went well farther south, and Mike hopes the fish scoot north to local waters soon.
Boaters picked away at small bluefin tuna at grounds like the Triple Wrecks, mostly on trolled ballyhoos, RonZ soft baits, cedar plugs and spreader bars, sometimes on jigs or popper lures, said Alex from The Reel Seat in Brielle. Farther from shore, yellowfin tuna 30 to 60 pounds were trolled at southern canyons on ballys, RonZ’s and spreaders.
An overnight trip offshore Saturday with Mushin Sportfishing from Point Pleasant Beach, sailing from Cape May this month, trolled a white marlin and tiny yellowfin tuna, Mushin’s Facebook page said. Mahi mahi were also trolled and chunked, and see photos of the fish on the page. In the evening, the trip began trolling for bigeye tuna, like about 14 other boats did. A bigeye bit at 9:40 p.m. but pulled the hook. The trip kept trolling until midnight, but no others bit. The anglers tried for swordfish the rest of the night, but none showed up. More of the yellowfins were trolled in the morning, and the trip headed home at 10 a.m. A trip the previous day, Friday, chunked for bluefin tuna and yellowfin tuna inshore. Tuna were hooked but broke off light leaders.
Great Egg Harbor Inlet
Trips beat bluefin and yellowfin tuna at Massey’s Canyon, said Capt. Mike from the Stray Cat from Longport. A hundred-fifty boats must’ve fished there at any given time during the day this weekend. A 7- or 8-pound mahi mahi was decked on a fluke and sea bass trip this week aboard. Spanish mackerel were hooked on a previous trip, and the boat this weekend might troll for mahi and Spanish.
Bluefin tuna and yellowfin tuna were chunked at Massey’s Canyon, 40 miles south of Cape May, said Jake from Fin-Atics in Ocean City. Yellowfins, bluefins and a few bigeye tuna were trolled at Wilmington Canyon during daytime but also chunked at night.
Tuna were caught inshore at Massey’s Canyon, and the fishing was sketchy, or one boat might catch, and the boat next to that might get blanked, said Capt. Joe Hughes from Jersey Cape Guide Service from Sea Isle City, affiliated with Sea Isle Bait & Tackle. Or some catch, some don’t, and lots of boats filled the water. Lots of mahi mahi swam inshore, “so that’s nice,” he said.
Tuna catches, decent, were still talked about from Massey’s Canyon throughout the week, when boaters had the weather to sail, said Mike from Sea Isle Bait & Tackle in Sea Isle City. That was mostly while chunking, sometimes on jigs.
Cape May Inlet
On the Heavy Hitter from Cape May, a good-sized bluefin tuna and a yellowfin tuna were bagged from the inshore ocean Saturday with Nick Sosnowky’s charter, Capt. George said. Eight or nine other tuna were also hooked and got off, and all the trip’s tuna were jigged. When jigging, anglers never know where the fish will be hooked, he said. Boats seemed to score well on the tuna the next day, Sunday, too. On a trip to the waters Tuesday aboard, weather and seas were terrible, though forecasts failed to call for that, and the angling was tough. One tuna was hooked but got off and another was missed. No other tuna bit on the trip, but boats caught that began fishing at 5 a.m. How they reached the waters that early in the rough conditions was unknown. Boats from Ocean City, Md., nearer to the fishing, seemed the ones that did. The Heavy Hitter departed for the fishing early, but was turned around, because of seas. But the trip sailed later that morning, trying to head out in improved conditions, arriving at 9:30 a.m. at the fishing grounds, and conditions were still rough. The bite was mostly finished by then. But tuna were caught earlier, and were caught again the next day, Wednesday. The Heavy Hitter is supposed to fish for them again Saturday, if weather allows. Rough weather might prevent that.
Caveman Sportfishing from Cape May was supposed to fish for tuna at Massey’s Canyon, 40 miles south of Cape May, Thursday, Capt. John said before the trip. A friend chunked a bunch of yellowfin tuna there Wednesday. At Massey’s last Friday with Caveman, five yellowfins were landed. On Saturday at the canyon aboard, a couple of tuna were broken off, because of light, 30-pound leaders, and those were the trip’s only bites. Probably 200 boats fished the area that day, affecting the fishing. No trip fished Sunday aboard for them, and John was going to let the water quiet down a couple of days, then see how the angling was. Bluefin tuna and yellowfin tuna had been giving up great fishing in the area. All catches were on chunks and jigs.