Sun., July 31, 2016
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Offshore Report

Report from Friday, July 29.

| Sandy Hook | Shark River Inlet | Manasquan Inlet | Barnegat Inlet | Little Egg Inlet | Great Egg Harbor Inlet | Townsend's Inlet | Cape May Inlet | Last Week's Report |
Sandy Hook
One angler’s trip whacked a 265-pound bigeye tuna, said Joe Julian from Julian’s Bait & Tackle in Atlantic Highlands.

Shark River Inlet
The Katie H from Belmar had been slated to fish for bluefin tuna inshore last Friday, but reports about the angling were terrible, Capt. Mike said. A buddy fished for the bluefins afterward, so Mike would find out how that went.

Manasquan Inlet
Mushin Sportfishing from Point Pleasant Beach, sailing from Cape May for tuna and big game this month, ran to a southern canyon offshore Sunday, Capt. Alan wrote in an email. The boat was the only at the canyon, and plenty of bait swam the clean, green water. Pilot whales breached, and skipjacks were seen along the water surface. The trip began trolling for bigeye tuna, and at first, “connected with a few smaller tunas,” he wrote. A 200-pound bigeye was hooked at 7:30 p.m. and landed. Another was hooked at 9:30 p.m. on the troll but got off quickly. The trip ran to inshore lumps to try for yellowfin tuna, “but no love,” he said. A handful of mahi mahi were also caught on the outing.

Yellowfin tuna, mostly small but good numbers, were trolled from Toms Canyon to Spencer Canyon, said Eric from The Reel Seat in Brielle. Fairly decent catches of blue marlin came from southern canyons. Up to 800-pounders were reported, and canyon fishing wasn’t fantastic but caught. Closer to shore, bluefin tuna fishing seemed hit and miss, mostly on the troll, not really on the chunk or on jigs. All traditional spots held the fish, like the Atlantic Princess wreck, the Triple Wrecks, the Bacardi wreck and farther offshore. A few mako sharks were heard about from 30 fathoms, a little far from shore for sharking, but not too far, if anglers want the fish. Up to 150-pounders were heard about.

Barnegat Inlet
Nothing was really heard about tuna fishing, except about tuna landed at Massey’s Canyon, south of Cape May, too far for a trip from Barnegat Light, said Capt. Ted from the Super Chic from Barnegat Light. A few white marlin were heard about from Baltimore Canyon. Radio talk mentioned a few bonito caught on boats that bluefished inshore.

Little Egg Inlet
A couple of customers sailed for bigeye tuna to Lindenkohl Canyon but caught only mahi mahi and blueline tilefish, said Chris from Scott’s Bait & Tackle in Mystic Island. But yellowfin tuna blitzed at Massey’s Canyon. The fishing at Massey’s had slowed but now improved again. Bluefin tuna had been more abundant than yellowfins at Massey’s earlier this season. The best bluefin fishing now seemed to the north, like at the Chicken Canyon.

Great Egg Harbor Inlet
A tuna trip will fish Sunday on the Stray Cat from Longport, Capt. Mike said. Not a lot happened with tuna, and Mike will see where the trip will head. A couple of bigeye tuna were taken. Bluefin tuna fishing fell apart 1 ½ weeks ago or so that had been good in inshore waters south of Cape May.

For tuna, more boaters seemed to sail farther offshore than before to canyons on the Continental Shelf, said Pat from Fin-Atics from Ocean City. Inshore fishing for tuna at Massey’s Canyon slowed compared with previously.

Massey’s Canyon seemed most popular for tuna, said Collin from 24-7 Bait & Tackle in Egg Harbor Township. But a couple of “things” were reported about Wilmington Canyon, nothing crazy. The company also owns 24-7 Bait & Tackle in Marmora.

Townsend's Inlet
A trip yesterday with Fins and Feathers Outfitters from Avalon was going to troll along lobster pots and see if mahi mahi bit, Capt. Jim said before the outing

Tuna were still boated inshore to the south, not only at Massey’s Canyon, said Mike from Sea Isle Bait & Tackle in Sea Isle City. The tuna could also come from other places in the area, like 19-Fathom Lump. More of the tuna were yellowfins than bluefins this week, he would say. Most of the tuna seemed caught on the chunk, but some were trolled.

Cape May Inlet
Capt. George from the Heavy Hitter from Cape May was supposed to fish for tuna inshore on a friend’s boat yesterday, he said before the trip. The tuna were still caught, and a trip on the Heavy Hitter might tilefish at offshore canyons Sunday. Anglers wanted to tilefish, and weather looks good that day. An inshore tuna trip was cancelled last Saturday because of forecasts, but weather turned out beautiful. Tuna fishing inshore was lousy last week on Thursday aboard. It was also no good last week on Tuesday on the boat, covered in the last report here. George attributed the bad angling to the full moon. Some boats caught the fish during that time, and some didn’t, but the fishing became good again this past Friday and Saturday. Catches were heard about Sunday, too. The catches, bluefin and yellowfin tuna, had been good on the Heavy Hitter until the two slow trips. Anglers better fish for the tuna as soon as possible, because the fish won’t stick around forever. Someone asked to sail for the fish August 15, but George recommended the angler jump on the tuna next Friday, when the boat had an opening, and the angler was going to see if he could.

Yellowfin tuna, good-sized, were drilled at Massey’s Canyon, said Joe from Hands Too Bait & Tackle in Cape May. The fishing could be off the hook at times. Most were chunked, and some were jigged. Little was reported about tuna fishing farther from shore, probably because most anglers concentrated on the tuna inshore like at Massey’s.

Last Week's Report
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.

Manasquan Inlet

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.

Townsend’s Inlet

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.