June turned out to be a memorable month in terms of semi-tropical species arriving in NY/NJ Bight waters very early. In addition to the Spanish mackerel, there were cobia caught even in the surf from South Jersey — and Kevin Kuriawa sent a report about a 38-inch cobia caught by Rich Bizarri on Rick Paglucco’s 25 Cobia boat while fluking Sunday off Sea Bright. To top it off, that was only one of the two cobia he caught! Both the 38-inch and the smaller one were released as the minimum length for cobia is 40 inches. They were caught on 6-inch Gulp. If cobia are spotted on the surface they can be very aggressive. In Florida I’ve even caught them by casting very long Sekora striper tubes and reeling fast so they create a lot of surface commotion.
The adventure continued today for Aidan Moorby of Franklin, Tn. who’s up here for today’s Manasquan beach wedding of his mother Allie to my son Mike. The 11-year-old caught his first fish (school stripers and fluke) yesterday with Chuck Many on his Ty Man at Highlands, and this morning he got a taste of surf casting. Luis Gonzalez of Palm Beach Gardens, Fl., who’s engaged to my daughter Cyndi, coached Aidan and soon had him making respectable casts with my canal and river light tackle quickly enough to catch a very small bluefish at Bay Head where there had been good action up through yesterday. However, that seemed to be the only fish caught there this morning.
I decided to look for the fish to the south, but saw no signs before blind casting in Mantoloking. I was shocked to hook up on a Chug Bug even though the sun was up high, and landed a double with a blue on the popper and a Spanish mackerel on the fly teaser. Luis hooked up at the same time on metal, but that fish came right off — and there was no more action until Aidan caught a windowpane flounder on the smallest Run-Off Sand Eel jig.
The first party boat doormat fluke reported to me was boated today on the Sea Hunter from Atlantic Highlands by Dan D’Antonio. That 10 3/8-pounder was among the few keepers in a day dominated by shorts. Word Press landed that photo above instead of where it was intended.
The Jamaica from Brielle will resume 3/4-day fluke and sea bass trips at 7:30 a.m. Tuesday.
The forecast for tomorrow is southwest winds at 10-15 knots.