The 2-4-pound bluefish that provided lots of jigging action for party boat anglers in northern N.J. yesterday were back again today. The Golden Eagle from Belmar reported another day of good weather and steady fishing as some bonito, chub mackerel, sea bass and fluke were added to the catch.
The Queen Mary from Point Pleasant called yesterday the best bluefishing of the season as the hi-hook caught 35, and there were many limits plus bonito and chub mackerel.
There shouldn’t be any weather problem in getting to those fish on Sunday as the forecast is for south winds at just 5-10 knots with 3-foot seas.
There was no bluefish bite in Shark River this morning. Frank Manzi lost two small fish that he thinks were stripers, and I had one small fish hit on a popper. A seiner left lots of spearing and peanut bunker on the shore , and I took a few of them to the Spring Lake surf to get the skunk off by quickly releasing three short fluke up to 16 inches despite lots of weed in the surf.
Paul Haertel was pleased to get 61 boats in the new-format JCAA Fluke Tournament that winds up tomorrow.
The multi-million-dollar MidAtlantic begins with the captains meeting in Cape May tomorrow. Offshore trollers have another contest coming up right after it with the Manasquan River Marlin & Tuna Club’s 39th annual Offshore Open from Aug. 24-31. There will be an estimated $200,000 in cash prizes for tuna (except bluefins), swordfish, dolphin and wahoo plus white marlin and blue marlin releases. Ray Catena Audi sponsors Challenges for yellowfin tuna and albacore that don’t require any fee in addition to the basic tournament entry of $500. The captains meeting will be on Friday at 6:30 p.m. at Crystal Point Yacht Club. A small boat category is included for boats 35 feet or less. Brochures are available at area tackle shops and marinas.
The bluefin tuna jigging at mid-range grounds continues. This one was caught on a popper cast by Joe Massa.