Finally a 60– Katfish strikes again!

Just as I was about to write a blog about the relative abundance of 50-pound stripers being reported in NY/NJ Bight this year without one just a bit bigger to break the 60-pound mark, Capt. Vinny Vetere did it again on his Katfish from Great Kills by putting his mate Brian into one well above monster status with fork length of 58 inches plus a girth of 29.5 inches. The formula of girth squared times fork length divided by 800 comes to 63.093125 pounds — and is the only accepted was to estimate weight now that all large stripers have to be released.

Vinnie has produced 60s before, and knows what they look like as well as needing the fork length rather than tail length for the formula which was developed long ago when fish were measured that way. He said Brian fished a live bunker on a spinning rod.

The last virtual public hearing on the ASMFC emergency rule limiting the maximum striped bass maximum size to 31 inches is being held from 6-8 p.m. today. You can check out the comments in the listen-only mode at 914 514-3221. Use access code 424-938-669.

Vinny D’Anton had some action in the Monmouth County surf with stripers on sand fleas, but they were smaller bass from 22 to 28 inches. He also got word of good bite of mixed-size bluefish in Manasquan River.

The Golden Eagle from Belmar had a slow start with sea bass, but that improved in the afternoon as some limits were bagged.

The morning forecast is for northwest winds at 5-10 knots plus patchy fog before going south in the afternoon.

Capt. Dave DeGennaro has been finding mixed-size blues in Barnegat Inlet and Bay by trolling small pugs to locate them before going to casting. He has openings on Hi Flier from Barnegat from Friday through Sunday. Call 732 330-5674.

NOAA Fisheries increases General Category bluefin tuna daily landings

NOAA FISHERIES has announced a change in General Category bluefin tuna daily landings as of June 1 from one large bluefin (73 inches up) to three. That runs through Aug. 31, and applies also to charter and party boats when fishing for the market with their permits.

A small craft warning is up through 6 p.m. , but the morning forecast is down to northeast at 5-10 knots before going east in the afternoon. Patchy fog is likely in the morning.

Great striper reports continue

If anyone is having a hard time catching striped bass in NY/NJ Bight waters, they aren’t admitting to it. Some have to “weed” through bass too large to boat in order to keep what they want — though that’s a problem that I wouldn’t have objected to not that many years ago.

In describing Dave Lilly’s great wire line trolling catch yesterday , I didn’t mention that in addition to using Tony Maja bunker spoons, they also tried Tony’s mojo rigs and wore themselves out on five doubleheaders

Here’s a shot of one of the big bass caught by Chris Buchta and his crew a couple of days ago,

Vinny D’Anton continues to catch stripers on sand fleas in his local surf by releasing a 31-incher today. The northeast swell has created whitewater conditions which are favorable for that fishing.

A small craft warning is up tonight for northeast winds gusting to 30 knots. That goes south in the morning at 15-20 knots

PR striper fishing continues

Dave Lilly called me at 9 this morning to tell me he was finished fishing with Brian Farmer on Ric Martel’s boat as they trolled Tony Maja bunker spoons in the Raritan Bay area all by themselves for two over 50 pounds to 54 inches plus another dozen over 40 pounds, and 10 more over 30 pounds.

Chuck Many reported the beat went on Friday aboard his Tyman from Highlands for Bob Nikki Bowden Alex Katyan and Dylan Parker. .

Chris Buchta had a day for the ages for his crew with personal records that included a 50 plus a 52 for the skipper.

Chris Buchta’s fishfinder


y’s forecast starts well with north winds at 5-10 knots before going east at 15-20 with gusts to 25 late.

Vinny D’Anton reports a pick of legal stripers on sand fleas in the Monmouth County surf.

Great weather & reports

Outstanding fishing for both striped bass and sea bass continues in NY/NJ Bight.

The Jamaica from Brielle notes that the Memorial Day weekend isn’t always as crowded as you might expect. They expect to have fof walk-on space for sea bass in the morning. That boat has also added two 1.5-day tilefish trips at 10 p.m. June 19 and 26. Call 732 528-5014 for reservations.

Hans Kaspersetz with a jumbo sea bass on Water Proof

Sunday’s forecast is for southeast winds at a mere 5 knots, The wind goes south in the afternoon.

The result of strict striper limits — massive quantities of trophy bass

Every time it appears that striped bass fishing in NY/NJ Bight can’t be any better, there’s yet another report from Chuck Many on his Tyman from Highlands like the following:

Monday was good with 60 jumbos, but Tuesday and a quick trip Wednesday morning topped it, with over 100 Jumbos boated. Smallest was right around 30 pounds, Largest was Rich Miller first 50 at between 51 & 52 pounds!! Great times with Rich, Dean Cox, & Brian Cox!!!

+NJ Hybrid striped bass record broken:

  • The N.J. Division of Fish and Wildlife reports that Jim Piascik caught the new state record Hybrid Striped Bass in Monksville Reservoir on May 24, 2023.  The fish weighed 17 pounds, 12 ounces, replacing John Vayda’s 16-pound, 10-ounce record from 2022.  The old record only stood for 227 days.   Jim was fishing for Walleye when the fish hit just after midnight.  After previously landing a 25-inch Walleye, he was prepared with a large net, and managed to get this giant in the boat alone and in the dark.Congratulations Jim!  What a catch!
  • The Fishermen from Atlantic Highlands reported steady sea bass fishing all day with a variety of sizes up to the 3-pound pool winner as many limits were taken.
  • The forecast is for north winds at 5-10 knots before going southeast in the afternoon
  • Vinny D’Anton fished sand fleas in the Monmouth County surf this morning for stripers of 32 and 29 inches, but was surprised to not see other anglers fishing.


S.C. anglers enjoy a striper blast on Tyman

Chuck Many hosted fishing friends from South Carolina this week on his Tyman for great striper fishing that included not only great numbers of big bass, but also one over 50 pounds.

All of the striper reports I got today were very positive, including the following about yesterday’s trip from Andreas Toy out of Perth Amboy:

“Had George out today and made a long run to some of the best fishing I’ve ever seen. The first two hours it was almost every cast all alone and nearly every fish was over 40 inches. Spooks, metal lips, live bunker it didn’t matter they were hungry. One group of fish hit a spook so hard it hit the transom, fell back in the water and then they hit it before it hit the water. Every live bait on the surface got blown up on within 30 seconds and didn’t stand a chance. No time for pictures as the action was so hot and bass were blowing up around the boat for hours. It is simply impossible for fishing to be any better than this.”

Want to take a long shot at a giant bluefin tuna? Capt. Dave De Gennaro is ready to take a charter or individual reservations on his Hi Flier from Barnegat Light for 45-mile run to the north on Friday, Saturday or Sunday. when there’s an opportunity to troll for a giant if the seas are calm. DeGennaro mated three seasons for the greatest giant tuna skipper of all — the late Capt. Bob Pisano. Call 732 330-5674 for details. If the weather isn’t right, he’ll switch over to local stripers and blues.

Sea bass fishing is also standing up well. The Golden Eagle from Belmar reported slower fishing this morning when the weather was poor, but they ended up with many limits as conditions improved. Bait seemed to have the edge today. The Big Mohawk from Belmar has been enjoying similar action, but is chartered tomorrow.

The forecast is for north winds at just 5-10 knots before going southeast in the afternoon.

I finally got the results from Sunday’s Governor’s Surf Fishing Tournament at IBSP, though I haven’t been able to transfer them. Despite light rain early, the fishing turned out to be pretty good, with over 160 fish measured as bluefish showed up. The Governor’s Cup winner was David Koenigstein of Toms River with a 37 2/8-inch striper and won two rod and reel ombos. His name will be engraved on the Cup. He edged by Kyle Keefer of Montague with a 35 4/8-inch bass. Parker Sowul of Manasquan won the teen bluefish award with a 33-incher, and Kathy Gresko of Robbinsville had a 19 2/8-inch fluke.

Lilly proves fluke are biting

Fluke pro Dave Lilly stopped by the Tackle Box in Hazlet and asked iif any big fluke had come in as yet. When told there hadn’t been anything more than a modest 4 pounds, he decided to make his first fluke trip of the season. It didn’t take long in the back of Raritan Bay for Lilly to come up with a limit topped by a 6.8-pounder!

Lilly said the water temperature was 62 degrees where he drifted a Gulp Pink Slime plus a Tsunami Halographic teaser. Birds were picking on small bait, and only one other boater was in the area.

Vinny D’Anton made his first surf attempt in the Monmouth County surf since returning from Florida, and quickly hooked a 30-inch striper on sand fleas. There were only a couple of light hits during a brief attempt.

I haven’t been able to obtain result from Sunday’s Governor’s Surf Fishing Tournament at IBSP so far, but will pass them along whenever they’re available from the N.J. Division of Fish and Wildlife.

A small craft warning is up until Thursday afternoon. The forecast is for north winds at 15-20 knots plus gusts to 25 in the morning before switching to a calming 10-15 knots in the afternoon.

Sea bass reports remain very good. At Belmar, the Golden Eagle started out with an hour-long drift as everyone limited through lots of shorts.

The Jamica from Brielle added some ling and winter flounders to Tuesday’s sea bass, as the pool went to a 4.5-pound flounder caught by Igor Nedeski of Howell.

NYC Capt. John McMurray continues to catch lots of stripers and blues from among the great marks on his fishfinder.

JCAA Fluke Tournament coming up

The 27th annual JCAA Fluke Tournament is coming up on 6/17 with the usual load of prizes plus the opportunity to win the $50,000 Doormat Fluke prize as was done last year. The big awards party and drawings for prizes takes place at Resorts Casino on 6/23. . It’s not necessary to catch a single fish during the contest in order to be eligible for the drawings. Go to for entry information’

Chuck Many not only had lots of big stripers tagged from his Tyman out of Highlands during the Grey Striper Quest, but also had four 50-pounders included. I lost his report yesterday, but here’s the biggest at 56 pounds.

Grumpy’s Tackle in Seaside Park reports Antonio Leone won the children’s prize in Sunday’s Governor’s Surf Fishing Tournament at IBSP with this 14.7-pound striper caught on clams.

The weather looks good, with east winds at just 5-10 knots before going southeast in the afternoon.

All sea bass reports remain very good. At Belmar the Big Mohawk had a 30-man limit for the Wall H.S. Fishing Club yesterday. The Golden Eagle reported today was so good that it seemed as if a new body of sea bass arrived.

Absecon Bay Sportsmans Center reports the bay is now loaded with big blues.

Manasquan H.S. wins at Governor’s Surf Fishing Tournament

Capt. Jim Freda reported as follows:

“This past Sunday the 6th Annual Governor’s High School Surf Fishing State Championships took place at Island Beach State Park. I am very proud to announce that our Manasquan HS fishing team won the state championship again this year repeating what the team did in 2021. The high school team consisted of all juniors co-president Parker Sowul, Nicholas Horvot, Jack Mead, and co-advisors Mr Eric Wasnesky, and myself. Parker had the big winning fish for the team, a 33 inch bluefish, while Nick had a 17 inch bluefish. Surf conditions were only fair on Sunday as a big swell with over headers was constantly pushing sets in on the beach. Therefore, not many fish were caught in the entire tournament. You had to fish hard and work at it by timing your casts in between the waves. Our team did just that as all three team members are experienced surf casters. There were 7 teams that competed for the state championship this year with second place going to Pascack Valley HS with a 32-7/8 inch bluefish and third place to Toms River South HS with a 30 inch bluefish. Congrats to all that participated! Thank you Karen and crew of the NJDEP Fish and Wildlife and NJ Beach Buggy Assoc for all your hard work and efforts in running another very successful tournament! Much appreciated!

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Tuesday’s forecast is for east winds at just 10-15 knots

The Big Mohawk from Belmar reported a 30-man boat limit of sea bass plus some ling today.

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