OCEAN: Anglers out of Hatteras had decent offshore catches but success rates have taken a modest step backwards as compared to the previous weeks catches, a few dolphin were caught-some being very large specimens along with scattered wahoo and both yellow & blackfin tuna. Billfish catches continue to improve with releases of sailfish, white and blue marlin. Bottom fishing in deep water was a bright spot with much diversity including grey triggerfish, vermillion snapper, greater amberjack, snowy and yellowedge grouper, blackbelly rosefish, and spinycheek scorpionfish. Nearshore fishing was awesome and was almost exclusively bluefish and spanish mackerel-both being caught in very high numbers. Fishing out of Oregon Inlet yielded very good offshore catches with limits of dolphin on most outings along with some very large bigeye and yellowfin tuna. Scattered catches of wahoo and blackfin tuna were also noted. Billfish release’s were plentiful. Nearshore action was similar to that of Hatteras anglers with bluefish and spanish mackerel being most common along with the addition of moderate amounts of king mackerel and amberjack, scattered catches of cobia and undersize striped bass were also recorded.
INLETS/SOUNDS/BAYS: Fishing out of Hatteras was fair but continues to improve with weakfish and spotted seatrout being most prevalent , bluefish, Spanish mackerel, and “in-slot” red drum rounded out the catches. Fishing in the Northern area offered a very diverse mix of species all caught in moderate amounts including bluefish, spot, kingfish, croaker, flounder, black seabass, hake, silver perch, pinfish, pigfish, and atlantic cutlassfish (ribbonfish). Anglers fishing around the Oregon Inlet bridge pilings caught some very large sheepshead and black drum.
SHORE/PIERS: South beach anglers caught plenty of bluefish and spanish mackerel if they were lucky enough to be there for their short term blitzes, flounder catches have made a marked improvement in frequency this previous week. Citation size pompano are still being caught on a regular basis. North beach anglers have been catching the blitzing blues as well along with spanish mackerel mixed in most of the time. Pompano are being caught but are significantly smaller than the South beach giants, sea mullet, striped burrfish, puffers, pinfish, pigfish, menhaden, dogfish, and hake have also been caught in moderation. Cownose rays were thick and almost unavoidable when the school’s passed by.