OCEAN: Fishing patterns are pretty much the same as the previous week & this is a good thing. Offshore action out of Hatteras marinas remained very good with plenty of citation size blackfin tuna hitting the docks daily. Dolphin catches have increased with some nice size gaffers starting to show up along with a few wahoo, atlantic bonito, and little tunny. Bottom fishing in deep water has yielded very high numbers of citation size grey triggerfish on most outings along with moderate amounts of black seabass, amberjack, and vermillion snapper. Inshore catches primarily consisted of bluefish along with a few weakfish and large over-slot red drum. North beach marinas had good success as well with a few but very large gaffer dolphin and moderate amounts of yellowfin tuna caught on most trips, a few bigeye tuna have started to show up along with an occasional billfish release. Inshore anglers caught plenty of bluefish to keep them busy along with a few nice spotted seatrout
INLETS/SOUNDS/BAYS: Things were slow in Hatteras in these water’s-with a few bluefish & red drum caught-but for the most part was uneventful. Anglers from Oregon Inlet northward had much better luck with plenty of undersize striped bass being caught on a daily basis along with much improved keeper ratios on spotted seatrout catches, early morning hours have offered the best results in regard to both of these species. Assorted others were caught throughout the region in low amounts.
PIERS/SHORE: Anglers fishing from Avon southward were very pleased with the improved red drum catches with all sizes being landed from small “puppy drum” up to the over-slot giants, plenty of kingfish (sea mullet) and puffers were also reported. Northern beaches continue to catch plenty of puffers and sea mullet along with a few short term isolated bluefish blitzes. A host of others were caught in low amounts.
Brian A Melott
Recreational Port Agent
Division of Marine Fisheries
NC Department of Environmental Quality
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OCEAN: The impacts of the coastal storm have keep offshore and mid-range fishing grounds inaccessible this previous week. Inshore anglers did manage to catch a few spanish mackerel, bluefish, and red drum-but this was limited as well due to rough sea’s.
INLETS/SOUNDS/BAYS: Effects of the nor’easter have impacted these anglers to lesser extent. The few anglers that did tough it out caught a low amount of a mixed bag of species including flounder, croaker, kingfish, pigfish, and pinfish. The causeway (Little Bridge) did yield a few striped bass & spotted seatrout.
PIERS/SHORE: These fisherman were restricted least of all, surf casting was tough for obvious reasons-a few red drum and dogfish sharks were reported. Pier fishing was the best option these last few days- red drum, dogfish sharks, and pompano were caught in moderation by those trying their luck in the unfavorable weather conditions.
Brian A. Melott
Marine Fisheries Tech II
OCEAN: Limits of dolphin were had by most anglers heading offshore this previous week, billfish catches have improved significantly with some boats returning with a “Grand-Slam” catch of sailfish and both blue & white marlin. The Hatteras offshore action has picked up with citation size wahoo and plenty of blackfin tuna along with lesser amounts of other assorted tuna’s. Midrange/near shore trips have yielded a few over-slot red drum along with high volume catches of both spanish mackerel & bluefish.
INLETS/SOUNDS/BAYS: Anglers struggled to catch much of anything in these waters, most reported not even getting a bite or at best a few undersize flounder & trout. Spot, croaker, pigfish, and sea mullet were caught in moderation offering something for the dinner table when little else was available. Manns Harbor/Mashoes anglers caught a few undersize striped bass. Anglers fishing the Roanoke Sound in the early morning hours did manage to catch a few keeper spotted seatrout & weakfish but this has dropped off as well.
PIERS/SHORE: Fishing success rates have been moderate in these waters with a mixed bag of species caught, beaches from Avon southward have produced some decent catches of spanish mackerel & bluefish for those fortunate enough to be there for the short -term blitzes. Pompano & sea mullet are still available in the near shore surf zone with sand fleas being the bait of choice, a host of others were caught in lesser amounts including lizardfish, black drum, sheepshead, dogfish sharks, pinfish, spot, pigfish, croaker, blue runner, silver perch, cutlassfish, puffer, weakfish, spotted seatrout, skates & assorted rays.
Brian A. Melott
Marine Fisheries Tech II