OCEAN: Offshore action continues to be good, anglers out of the Hatteras marinas caught plenty of citation size wahoo-one specimen weighed in at 92lbs! with most specimens in the 50lb + category. Moderate amounts of blackfin tuna along with a few scattered dolphin and billfish releases were also reported. Wreck fishing yielded decent catches of triggerfish, vermillion snapper, and blackbelly rosefish. Nearshore anglers caught quite a few red drum but most were over-slot one’s along with spotted seatrout and assorted sharks. Anglers out of the North beach marina’s had similar success with moderate amounts of wahoo hitting the docks, a few citation size ones were reported. Dolphin and both blackfin & yellowfin tuna were caught on a consistent basis along with a few king mackerel on some occasions. Nearshore anglers have been catching plenty of striped bass but keeper ratios have been less than desirable. Large sheepshead and a few little tunny and bluefish were also reported.

INLETS/SOUNDS/BAYS: A mixed bag of species have been caught in these waters, most anglers have been targeting striped bass and spotted seatrout with mixed results. Striped bass catches continue to improve throughout the region with the Roanoke Sound leading the way with the most consistent catches, time of day is crucial with early morning hours being most productive dropping off sharply afterwards. Spotted seatrout catches have followed a similar pattern with early morning & evening proving best, unlike the striped bass catches that were concentrated in one area the spotted seatrout were caught almost everywhere with keeper specimens in most cases. A host of others were caught in low-moderate amounts including flounder, sea robin, puffer, croaker, pigfish, pinfish, and kingfish.

PIERS/SHORE: The red drum catch continues to be good from North to South, anglers from Avon southward caught high numbers of very large over-slot specimens. Large size black drum have been caught in the backwash of the surf zone with plenty of puffers and citation size sea mullet mixed in on most outings. Anglers have reported catching bluefish and spotted seatrout on very productive/ short -term basis if you were lucky enough to have a line in the water when they were biting. A mixed bag of species were also caught in low-moderate amounts.

Brian A. Melott
Marine Fisheries Tech II