I know its been a while since my last report however I have had a pretty hectic couple of weeks. Blown motors, boat shuffles, and lots and lots of fish to clean when we get in have had me falling asleep before my head ever crushes into the pillow of the evening here lately and I know I have been a little lazy in keeping those that read this report informed. For this I apologize!
The Flounder action has remained quite steady in my book over the last couple of weeks with my all day trips, we continue to see modest to impressive numbers of nice fish on each and every trip that we have made. Along with the flatties we are also seeing a nice smattering of Sea Bass and a few Snapper Blues in the mix. When conditions are favorable we have really been able to see some great action and have been able to box some quality fish.
We have however seen a few setbacks in the program, primarily due to Mother Nature throwing us a curve ball from time to time with either a lousy drift or a wind opposing the current situation which makes things very difficult for us to work with, but for the most part the better days have far outnumbered the tough ones. With a little patients and a little luck the fish have been adding up quite nicely at the end of the day. Limit catches have been a regular occurrence on board and many days we have seen multiple limits around the rail for our fisherman. Getting a fresh fish for supper has seemed pretty easy.
We continue to fish over the rocky ledges and coral bottoms of the "old grounds" pretty much exclusively, the Delaware Bay has not produced much in the line of any real number of Flounder unless you center your day around some of the artificial reef sites, and even these locations have not been the most consistent. With the reefs its almost like wreck fishing where as once you catch up the fish hanging out on any particular location, it takes a while for more fish to populate the area. On the old grounds there are large schools of these Flatties moving around and once a good pile of fish is located you can work on them several days at times making life much simpler not having to deal with the short drifts and the tackle loss that you can see while structure fishing the artificial reefs. That's not to say we don't loose tackle; we loose more than our fair share on the hard bottoms but its much less than it would be when we fish over top of the artificial reefs. At times we have been able to drift the better part of a mile on the open bottom picking away at the fish for the entire drift.
The Delaware Bay has become alive with some Croakers now providing some good rod bending action however for the most part so far they have been a little on the small side. Half-Day trips have been enjoying the action lately with these scrappers and between the Croaks, the small Trout, and the snapper Blues Capt. Mike has reported some good fishing finally in the confines of the Bay with his Half Day trips. This fishing should only get better from here on out and with any luck the Croaks will continue to filter into the Bay the way they normally do providing some excellent fish catching opportunities in the weeks ahead.
The Offshore action continues to be real good with the Tuna fish. Boats targeting these fish have been enjoying quite the summer with these brutes both while trolling baits and lures as well as anchored up or drifting and chunking with Butterfish. Some of the best action has been on the inshore lumps however the edges of the canyons are also producing good numbers of Yellow Fin Tuna as well as a good number of Billfish. These fish have been around all summer long and it looks as though they will be sticking around for quite a while longer by the sounds of things. If you are interested in offshore fishing this seems to be a great year to take the gamble.
Water temperatures have still been way up in the mid to upper seventies and even tipping over eighty degrees on a few occasions when the ocean gets like glass. We have still been enjoying some of that crystal clear water where you can see your baits and your fish long before they break the surface of the water. We have even seen a few small Mahi swimming around the boat a few different times and we continue to see various species of Sharks lurking about in these tropical like waters. Sea Turtles and baitfish are also ever present, and there has just recently been several pods of Whales spotted with all the Menhaden in the area.
By the time some of you read this report the month of July will just about be in the history books, our summer season seems to be just zipping by. We will continue to concentrate on these Flounder for hopefully several more weeks to come and I have to say that the outlook is very promising to continue to see decent landings with these fish well on into August and possibly beyond. I also look to see more of a variety catch with more and more Sea Bass being boxed and some snapper sized Blues in the mix. This is normally what we start to see and expect as the month of August progresses and this year shouldn't be any different. I will be sailing daily at 7 a.m. for the Fluke and whatever else we may catch and we generally get back in to the docks sometime after 4:00. Jigging has still been one of the best methods for catching the Flatties while fishing over these hard bottoms. We provide the squid and whatever fresh meat we can get our hands on. If you want something different please feel free to bring it along. Our Half-Day schedule is 8:00 a.m. and then again at 1:00 p.m. sailing daily for Croakers and anything else they can catch. We also will run evening trips on Both Friday and Saturday nights sailing at 6:00 p.m.
If you would like any more information about trips sailing out of the Wharf or you would like to book a private charter or reserve space on a special trip please give us a call at (302) 645-TUNA.
Until Next Week Happy Fishing!
Capt. Rick Yakimowicz
Thelma Dale IV