As the summer season comes to a close and gives way to autumn, the fishing scene here at the Wharf is also starting to see a change. After a full summer of mostly drift fishing for Flounders, with the weather patterns and the passing fronts and moderate winds that we have been seeing lately, I'm going to have to say that the majority of our fishing from now on out until the end of the year will be mostly anchor fishing over shipwrecks and artificial reefs targeting primarily the Sea Bass.
We seem to be stuck in a pattern now where we just see one front after another ushering in winds from all around the compass rose. This has made drifting no longer our best option for scraping up a good mess of fish. Even though the weather for the most part hasn't been what I would call bad, there has been just enough wind to throw a cog in the gears for an effective drift and we have been doing much better sitting on the anchor since last weeks hard southerly winds shook things up.
While we are still seeing a nice variety of fish while anchored, Sea Bass will now likely be the primary target with my regular All-Day trips. We should continue to see some Flounder over the structure in fact a Fluke has taken the pool every trip this past week even while we were anchored. These Flounder will continue to feed around the wrecks and artificial reefs while fattening up for their offshore migration for several more weeks and we will happily accept them as a bonus by-catch while fishing for the Bass until the season comes to an end. I can remember wreck trips recently where the Flounder jigging was red hot with nice fish and it is entirely possible that we could see just such action on any given day. I also expect to see some Bluefish, Trigger Fish, eventually some Tog, and maybe even a few Porgies as the water temperatures start to change
during the next several weeks.
After several bouts last week with wind from every conceivable direction, and the offshore passing of the swell generating hurricane Igor over the weekend, the water temperatures are still very stable at around 72 degrees. I believe that the entire water column is still warm even on the bottom; the fish we have been bringing up from the depths feel like they have been wrapped up in a warm blanket! Not only is the water still warm it has also been rather clear, not the crystal clear water that we had for a few weeks but still clear enough to see the fish close to twenty feet or more from the surface as you are reeling them up. Even with all the wind and waves last week we still managed to have a pretty decent week of catching fish. I saw one of the best drifting days that we have had on Flounder that I have seen in several weeks, and we also saw hands down
the best Sea Bass action that we have had seen since the season opening in the spring. I have had several trips where top hooks have been in the mid to upper teens or more with nice keeper Sea Bass. Yesterday alone we landed over 170 keeper Bass for just twelve anglers fishing! That is what I would call a good day!
The outlook for fishing this fall season is very good. With my All-Day trips I expect to see more good action like I have seen recently with the Sea Bass and I also expect to see a nice smattering of Fluke until the Seasons close. Both the Summer Flounder and the Black Sea Bass seasons will close after October 12th. Sea Bass will reopen on the 1st of November however the Flounder will remain closed until next year. There is still a lot of fish around and they seem to be on the move right now. A bunch of nice Croakers has also shown back up in the Delaware Bay keeping that option open for private charters, Half-Day trips or those days when the Ocean may be just to rough to venture very far offshore. There has also been several Snapper Blues around both in the Bay and in the Ocean.
I will continue sailing daily at 7:00 a.m. with the regular All-Day trips. We will be anchor fishing over wrecks and reefs daily and the Sea Bass will be at the top of the menu. It is possible that we may make a few drifts from time to time but conditions will have to be ideal for me to even consider the drifting option now. We will also continue running Half-Day trips daily until the first week of October. Half-Day trips will be targeting primarily the Croakers. We are working on our fall schedule now for the special wreck trips for Sea Bass. When a list of dates becomes available to me I will have them posted on the special trip link from the home page. We are planning to run for the Bass as much as we can up until the final closure at the end of the year and we will be having several extended trips for these fish as they begin to move offshore.
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 V