May 23 2015

Virginia Beach Sport Fishing Rundown

julie7

By Dr. Julie Ball


Many consider Memorial Day as the beginning of summer. With a pleasant forecast on the horizon along with some good fishing, the holiday weekend could be a great kick-off for summertime fishing.

Although the bite is not as crazy as it was a week ago, the drum bite continues to keep anglers occupied. Several boats are reporting multiple hook-ups, with good catches of big red and black drum. The black drum continue to come from the Bayside of the Eastern Shore near buoys 10, 13 and 16, where sea clams and chowder clams are the bait of choice. Red drum are still ravaging the breakers off the Eastern Shore barrier islands, while they are also mixing in with black drum among the shoals off Fisherman’s Island, near buoy 10, Nautilus Shoal, and the Nine-Foot Shoal areas. Surf anglers are also still pulling big reds from the surflines along the Eastern Shore barrier islands as well as Sandbridge.

Although a bit early, the first Spanish mackerel catch was confirmed this week off the Virginia Beach Ocean Front. Look for this action to pick up as the waters continue to warm.

Cobia hunters in North Carolina are still reporting excellent catches this week as they intercept schools of fish heading north. But this week, both sightings of schools of cobia as well boated fish confirm their arrival in local waters off Virginia. This trend will only improve over the next months.

Flounder action is still picking up, but there is room for improvement in lower Bay waters. Folks are catching some fish at the CBBT this week, but most of the action is still coming from more protected areas. Both Rudee and Lynnhaven Inlets are still giving up decent hauls of flatfish, with some flatties exceeding 20-inches. The best hauls continue to come from the backwaters on the Eastern Shore, such as the seaside inlets of Oyster and Wachapreague. Strips of squid, fresh stripped bait, and Gulp baits are some offerings working for flatfish this week. Scattered puppy drum and school-sized striped bass are also hitting in many of these same shallow water locations.

Croaker are keeping pier anglers content as small to medium-sized hardheads take squid and bloodworm offerings off Virginia Beach, Ocean View, Willoughby and Buckroe lately. Some decent sized sea mullet are also in the mix, along with some Taylor and snapper bluefish and small spot. Striped bass are also a possibility in these areas, as well as along all the lower Bay crossings and inlets, but be sure to check the regulations carefully.

With seabass season now open, boats are reporting scattered catches of fish, with some fish pushing up to 4-pounds coming from both offshore and nearshore structures. Tautog are available in these same areas, but remember that tog season is closed. Reports of spadefish around the islands and pilings of the CBBT and at the Chesapeake Light Tower are trickling in, but the water needs to warm up a few more degrees for these fish to begin biting with consistency. Sheepshead are also beginning to respond along the CBBT, and some nice fish are still taking bait intended for drum along the shoals.

deepdropThe deep dropping scene is still producing good catches for boats as the dogfish continue to clear out. Expect a selection of blueline tilefish and golden tilefish, along with black bellied rosefish, barrelfish, and a variety of scattered grouper from along the edges of the Norfolk Canyon. Jumbo seabass provide a nice by-catch in these areas.

The offshore trolling scene should heat up soon off Virginia. In Carolina waters, the offshore fleet is enjoying some good gaffer action, with yellowfin tuna and big eye tuna adding to the mix. A few billfish are beginning to make things interesting as they enter trolling spreads, with some big blue marlin taking the lead this week.


Permanent link to this article: http://vbsf.net/2015/05/23/virginia-beach-sport-fishing-rundown-3/

May 19 2015

Peninsula Saltwater Sport Fisherman Report

pen-wht2

By Dr. Ken Neill III, Seaford VA

 


The drum bite remains excellent. The black drum bite may be slowing down a bit while the red drum bite is getting better. Fishing for both species is very good. More sheepshead have been caught by anglers targeting black drum and joining the bycatch Ken Neill Black Drumthis week are cobia. The cobia bite is red hot out of the Outer banks with fish to 100 pounds being caught. That is the place to be for cobia right now but some have already made it to the bay and have been caught by drum fishermen. The bay cobia fishery here should really get going over the next couple of weeks.

Some flounder are being caught at most of the normal flounder spots but only a few. The exception is the seaside inlets of the Eastern Shore where some nice limits of flatfish are being caught. There have been some flounder caught in the shallows by anglers targeting puppy drum and speckled trout. A few puppy drum are being caught and a very, very few speckled trout. What anglers are finding in the shallow flats and grass beds are good numbers of small striped bass.

Bottom fishermen are finding good numbers of croaker and sea mullet. A lot of the croaker are small but the average size seems to be improving. A few eating-sized spot are also being caught.

The offshore fishing is good to our south. Boats fishing out of Hatteras are catching dolphin and the blue marlin fishing is good. Two over 600 pounds were weighed in this past weekend at the Hatteras Village Tournament. Boats out of Oregon Inlet are catching good numbers of yellowfin tuna and some impressive bigeye tuna. There has not been much fishing for pelagics off of Virginia yet. It is time to start. There have been tuna caught to our north already. Most of the boats running out of Virginia are bottom fishing and are coming back with good catches of tilefish, sea bass, and some grouper. The coastal wrecks are still holding some cod along with sea bass.


flounder bowl banner

Permanent link to this article: http://vbsf.net/2015/05/19/peninsula-saltwater-sport-fisherman-report-2/

May 16 2015

Virginia Beach Sport Fishing Rundown

julie7

By Dr. Julie Ball


As the weather continues to warm, the spring fishing trend continues to evolve, showing promise of a good season.

The red and black drum scene continues to improve on the Eastern Shore side of the Bay.
This week, the black drum activity in the Bay took a notable leap, with several boats catching multiple fish. Plenty of big blacks measuring to over 46-inches are hitting offerings of chowder clams and sea clams, with anglers experiencing good catches from near buoys 13 and 16 off Cape Charles, to buoys 8 and 10 along Nautilus Shoal. Red drum action is also escalating, with anglers finding good action along the breakers and within the inlet at Fisherman’s Island as well as along Nautilus and the Nine-foot Shoals, especially at night. Both cut bait and blue crabs are working for reds lately.

Deep dropping action on a Rudee Head Boat

Deep dropping action on a Rudee Head Boat

Anglers are still finding some striped bass action along the CBBT, where a variety of top water lures thrown along the spines at all four islands is getting the job done, especially at first light and at dusk. The current Bay guidelines can be tricky right now, so be sure to review the regulations before you go.

Small to medium-sized croaker, small spot and some sea mullet, together with nice weather is making local fishing piers popular lately. Piers along the ocean front are also hosting some snapper bluefish in the mix.

The Bay flounder bite is still not on fire, but the action continues to develop. Some flatfish are responding to offerings of live bait and jigs presented around the structure of the Bay Bridge Tunnel this week. Keeper-sized flounder are still active within Lynnhaven and Rudee Inlets, while anglers are still reporting fulfilled limits of respectable flatties from the seaside inlets and backwaters of the Eastern Shore. A few puppy drum are also responding in many of these same shallow water locations.

Wreck fishing may attract some renewed interest, since the seabass season reopened this week. A few boats tested the water on opening day, with some decent fish to show, although not huge numbers of them. You can keep up to 15 seabass per person, measuring at least 12.5-inches long. Spadefish will appear soon at the Chesapeake Light Tower and nearshore wrecks, and a few nice sheepshead are also beginning to show along the CBBT.

Deep dropping is still a good bet, with blueline tilefish, golden tilefish, blackbellied rosefish, wreck fish, and a variety of grouper still on the menu along the edges of the Norfolk Canyon. With black seabass season open, anticipate an increase in deep dropping interest.

The Carolina blue water bite is still going on with yellowfin tuna and bull dolphin dominating the scene. A few billfish are also still a possibility.


Permanent link to this article: http://vbsf.net/2015/05/16/virginia-beach-sport-fishing-rundown-2/

May 13 2015

World Record Carolina Hake Certified


hake

The Carolina Hake, caught by Johnny Boyd earlier this year, has been approved as the All-Tackle World Record for the species by the International Game Fish Association. Boyd’s fish weighed 5 pounds 10 ounces when it was weighed at the Virginia Marine Resources Commission. The fish was examined at the Virginia Institute of Marine Science (VIMS) to confirm the species identification. Boyd donated his fish to VIMS to be added to their fish collection.

Boyd was fishing out of Virginia Beach aboard the Healthy Grin. Johnny’s fish establishes the initial world record for Carolina Hake. It is the 11th All-Tackle World Record caught on the Healthy Grin.

Record Details
Angler Johnny R. Boyd
Weight of Fish 2.55 kg (5 lbs 10 oz)
Length of Fish 58.42 cm ( 23 in)
Girth of Fish 38.1 cm ( 15 in)
Location of Catch Virginia Beach
Date of Catch 2/1/2015
Type of Rod Custom
Type of Reel Avet
Type of Line Power Pro
Line Size 65 lb
Method of Catch Bottom fishing
Lure or Bait crab


Permanent link to this article: http://vbsf.net/2015/05/13/world-record-carolina-hake-certified/

May 13 2015

Peninsula Saltwater Sport Fisherman Report

pen-wht2

By Dr. Ken Neill III, Seaford VA

 


TJ Hale and a nice Black Drum

TJ Hale and his nice Black Drum

Drum fishing is nothing short of fantastic. Big red and black drum are being caught in large numbers. Big black drum are being caught in the general areas of buoys 16,13, and 10 and in some of the seaside inlets of the Eastern Shore. Big red drum are being caught in the seaside surf and on Nautilus, Latimer, and 9-Foot Shoals. You have some time to get in on the red drum bite but the black drum will not hang out for long. They may or may not stage around the islands of the CBBT for the summer after they leave the areas they are at now. The good news is that about the time that the black drum bite wanes, cobia will be here. There have been some cobia caught out of Hatteras but it has not taken off yet. This should be the week. There will be some in the bay later this month with our cobia fishery really getting going in June.

There are some striped bass being caught. Larger fish are being found at the CBBT and around the barrier islands of the Eastern Shore. Smaller fish are being caught up in the rivers and on the flats. If you plan on keeping any striped bass that you catch, make sure that you know the current regulations. They are a little complicated this time of year: www.mrc.virginia.gov . In an effort to better communicate with the angling public, VMRC also has a Facebook page but you have to be sure that you are on the official page: www.facebook.com/MRCVirginia .

Flounder are being caught inside of the seaside inlets of the Eastern Shore and some have been caught inside of Rudee Inlet. Hampton Bar, Back River, Back River Reef have produced some keeper flounder and some have been caught at the CBBT. The flounder fishery should continue to pick up as the water continues to warm. Some puppy drum have been caught inside Rudee and Lynnhaven Inlets and on the western side of the bay but not in the numbers we have had the past few years. The fish we were catching have mostly grown out of the fishery. Drum are batch spawners and we may need another big spawn before we see fishing return to those levels. A notable no-show so far this spring has been speckled trout. Very few have been caught so far. A species that did show up this past week is the sheepshead. Several large sheepshead were caught by anglers targeting black drum.

Croaker and sea mullet are providing plenty of action for bottom fishermen though much of the catch is smaller fish. Some spot have been caught as well. Small bluefish can be found in the lower bay and along the oceanfront.

Dolphin catches have been good out of the Outer Banks. There have been good catches of yellowfin tuna along with some bigeye tuna out of Oregon Inlet. A few Virginia boats have made the long run to get in on the bite. It is time for our offshore waters to heat up.

Sea bass is open as of May 15. This will make wreck fishing trips popular. There are still some cod hanging on ocean wrecks along with the sea bass. The sea bass opening will also make offshore bottom fishing more attractive as anglers can now keep the big sea bass that they catch while targeting blueline tilefish.

Our club has another record winner. The Carolina Hake, caught by Johnny Boyd earlier this year, has been approved as the All-Tackle World Record. Johnny’s fish weighed 5 pounds 10 ounces. He was fishing aboard the Healthy Grin on Super Bowl Sunday. On any other day, that fish would have been cleaned but we were in a hurry to get home for the game. Doug Olander saw a photo of his fish and thought it was a Carolina hake and a large one at that. Luckily, Johnny had not yet cleaned his fish and he is now a World Record holder. This is the 11th All-Tackle World Record caught on the Healthy Grin.

“The Pirate”, Pete Bregant, will be the speaker at the May 19 meeting of the PSWSFA. He will discuss techniques for catching trophy-sized red drum. The Bishop Fishing Supply Triple Threat Tournament continues through the end of July. The fish are red drum, black drum, and cobia with the winners being determined by the combined length of length of the three species. Be sure to contact Rick Wineman to join the tournament prior to fishing.


flounder bowl banner

Permanent link to this article: http://vbsf.net/2015/05/13/peninsula-saltwater-sport-fisherman-report/

Older posts «