Fluke action moving from bay to ocean

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Chase Colson of Cumming Ga. caught this flounder and several more from the Old Grounds. Chase Colson of Cumming Ga. caught this flounder and several more from the Old Grounds.

Connor Colson vacationing from Cumming, Ga. was able to net several flounder, bluefish and two black sea bass at the Old Grounds. Connor Colson vacationing from Cumming, Ga. was able to net several flounder, bluefish and two black sea bass at the Old Grounds.

Seasonal fishing is beginning to settle into the back bays, inlets and reefs. What started out to be a great flounder season in the back bays is now shifting to the ocean reefs and wrecks and Delaware Bay's Old Grounds. As we enter into the last couple of weeks of July anglers are still catching flounder in the back but the keepers are few and far between as the fish continue to move out into the ocean.

Tautog season will kick back in Friday, July 27 with a one fish limit at 15 inches. These fish are already beginning to hit the lines but anglers must release the fish until the season opens back up.

The weakfish continue to be caught and in good numbers. Tom Christ of Brennan Marine Supply in Somers Point reported that Bob Whiteside and party of Linwood ventured to the Great Egg Inlet and the Ocean City Reef and came back to the dock with a 16-inch weakfish as well as four keeper flounder. They were using a minnow, squid, and Gulps combo.

Angler Rick Rosenthal and party fished aboard Cashmere and bagged five keeper flounder ranging from 20-22 inches. They were at the southern end of the Ocean City Reef.

Frank Jankowski of Frank's Boat Rentals in Strathmere said the flounder are still being caught in his area but the finding a keeper is the challenge. He said being in the right spot at the right time is key. At least one keeper flounder was brought back to the dock every day this past week ranging from 17 1/2 to 22 inches. The bait proven much success at Frank's Boat Rentals has been minnows with a strip of squid above the minnow.

The biggest flounder brought in at Frank's was a 22-inch landed by Scot and Billy Pfeiffer of Abington, Pa., along with a nice 20-inch second keeper.

Crabbing, said Jankowski, is the most family fun right now with the crabs keeping the kids pulling up the handlines as quick as mom or dad can get the crabs out of the net. The sizes are still on the small side, at about 4 1/2 to 5 inches but there is an occasional 5 1/2 incher on the line. As the crab sheds and grows and the season progresses there should be plenty of big crabs.

Some notable catches at Frank's Boat Rentals this past week include: Rick Mallon of Croydon, Pa. with an 18-inch flounder; Maggie Hinkel,12, of Lebanon, Pa. caught a 17 1/2- and 18 1/4-inch flounder; Morgan and Maddie Martino, 12 year old twins of Medford caught two dozen crabs; the Pizarro and LoCastro party of Easton, Pa. caught 45 crabs; Gary Ackonmans of Collegeville, Pa. caught a 17 3/4-inch flounder; Leighann Conboy of Horsham, Pa. caught a 19-inch flounder; Nick Formelio and party of Williamstown netted 40 crabs; Cole Meenan of Chalfont, Pa. caught a 19 3/4-inch flounder; Scott and Billy Pfeiffer of Abington, Pa. caught a 20 and 22-inch flounder; Albert Wankmiller and party of Havertown, Pa. netted 48 crabs and Greg Trusky of Exton, Pa. caught two 17 1/2-inch flounder.

Capt. Frank W. Breakell of Brynnie-B Inshore Fishing hosted the Heiman family (Bob, Marie, Alex, David, and Andrew) along with Breakell's daughter, Chloe on the Heiman's boat last week. They fished an inshore wreck using clam and squid on Breakell's line of rigs - Brown Dog Bomb Rigs. They got caught up in trigger fish action. The kids had a blast, hooking up on nearly every drop, said Breakell. Triggers, he said, are great fighters on light tackle, and make for delicious table fare.

The next day, Breakell hosted the Heiman's again but on a surf fishing trip in Ocean City. They used bloodworms again on the Brown Dog Bomb Rig. They caught kingfish, spot, and small dog fish (shark).

On a more recent trip, Breakell fished with Johnnie Ball of Port Norris on the Stone Harbor beach during the early morning on the outgoing tide. He used bloodworms and Brown Dog Bomb Kingfish rigs and landed 11 kingfish and a lot of spot. Later in the morning the spot dominated.

Chris Colson of Cumming, Ga. checked in with us while vacationing in the area. Last Tuesday he took his two sons, Chase and Connor, fishing at the Old Grounds in the Delaware Bay. They were able to net 10 keeper flounder, a bluefish and two black sea bass.

Tammy Carbon of Avalon Hodge Podge Bait and Tackle in Avalon said that inshore action could be better but it seems the "hot" water is counter-productive to catching the majority of the fish. That being said, there were a few fluke caught using minnows and squid while drifting behind Avalon, she reported.

The Nev’R Enuf charter reported all day action of 1- to 2-pound bluefish at 2 Fathom Buoy on the troll. He also said that he had keeper-size fluke while bottom fishing at the same location. Charlie Davison of Avalon landed a 3.8-pound, 22-inch flounder while fishing the Townsend Inlet Reef also using minnows and squid. John Janderchick of Pennsylvania weighed in some porgys he caught at Cape May Point using squid. The largest was 15 inches and just over 1 ½ pounds.

The sixth annual Grassy Sound Flounder Tournament was held last Saturday. The results include: First Place Heaviest Flounder: Gary Errickson of Dennisville, 4.7 pounds fish. Second Place: Bob Lutz of Williamstown, 4.5 pounds. Third Place: Tim Fehr of Philadelphia, 4.46 pounds. Three Heaviest Combined: Mike Dougherty of West Wildwood, 8.1 pounds. Women’s Division: Janet McCullough of Southampton, Pa., 3.7 pounds. Children’s Division: Jack Lynch of Steelmantown, 2.7 pound. First Place Bridge Division and Bill Kinsley Award: Marie Nickerson of Wildwood Crest. Second Place Bridge Division: Bob Steinmetz aka BobKat, West Wildwood. The winning flounder was caught on Pearl White Gulp near the Stone Harbor spoils site.

Some notable catches weighed in at Grassy Sound last weekend include: Ray Frankson Crew of Warrington, Pa. caught three keeper flounder to 19 inches on minnows from a rental boat during the incoming tide near marker 445. Chris Buggey, Jr. of Philadelphia caught three stripers with one keeper at 30 inches off the Grassy Sound fishing pier. He was using clam during incoming tide. Don Raggs of Philadelphia caught six kingfish on clam during the incoming tide off the pier and Alfredo Candeloro also of Philadelphia caught a nice blue fish and two sea bass off the pier. He was using minnows during the outgoing tide.

Another popular fishing tournament now in its 19th year is the annual Duke of Fluke Tournament hosted by Sterling Harbor Bait and Tackle in Shawcrest. Again, there was a tremendous turnout with 123 boats participating in the boat division and 35 anglers fishing from kayaks.

The results are: Single Heaviest Fluke: first place Capt. Scott Pierce onboard Tuna Chick with an 8.11-pound flounder. Second place and third place tie - Capt. Rob Kurian onboard Sea Esta and Capt. Mike Mulholland onboard Deptford Mike with 7.67-pound flounder.

Five Heaviest Fluke: first place Capt. Skip Jastremski onboard Stalker II with a total of 33.30 pounds. Second place Capt. Adam Crouthamel onboard Adam Bomb with 30.32 pounds and third place Capt. Roy Lucadema of Predator with 27.75 pounds.

Duchess Award went to Ashley Lucadema with a 7.67-pound flounder. The Junior Angler Award was earned by Josh Edgar with a 4.33-pound flounder.

In the Kayak Division, first place went to David Hirsch with a 2.94-pound flounder, second place went to Dalton Campbell with a 2.24-pounder and third place went to Gerald Devlin, Jr. with a 1.91-pound fish.

The Heaviest Sea Bass was caught by Greg DeFelice onboard Rain Man with a 3.69-pound sea bass and the Heaviest Bluefish prize was given to Bruce Fish onboard Gone Fishin' for his 1.58-pound bluefish.

Captain Ray Szulczewski of the charter Tide Runner out of Cape May checked in this week. He is a local fly fisherman and commented on how the hot weather is slowing down the fishing in the Cape May area. The water temperatures are becoming extreme and he is seeing most of the action around the inlet and in the ocean where the water is clearer and close to 80. This past week he was able to catch flounder, bluefish, some stripers and an occasional weakfish. All of the fish, he said, have been on the small size.

Captain John Sowerby of Hooked Up II out of South Jersey Marina in Cape May said the great tuna chunk and jig bite slowed down late last week after being on fire earlier in the week. The bluefins that were up to 100 pounds and thick disappeared almost altogether by last weekend and at that time no one really knows where they went. He thinks they probably headed north up along the 30 fathom line to the hills and lumps. Right now, he reported, it is all yellowfins for the most part and it is also unknown if they will be there in the big numbers later this week when the boat traffic is far less than the last few days.

He said he heard that a few boats had banner days chunking and jigging yellowfins last weekend but for most it was a slow experience with one or two, if any.

As a reminder, all anglers must inquire about the free saltwater fishing registration. See www.countmyfish.noaa.gov or call 888-674-7411 to find out if you need a license to fish your desired species. Print out the certificate and keep in on you while fishing. You can also stop in any bait and tackle store for more details.

Fishing Notes:

- Captain Skip Jastremski of Stalker II is now deepwater flounder fishing every day. Call 609-972-5218 or see www.stalkerfishingcharters.net.

- The Royal Flush is sailing three trips a day. The times are 8 a.m.-noon, 1-5 p.m. and 7-11 p.m. The Royal Flush is catching flounder, sea bass, snapper blues, and some weak fish on all trips, call 609-522-1395 or check them out on Facebook at Royal Flush Fishing business page.

Fishing reports and photos can be emailed to Heather Holtzapfel James at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or faxed to 609-465-9155. Reports need to be in by Sunday evening of each week.

 

 

Tides -- Week of July 20

Wildwood

                                    AM Low          AM High          PM Low          PM High

Friday                          4:10                 9:57                 4:01                 10:05

Saturday                       4:47                 10:37               4:44                 10:43

Sunday                        5:24                 11:18               5:30                 11:23

Monday                       6:04                 12:02               6:20                 none

Tuesday                       6:48                 12:07               7:16                 12:50

Wednesday                  7:36                 12:56               8:17                 1:45

Thursday                      8:30                 1:53                 9:24                 2:46

 

Ocean City

                                    AM Low          AM High          PM Low          PM High

Friday                          4:12                 9:56                 4:03                 10:04

Saturday                       4:49                 10:36               4:46                 10:42

Sunday                      5:26                 11:17               5:32                 11:22

Monday                       6:06                 12:01               6:22                 none

Tuesday                       6:50                 12:06               7:18                 12:49

Wednesday                  7:38                 12:55               8:19                 1:44

Thursday                      8:32                 1:52                 9:26                 2:45

 

Meet Elvis Jones of Paramus with his whopping 2 1/2-pound sea bass caught aboard the Royal Flush out of Wildwood. Meet Elvis Jones of Paramus with his whopping 2 1/2-pound sea bass caught aboard the Royal Flush out of Wildwood.

Joe Lutek of North Wildwood proudly displays his 3- and 3 1/2-pound flounders caught aboard the Royal Flush out of Wildwood. Joe Lutek of North Wildwood proudly displays his 3- and 3 1/2-pound flounders caught aboard the Royal Flush out of Wildwood.

Capt. Skip Jastremski took first place for the five heaviest fluke category in the 19th annual Duke of Fluke Tournament held July 14 out of Sterling Harbor Bait and Tackle in Shawcrest. All five fish totaled 33.30 pounds. He captained Stalker II. Capt. Skip Jastremski took first place for the five heaviest fluke category in the 19th annual Duke of Fluke Tournament held July 14 out of Sterling Harbor Bait and Tackle in Shawcrest. All five fish totaled 33.30 pounds. He captained Stalker II.

- Josh Edgar took first place in the junior angler division in the 19th annual Duke of Fluke Tournament held out of Sterling Harbor Bait and Tackle in Shawcrest July 14. His flounder weighed 4.33 pounds. - Josh Edgar took first place in the junior angler division in the 19th annual Duke of Fluke Tournament held out of Sterling Harbor Bait and Tackle in Shawcrest July 14. His flounder weighed 4.33 pounds.

Capt. Scoot Pierce took first place in the single heaviest division in the 19th annual Duke of Fluke Tournament held out of Sterling Harbor Bait and Tackle in Shawcrest July 14. His flounder weighed 8.11 pounds. He fished aboard Tuna Chick. Capt. Scoot Pierce took first place in the single heaviest division in the 19th annual Duke of Fluke Tournament held out of Sterling Harbor Bait and Tackle in Shawcrest July 14. His flounder weighed 8.11 pounds. He fished aboard Tuna Chick.

Charlie Davison of Avalon landed a 3.8-pound, 22-inch fluke while fishing the TI Reef using minnows and squid. Charlie Davison of Avalon landed a 3.8-pound, 22-inch fluke while fishing the TI Reef using minnows and squid.

Cole Meenan of Chalfont, Pa. caught a 19 3/4-inch flounder while fishing aboard a Frank's Boat Rental boat. Cole Meenan of Chalfont, Pa. caught a 19 3/4-inch flounder while fishing aboard a Frank's Boat Rental boat.

Morgan and Maddie Martino, 12 year old twins, of Medford, netted two dozen crabs while aboard a Frank's Boat Rental boat.

Morgan and Maddie Martino, 12 year old twins, of Medford, netted two dozen crabs while aboard a Frank's Boat Rental boat.

- Nick Formelio and party of Williamstown, caught 40 crabs aboard a Frank's Boat Rental boat. - Nick Formelio and party of Williamstown, caught 40 crabs aboard a Frank's Boat Rental boat.

Albert Wankmiller and party of Havertown, Pa. caught 48 crabs while aboard a Frank's Boat Rental boat. Albert Wankmiller and party of Havertown, Pa. caught 48 crabs while aboard a Frank's Boat Rental boat.

Alex Heiman and Chloe Breakell with their triggers caught off inshore wrecks while fishing with Capt. Frank Breakell of Brynnie-B Inshore Fishing. Alex Heiman and Chloe Breakell with their triggers caught off inshore wrecks while fishing with Capt. Frank Breakell of Brynnie-B Inshore Fishing.


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