Long Island/NYC Fishing Reports

Long Island/NYC Fishing Report - July 11th, 2014

The saltwater fishing during this report period was excellent. June cooperated as being the big striper month, with numerous 50-pound stripers caught under the pods of bunker located just outside the South Shore inlets and within Jamaica Bay and New York Bight. Some of the largest stripers were reported from Moriches Inlet to the east, and in Jamaica Bay where fly anglers did well casting bunker flies at the edges of the bunker schools. Some of the best fishing in Jamaica Bay occurred near JFK Airport.

As typical with targeting stripers under the schools of bunker, the fishing can be hit or miss as not all pods of bunker hold stripers. But many anglers scored big time, with some anglers reported a dozen or more keeper stripers per day, with many in the 30-pound class. Large bluefish, some breaking the 15-pound mark, were reported mixed in with the stripers, as were large smooth dogfish. 

Surfcasters did well on stripers and blues fishing fresh bunker chunks tight to the bottom off both the South and North beaches, and off Montauk Point. At dusk and dawn poppers and surface swimmers worked well, as did tins during the day. Fly casters caught schoolie stripers and blues to 5 pounds on Deceivers and Clouser Minnows fished during the low-light times of the day on the North Shore beaches, with the best action from the Nissequogue River east to Rocky Point.

The shark action for blue sharks, makos and browns was excellent with the water temperatures in the low to mid-60s – prime shark temperature. The best blue shark fishing was reported in 180 feet of water and deeper, with the 30-fathom fingers south of Shinnecock Inlet and off Montauk Point the prime spots.  Makos in the 75- to 150-pound class were mixed in with the blue sharks and closer to shore around the 20-fathom line, with largest makos weighed in at Montauk Point.

Large thresher sharks, some well over 300 pounds, were reported west of Shinnecock Inlet to Jones Inlet in 90 feet of water out to the 20-fathom line. These threshers are near-shore sharks that typically target bluefish and are occasionally hooked – and typically lost – by anglers fishing for ocean fluke and sea bass.

Schools of school-sized bluefin tuna were reported attaching schools of bait around the Coimbra Wreck.  This area has also held large schools of porpoise, indicating that the area is holding large schools of bait.

There were reports of good fluke fishing throughout the region in all the traditional fluke spots, including the South Shore inlets and reefs in the Long Island Sound. With the inshore water temperatures around 70 degrees, the fluke have worked their way from the back bays into the inlets and into the Sound where the water is cooler.

Squid strips and spearing combos, and bucktails tipped with squid strips or Gulp! baits were the top choice along both shores. Pool-winning fluke were typically between 5 and 7 pounds.

The offshore fluke fishing was spotty, with the exception of off the south side of Montauk Point, off Orient Point and the area between the Verrazano Bridge and Sandy Hook, where fluke to 7 pounds were reported by many boats. The large schools of squid that attract the fluke have been difficult to find as the squid haven’t settled into the 40- to 60-foot depths where they typically are found by the end of June. The surfcasting for fluke off the beaches was reported to be very good, with bucktails, tins bounced off the bottom and soft plastics all good bets. A fair number of sea robins were caught with the fluke.

The RSA sea bass season continued to be good, with open boats running out of Fire Island and Jones inlets reporting excellent fishing on the Fire Island artificial reef and the Hempstead reef. A good number of large porgies were mixed in with the sea bass.

Porgies have settled in to Montauk Point in good numbers, with excellent fishing being reported on clam and sandworms. Excellent porgy fishing was reported in the Peconic, Gardiners and Shinnecock bays and in New York Bight, where a good number of ling were also caught. 

The freshwater fishing was good for sunnies and bluegills, with the occasional largemouth bass reported. 

Guy Zummo

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