Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Glut of Bait Attracting All Kinds of Fish

I hit the oceanfront again yesterday.  Unlike the previous day, the water was calm due to a north wind, and any bait that was around was very visible.  Upon arriving at the beach, I scanned the surfline.  What I saw looked like a thick black line that paralleled the shore.  It was all bait, massive numbers of bay anchovies, that seemed as wide as a two lane road.  In addition, there were dark patches of bait here and there way out that were about the size of a school gym.  The bait way out was being attacked sporadically by roving pods of bluefish.  Sometimes you'd see several schools of blues working in different locations.
In my previous post, I told about millions of bluefish I found two days ago.  Well, big numbers of blues were still around yesterday as my son, Jon, and I landed 40 of them on poppers (see photo of jon landing a fish at right).  But, there are increasing numbers of other fish all being lured close to shore by the bait.  In places the bottom seems to be paved with undersized fluke.  We landed 20 of those on bucktail jigs when the blues weren't breaking.  At one point Jon landed fluke on six casts in a row.  We also caught good numbers of sea robins while fishing for fluke.  I also did see several keeper bass tear through bait schools that were almost at my feet.  The stripers, though, seemed to be loners and not interested in hitting anything as they keyed on this tiny half inch to an inch baitfish (see photo of bait at left).
So, we are in a rare dead of summer glut of fish right now.  While stripers continue to be in short supply, bluefish and fluke are around in astronomical numbers. So, I am taking what's available and having a great time with it!