Saturday, May 18, 2013

Far Less Fish but Bigger

The reports paint a rosy picture of our striper fishing this week.  I don't see it that way.  There has been a noticeable decrease in the numbers of schoolies around in the last week in both the Bay and along the oceanfront, but there are reports of some large fish being taken here and there.  However, it will take considerable effort to catch one of those few big fish.
The ocean has been rough this week with the fronts going through.  Many places have been dirty with sand and weed and as of yesterday, good size rollers were still pounding the shoreline.  My sons and friends have been out along the oceanfront many times in the last week. The numbers of fish, particularly schoolies, are down, but there are occasionally big fish being taken.  I'm talking fish over 20 lbs.
I have been hitting the Bay from shore.  The numbers of schoolies are down along the Bay, but bluefish are on the increase.  I haven't seen big schools of blues, but these are loners who play havoc with plastic offerings.
My brother has been out in the boat a couple of times this week.  He got a couple of small stripers and small bluefish, but his target was mainly keeper bass.  The upper Bay has a lot of menhaden right now, but not that many big fish under them.  My brother live lined pogies most of one day in some real good spots.  He had several chases from stripers, but the fish were too small to take the bait.  He was also harassed by large blues that were just chopping up the offerings.
So, for the first time in  a month, I would rate the fishing as only fair right now. That could change in the coming days, especially in the Bay where lots of big bait is holed up.  Yes, there are some bigger fish around, but you will have to really work to catch one.