Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Lack of Bait + Fewer Fish = Slim Pickings

If you have been reading recent reports about RI fishing, you would think forty and fifty pound stripers would be jumping in your waders.  Realize these are "highlight fish".  Yes, a few of these fish are being taken by boaters fishing at Block Island for the most part. With hundreds of boats a day probing the Block's waters, some fish are bound to be caught. Fishing from shore is a different ballgame.
If shore fishing were a hospital patient, it would be on life support.  Not much is going on.  There is a noticeable lack of bait near shore.  Sure, there are some menhaden in the Bay, and pods of sandeels seem to be showing up way off shore.  But, close shore there is little or nothing. Don't expect the bait situation to change until at least mid August when bay anchovies start to move along the oceanfront.
No question, there are fewer fish around.  Most will agree that numbers are down.  That's why we can only keep one fish a day. From shore the shortage is magnified as shore fishing in the summer has been on a downhill slide here in RI for the last several years.
I was out last evening/night fishing a high percentage spot.  The water was rough, but clean.  Ideal conditions.  I slugged it out in multiple spots along a shoreline.  The results were just one lone schoolie about 20 inches that was caught on a white Slug-go after dark. It was odd that there was just one other person fishing this popular spot, and he got nothing.  It seems to me that shore fishermen are giving up striper fishing in droves in the summertime. I know a lot of shore fishermen and most have either given it up or cut back big time.  Most realize there is little to catch right now.