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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Check Out This Report From Down In Maryland..
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The only fishing action reported this week comes from the surf zone and around the Ocean City Inlet. Surf fishermen continue to find large bluefish in the surf on bait rigs using either mullet or menhaden. A few striped bass are being caught, but apparently it's nothing to write home about. Surf fishermen in N.J. are not doing much better and North Carolina has striped bass big time. I'm not sure how we missed out on this years fall migration. There is evidence from boats within 15 miles of the beach of big schools of striped bass moving through the area. Why not take the shortest route to North Carolina from up north? That seems to be what the fish are doing. There are a lot of hopeful fishermen in boats drifting eels in the Ocean City Inlet trying to hook up a striped bass. A few are being caught, but the action has generally been termed slow.
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Looks like the same pattern that we have here
in New Jersey, the main body of fish stay offshore.. Why,, Water Temps are still favoritable along the beach,the bait is present
Peanuts,Sandeels etc....
What's OffShore That Makes Them Stay There
En-route to the South these days ??
 

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Man great question !!
I sure will be checkin back ta see the answers to this one !!!
Are there any clam boats workin inshore these days??would taht affect um???
is it possable they get chased by Bigger prey ??
Hope i dont sound to stupid just throwing something out there !!!!
 

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I think they realized where the eez line is :(

I dont know about you guys but the spring rins have been much better for me the past few years.

And this spring I hope to cash in on the bunker schools of Momouth if they are there again - the past two years Ive been up at the Cape.
 

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All this stormy weather drove everything off the beach. :( Some one had in their report about a capt. that could take you to the Long Island to Delaware trough and get you all the big stripers you could catch. ;)
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
It sure does look like where the bigger bait
is the bigger bass are....
Back in the Spring we had those BIG BUNKER
in close and plenty of 30-50lbers were caught
from shore,, during the last six weeks we
have had small bait (PeanutBunker) in close
and the Stripers have been small to match them..
 

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Aaaargh I knew it.

When I was a kid I used to watch surf fishermen throw lures waaaaaay out there and here I was with my dinky 5' snapper rod. It's the worst feeling, you see the fish in the distance and you can't reach them, like going to war without your rifle.

Now I got a surf rod and I'm all set, but they're offshore.

What does that mean?

DAMMIT! I'm getting a boat!!
 

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I'm not sure anyone will ever know why one year the bass are in close or offshore a bit. My guess is that they had just as good feeding opportunities out in deeper water and short of what they are following coming in to shallower waters, the just don't have any reason to do anything but follow them. At least when were talking about migratory stripers, the ones that summer between Montauk and Maine and are centered around Cape Cod. These fish seem to follow larger bait- herring, Bunker, Mackeral. So, unlike the summertime bass we see hanging around in NJ that make up a good part of the mullet run, these migratories we see in Nov/Dec are tailing bigger bait. Where that bait goes they go. This is my theory.

I think the mullet run bass do the same thing, all the bigger fish that have hung around thru the summer take off with the mullet as they go south. Last year, all my biggest bass during the mullet run were caught by the 2nd week in Sept. This year all the 15lbs and up where caught in the first week in Sept. in 74 degree water. By the 3rd week in Sept. it was all over. Go figure - but I'm positive those bigger fish kept pace with the mullet since they disappeared with the bigger schools of mullet and friends of mine who fished just above the Cheasy started seeing big'uns on mullet a week later.

Migratory fishing for stripers is about bait - find the bait and you'll find the fish - unless the bait is just everywhere(unconcentrated)and then what you have is a year like this one - fair to poor. But we still have December - that is some good news!

[ 12-08-2004, 10:14 PM: Message edited by: Ardmore Bill ]
 

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The water is much cleaner offshore and there is plenty of bait. Sardines, sand eels, rainfish and herring all frequent the deeper water, especially with the storms we have been having recently. If I was a bass, I would be staying out there too. Still a good three weeks to go for those south of LBI. Hell, it might be like a few winters back and fish right through....

[ 12-08-2004, 10:53 PM: Message edited by: eelinfool152 ]
 

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Maybe the bass saw the new regs. All the fish over 34" are staying offshore. Fish ain't dumb ya know. ;)
 

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Our experiences during the striper migration isn't necesarily a "p then q" argument. The fact that fishing was slow on the beach doesn't always mean the bass were offshore. Other possibilities need to be considered;

1. The bass could have been in the surf zone but there was no bait, therefore no feeding.

2. The biomass that ASMFC claims is out there is simply wrong. ( think weakfish )

3. The age structure of the biomass as determined by ASMFC is wrong.

4. As noted above, weather/bait/moons etc, all conspired to ensure tough fishing off the beach and for near-shore boats.

From my perspective, the timing of the run in Delaware Bay mirrored prior years. We had a run of large in the mid-October time frame. Then, the first weeks of November saw good fishing for large fish, the over 40 inch class. This coincided with Utsch's tournament, ASA etc. Yes, fish, and many large ones, can be caught in late November and December, but the first three weeks of November was once again the best for overall numbers of 40+ inch fish. Whether they arrive from the EEZ or the surf zone is anyone's guess.
 

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Not that this explanation helps or will make you feel better but I was out last weekend about 15 miles+ and was under one of the biggest schools of birds I have ever seen out of Cape May. The birds were pounding a huge pod of sardines that you could see on top flashing and read on the fish finder like a christmas tree, top to bottom when they went under you. Of course the blue fish were in mass, with stripers down below. and tuna on the outside. It was a food chain in full effect and like something out of a National Geographic highlight. A text book example of what fishing in a fish bowl is like also. Every fish came up gorged with sardines. Some of the birds were so gourged they had problems getting their fat a$$ out of the water. EVERY time you could get you bait through the blues you had a bass, big ones, no matter what you put down there. These fish hit everything, poppers, jigs, bucktails, dead sardines on a chin weight, eels, you name it. We threw it and hooked up. EVERY bass was released unharmed, as tempting as it was, and we kept some real nice eatin blue fish. We easily caught some 15+ pound blues and stripers over 36". Bewtween the 5 of us we had to catch at least 150 fish in a few hours. Thank god for the 3mile rule because if a netter came through that school he could have sank his boat with the weight if he took at all. It was a 1/2 mile x 1/2 school of fish at least. There were only 4 boats that had the pleasure of fishing in this dreamworld. To top it off we stopped at the rips on the way in and picked up three slot stripers for the dinner table. It was ashame to let the big guys go outside but what can you do.
 

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Jbones,
Im not sure the clammers are workin in close this year !!
We had um good around the clammers for the last couple years !
 
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