Tune in for tuna!
In the next few weeks, Block Island will see its highest water temperatures for the season. The warm water is definitely prime for baitfish, which in turn keeps the big fish around. Already for the beginning of August, we are seeing great catches from both boat and shore. One thing to keep in mind is that pretty soon the bonito and false albacore will show up. This is exciting news! They usually arrive together in the first few weeks of August and will stay around for about two months. These little tuna fight hard, swim fast, and taste delicious. Normally they will be spotted first by boats, but if you’re at the Coast Guard Channel, keep an eye out for them as well.
The boat report this week is much of what we’ve already been seeing. Large striped bass. Using mostly eels while drifting, Matt King of Hula Charters reported stripers in the 40 to 50 pound class on the southwest corner of the island near the three mile marker. It’s important to know that you need to stay within the three mile mark of the island when fishing for stripers. There are also plenty of boats doing well with eels in a little closer on the south side of the island between the southeast lighthouse and Black Rock in about 30 to 60 feet of water. On the east side, Capt. Bill Gould of the G Willie Makit reported good stripers trolling tube and worm right in front of Clayhead Beach. As for fluke, the east side has been a great place to fish in about 70 feet of water, jigging either fluke rigs or bucktails with squid or Gulps.
From shore, the best daytime spot for fishing is the Coast Guard Channel. There have been consistent reports all summer of fluke on both sides of the tide. There are a lot of shorts right now, but still plenty of people are catching the legal size (18 inches). Scup are also good in the channel right now, but have also been really good on the eastern beaches, including Mansion and Scotch. Both fish can be caught using squid bait for the most part, but you can also go with small two-inch sluggos if you prefer artificial.
As the sun sets, fishermen have had good luck fishing surface poppers on the west side in that last half hour of light. At night, there are stripers in the 10 to 20 pound range on the east beaches, as well as slightly larger fish on the south side of the island at Snake Hole. You can use an assortment of lures and bait at night, but for sure the most popular on Block Island is the needlefish. Slow and steady is the name of the game! Not a lot of talk of bluefish lately, but they are definitely around, so a thick mono or wire leader is recommended.
Lots to do out there, folks. Grab your fishing pole and catch that fish!