Fall fishing is great!
What a beautiful week for fishing!
Perfect fall weather has given anglers plenty of opportunities to go out for the big one. Typically, this is the time of year when we start to see huge numbers of squid showing up in the harbors. There are also large amounts of other bait around the island keeping the fish in close to shore.
If you’re on boat, the season is far from over.
First and foremost, there are large numbers of black seabass all around the island. Bill Latva, a daily seabass fisherman, reported good fish at the southwest buoy. Cod have also started showing up in about 80 to 90 feet of water on the southeast side of the island near the wind farm. As for striper fishing, Matt King of Hula Charters recommends to start fishing during the warmer part of the day that coincides with the strongest tide.
“That’s when the bass like to feed now that the water temps are starting to drop,” King said. He added that anglers should be covering as much water as possible because the fish aren’t schooled up this time of year; rather, they’re in groups of two or three. “Fish where the bait is...they’re looking for bigger meals to fatten up for their journey south.”
There is a lot going on from shore right now.
Winter flounder have started to show up off of Payne’s Dock using clams as bait. You can still try your luck for the false albacore which show up at the Coast Guard Channel several times a day, but anglers have reported them being very finicky even when using Deadly Dick lures, which are usually the best. At the Channel you can also still get into fluke and scup on the bottom, as well as stripers and bluefish at night, using any small swimmer you have. Harbor blues have shown up, so if you’re fishing inside the Great Salt Pond, be sure to use a heavy mono leader. The sunset bite has been most productive, with keeper-sized bass hitting top water lures such as poppers. From the beach, there are some good reports on the east side, from spots like Mansion Beach and Ballard’s Beach. The south and southwest side of the island at night is where you’ll find the biggest fish, typically, and the best lure to start off with there is a darker colored needlefish and fish it very slow.
Hope everyone is enjoying fishing this time of year as much as I am.