Fisherman Magazine Update

The Feast of the Seven Fishes is an Italian-American tradition that celebrate Christmas Eve with a full menu of fish and seafood; if you’re interested in putting your own seven-fish line-up together, try giving this a shot. Small STRIPED BASS are in the wash in good numbers, though the best bet for a keeper is still jigging, plugging or trolling just offshore from Manasquan Inlet south to Fenwick Island. TAUTOG has been a pick, but the fish coming aboard of late have been good size, with several upper teen tog registered since last week – a couple of big COD taken on the structure too. It’s the final week of BLACK SEA BASS fishing for a while which has put boats offshore on the humpback grounds in these last days; the bulkhead brigade too knows that WINTER FLOUNDER are in with just days before the 2017 closure to put a couple of sweet and tasty filets aside for the weekend. HERRING action for party boats starts right after the Christmas holiday, and the presence of those delicious pickling baits has brought the BLUEFIN in closer (though our reports this week finds guys trolling for bluefin 10 miles or more offshore finding it hard to get away from the stripers out there on the herring schools!) From our family to yours, a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.

While an arctic blast swept across the region this week, striped bass are still available in fairly good numbers throughout the New Jersey, Delaware region this week.

Though many folks have pulled their boats for the winter, big fish are being taken on the troll off South Jersey and down the DELMARVA peninsula, with mojos, spoons and plugs getting the nod. The Northern and Central Jersey bite continues as well, though it’s not the gangbusters action experienced earlier the season, and not the staggering sizes either. Along the surf, finding the right cut or slough this week and scaling down the gear can put double-digit striper catches on the sand, even if most of the fish are on the small side. The best news is stripers are still being caught along the South Shore of Long Island which bodes well for holiday action. Charter and party boats not jigging or trolling stripers continue to find a good tautog bite nearer shore than expected, though a few toggers in the past week working deeper waters have reported some bluefin on the move as well. Catch up the black sea bass before the December 31 seasonal close, and check back with TheFisherman.com in the days ahead for regulatory updates from the “Beltway” between DC and Annapolis where fluke and sea bass are in the regulatory spotlight this week.

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