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NJ Saltwater Baitfish

Know Your Bait Catch More Fish
Bunker Bunker typically start showing in NJ around mid to April and arrive en masse in May. Peanut bunker leave the bay in the fall and can lead to a bait fish bonanza along the NJ beaches. April - June, September - November
Herring Herring are a cold water fish and as such are not as important on the NJ bait scene as some as the others. Still Striped Bass LOVE Herring. November - February
Mullet Look for the Mullet to leave the bay mid-September. Typically, any Mullet run is before the Peanut Bunker leave the bay. September - October
Rainfish Rainfish or Bay Anchovies on first inspection closely resemble spearing. September - October
Sandeel Sandeels are like the candy of the Sea. When they are around it seems to light something in the local Gamefish's DNA because they tend to gorge themselves on these. Read more on how to take advantage. May - June, October - November
Spearing Spearing are the most prevalent fish in New Jersey's bay and estuarine system. Very similar in appearance to rainfish. It has a much smaller mouth than rainfish. April - November

Weekly Update (June 4, 2017)

It is going to be a tough week this week, across the board.  Persistent NE winds for the entire week are going to keep all but the biggest boats 'inside' and make life miserable for patrons who can get 'outside'.

That makes Fluke the number one game in town this week.  Focus on the back bays and rivers, it will produce some flatties.  Don't expect any lights out fishing, but at least you will be able to bend a rod.

Stripers are going to love this week's weather set up.  Still getting to them by boat is going to be very difficult.  If you are a beach or jetty jock, then this is your week.  Get out your surf pole and some bunker heads and you have a chance at some real big fish coming along.  I will also mention that a persistent NE wind is known to push the Stripers back into the bay.  It would not be surprising to hear some really big fish coming bayside this week.   Suggestions on targeting bay fish -- Set up on anchor with clam and chum.

Bluefish do still exist in the bays but in decreasing numbers.  Probably not worth targeting at this point but if you see some bird play, jump in.

Finally, I will mention in anticipation, this blog was going to focus on Shark this week as we are rounding into prime time season.  But given the weather set up, don't expect any activity this week.  Will take a closer week next week.

 

 

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