Sea bass reports from party boats have been very good since the season opened last Friday. At Atlantic Highlands, Capt. Ron Santee reported the Wednesday evebing sailing of the Fishermen produced up to five keeper-size fluke, and Thursday's morning trip was decent as Capt. Ron Sr. hooked six legal fluke, and fares had up to five that size.
After bringing in the first mako shark and school bluefin tuna from the canyons earlier in the week, the Canyon Runner from Point Pleasant ran a Saturday to Sunday overnighter that produced the first yellowfin tuna (about 35 pounds) and two dolphin from canyons in over 1000 fathoms off Delaware for David Stratoff and his son. Honors for the first N. J. bigeye tuna fell to a boat in the Canyon Runner reporting team as the Flying Fish landed one in Cape May on the way back from North Carolina.
The Golden Eagle from Belmar had a few drifts with blues on Run-Off Hammer jigs, but not enough. Joe Melillo, at Castaways Tackle in Point Pleasant, weighed an 11-pound striper caught in Point Pleasant Canal by Bob Matthews of Belmar, plus two surf bass - a 13 3 8-pounder by Bob Longo of Brick on a plug, and a 12 1 8-pounder on metal for Jeff Garnett from Howell.
The Canyon Runner from Pint Pleasant brought in the first mako shark of the season Tuesday after their initial canyon overnighter. Six blue sharks were released at night before the 82-inch (about 175 to 200 pound) mako was boated after a 25-minute fight. Trolling for school bluefin tuna at dawn produced four hits, with a 33-incher boated
Mate Steve Tosti didn't have any trouble loading a cooler with bunker after a few throws of a castnet even though we didn't leave until 9 a. m. Bluefish have been a big problem for those seeking stripers in Rartan Bay, so Contello ran to the Hudson River and waited out the bite on chunked bunker. The Queen Mary from Point Pleasant also jigged 1-to-4-pound blues, but were fortunate enough to add a couple of stripers up to 30 pounds.
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