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Captain's Focus

The fleet headed south, right back to where stripers and blues were on Friday, and did very well. The Golden Eagle from Belmar reported lots of both species for jigging, with the largest bass at 34 inches. With continuing west winds, there should be good boat fishing again on Sunday in the Seaside area. The striper bite to the north hasn't been good during the last week, and Capt. Ron Santee has decided to call it a year with his Fishermen from Atlantic Highlands. He wrapped it up as follows: "We had what I would call one of the best fluke fishing seasons in 4 years. The first month and a half saw many limits on some beautiful fish. Still not happy with an 18 inch size limit as we have proven that we are now taking 95% females out of the quota. The powers that be think this is O.K.!  Porgy fishing was excellent this year also. Huge bluefish in spring close to home provided much needed action to start the season as the striped bass fishing certainly was off. The jig bite we so look forward to in the fall was also a huge disappointment this year. We did have a few days that were awesome but overall I wouldn't call it a banner year for striped bass. Happy New Year to all, you guys and gals are always the Best! See you in the spring. PS: If you or anyone you know may be interested in some deck hand work over the summer, we are always looking for help." The Sea Hunter plans to sail for stripers from Atlantic Highlands on Sunday. Surfcasters got a few shots today. John Green got his opportunity in Berkely Township, but then the bass moved north and stayed out of range. Jerry Lasko released a 27-inch striper in the morning at Mantoloking, but got into a blitz in the evening. I saw some small bass chase bait briefly in the morning at Spring Lake, and got a bump during the one time they came into casting range. Vinny D'Anton released three small bass there at dusk.

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