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Captain's Focus

There's not much going on with stripers right now, but the bonus bass has been allowed since Sept. 1 as per the following DEP release: The Striped Bass Bonus Program (SBBP) is now open. Applications are available on the SBBP webpage and must be submitted before October 31, 2017. All permits issued in 2016 are not valid in 2017. Reporting Bonus harvest within 24 hours is mandatory. Please check the SBBP webpage at http://njfishandwildlife.com/bonusbas.htm for more information and to apply. With the ocean still being rough, I had no reports today. Capt. Stan Zagleski said rain and wind kept even the northern boats at the docks, but he'll be finishing up the fluke season Monday and Tuesday with his Elaine B.II from Bahrs in Highlands  -- as well the rest of the fluke fleet. Monday looks very nice, and Tuesday should be all right for the last day of the fluke season despite gusty south winds. After enjoying a lighted fireplace Saturday evening, I was prepared this morning for rain and cold at Point Pleasant Canal with my big boy pants on for the first time since spring plus an insulated jacket. Yet, the weather was mild and very comfortable with no rain. Unfortunately, I also had no hits casting a 6-inch Tsunami shad before and just after daylight-- though a couple of blues were hooked by others. I returned on the tide change and finally hooked up, but just as Joe Melillo of Castaways Tackle in Point Pleasant was reaching for the leader the 6-to-7-pound blue shook the lure out. There were a few blues of various sizes caught or lost, and I had another on for a second -- but it was just a very slow pick. 

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