Sheepshead anglers in it for the big haul
Lately there’s been more excitement than usual at Sheepshead Bay. Last Saturday, the new super-sized catamaran party boat the Golden Sunshine set out from Pier 2 on her maiden voyage bottom fishing.
Then on Monday, Capt. Bill Doll of the Jet stopped in at the Stella Maris tackle shop with one of his regular customers, Edward Weiss. Turns out that the Brooklyn angler had a black drum fish – which had taken a gold jig off Sandy Hook – that tipped the tackle shop scales at 69pounds.
A couple days later, the Jet sailed back to Pier 9 not only with Yonkers angler John Ludwig’s pool-winning 5-1/2-pound sea bass, but also with the welcome news that weakfish are moving out again from Raritan Bay coves to the ocean after a few days’ hiatus.
Besides all that, the Bight remains full of nice-sized hungry bluefish, and more striped bass have been showing up. Anglers also are enjoying some very good porgy fishing, especially off the Highlands Reef, where drifting’s easier with less of a current. Even some exotics, such as bonito and albacore, can be found in the area.
Long Island Sound has a similar story: awesome blue fishing – even on plugs along Hart’s Island’s rocky shores – porgies on both sides of the Sound, oodles of baitfish moving from cove to cove, and a smattering of sea bass and stripers.
And, as of Monday, the New York season opens for tautog, aka blackfish. The limit is 10 fish with a minimum of 14 inches.
Incidentally, Monday also happens to be the deadline for New York DEC Deer Management Permits (DMP) applications at license-issuing outlets for hunters to take antlerless deer in specific Wildlife Management Units.
Anglers may still register until 9 a.m. tomorrow for the Montauk Surf Classic at the local Johnny’s Tackle or Freddie’s Bait & Tackle shops. The contest closes Sunday at noon and has an entry fee of $15. For info, phone (631) 669-1000, ext 247.
Another nautical event this weekend is the Liberty Boat Show, sporting more than 300 boats in water and ready for sea trial demos. It continues through Sunday at Liberty State Park in Jersey City, just across the Hudson River from Manhattan.
Also on Sunday, the Pequest Trout Hatchery on Route 46 west of Hackettstown, N.J., is staging its annual Heritage Festival from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m. Everything’s free for whole-family fun, including trout fishing ponds – even for even kids under age 8 – archery target shoots, wildlife artists and a sportsmen’s flea market. For more info, phone (908) 637-4125.
By Alexandra Kenney