Better Sea Bass Fishing and A Nice Red From The Inlet

By Scott Lenox

Better Sea Bass Fishing and A Nice Red From The Inlet

Hit the vid for the First White Marlin of the season at Sunset Marina!!

Had a beautiful day out there today with sunny skies, light winds and warm temps and the fishing was good to boot!

Captain Jason Mumford of Lucky Break Charters had a nice day today with two very successful trips.  This afternoon it was bluefish and a couple of keeper flounder (and a bunch of throwbacks), and this morning it was short stripers and a big red drum release.

Captain Chris Mizurak of the Angler reported a better sea bass bite today with plenty of keepers up to 4 pounds around and a few flounder up to 5 pounds.

This keeper came from the Tortuga fishing out of Bahia Marina.

Seth Price fished his kayak last night into this morning and managed an over slot striper and a very nice weakfish.

Constantine Powers caught and released (season is closed) this 27″ tautog after it ate a Nomad jig.

Captain Monty Hawkins of the Morning Star reported his best sea bass bite of 2024 today.

What a nice summer day off there today (then a dagone fog coming home!) Our best day of sea bassing this season too. Yesterday’s threat of severe weather never materialized – ashore anyway. Got a world of chores done. Now I’ve cancelled Wed the 5th for mid day t-storms. (Weather I’ve learned not to trust.)
Young Miss Lexi did the deed on today’s reef block drop in fine style. Have been concentrating on Capt. Bob’s Memorial Reef when able and did so today – makes 4,538 reef blocks & 94 pyramids there. (plus a lot of large material! It’ll be {is!} one of our greats..) For the life of the project we have 41,703 reef blocks deployed off my transom and 2,236 reef pyramids alltogether.
After taking note of two fathoms visability on the secci disk atop Bobby’s Reef, we pressed on.
Despite a brutal start, fishing became surprisingly kind. Had several clients limit with Chef Mark first among them, then Ken, Kathy & today’s pool winner, Tracy. Jigging was most productive – so much so that even Cathy was waylaying em on a jig for a while. I’d have been less surprised if she’d started taking in stray dogs while forsaking her kitties!
For this year? A very fine day indeed. Unfortunately, this won’t be the norm. We’ve a pressing issue with sea bass and I doubt seriously we’ll get management to budge on it’s repair..
I’ll do a deep dive on that soon.
If managemnt sticks to their numbers from MRIP and refuses biological spawning behaviors as a consideration – our once proud sea bass fishery shall wither.
I wish I’d had sense enough to start those secci disk readings in the 1980s. Too late to show a blue sea become green, but perhaps useful should oyster recovery efforts ever reduce nutrient (and therefore algae) outflows from our major estuaries to the sea.
Is turning the Mid-Atlantic blue again doable?
Absolutely!
Oyster restoration efforts are undoubtably working – working incredibly better than ever before owing a switch to rock substrates.
However, I doubt turning the ocean blue again is possible on present course. At least not for several human generations. I had every concern “pretty shell reefs” would never succeed other than as fodder for the dredge fishery. Now we are seeing rock & concrete will succeed – are. Can oyster biofilters be acheived from low profile rock substrates?
Yes.
In time.
A long time.
An oyster reef/bar several permeable feet thick will take human generations to grow.
Big boisterous concrete pipe reefs stacked high into the water column would deliver the result of filtration more swiftly – a few years – by capturing infinitely more natural spat and allowing oyster growth & water passage throughout the height of the reef – the entire height of the reef would be permeable, yet offer substrate for oysters to strike and grow to maturity.
A HUGE estuarine biofilter could be made using a minimum of bayfloor by building UP into the water instead of OUT across acres of bottom.
Such a pipe reef would also do fine with oyster tonging – there’d be many layers of substrate beneath the topmost oysters. With most surfaces inaccessible, the top could be available to harvest.
One thing’s inescapable – a functioning biofilter would throw more spawn/produce more spat than any reef in human memory.
When they’ve become a problem – when oysters are growing everywhere – you’ll witness clear blue ocean waters far inshore of today’s bluewater fisheries.
I’ve spoken with many skippers who caught white marlin inside ten miles – all that was before the collapse of oysters. That’s the measure. When baits are run astern to successfully catch whites at Jackspot 20 miles out – when that’s once again become a targeted fishery? It will primarily have been the restoration efforts of oyster reef builders that got it done.
Regards,
Monty

Caught some BIG bluefish at the south jetty the other day….check it out!!

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