Posted on December 29th, 2019
The weather changed a little for the worse today with some pretty good rain this afternoon, but temps were still relatively warm and there was zero wind once again.
I saw the first pomfret that I’ve ever seen caught out of Ocean City less than a month ago, and today I got to see the second. The fish caught just a few short weeks ago was an Atlantic pomfret and was an impressive fish, but the pomfret that was caught yesterday by Jeff Rosenkilde while fishing with the crew of Tony Freiji, Mike Freiji, Brendan Barbey and Jeremy Scott just may be a new all-tackle world record for bigscale pomfret. The current record is 20 pounds, 10 ounces and was caught in 2004 off the coast of Florida. My DNR biologist buddy Steve Doctor will be inspecting the fish tomorrow to determine if it is an Atlantic or bigscale pomfret and then the crew will be getting an official weight at Sunset Marina. The rare for our waters pomfret weighed more than 22 pounds on an uncertified scale and that weight would break the current IGFA world record for bigscale pomfret by a pound or more. The fish was caught deep dropping for swordfish and was hand cranked by Jeff. The crew also had a nice swordfish on the trip. We’ll find out more tomorrow on this awesome yet unusual catch so stay tuned. Big thanks to Steve Doctor and Erik Zlokovitz from MD DNR for their help on this.
In not so unusual fishing news, Captain Monty Hawkins of the Morning Star had his first tautog only trip of the winter and put some nice fish on deck.
Yet another calm December day. Dropped blocks and two reef pyramids at Capt Bob Gowar’s Memorial Reef and pressed on.. Had pushed today’s start back; those 12 hour sea bass runs take their toll on this aging skipper.
So naturally the tog bite was early. When the current died just after noon – it was over.
Nicked a few pretty ones beforehand though. Mike Jones of Slatington PA even limited out. (Here with a double.)
Saw a couple serious thumpers that broke off. Those are the fish that get people addicted to this supremely frustrating fishery. A deeply bowed rod with a powerful fish is what we want. It’s why Bully Bob calls em ‘DelMarVa Grouper..’
Mike Ziegler (Zig!), an OC local, put the pool money in his pocket again with a 20.25 inch tautog. I expect Zig’s back to back wins will make it easier to get permission to go again..
Tagged 8 females and put a few males back too with a third fin rip. This simple tear in between the third and forth dorsal spines does not heal (nor harm the fish.) It’s a simple way to see a fish has been caught before.
Our tog pools go by length. If someone tags a huge female – length listed on the tag card counts the same as a tog that’s in the boat. It allows a client who respects the fishery to put a fish back that otherwise would have been taken to the weigh-in.
Craig Moore of Ringwood NJ had a 22.5 incher.. (white bibs)
Also pictured in the group snap are Bo Shultz of Middle River MD & Kelly Clark, an Ocean Pines local.
Phillip Thornes of Thornes Marine had a nice day of sea bassing yesterday made even better by this striped bass that he caught on a flat calm ocean.