The fluke bite is finally attracting the attention of more captains as the season gets into full swing for the tasty flatfish.
On board the Jamaica II party boat out of Brielle, fluke are "getting in the chewing mood more and more each day," said Capt. Ryan. According to the captain's report, the best action has been seen off the beach, and anglers this week have been putting together a nice collection of keepers.
Anecdotally, I've heard about steady fluke fishing all week in the Manasquan River. As usual, try the channel edges off Clark's Landing and the small channels just west of the Route 35 bridge. There's no huge secrets or tactical approaches required in the Manasquan. Pick your spot and fish!
In Barnegat Bay, blues continued to be caught near the Route 37 bridge, said Dennis from Murphy's Hook House in Toms River. Bunker could be seen popping all over from the mouth of the Toms to the Seaside bridge, Dennis said.
Crabbing was also picking up, up and down the bay, as water temperatures began to break the 70 degree mark. The staff at The Dock Outfitters in Seaside Heights reported excellent crabbing at their fishing pier behind the shop. In one day, three different people scored 5 gallon buckets of keepers this week.
Reports from Barnegat Inlet showed decent fluking the Oyster Creek and Double Creek channels, though the bay was full of sea lettuce throughout most of the week. Driving over the LBI causeway bridge the other day, I could literally see it from my the driver's seat of my SUV! Some reports, including one at FishingReportsNow.com from Grizz's B&T in Forked River indicate the slimy plant life has departed, however.
At this point in the season, the best spots in these channels will be at the west end of the dike, where the skinny channel meets the "convergence zone" of the two channels at High Bar Harbor. Personally, I almost exclusively fish with Berkely Gulp baits in this area.
Surf fishing on LBI has also been pretty good this week. Dave Iacono landed a 12-pound blue in the suds off Long Beach Township and had seven stripers more than 30 inches at night. He weighed in the fish at Oceanside Bait and Tackle in the township's Brighton Beach section.