OVERVIEWThe next Virginia Saltwater Review will be published the week of June 3-7.
Donna at Captain Bob’s reported flounder pounders had “a tough weekend,” following the thunderstorms and strong winds during the week. Waters at Four Mouths were murky and skate and ray were active. Queens Sound was fishable on Friday and some keeper flounder were caught. On Saturday and Sunday, this area was unfishable due to the wind. Despite the wind and still murky water, keeper flounder measuring up to 24 inches were caught on Sunday in Four Mouths near buoy 3 and 4.
Captain Wil Laaksonen from Fish and Finn Charters reported very good weekend bottom fishing for croaker but “it was rough,” referring to the sea conditions. The croaker are running good size and “fat and getting fatter,” with a few pan trout mixed in. Flounder have arrived off Onancock, where best action has been along the channel edges in 20 to 40 feet of water. Captain Wil heard of a few black and red drum caught by local anglers in the past week plus a 46-inch striped bass was released aboard the Fish and Finn early in the week.
Lower Bay/Bridge Tunnel -
The Virginia Beach Fishing Center reported headboats had nice catches of medium to large black sea bass on the inshore ocean wrecks while several six-pack charters trolled-up dozens of chopper bluefish over the weekend.
Paula Owen from Fisherman's Wharf Marina said offshore fishing activity remains slow, although chopper bluefish were available on the inshore ocean lumps and several boats had fished for and caught striped bass around the CBBT complex.
Virginia Piers -
James River – Croaker continue to dominate the action. With the onset of the spring bay season for striped bass, which began May 16, this pier offers one of the best shots at a keeper striper from a public pier.
Ocean View – Taylor bluefish provided most of the excitement with the best action coming in the early morning and around sunset. Bottom fishermen also caught some sea mullet, croaker, skate and a few keeper flounder.
Lynnhaven – Mixed sizes of sea mullet hit the pier last week, as anglers caught bluefish up to 5 pounds, some keeper flounder and plenty of skate and some cow-nosed rays.
Virginia Beach – Spot and snapper bluefish were caught over the weekend and a 44-inch red drum was caught Tuesday (May 16).
Sandbridge – Bluefish, from half-pound snappers up to a 6-1/2-pound brute, were caught over the weekend. Bottom fishermen also decked fair to good numbers of smallish spot and sea mullet. Water temperatures have finally topped 60 degrees.
Outer Banks, NC -
Surf and pier fishermen in the Nags Head area enjoyed a fair mixture of small panfish over the weekend with a mixture of snapper bluefish, sea mullet, spot and speckled trout. Water temperatures were holding right at 60 degrees most of the weekend. Bottom fishermen working the little bridge to Manteo reported mixed catches of snapper bluefish, speckled trout, puppy drum and small black drum.
South of Oregon Inlet, at Cape Point on Buxton, four large red drum were beached Friday, as well as numerous puppy drum, bluefish to 7 pounds and a few pompano. Twelve red drum were caught Saturday evening at the Point plus several sand tiger shark to over 8-feet. Six large red drum were beached Sunday morning and bluefish were caught throughout the day. On Monday a dozen drum and numerous puppy drum plus bluefish up to 10 pounds were caught.
The Oregon Inlet Fishing Center recorded good catches of yellowfin tuna up to 74 pounds on Thursday on the offshore grounds while inshore trollers caught lots of taylor bluefish. Friday’s yellowfin catches ranged from fair to good among the fleet with some gaffer dolphin and wahoo to 70 pounds mixed in with the tuna while Spanish mackerel arrived on the inshore grounds to the delight of light tackle trollers. Saturday, catches were a mixture of dolphin, king mackerel and yellowfin tuna. The tuna were fewer in number but most weighed over 50 pounds. On Sunday, catches consisted primarily of king mackerel and dolphin with only a scattering of yellowfin tuna and several wahoo to 60 pounds.
The fleet sailing from Hatteras Inlet enjoyed good yellowfin tuna action early in the week but as the weekend arrived the tuna numbers dropped but dolphin increased. Most boats also caught some king mackerel and wahoo. On Saturday, Samantha Stephenson of Glenn Allen, VA boated a 44-pound wahoo and Alfred Carter of Winchester decked a 43-pound wahoo on Sunday.
If you have additional information or would like further details contact Lewis Gillingham at (757) 247-2243.
Please credit the Virginia Marine Resources Commission's THE SALTWATER REVIEW as the source of the fishing information. Project is funded by NOAA and VMRC.
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