10/02/09 — Fishing report

View Archive

Fishing report

By From staff reports
Published in Sports on October 2, 2009 1:46 PM

Northern District

Ocean: Offshore anglers reported fair to good results. They caught dolphin and wahoo along with a few amberjack, little tunny, atlantic bonito, yellowfin, blackfin and skipjack tuna. Billfish catches slowed and only a few were caught.

Mid-range fishing was slow and uneventful with very little caught, except an occasional king mackerel in the 15- to 20-mile range. Anglers caught a few fish on the artificial reefs, including tautog, sheepshead, triggerfish, spadefish and black drum.

Near-shore anglers had good catches of keeper-size red drum. Most catches were in the backwash of the surf zone with shrimp and sand fleas being the bait of choice. Croakers, kingfish and pompano were also caught in this same area.

Inlets/Sounds/Bays: Flounder and spotted seatrout catches made a modest improvement. Red drum are now the primary target of these anglers with nearly all of them being caught just inshore of the Oregon Inlet Bridge. Most specimens fell in the legal slot limit.

Striped bass catches made a marked improvement throughout the area with most specimens being caught out of the Roanoke Sound off of the "Little Bridge" and underneath of the Washington Baum Bridge. Bridge structures continue to offer catches of sheepshead and black drum on a consistent basis.

Piers/shore: Anglers had results similar to the near-shore boaters with red drum catches in the near-shore surf zone being the most notable. Kingfish, pompano and some very large croakers were also caught in the same area. Assorted other species were caught in low amounts including black seabass, weakfish, flounder, spotted seatrout, puffers, bluefish, spanish mackerel, red and black drum, pinfish, pigfish, banded rudderfish, striped burrfish, lizardfish, skates and assorted rays and sharks.

Central region

Ocean: The Spanish bite was great this week in and around the Cape Lookout area -- so good that a number of people came back to the docks with their limits of them. A few kings were caught out at Big 10 Little 10 along with a few dolphin here and there.

Bottom fishing is still yielding large vermillion snapper around 2 to 3 pounds.

Inlets/Sounds/Bays: There are still a few good-sized Spanish, some weighing in at three pounds in and around Beaufort and Bogue Inlets, although you will most likely have to go outside to find the bait. A few blues being caught here and there, but really nothing to speak of. A few grey trout have turned up in the inlets, but this past week they were few and far between.

The legal-size flounders have been difficult to find lately, but this past week many of the local rivers turned out to be great fishing holes. A number of people fishing the White Oak River went home with four to five legal flounder on ice! Yet again, the Pamlico River and Core Sound produced keeper flounder and some very large red drum. Those fishing for sheepshead around the Morehead City high-rise bridges have been having record weeks with a number of citation size fish.

The spot fishing has also picked up in the past week. Although huge numbers are not being caught, the fish are larger than many have seen in the past two to three years.

Piers/shore: The surf and pier fishing continues to improve. Anglers on piers reeled in lots of Spanish and most of them weighed close to two pounds. People were catching good numbers of pompano, whiting, spadefish, puffers, blues and decent numbers of good sized spot. Blues have been sparse, but when caught they have still been good sized.

Southern District

Ocean: Offshore, wahoo have been biting pretty good over the last couple of weeks. Bottom fishing has been slow. The best catches are coming from the 35- to 45-mile range. Reds, gags, and scamps are being caught, but no real big numbers of fish. However, there are some really nice vermilion snapper biting right now. King mackerel fishing is still somewhat slow.

Some fish being caught around Southport and offshore at the shark hole. Near-shore reefs are yielding flounder, Spanish and some gray trout. The Spanish mackerel fishing was outstanding last week along area beaches.

Inlets/Sounds/Bays: Fishing overall is pretty good.

Wind and rain really hampered fishing this week, but there still were some good catches of drum flounder and trout. The Cape Fear River is producing some really nice trout and flounder right now. Fish are being caught from downtown Wilmington to Southport. The trout are biting both artificial and live shrimp and the flounder are coming off of live bait. Area inlets are also holding some nice drum along with a few trout.

Piers/shore: Fishing has really picked up over the last couple of weeks. First off the spots are starting to really run on area piers. The fish started out small earlier in the week, but some nice size fish showed up toward the weekend. Blood worms are the top bait, but they will hit fresh shrimp and night crawlers.

Pompano, sea mullets and bluefish are also being caught. Some really nice size Spanish mackerel and a few king mackerel are being caught at the ends of the piers. Surf fishermen are catching sea mullets, pompano, flounder and bluefish.