September 15, 2006

Fall Feed is On!

Frank Dwyer

The weather feels like autumn, and the fishing is starting to fit the season. Striped Bass and Bluefish continue to feed aggressively in North Shore waters, as the offshore fishery has also been heating up.

Bluefin tuna, cod, haddock and pollock are all in play as the fishing season gets ready for the final death rattle.

Marblehead: (4 hooks) Fishing from the Neck continues to be hot as striped bass and bluefish have been taking most offerings. Anglers fishing the rocks at night have found keeper-size bass willing to take live eels and large plugs.

Salem: (4 hooks) Salem Harbor and the area around the Misery Islands have been producing good numbers of bass and bluefish. Trolling tube-n-worms as well as using large plugs tossed into the rocks has been very productive. As usual, larger bass are being taken at night.

Beverly: (4 hooks) The fishing has been terrific around Beverly Harbor as well off West Beach. Striped Bass and bluefish continue their aggressive feeding habits in preparation of the Fall migration. Metal lures, sluggos and popping plugs have all been quite productive.

Cape Ann: (4 hooks) The Manchester and Magnolia coastline has been fishing quite well over the last several days as anglers have found large bass along the rocky coast. Fishing around Wingaersheek Beach and Good Harbor in Gloucester has also been good with large bluefish and stripers in the mix. Large bluefish have also been taken from the breakwater to off Halibut Point. The school bluefin tuna bite has been somewhat in consistent but most offshore types agree that the southwest corner of Stellwagen Bank has been the best waters to target. Party boats have done quite well for cod and haddock this past week.

Ipswich: (4 hooks) The area around Pavilion Beach has been loaded with bluefish and bass as anglers have found these fish to take most offerings. The fish have been keying in on small peanut bunker and sand eels, so lures and flies that resemble those baits are working best.

Newbury: (4 hooks) The Parker River NWR continues to provide excellent opportunities for anglers as fish have been taken from most Parking Lots, as well as from Sandy Point. Plum Island Sound has also seen good action for
bass and blues.

Newburyport / Plum Island: (4 hooks) There are plenty of striped bass in the Newburyport area as smaller bass have been feeding on top during the daylight hours and larger bass coming at night, especially for anglers using eels on Joppa Flats. The ocean front has seen several days of bluefish and stripers available to surfcasters working the beach, while anglers in boats have found larger bass at the mouth of the Merrimack on the outgoing tide. Party boats have found ground fish in closer to shore over the last week.

Salisbury: (3 hooks) Bass and bluefish have been close to shore and anglers have landed fish from both Salisbury Beach and the shores of the State Reservation. These fish are actively feeding and while bait can still work, plugs and lures have been quite productive all week.

Seacoast, NH: (4 hooks) Bluefish are still thick from Hampton to Portsmouth and striped bass have been feeding heavily in preparation for their migration south. Many bluefish have been in both Great and Little Bay, and are taking most top-water and metal offerings. Several bass surface feeds have been happening off the Rye and Portsmouth coast, with good action in the Piscataqua as well.


Fishing surface lures like Danny Plugs, Needlefish, Atom Poppers and the like is more of an art-form than most anglers realize. You need to make these lures “dance” across the surface with erratic movements like the injured baitfish they are intended to mimic. Work on your retrieve method to land more fish.

No comments: