Rockaway Outdoors/Tales From The Wheel house
Traditionally this would be a killer week on big fluke in and around Ambrose Channel; however it won't be this year. The fluke season is closed due to the new regulations for New York State. In a way, it's kind of sad because it was a run of fish that really was something to look forward to.
Not only did some quality fish come up in the past, but it generated some much needed income to the party and charter boat fleets. It was revenue that would sustain some of the boats as the inshore fish began to leave our waters.
Hopefully these new regulations will in the future enhance the current stocks and make for a healthier fluke fishery in the days to come. I hope so. I enjoyed fluke fishing growing up and it would be nice to see the next generation of fishermen do the same.
Locally fishing was okay, and by that I mean for the end of August it was just that. There was plenty of bluefish throughout the area.
Jamaica Bay has some decent size blues hard on the bunker schools and best action at dawn with dusk a close second. I'm surprised that the bay outside of the Pumpkin Patch and Ruffle Bar hasn't been home to more blues as of yet.
Perhaps the baby bunker will invade the area with the pelagics close behind. Still in all, the bays quiet for this time of year. The North Channel Bridge and surrounding shore points have seen some hit and miss blues when conditions are right. I heard of some scattered weakfish up by the Padeget and I may do some recon this week. I'll keep you posted.
The offshore bluefishing has been noteworthy too. Head boats out of the bay continue to score well south from the mud buoy to the rock piles off of Shrewsberry.
The Atlantic highlands still have some ocean schools of bait, followed by blues with an occasional striper have been jigged and baited.
The inshore bottom species of choice will no doubt become the porgies. Wrecks from around the warrior buoy, and the Rockaway reef should produce, with my favorite spot being the south east corner of the reef.
Most of my friends who fished the areas had some decent catches. Nothing spectacular, but enough fish to make it worthwhile.
I'm hoping the September moon sees a showing of striped bass. The water has been cooling off a bit and it will be interesting to see if all of these tropical storms have any impact on our waters.
Usually September sparks the arrival of mullet into our area. Mullet generally hug the beach as they move down the coast and it's at this time that the jetty jockeys and surfcasters get their licks in.
A good pair of binoculars is an important tool in the surfcasters' arsenal this time of year. See bait and you'll more than likely see fish. That is a well-learned lesson from my friend Cheach.
Speaking of the master, he will be going to Rhode Island for the October moon. Around 1977, Cheach and I put away a few bass at the Narrows River mouth in Narragnsette. It was a good catch as most were caught by slinging live eels as the bait. We had a good fall that year. So did the Yankees.