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Posted By Jim Hutchinson, Jr., October 7, 2019
New Jersey’s black sea bass fall season is officially reopen as of Tuesday with the return of the 10 fish bag and 12-1/2-inch size limit as of October 8.
New Jersey’s black sea bass fall season is officially reopen as of Tuesday, October 8 as a 10 fish bag limit with 12-1/2-inch size kicks in through the end of the month. On November 1, it goes to a 15 fish bag and 13-size limit in New Jersey to finish out the rest of the 2019 season. In Delaware, it’s 12-1/2 inches and 15 fish all the way through to the end of the year; in New York, it’s a 15-inch minimum and seven fish bag limit through December 31. The return of sea bass and anticipated arrival of striped bass has many local captains anxious to get back to the fishing grounds after a week of windy conditions. “The boats that did not sail outnumbered the boats that did by a large number,” wrote North Jersey field editor JB Kasper in this week’s printed report for The Fisherman Magazine. The upbeat news that JB had was that mullet are moving out of the bays and rivers and into the ocean along the beaches, and bluefish continue to be very active with 2- to 9-pounders being common, along with larger slammers blitzing inlets and beaches as well as areas throughout Raritan Bay. From Manasquan to Beach Have last week, Ashley Viola had much the same news in her Central Jersey reporter. “Folks still managed to get blues and stripers off the surf on mullet and plugs,” Ashley reveals in this week’s addition, adding that the surf is loaded with mullet. “This is a good sign for how the fall striper fishing will be,” Ashley added, noting bonito, Spanish mackerel, and albacore have been keeping anglers busy in the inlet and out to the ocean. When wind and swells are up, it’s led anglers to figuring out secondary options for getting it done according to South Jersey field editor Anthony Califano. “Those that did manage to get out found that the trigger fishing continues to be fantastic with the water temps still around the 70-degree mark,” Anthony writes this week in his column, adding “That warm water is keeping mahi around the pots and also keeping kingfish and blowfish in the bays.” Surfcasters and jetty jocks in Atlantic and Cape May counties are finding local jetty and bridge fishing good with tog, stripers, blues and weakfish cooperating nicely. Those looking to head offshore for a shot at yellowfin, swordfish or mahi, regrettably it’s not looking so hot to the east. Large, double-digit swells forecast by NOAA for the Hudson to Baltimore all week with a gale expected to blow through by Friday.
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