The Bay Shore Marina Dock is a great place to begin fishing, especially with the kids. The dock is large, offers a playground for the non-fishing times, plus it’s loaded with opportunity.
Bay Shore Marina was my home away from home beginning at the young age of 8. With my dog Ginger in tow, along with fishing gear, bait and lunch, I would be there all day. And, to make it even better, I can honestly say, the fishing was always very good.
Fast forward to today, and from the fishing reports I receive, angler comments, and the two local bait and tackle shops — Burnett’s Marina and Willie K Bait and Tackle — the action remains rock solid throughout the year.
Although flounder action is a distant memory, early season forays begin with bluefish invading the area as early as late April, usually with the arrival of bunker. Blues will come in fast, and at times see fish pushing 10 plus pounds. As the season wanes on, the blues remain, and are joined by stripers from school size to slot fish. For blues, nothing will beat a bunker or mackerel chunk, but a topwater popper can be deadly in the early a.m. on a calm morning. Bass will be on the bunker pods if they are there, but smaller, school size fish can be caught on small swimmers such as SP Minnows and other similar plugs. Bunker and mackerel chunks will also work well for the bass. Remember, if you are targeting bass, you must be using an inline circle hook. A 7/0 size is perfect for the chunks.
Next up, and at times coinciding with the blues will be weakfish, followed by fluke. The weakfish run lately has not been long, but anglers targeting them at sunrise, dusk or after dark have scored quite a few keepers. A small pink soft plastic Fin-S Fish on a light 1/4-ounce jighead is all you need to score. If you can get your hands on some grass shrimp, your odds will drastically increase. You can find them along the pilings at times.
Fluke will be in the area all summer, but you will have to work for a keeper. For fluke, nothing beats a strip of squid and spearing combo. The secret for fluke is to keep the bait moving at all times. Make your cast, and then slowly reel in the bait. If you feel dead weight, drop your rod tip, and then slowly lift to set the hook. Another option would be a bucktail and single spearing in combination with a short hop and reel retrieve.
By the time June arrives, along with the warmer summer water and air temperatures, bottom dwellers like kingfish and blowfish can be caught there daily. Kings and blowfish will respond well to clam baits. Throw out a chum pot full of clam chum and you will have them feeding in no time. Don’t be afraid to change locations as blowfish and kingfish will usually be set up in a little dip in the bay floor. A dip as little as 10 to 15 inches could be the difference maker.
Add in the great crabbing, and you have the makings of a great day on the water all without the use of a boat.
Bay Shore Marina is a Town of Islip Park, with a fee for residents and non-residents. For more info, contact Bay Shore Marina at 631-224-5648.
For fishing info, contact Greg at Burnett’s Marina at 631-665-9050 or Kurt at Willie K at 631-665-7414.