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New Jersey & Delaware Bay


Posted By Jim Hutchinson, Jr., December 3, 2018
Joe Vezzosi registered the biggest reported tautog of the fall season we’ve heard so far with this 17.95-pound, 29-inch tautog caught aboard his Contender Matador on a custom-painted S&S John Skinner Tog jig. The fish was weighed in at Charlie’s Bait and Tackle, though Pete Kupper said Joe’s monster tautog was caught a bit farther to the south.
For those looking to angle up some tablefare, the tautog bite along the Jersey and Delaware coast has been the best bet. A little weather window is about all we need for boats to get out to the artificial reefs, where good fish have been had for folks jigging crabs on spin gear or baitcasting the more traditional fashion (and in relatively close to shore). A couple of monsters reported in the past week, including our web cover shot for New Jersey with Joe Vezzosi and a nearly 18-pound behemoth. Black sea bass of a jumbo variety are offshore in the 60-mile range where party boats have been able to put fares into a good amount of fish (also includes ling, cod, some pollock as well). Striped bass action along the beaches has been pretty incredible of late, so long as surfcasters don’t get too hung up on the size of the fish. Those scaling down for size and tossing thin metals with teasers are enjoying double-digit catches. Be prepared to walk and cast, as these fish are there and then they’re not. Those sand eel blooms have also brought some big bluefin in close, a giant turning heads on Monday morning when it washed ashore at Island Beach State Park and had to be removed by a front-end loader.
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