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Posted By Jim Hutchinson, Jr., December 23, 2019
Tara Bogan shows off a good sea bass caught while fishing with boyfriend Chris Lido for his birthday aboard dad Bob’s Gambler over the weekend. Just one more week of black sea bass fishing in the New York, New Jersey and Delaware region as the fishery comes to a close as of the first of the year.
According to the fisheries managers and federal officials at NOAA Fisheries, the black sea bass is more than two times its rebuilt goal; that’s the good news. The bad news is just because a fishery is statistically overbuilt, it doesn’t mean anything in terms of more days of fishing. That said, the New Jersey black sea bass fishery will once again close at the end of the year, the reopening set for sometime later in the spring. It’s a great week to hop on a party boat or dedicated charter to hit the sea bass grounds, roughly 40 plus miles from shore. In the mix on a lot of these boats heading offshore for sea bass are ling, cod, pollock, haddock and a few jumbo winter flounder. The tautog action continues to impress along the nearer shore reefs, wrecks and snags; sometime in 2020 you can expect these blackfish to move into deeper water, but this week find action in the 60- to 80-foot depths along the coast. Still plenty of stripers in the wash, particularly along the Ocean County stretches where more casters are enjoying the catch and release action (short stripers) whenever weather allows some comfortable fishing. Tins and teasers as typical, all types of sand eel matches; but be sure to take along some smaller plastic shads, the Kettle Creek 4-inch, Al Gag’s and small Tsunami shads. Be sure to check out The Fisherman’s homepage for a holiday message from our family to yours; there’s no video forecast for New Jersey, Delaware Bay edition this week due to holiday schedule. From all of us to all of you, a very Merry Christmas and happy Hanukah!
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