Striped bass provided the focus for ocean anglers fishing state waters inside the three-mile limit, with catch reports indicating success on natural baits and trolled artificials. The top choice among bait fishermen is live spot, with live eels, black salties, bunker and mullet also putting their share of fish on the deck. Catch reports from most of the trollers listed the Mann’s Stretch plugs as the top producer, followed by Bomber plugs, umbrella rigs, jumbo shad body lures and Parachutes.
Productive locations for ocean rockfish action included the Cape May Rips, Hens and Chickens Shoal, the shoal waters just below the Indian River Bell Buoy, the Bethany Condos and Little Gull Bank.
Boaters fishing in federal waters are reporting good action on chopper bluefish, with some of the best reports coming from McCrie Shoal, Five Fathom Bank, the Pimple, Fenwick Shoal, the Bass Grounds, Isle of Wight Shoal and Great Gull Bank. Fishermen targeting blues outside the three-mile limit also are releasing a few striped bass, which are illegal to possess while fishing in federal jurisdiction waters.