Indian summer-like temps make for fine fishing

Kingfish caught at Assateague by David Moore of Shark Whisperer guide service.

Is is summer again already? Nothing like an Indian summer tease by Mother Nature to really throw off your game. Fishing has been decent. The truck is loaded with enough Helly Hansen cold weather gear to outfit an Eskimo. Now I am questioning the need. I’m sure by next week I won’t have that issue.

Despite the warmup, the fishing hasn’t changed much. We are still in summer fish mode for a few species. Spot has all but disappeared. Kingfish are hitting in the surf, rather large ones, especially at Assateague. Most of the bluefish are the tiny cocktail size in the eight-inch range. There are some larger ones around but most of the schools have the summer baby blues. The skate and dogfish action is decent. Be careful, the dogfish are the spiny dogs. That dorsal spine can be rather painful

Bunker schools are thick along the beaches. Finding fish on them is a different story. Up north in Jersey, anglers are seeing bass on bunker in back bays and sand eels along the beaches. Gear up appropriately. Once striped bass find sand eels, they tend to sit on the schools for a bit. If the sand eels sit in one place, that helps a great deal.

Schooling striped bass are feeding heavy in the surf and other waterways. The catching is fun. Most of them are all short schooling bass. They are a lot of fun on light action gear. There have been a few keepers caught at the Indian River Inlet and Lewes Canal. A lot of decent night action for striped bass.

Tautog has been the hot catch for the boats and wall anglers. Some keepers here and there between throwbacks. Anglers are using bait or jigging, some with bait. Those tautog jigs work pretty well on their own. Some good eating if you have the patience for catching tautog.

Check the charters out of Lewes and Indian River for trip times and costs. The inlets are producing as well as some more keepers this week than last. Green crabs or sand fleas for bait. You can still find sand fleas in the surf.

Sea bass action has been hot for boats getting out. Book a trip today. Some porgie action mixed in as well.

This time last year the speckled trout ran Delaware waters in huge numbers. Haven’t seen that much action this year but they are around and feeding. Nuclear Chicken gulp for the win jigging the canal.

Flounder are still biting around the Lewes Canal, Roosevelt Inlet and the bays. Lot of small throwbacks but the action is still there.

Crabbing will be great all winter if the temperature never changes. I have seen a lot of fat crabs on the pier poles down to the docks. Pots are no longer allowed, but you can handline crabs all day long. When they get slow enough, just scoop them up with a net.

Delaware state parks are free to enter as of Nov 1. They are a great way to enjoy the outdoors for no charge. Get the family out this weekend. No idea how long this beautiful weather will last. I still can’t wait to go car hooding but I will take an Indian Summer anytime.

Keep up with your fishery meeting. Tthey are all online now. The easiest way I have ever been bored for two hours at a clip. But it is important to keep up with any and all details of the fishery.

Adam Aguado caught this nice speckled trout in the Lewes Canal.

The recreational fishing funding council just met. Some new projects coming soon. The Dobbinsville Pier up north will be a nice addition in about a year. The 7th Street boat ramp project will occur soon. We will be losing the C&D Canal piers unless anglers stand up and ask for them to be fixed. This is the council that helps approve projects and the funding. If you want more access for land-based fishing, get involved.

The nice thing about online meetings is council members can’t cuss you out for asking hard questions.

I’m curious how many more fishing licenses sold this year compared to last year. Seems like the whole state went fishing when we were allowed to fish during the quarantine.

Hunters have been doing well “catching” deer. Still love asking people that mostly for the hilarious looks. The butchers have been busy this fall. Waterfowl hunting has been good for many as well.

Brecknock County Park’s Howell Mill Nature Center is open again. There are a lot of great displays and trails at that park. The park is located in Camden and is a must-visit for the family.

The oil spill clean-up is still underway but winding down. From personal experience, there is still some tar oil globs in the upper wrack line. There isn’t any more washing up, which is good. On very warm days I would leave the pets at home instead of walking them on the beach.

Random tar oil blobs will warm up on those days and stick to anything. I am still wearing shoes until I feel I won’t get tar oil on my feet. Cleaning that off is no fun at all. WD-40 is the bomb, but who wants to smell like WD-40 all day?