Bluefish Showing Up In All The Spots Like Last Year


bluefish, yellow eyed devil, gator, slammer, snapper, mullet, cape henlopen fishing pier
Ryan was wading and slammed this gator at the Henlopen Flats on Monday

The bluefish action has been great for about three weeks, or so.  The fish have been showing up at the beaches, the Broadkill River one day , and the Indian River Inlet the next.  You can’t predict when and where, like last year but it is getting closer.  The henlopen flats as you may already know have been hot for a while. You just have to be there when the fish come in but there is something much different from last year.  This year everyone is fishing from land.  Either wading or casting from the surfline.  Yesterday there were twenty people there and by the time we left there were fifty and only two boats and five kayaks.  Last year at this time there were twenty kayaks and fifty boats in there all day chasing the schools, not one person fishing from land.  Not one of the boats is chasing schools they are just anchoring up waiting for the fish to show up.  It was a funny scene, there are four guys chest deep wading, not twenty yards from the anchored boat.  Then the guys on land are casting to within twenty feet of the guys that waded out front.  Everyone is waiting for the fish to come close to shore, while the boat hammers fish.  The scenario with the pier being closed is the same as well.  Otherwise everyone would be on the end of the pier casting to the twelve-foot water line, where the fish are running.  Once in a while they would come within twenty feet of shore and that has been random.  The action has been the hottest closer to the top of incoming tide.  There is a lot of bait fish alog the surf line


dewey beach, inlandbays, rehobothbay, indianriver bay, delaware, sussex county, bluefish, yellow eyed devil, snapper, crappie meat
Ethan Henry … 15.8 lbs 38 inches … Rehoboth Bay
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While the anglers were trying for the blues at the pier area, friends were catching smaller blues around the corner on the ocean side of Cape Henlopen State Park.   These were a little smaller fish than the average large ones coming from the pier, but fun none the less.  They were hitting mullet rigs, and the fish near the pier are hitting anything that moves, when they are around.  The bluefish have also moved into the inland bays.  You need to find nervous water or the birds to locate the schools.  Ethan Henry and friends were fishing Rehoboth Bay yesterday and landed a thirty-eight inch blue.  The bait was freezer burnt crappie from last year.  Just goes to show these fish are hungry and will hit anything. The fact they are all head and skinny bodies shows they are very hungry.

Now if you are wondering why there aren’t as many here like last year, there could be a number of reasons.  One that stands out in my mind is the fact a lot of these fish were caught and killed last year up and downthe east coast.  That reduces the numbers for the next year for the same year class fish.   Aside from that being an obvious answer, there are tons of these fish already in New Jersey at most of the beaches and inlets.  So maybe they didn’t want to stick around like last year or in the same large schools.  One can only guess why and speculate.  How long will they stick around this year?  That all depends on the amount of food they are following and water temperatures.  Last year they were still here in rather warm water and well past Memorial Day weekend.  A croaker was caught in Cape Henlopen over the weekend, if they are starting to show up now that would increase the food source for the bluefish, as well as the flounder, crabs, and everything else that is already moving around our waters.

Fish On!!

Rich King

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