Fish Post

Topsail – June 8, 2017

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Austin, of East Coast Sports, reports that surf anglers are connecting with nice-sized black drum, along with a few red drum. The black drum are falling for fresh shrimp fished along the bottom, and the reds are preferring a piece of cut mullet or menhaden.

Sea mullet and pompano are showing up in decent numbers. Shrimp and sand fleas are how most are getting the bites. Bluefish are being hooked in the surf using cut bait on bottom rigs. Anglers casting plugs and diamond jigs near the inlets are getting a few spanish, mostly during high tide.

There are black drum biting inshore, and most of the fish are being found around bridges, oyster bars, and docks. Live and fresh cut shrimp are getting the black drum to bite. Also look for red drum holding in similar areas. In addition, the reds are also patrolling shallow flats and grass shorelines. Topwater plugs, scented soft plastics fished under popping corks, and live shrimp and minnows are getting attention from the reds.

Inshore flounder fishing has steadily picked up over the past week. Creek mouths, docks, channels, and drop-offs are all holding fish. Live mud minnows fished on Carolina rigs are how most of the bites are coming, but Z-Man and Gulp soft plastics fished on 3/8 oz. jig heads are also catching the fish.

Nearshore boaters are seeing good numbers of spanish mackerel just off the beach. Trolling #0 and #00 Clarkspoons behind #1 planers are getting the bites. Surface feeding fish have been present early and late in the day, and 1/2 oz. Jigfish and Epoxy jigs will get them to bite. There have also been some bluefish and false albacore falling for trolled spoons.

Cobia have been holding tight to menhaden schools and being caught on Bowed Up cobia jigs. Bottom fishing around structure and area inlets has also produced bites from cobia.

King mackerel fishing has been hot around the 20 mile line. Cigar minnows fished on Blue Water Candy dead bait rigs below a downrigger is working best. Trolling faster with plugs and spoons has been effective, too.

Bottom fishing has been good, with catches of grouper, sea bass, grunts, and snapper being reported. Metal jigs, frozen minnows, and squid bait are all getting action from the mixed bag of bottom species.

Mahi fishing has been good inside the break. Most of the fish are being hooked on the troll with skirted ballyhoo. Gulf Stream boaters are also hooking solid numbers of billfish, mostly blue marlin and a few sailfish and whites.


Wes Pollard and Casey Griffith with dolphin and a pompano caught in 110’ of water out of New River Inlet. The anglers trolled ballyhoo for the mahi and dropped jigs for the African pompano.


Chadwick, of South End Anglers, reports that red drum fishing along the marsh has been good for just legal-sized fish. They are biting topwater plugs early and late in the day along shorelines adjacent to docks. Once the sun gets up, the fish are moving back under the docks and keying in on live minnows and shrimp. Look for the larger fish to move from the surf zone back into the marsh once the baitfish and shrimp begin to show up in better numbers.

Flounder fishing nearshore and in the marsh has picked up considerably. Bucktails and small live menhaden fished on Carolina rigs around nearshore reefs and ledges are how most of the larger fish are being caught. Z-Man MinnowZ fished on Fathom Inshore jigs are getting attention from inshore flounder when opting to not use live bait.

Spanish mackerel fishing has been very good near New Topsail Inlet and along the beaches. Nickle/pink and gold Clarkspoons trolled behind #1 planers are all that’s needed to produce plenty of fish. The best bite has been early in the day on an outgoing tide, and tidelines and color changes are holding the most fish. Small false albacore and bluefish are biting well once the tide begins to rise.

There are still a good many cobia swimming around nearshore structure and along the inlets. Live and cut menhaden fished on the bottom and sight casting with Blue Water Candy bucktails and Z-Man HeroZ are how most of the bites are coming. Small king mackerel have been thick around nearshore AR’s, live bottoms, and ledges.

Bottom fishing in the 3-16 mile range is producing sea bass, grunts, and grouper. Z-Man plastics on 2 and 3 oz. TT jigs, a variety of metal jigs, squid, and cut albacore are all working well.


Mike, of Native Son Guide Service, reports that speckled trout are biting topwater plugs, but you have to be there at first light or twilight to get the strikes. Small-sized Rapala Skitterwalks and MirrOlure Top Pups have worked the best for the trout.

Flounder are showing up in numbers, and Z-Man jerk shads fished around creek mouths and docks are producing. Live bait works great when the right size is available.

Spanish fishing has been real good, and the better fishing has been close to the beach. Trolling #00 Clarkspoons behind #1 planers is working best.

Kings are biting live bait well around the nearshore reefs.


Jim, of Plan 9 Charters, reports that king mackerel fishing has been good, with the best action in the 10-20 mile range. The fish have been showing the most interest in Yo-Zuri deep divers and Drone spoons, but keep in mind that the kings are still a little scattered.

Mahi are being caught in the 25-35 mile range. Small ballyhoo rigs and dead bait rigs with cigar minnows are working on them.

The spanish bite has been a little on and off. Overall, most of the fish have been smaller. The best fishing has been early around the inlets, and the fish have been eating #00 Clarkspoons better than #0.

Bottom fishing has picked up in the 15-20 mile range, with grouper, gray snapper, and sea bass all providing consistent action.

Red drum caught by Fernando Moya of Wilmington on Figure 8 Island, he was using mud minnows on a Carolina rig.

Robin, of Jolly Roger Pier, reports that spanish and bluefish have been biting well off the end of the pier. Gotcha plugs and diamond jigs casted early and late in the day are getting the majority of strikes.

Bottom fishermen are seeing black drum, and fresh shrimp fished on the bottom is catching the drum.


Terry, of Surf City Pier, reports that blues and spanish are biting plugs, hitting better early and late in the day. Red and black drum are both biting fresh shrimp on the bottom, and the reds are also biting cut mullet.

The first king mackerel was landed, but it was just undersize and had to be released.

Spots are showing up at night. The bite hasn’t lasted long and has been sporadic. Some very nice speckled trout have been caught by anglers using live shrimp. Good numbers of flounder have been biting, but the majority of those caught have been undersized.


Tyler, of Seaview Fishing Pier, reports that the first tarpon of the season was landed on a live bluefish this past week. Bluefish have been biting Gotcha plugs very well throughout the day, and spanish are biting well, too.

Speckled trout are being caught on live shrimp, with some nice-sized fish landed. Keeper black drum and a few red drum are being caught on the bottom using fresh cut shrimp.