Swansboro – April 26, 2018
Rich, of The Reel Outdoors, reports that red drum are biting inshore as they move in from the inlets and into area marshes. Cut mullet, topwater lures, and grubs work best for the reds when you locate them.
Sea mullet are being caught out on the beach, where shrimp or any type of Fishbites artificial bait will work when fished on the bottom. Bluefish are starting to show up in the surf, too, and cut mullet or a Gotcha plug will get in on the action.
Offshore, yellowfins are hitting standard trolling setups, if you can get past the wind to make the trip out to them.
Jerry, of Pogie’s Fishing Center, reports that not much has changed in the last few weeks other than the fact that higher inshore water temperatures are making fishing a little more exciting. The flounder bite is starting to pick up, especially near docks, and red drum can be found schooled up behind barrier islands. The reds are falling for everything from topwater baits to Gulp soft plastics to cut bait on Carolina rigs.
Nearshore fishing is all about bonito and false albacore right now. Get out your fly rod or rig up a Stingsilver to take advantage of the bite.
Rob, of Sandbar Safari Charters, reports that red drum are schooling up in the marsh, where soft plastics on weedless jigs and cut mullet have been getting the most bites. Black drum are in the inland creeks as well and are falling for cut shrimp. The bluefish bite continues to pick up, and speckled trout are still in area rivers and falling for Halo shrimp and MirrOlures.
The nearshore bonito bite should be getting even better this week. The fish can be caught by trolling Yo-Zuri lures and spoons or by casting metal jigs to fish on the surface.
On nearshore reefs, sea bass and gray trout can be found just off the bottom, and they will bite Stingsilvers and strip baits.
Johnathan, of On Point Charters, reports that the lack of any major change in the weather has kept fishing fairly predictable over the last few weeks. Red drum, speckled trout, and flounder are all still sitting behind the barrier islands around Bogue Inlet, but some bluefish are also starting to enter the mix.
Most of the blues are in the 1-3 lb. range, but a few bigger Hatteras blues have been found as well. The bluefish will hit just about any bait that you put in front of them.
Nearshore, sea bass are still biting in the 10-15 mile range and are mostly going after squid.
Bobby, of Teezher Charters, reports that sea mullet are on the beach and bluefish are taking the inshore creeks by storm, which (other than 2017) hasn’t happened on this scale in 25 years. The blues are happily taking the same types of baits and lures meant for red drum.
Nearshore, bonito are hanging on nearshore rocks about 5 miles out. The best way to get a bite is to troll Clarkspoons and diving jigs early in the morning. If you can see the fish on the surface, though, switch to light spinning tackle and cast into the school with a fast retrieve. Just like with the red drum, don’t be surprised if a bluefish hits your bonito rig.
Underneath the bonito in the 5 mile range, you should still be able to find some black sea bass on the bottom. Squid works the best, but any type of cut bait on a bottom rig will get the attention of the bass.
In the Gulf Stream, yellowfins, blackfins, and wahoo are all still biting. If you can mark the tuna, jigging has been working in depths of 100-125’, while scaling down to small lures will fool the fish on the surface. Skirting ballyhoo or Ilanders may also hook a tuna, though it certainly works best for wahoo.
Tammy, of Bogue Inlet Pier, reports that a couple of bluefish have come in on shrimp and Fishbites with a bloodworm scent. Late at night, sea mullet and blowfish have made up the majority of the catch, as the water temperature remains in the high 50s.