Fish Post

Northern Beaches – October 10, 2019

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Betty, of TW’s Bait and Tackle, reports that Nags Head area beaches are producing good-sized bluefish (up to 3 lbs.), puppy drum, and black drum with Carolina-rigged mullet and fresh shrimp.

Anglers in the sound are catching limits of speckled trout from Wanchese down to the inlet. Bluefish are holding in deeper channels around the inlet, and they’re hitting casting jigs and soft plastics.

Puppy drum are in small groups on the flats. Carolina-rigged baits have been working best, with a few hitting soft plastics intended for trout.

Nearshore fishing has been solid for anglers casting jigs to spanish mackerel, bluefish, and false albacore just off the beach.

Nearshore bottom structure has been holding keeper black sea bass and triggerfish.

Sheepshead are staged along the Oregon Inlet Bridge pilings and hitting live fiddler crabs.

Offshore anglers are seeing dolphin in the daily counts, though seeing consistency has been tough. Some days anglers land a handful, and the next day they make quick limits.

Citation-sized yellowfin and blackfin tuna are showing up, and the yellowfin bite is anticipated to get better over the next month or two.

A few large bigeye tuna (up to 139 lbs.) were landed this past week.

White and blue marlin releases are happening almost daily. Wahoo numbers have been good, with many trips hooking up a couple fish in the 40 lb. range. A couple swordfish (up to 388 lbs.) are being caught by anglers bait fishing out deep.

King mackerel are scattered, but anglers are finding areas with structure or ledges holding a few fish.

Joanne Torrence with a keeper trout caught in the Roanoke Sound.

Bridgette, of Oregon Inlet Fishing Center, reports that offshore anglers have been coming in with limits of bailer and gaffer dolphin.

A handful of yellowfin tuna made a showing, with a couple citations in the bunch. Large wahoo, scattered blackfin, and a few bigeye tuna were also in the daily counts.

Bottom fishing has been producing large amberjacks, triggerfish, and keeper black sea bass.

Nearshore trips have been catching spanish mackerel, false albacore, and bluefish both while trolling and casting jigs.

Inshore trips are landing limits of speckled trout and scattered red drum while working channels and ledges around the inlet.

The head boat inlet trips have been pulling up gray trout, black sea bass, good-sized sea mullet, and pufferfish while bottom fishing.


Aaron, of Carolina Sunrise Charters, reports that speckled trout fishing has been on fire. Anglers are finding limits of 20” class fish while casting 4” Z-Man soft plastics under popping corks. MirrOlures are also very productive, as anglers work the ledges and grass banks from the inlet up towards Wanchese.

A few puppy drum are in the same areas, though warm water temperatures have the fish spread out.

Bluefish are a by-catch of anglers working the deeper channels for trout.


Gerry, of Fishing Unlimited, reports that speckled trout fishing has been consistent, with Gulp and Z-Man soft plastics catching fish early and late in the day.

Bottom fishing has been a bit slow in the afternoons, with pinfish, croaker, and the occasional black drum being reported by anglers fishing shrimp and Fishbites.


Laurie, of Pirate’s Cove Marina, reports that yellowfin (up to 71 lbs.) and blackfin tuna are hitting ballyhoo.

Some huge bigeye tuna (up to 139 lbs.) made a showing, mixed in with the other species.

Mahi fishing has been very good, with a mix of bailers and large gaffers (up to 37 lbs.) being caught on skirted baits.

Nearshore anglers are reporting limits of spanish mackerel while trolling and casting spoons or jigs.

Bluefish have been plentiful around the inlet, and they’re hitting casting jigs.

Inshore trips have been landing limits of speckled trout, along with scattered bluefish and sheepshead.


Andy, of Nags Head Pier, reports that bottom fishing anglers have been catching good numbers of sea mullet, spot, and croakers while casting shrimp on double-drop rigs.

A few nice-sized pompano are in the mix. They’re being caught closer to the beach.

The occasional red drum is feeding on Carolina-rigged mullet.


Laurie, of Jennette’s Pier, reports that spanish mackerel and bluefish are hitting Gotcha plugs and casting jigs thrown to bait balls hanging around the pier. A few false albacore have come through, with most being spotted in the early mornings.

Bottom fishing has been producing a good variety of spot, sea mullet, croaker, pompano, pigfish, and sand perch.

Dropping Carolina-rigged sand fleas around the pilings has fooled a few sheepshead.

Black drum are in the mix, and they’re hitting Carolina-rigged shrimp fished in deeper holes closer to the breakers. Puppy drum are feeding on cut mullet and fresh shrimp.

Anglers fishing off the end have landed a few over-slot red drum (up to 40”) while fishing cut bait on large fish-finder rigs.


Justin, of Avalon Pier, reports that speckled trout (up to 20”) are hitting soft plastics and Carolina-rigged live baits in the early mornings.

Good-sized red drum (up to 29.5”) are being caught on Carolina-rigged cut mullet.

Bottom fishing with shrimp and Fishbites strips has been producing sea mullet, spot, and croaker.


John, of Bob’s Bait and Tackle, reports that surf anglers have been pleased to see a few speckled trout caught early and late in the day with soft plastics. Puppy drum are hitting Carolina-rigged shrimp and cut mullet.

Bottom fishing the deeper holes just off the sand has been producing pompano, croaker, and sea mullet.

Sound-side anglers have been finding great speckled trout fishing while casting soft plastics under popping corks. A few red drum are mixed in the inshore counts, with most being caught closer to the inlet.


Keith, of Corolla Bait and Tackle, reports that surf anglers are catching pompano and sea mullet while bottom fishing.

Bluefish are feeding on bait balls in between sandbars, and casting glass minnow style jigs has produced a few hits.