Fish Post

Wrightsville Beach – June 6, 2019

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Matt, of Tex’s Tackle, reports that a lot of the redfish have been on the move, spreading out to more locations inshore. A variety of lures (including Z-Man and Gulp soft plastics, topwater plugs, and gold spoons and spinner baits) have all been working well. You can’t go wrong with cut bait or live mullet either.

More keeper flounder are being caught inshore, and live bait and Gulp are accounting for most of the fish. The flounder can be found near the inlets and in the creeks on the mainland side. The sheepshead and black drum fishing has been good around bridges, docks, and oyster bars. Fiddler crabs, sand fleas, and shrimp are the best baits to go with.

There has been more variety coming in from the surf lately, with bluefish, pompano, spanish, croaker, black drum, red drum, and flounder all reported.

The spanish mackerel fishing has been great at the nearshore wrecks and ledges. There have been some citation-sized fish mixed in, especially for boats fishing with live bait. Anglers have also been catching blues, kings, and a few false albacore in the same areas. Trolling with Yo-Zuri Deep Divers and Clarkspoons with planers has been working best. The fish have also been hitting casting jigs, when you can find them feeding on the surface.

Some citation-sized flounder, gray trout, and sea bass having been chewing on the nearshore bottoms. Try a bucktail tipped with a Gulp or with a live mullet or menhaden.

There has been a decent number of cobia caught and seen around Wrightsville Beach. Look for them to be following turtles, rays, bait balls, or just free swimming.

King mackerel are being caught in great numbers at structure and ledges throughout the area. The kings are being caught from the beach to the 30 mile range. Ballyhoo and cigar minnows, Drone spoons, and live bait will all produce fish.

Mahi have started to be caught inshore of 100’. They are usually chasing flying fish, so try to match your trolling spread to the size of the bait you see in that area.

The gag grouper bite, along with some beeliners, pinkies, and grunts, has been strong starting in about 90’. The reds and scamps can be found further offshore, along with good numbers of triggerfish.

The most recent news from the Gulf Stream is the arrival of some strong mahi fishing (along with decent marlin fishing). Finding the temperature breaks and weed lines has been the key to success.

There have still been a few nice blackfins, and it’s still a good idea to run the planer rod with wire if you want a chance at a wahoo.

Pat Horning and Natalie Foley, of Wilmington, with a mahi that hit a black and green mylar Sea Witch rigged with ballyhoo while trolling along weed lines near the 280 line. They were fishing aboard the “Bruiser” with Capt. Paul Horning.

Arlen, of Intracoastal Angler, reports that red drum have been biting throughout the area, both on the flats and in the creeks. Scented jerk shads and soft plastic shrimp have been producing drum up to 26”, with topwater plugs working well early and later in the day. Several schools of upper-slot fish have been reported behind Masonboro, providing good opportunities for fly and topwater anglers.

Flounder fishing has been steadily improving, with several fish up to 5 lbs. Deeper oyster banks and creek mouths on the falling tide have produced the most action, with live minnows and Gulp jerk shads being the bait of choice.

Larger sheepshead are coming from waterway bridges and dock pilings on fiddler crabs and sand fleas.

Although the overall average size has decreased, spanish mackerel fishing has been very good along the beachfront.  Trolling areas such as Johns Creek and the Liberty Ship with Clarkspoons and Yo-Zuri Deep Divers has been the best bet.

Nearshore wrecks and reefs are producing a lot of flounder for anglers jigging Spro bucktail/Gulp combos. Several cobia were reported this week from the same areas, with live eels and menhaden producing the best results. A few anglers are also reporting catches of spadefish.

King mackerel fishing has been red hot, mainly in the 5-10 mile range. Trolling bigger ballyhoo on Mack-a-hoos, along with Drone spoons, has produced the best, with boat limits being the norm.

Gag grouper fishing has been red hot, with the best areas inshore of 23 Mile Rock and the Schoolhouse.

Ledges and live bottoms in the 45 mile range are producing nice scamp grouper, along with beeliners and triggerfish.

Despite having to battle the scattered grass lately, Gulf Stream anglers are reporting good catches of dolphin and tuna. The best areas have been from the Nipple to the north.

Anglers venturing to the 100 fathom curve have encountered several blue marlin and sailfish, with the best action from the 250 line north.

Kyle Cartrette (age 9) with his first king mackerel caught while fishing with his dad and mom, Brandon and Cora Cartrette. The 33″ king fell for a Yo-Zuri diving plug around the 5 Mile Boxcars.

Jamie, with Seagate Charters, reports that flounder are biting inshore, as well as at nearshore wrecks and reefs around 5 miles off the beach. The nearshore flounder are falling for Sea Striker bucktails tipped with plastics from Z-Man and Zoom, and live menhaden has produced both flounder and red drum.

Larger reds are starting to bite around area inlets and beaches.

Spanish mackerel fishing has slowed down on area beaches but should start to improve again soon. There are plenty of bluefish to be caught.

Speckled trout are feeding early in the mornings and going for topwater lures and suspending jerk baits.

Cobia are still around the area beaches. Finding bait balls and then casting into them with a bucktail is a good way to produce.


Rick, of Living Waters Guide Service, reports that offshore fishing is still going strong, with blackfins, mahi, and billfish (blue and white marlin, in addition to mainly sailfish) all in the mix. Wahoo are starting to become less common, but a few scattered ones can still be found.

Bottom fishing is excellent from 80’ and deeper. Gag, reds, and scamps are plentiful.


Clay, of Johnnie Mercers Pier, reports that anglers have seen a few cobia and some good runs on spanish. Bluefish, schools of big ladyfish, and pompano have also come in.

Flounder have started biting, though the majority of them have been small. Cut bait, small pinfish, and small Gulp grubs are catching the flounder.