STRIPED BASS fishing continues to be fair throughout the Sound. One must reef hop and hopefully get 1 or 2 bass on each reef. The nighttime is the right time. They are feeding on the young-of-year menhaden. Fishing should improve around the waning full moon. Bunker (Atlantic menhaden) schools are still in the major tidal rivers and harbors with stripers following close behind. Look for hovering or diving ospreys which is an indication of bunker (menhaden) schools.
The usual striper spots include the Watch Hill reefs, Ram Island Reef in Fishers Island Sound, lower Mystic and Thames River, the Race, Sluiceway, Plum Gut, Pigeon Rip, outer Bartlett Reef, Black Point, the “humps’ south of Hatchett Reef, lower Connecticut River, Long Sand Shoal, Cornfield Point, Southwest Reef (outer), Sixmile Reef, Falkner Island area, the reefs off Branford, New Haven Harbor and the upper reaches, Charles Island area, lower Housatonic River, buoys 18 and 20 off Stratford Point, Stratford Shoal/Middle Ground, Penfield Reef, around the Norwalk Islands, and Cable and Anchor Reef. Dawn and dusk is prime time for large stripers on the reefs, rip areas and lower coastal tidal rivers. Live lining eels, bunker or hickory shad has been the ticket.
BLACK SEA BASS fishing continues to be fantastic in the eastern Sound. They are carpeted throughout the bottom of the eastern Sound. Fishing over deep water structure/cobble/gravel in 80 to 120 ft around slack tide will produce some trophy-sized “humpbacks” up to 25 “ on baited jigs or gulp. It’s important to continue to move from structure to structure and fish around slack tide (stay close to the bottom) to find these beautiful and awesome eating fish. They will eat anything you provide them (clams). Fish shallower and you will catch some keeper-sized sea bass along with summer flounder, a lot of sea robins and smooth dogfish (aka sandsharks). CT black sea bass regulations are as follows…15 inch min. length, 5 fish daily limit from May 19th to December 31st. Berkely Gulp (swimming mullet), on a jig along with squid with a spinner works great for these Bucketmouths. Clams and sandworms also work well.
PORGY [Scup] fishing is awesome. These “Reef Slammers” are measuring 10-18 inches (“hubcap size”) in length being reported at every fishing pier, reef or rock pile in the Sound. Try Gardners Island, Milford (Charles Island), Montauk and Niantic (Bartletts and Hatchetts Reef). Porgy fishing has also been reported at these very accessible shore fishing locations: Calf Pasture beach, Jennings and Penfield beach, Seaside Park, (Milford), Bradley Point Park (West Haven), New Haven, Harkness State Park, Rocky Neck State Park, Kimberley Reef (Guilford), Meigs Point Hammonassett State Park and Fort Trumbull State Park. Locate your favorite Enhanced Shore Fishing Opportunities for these hard fighting and excellent eating Reef Slammers. These “panfish of the sea” are easily caught on sandworms/cut squid or any other small piece of bait. Contact your local bait and tackleshop for updated fishing information.
WEAKFISH fishing has surprised many anglers…good catches of “squeteague” are occurring while anglers bottom fish for fluke and sea bass. Good fishing in Niantic (Black Point), New Haven Harbor by the breakwaters over to Woodmont/Milford Point and along Stratford shoals to Darien. One of the best eating saltwater fish you will ever catch.
BLUEFISH fishing has improved on the major reefs and rip areas. Vertical jigging diamond jigs or trolling in deep water locations along with fresh bunker chunk baits on three way rigs in shallow water has been the ticket. Typical bluefish fishing spots include the reefs off Watch Hill, the Race, Thames River, Sluiceway, Plum Gut, Pigeon Rip, lower Connecticut River (CT DEEP Headquarters Fishing Pier), Long Sand Shoal, Sixmile Reef, Falkner Island area, New Haven Harbor and upper reaches, lower Housatonic River, buoys 18 and 20 off Stratford Point, Stratford Shoal/Middleground, Penfield Reef, and Cable and Anchor Reef.
SNAPPER BLUEFISH fishing is improving daily in the tidal creeks and rivers. The DEEP Marine Headquarters fishing pier and Fort
Trumbull fishing pier are two great spots to bring kids fishing & crabbing. Look for the schools of “peanut” bunker and you will find the snappers.
FLUKE [Summer Flounder] fishing is improving with the influx of peanut bunker and snapper blues forcing the summer flounder to feed in shallow water. There have been some big fish caught off Black Point and Six Mile Reef measuring in the 30 inch range being reported. Fort Trumbull is the shore fishing hot spot…there have been some very impressive fluke (24”) caught there recently.
Summer flounder spots include the south shore of Fishers Island (Isabella Beach, Wilderness Point), Napatree Point and along the beach, off the Stonington breakwater, mouth of the Mystic River over to Groton Long Point, Twotree Island Channel, Black Point/Niantic Bay including the Bloody Grounds, Sound View Beach, Long Sand Shoal, Falkner Island area, New Haven Harbor, off the mouth of the Housatonic River during the flood tide, and around the Norwalk Islands. Minimum size is 19 inches and the daily creel limit is 4 fish per person.
Read the full report at this link: Connecticut Department of Energy & Environmental Protection
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