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Fishing Friday: Blues’ The Word, Crabbing Picking Up, Bottom’s Up

Lucky anglers on board the Gambler party boat in Point Pleasant Beach, May 25, 2016. (Photo: Gambler Crew)

Lucky anglers on board the Gambler party boat in Point Pleasant Beach, May 25, 2016. (Photo: Gambler Crew)

Bluefish anglers, rejoice! Blues have been thick in the surf all week long, leading to plenty of action for almost anyone who wets a line.

“Big blue fish are attacking just about what ever passes their nose,” John at The Dock Outfitters in Seaside Heights said. “The number one lure seems to be a large popping plug and the larger the better. Metals and of course cut bunker will always work.”

Striped bass, the shop said in a report, are around, but all the attention is on bluefishing and they seem to be just about everywhere.

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Strip baits are also a popular method to catch them, John said.

The crew at Murphy’s Hook House in Toms River went fishing in Seaside Park the other night and managed to beach a nice 16-pound bass on bunker chunks, as well as a few others. The bluefish bite, of course, was the most- talked-about species on the menu.

“Bunker chunks and mullet for the bait fisherman and metals, poppers and swimmers worked for those throwing artificials,” said Mario from the shop.

The night bite was just as hot as the daytime bite, he said.

“Fluke season is open but we have not seen a lot of interest in them yet,” said Grumpy from Grumpy’s Tackle in Seaside Park, in a report.

Getting away from bluefish mania – we get it – Grumpy said crabbing is doing well in the bay.

“Crabbing has the same lack of attendance even though there are plenty of dinners waiting for ya,” he wrote.

The shop also weighed in a 40-inch bass this week, as well as the first keeper fluke of season.

Bottom fishing was taking off in the ocean, according to a number of reports posted by, including word from the Dauntless party boat in Point Pleasant Beach that many customers are limiting out on sea bass. Fluke were boated here and there on the Gambler party boat, the report said, which included a pool-winning 3.4 pounder.

“A few more keeper size Fluke along with some shorts and some good size sea bass came over the rail” on Thursday, a report from the Norma K III party boat said. “A few were caught on bucktails and a few on squid and spearing. Back at it tomorrow!”

In Barnegat Bay, there were scattered reports of fluke being caught around the usual spots, including the BI/BB buoys.

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