Based on some vague reports of bonito between the Cape Codder and West Falmouth Harbor, Capt. Warren Marshall made the run up the bay from Woods Hole in hopes of catching our first funny fish of the season. Alas, all we found were some boats drifting about south of the harbor, a few doing the same off of the Sea Crest, and a few knuckleheads who thing that fishing involves charging about at full throttle with no clear goal in mind. We actually watched one boat change direction six times at high speed before rocketing off back towards the Canal.
We poked around a bit and based on the bait concentrations we saw, it was clear why there would be bonito in the area; there were a good number of silversides close to shore, one of their favorite meals, and Buzzards Bay is typically filled with sand eels, another bone preference as opposed to baitfish such as peanut bunker. Capt. Jaime Boyle told us that he heard of a good bite yesterday, but by the time we left around 9:30 AM, nothing had really materialized on the falling tide. If we had the time, it would have been interesting to revisit the area on the change, but our busman’s holiday was geared more to catching some fish as opposed to chasing phantoms, no matter how tempting they might have been.
Mike Thomas at M & D’s in Wareham reported that the recremercial boaters who were fishing eels around the Maritime Academy this morning did nothing, zilch. On the other hand, those anglers who knew how to handle pogies, particularly rigging them in a manner that is yo-yo like but without internal weights, hog rings, and skewers, did really well. Mike spoke to one fisherman who said it was embarrassing as his eels went untouched while the pogy boats cleaned up.
There are some schools of small bluefish, around four-pounds on average, in Wareham Bay and around the west entrance to the Canal, but schoolie bass are surprisingly a bit more difficult to find recently. Early morning drifts along Stony Point Dike casting stickbaits like the Rebel Jumpin’ Minnow or unweighted soft plastics can produce some small stripers, as will targeting the myriad pieces of rocky structure from Phinney’s Harbor to Quissett. If a rising tide is in sync with the wee hours before first light, all the better.
Mike added that there is no lack of sea bass or big scup around Cleveland Ledge, with some of the largest fish in deeper water. The bottom fishing is also good around Bird Island and the entrance to Marion Harbor.