The bay has a mixed bag in terms of the sizes of the bass that folks are catching, although there really haven’t been any true cows weighed in recently.
According to Bruce Miller at Canal Bait and Tackle in Sagamore, there are a couple of big schools of larger stripers up around Plymouth; shore anglers are doing well at night on plugs as the fish move in closer to feed on mackerel before they move out into deeper water during the day. Vertical jigging has worked best when the fish are located, typically in 60+-feet of water.
The mackerel in the bay are on the small size and those small bonito, whose identity was confirmed by a scientist at the MBL in Woods Hole after Phil Stanton brought him one, are still around, but in decreasing numbers. Apparently, this event, or at least the magnitude in terms of numbers, is very unusual and not much is known about what it bodes for bonito fishing around these parts in the future.
Capt. Warren Marshall told me that a couple of members from the Cape Cod Flyrodders had a good day on Tuesday fishing for bass outside the east entrance, with mostly small fish up to the occasional 30-incher caught in the upper portions of the water column.
Andy Little from The Powderhorn in Hyannis confirmed that some larger bass are still being caught at night off of Sandy Neck on live eels, while there are as many schoolies inside Barnstable Harbor as you could want, making soft plastics rigged with single hooks, whether in a jighead or as an offset worm hook/swimbait hook, great choices since they are easier to remove, therefore allowing more fish to swim away in good condition so they can contribute to the stocks some day.
The Sandwich creeks are also good spots for schoolie fishing, with a handful of hardcores working the beaches in this area at night with live eels and swimming plugs in hopes of connecting with a larger bass.
It’s the same story around the beaches from Yarmouth to Brewster, although the number of fish is slowly thinning out; the flats are holding mainly small bass, with either gray, cloudy days or the darkness of night pretty much your best bet when it comes to locating anything of size, especially off the creeks that empty into the area.