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North Carolina Department of Environment Quality

NC Department of Environment and Natural Resources
Marine Fisheries - Central District

Marine Fisheries

Central District Fishing Report —
Pamlico, Craven, Carteret and Onslow Counties

8-point rule

 

Contact: Jesse Bissette (Jesse.Bissette@ncdenr.gov)

For the week of Sept. 30 – Oct. 6

Ocean: Wahoo fishing continued to be good, with most boats able to bring back high numbers of fish. Dolphin and blackfin tuna were mixed in with the wahoo, along with a handful of billfish. Bottom fishermen saw good catches of grouper, vermilion snapper and black sea bass. King mackerel were landed by anglers fishing on the east side of Cape Lookout and the Northwest Places. A few came from the shipping channel and around the artificial reefs, as well. Large Spanish mackerel were caught over some of the near shore reefs, and trolling the beaches proved effective for the smaller eating sized Spanish mackerel. Little tunny were seen feeding on bait balls off the beach between Beaufort Inlet and Cape Lookout.

Inlets/Sounds/Bays: Large red drum were still being caught by anglers fishing the Neuse River with popping corks and cut bait catching fish. Smaller red drum and spotted seatrout were caught by those fishing in the Haystacks, Core Creek, North River and other area marshes. Radio Island jetty held good numbers of fish, as well. Most of the red drum were undersized, but a lot of the spotted seatrout were nice-sized keepers. Live bait and artificial lures all caught fish. Anglers fishing with live shrimp were able to catch good numbers of black drum, with most of the fish being the perfect size for the dinner table. Bottom fishermen in Beaufort Inlet saw decent catches of sea mullet, while those fishing in the N.C. State Port turning basin and Gallant’s Channel caught croaker, pigfish and a handful of spot. The spot bite was very inconsistent. Sheepshead were caught by anglers fishing with fiddler crabs around area structures.

Piers/Surf: Anglers bottom fishing on area piers saw good catches of spot, with piers towards the southern end seeing higher numbers of fish. The spot seemed to bite best at night. Mixed in were a handful of sea mullet and pompano. Fishermen throwing plugs had good luck with the Spanish mackerel, but many of them were on the smaller side. Anglers caught bluefish on plugs, as well. Those using live bait landed some red drum and spotted seatrout. Anglers surf fishing at Fort Macon State Park caught large, over-slot red drum using both live and cut mullet.


For the fishing year, all owners/operators of vessels recreationally fishing for and/or retaining regulated Atlantic Highly Migratory Species (Atlantic tunas, sharks, swordfish and billfish) in the Atlantic Ocean, including the Gulf of Mexico and Caribbean Sea, must obtain an Atlantic Highly Migratory Species Angling permit. This permit has replaced the Atlantic tunas Angling category permit. In North Carolina, additional Highly Migratory Species harvest reporting requirements are also in place. To obtain a permit go to: http://www.nmfs.noaa.gov/sfa/hms/compliance/permits_reporting/index.html

 

Report a tagged fish

Please note: Anglers sometimes confuse small king mackerel with Spanish mackerel. King mackerel and Spanish mackerel have different size and catch limits. Make sure you properly identify the mackerel you are catching. (Tips here)

A recreational fishing license went into effect Jan. 1, 2007 for all of the state's coastal and ocean waters.

Click here for the latest seasons, size and bag limits.

Please note: New reports are usually posted by early Monday afternoon.

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N.C. Division of Marine Fisheries • 3441 Arendell Street • Morehead City, NC 28557 • 252-726-7021 or 800-682-2632

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