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N.C. Department of Environment and Natural Resources

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

Marine Fisheries

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Central District Pamlico, Craven, Carteret and Onslow Counties

Contact: Scott Smith

Owners/operators of vessels recreationally fishing for and/or retaining regulated Atlantic Highly Migratory Species (HMS) (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 (HMS) Angling permit. This permit has replaced the Atlantic tunas Angling category permit. In North Carolina, additional HMS harvest reporting requirements are also in place. To obtain a permit go to: http://www.hmspermits.gov..

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. Be SURE to properly identify the mackerel you are catching. (Tips here)

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

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


Central District

For the week of Aug. 25-31

Ocean: The wahoo bite was still doing great offshore, with anglers also reporting sailfish, dolphin and king mackerel catches. Bottom-fishing anglers landed black sea bass, red porgy, vermilion snapper, gray triggerfish, white grunt, whitebone porgy, gag grouper and amberjacks. Near shore, the mullet started running along the beaches, and the Spanish mackerel bite couldn’t have been better. King mackerel and bluefish were also reported in decent numbers along the shore and out towards the sea buoy.

Inlets/Sounds/Bays: Good numbers of Spanish mackerel and bluefish were reported from Beaufort Inlet. Red drum, flounder, lizardfish, pigfish, sea mullet and pinfish were landed from the N.C. Port turning basin and from Bogue Sound. Fishermen had a good flounder bite at the port, using live mullet as bait. The sheepshead bite was still strong, especially at the port wall, the Radio Island high-rise bridge and the Highway 101 Core Creek high-rise bridge. There were also decent catches of speckled trout from around Brown’s Inlet and the marshes around the New River Inlet.

Piers/Shore: Pier anglers reported a typical summer catch of croaker, spot, pigfish, pompano, red drum, bluefish and flounder. Fishermen also caught Spanish mackerel and a few king mackerel. There were a few sea mullet reported, but the water was still in the lower to mid-80s — too warm for sea mullet.

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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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