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N.C. Department of Environment and Natural Resources

NC Department of Environment and Natural Resources
Marine Fisheries - RecFishReports

Marine Fisheries

Recreational Fishing Reports

The North Carolina Division of Marine Fisheries interviews anglers throughout coastal areas to estimate the marine recreational fishing catch. The following regional fishing reports are updated weekly and compiled by DMF port agents as they observe and interview fishermen at access sites along the coast — more than 500 anglers are interviewed each week.

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

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Northern District

For the week of Sept. 9-14

Ocean: Offshore anglers experienced a fair week of fishing. Dolphin fishing was fair out of Oregon and Hatteras inlets. The majority of the dolphin were bailers with a few gaffers in the mix. The yellowfin tuna bite was fair. Anglers landed nice yellowfins in the 40- to 60-pound range. Anglers also landed blackfin tuna and wahoo. The best wahoo action was out of Hatteras. Anglers landed their limits of wahoo on a regular basis. Billfish action was fair, as well. Anglers caught and released blue and white marlin on a daily basis. Sailfish were released on a daily basis, too. Bottom fishing produced good numbers of blueline tilefish and triggerfish. Amberjacks were plentiful on most any offshore structure. Live bait and vertical jigs were the baits of choice. Anglers fishing along the shore landed good numbers of Spanish mackerel and bluefish. Trolling small spoons produced the best catches.

Inlets/Sounds/Bays: Inlet anglers reported good fishing. Flounder fishing was fair overall. Anglers landed good numbers of flounder, and quite a few fish were legal size. Live bait fished on a Carolina rig produced the best catches. Anglers also landed fish using Gulp bait. Red drum were still caught around the inlets and in all sizes. Artificial jigs and cut bait produced the bulk of the catches. Anglers landed red drum around shallow water shoals, as well as around grass beds. Bottom fishing produced catches of sea mullet and croakers. Anglers fishing at the Oregon Inlet bridge caught sheepshead and black drum. Speckled trout were caught throughout the local sounds, and anglers reported higher numbers of keeper-size fish.

Piers/Shore: Pier and surf anglers had a good week of fishing. Surf anglers caught good numbers of nice sea mullet, and sand fleas proved to be the best bait for the larger fish. Red drum were landed along all beaches with the bulk of the catches coming from the Cape Point area. Anglers using Gotcha plugs and sting silvers landed Spanish mackerel and bluefish. Anglers saw better catches around daylight and dusk. Bottom fishing on the piers produced fair catches of spot and sea mullet.


Central District

For the week of Sept. 9-14

Ocean: Offshore anglers reported catching wahoo in large numbers with some smaller dolphin and amberjack in the mix. A lot of fishing was going on around the Big Rock for wahoo. Closer to shore, anglers had a blast catching Spanish mackerel, little tunny and bluefish in Beaufort inlet and along the beaches out toward Artificial Reef 315. King mackerel were also caught in the same areas and out toward the sea buoy. Bottom fishing anglers caught large vermilion snapper, gag grouper, gray triggerfish, white grunt, amberjack and various porgies.

Inlets/Sounds/Bays: The inlets started to yield gray trout and sea mullet, and a few anglers met their limits. Pigfish, sea mullet, pinfish, flounder, pompano and bluefish were reported around Radio Island. The flounder bite was still going strong. Flounder were biting on live mullet fished around the N.C. Port. Sheepshead were still biting on live urchins and fiddler crabs at area bridges.

Piers/Shore: Shore anglers reported decent numbers of sea mullet, spot, pompano, flounder and red drum. The red drum catches really picked up, both on the beach and from the piers.


Southern District

For the week of Sept. 9-14

Ocean: Offshore, the wahoo fishing was outstanding. Some boats came in with limits of fish in the 35- to 45-pound range. Boats targeting reef fish had another good week, as well. There were good numbers of gags and scamps caught, along with limits of vermilion snapper and black sea bass. Near shore, some king mackerel were starting to show up along area beaches. Flounder fishing remained productive on reefs in the 2- to 5-mile range.

Inlets/Sounds/Bays: Fishing was limited some due to weather. The best fishing for drum, flounder, and trout remained in the lower Cape Fear River and down south around the Ocean Isle and Sunset Beach areas. Anglers reported good catches of trout, drum, and flounder around the Little River Rock Jetty. Sheepshead fishing was excellent around the ADM Dock in the Cape Fear River and along area bridges and docks.

Piers/Shore: Good numbers of Spanish mackerels and bluefish were landed on area piers. Bottom fishing anglers caught a mixed bag of sea mullet, black drum and a few spots. Anglers fishing from the surf caught large numbers of bluefish along with some slot-size red drum.


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

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