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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 Fishing Report

For the week of June 22-28

Ocean: Offshore catches were consistent with yellowfin, blackfin and bigeye tuna's, along with dolphin, amberjack and wahoo. Billfish catches were fair, with mostly blue marlin and a few sailfish and white marlin. Mid-range bottom fishing was good with catches of triggerfish, black sea bass and tautog. Cobia and over the slot sized red drum catches have fallen off, but a few nice fish were landed.

Inlets/Sounds/Bays: Anglers caught a lot of bluefish with very little effort throughout the area with some Spanish mackerel mixed in the catch. Flounder fishing was moderate with improved keeper ratios. Oregon Inlet bridge pilings offered nice catches of black drum, sheepshead, spadefish and Atlantic needlefish. Anglers fishing off of the Little Bridge and underneath the Washington Baum Bridge had some nice catches of spotted seatrout, with early morning and late evening yielding the bulk of the catches.

Piers/Shore: Very large sea mullet and pompano were landed recently. Sand fleas (mole crabs) were the choice bait for both of these with the backwash of the surf zone producing the bulk of the catches. Spoons continued to produce nice catches of bluefish and Spanish mackerel. Spot, croaker, pinfish, pigfish, black drum, banded rudderfish, puffers, sharks and rays were caught in lesser amounts.


Central District Fishing Report

For the week of June 22 – 28

Ocean: Steady winds kept many boats from venturing offshore. Those that made the trip reported catches of dolphin, wahoo, blackfin tuna and barracuda. Bottom anglers reported a great black sea bass catch, along with vermilion snapper, amberjack, whitebone porgy, white grunt, gray triggerfish and gag grouper. Near shore anglers reported large Spanish mackerel catches and decent flounder catches from Artificial Reef 315.

Inlets/Sounds/Bays: Flounder were caught around the N.C. State Port turning basin, and along the backside of Shackleford Banks. Live mullet or mud minnows fished on a Carolina rig did the trick. Sheepshead fishing continued to do very well, with a few eight pound fish weighed in. Live urchins, sand fleas and fiddler crabs fished near any area structure worked well. Spear fishermen reported a really good catch of sheepshead and flounder along the area bridges. Bottom anglers reported catches of sea mullet, pinfish, croaker, spot, flounder, bluefish and pigfish.

Piers/Shore: The fishing piers produced pompano, bluefish, Spanish mackerel, spot, croaker, silver perch, pinfish, flounder, sheepshead and juvenile sharks. The Spanish mackerel bite was best in the morning and evening hours. Anglers using plugs had the best luck. 


Southern District Fishing Report

For the week of June 22 – 28

Ocean: Offshore fishing was limited due to gusty Southwest winds. On the days when boats were able to get offshore, anglers brought in good catches of bottom fish such as groupers and vermilion snapper, along with king mackerel, amberjacks and dolphin. Closer to shore, in the 10- to 20-mile range, boats caught good numbers of king mackerel, dolphin and some sailfish. Near-shore reefs produced catches of flounder, spadefish and Spanish mackerel.

Inlets/Sounds/Bays: Despite the heat, anglers fishing inshore found some action with red drum, flounder and trout. The best flounder catches came from the Cape Fear River from downtown Wilmington to Southport, and down south around the Ocean Isle/Sunset Beach area. Spotted sea trout were caught in the New River around Sneads Ferry and down south around the Little River Rock Jetty. Anglers fishing around bridge pilings, docks and rock jetties caught fair numbers of both black drum and sheepshead. Striped bass fishing around the downtown Wilmington area was also good.

Piers/Shore: Pier and surf fishermen caught a mixed bag of fish including flounder, red and black drum and bluefish. Anglers using fresh shrimp and mole crabs just behind the breakers reeled in sea mullet, pompano, spot and croakers.


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

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