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North Carolina Department of Environment Quality

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

Marine Fisheries

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Southern District —
Pender, New Hanover and Brunswick Counties

Contact: Dennis Trowell (Dennis.Trowell@ncdenr.gov)

For the fishing year, all 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. Make SURE you 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.

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

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


Southern District Fishing Report:

For the week of April 26 - May 1

Ocean: Offshore boats fishing in the Gulf Stream caught gaffer dolphin and blackfin tuna. Anglers also caught wahoo, sailfish and even a few blue marlin. The dolphin fishing should really heat up over the next couple of weeks as South Carolina is reporting world class dolphin fishing now. Closer to shore, anglers caught king mackerel in the 15- to 20-mile range, along with some gag grouper and black sea bass. Nearshore anglers caught lots of nice size Spanish mackerel, little tunny and Atlantic bonito.

Inlets/Sounds/Bays: Anglers targeting flounder caught some keepers. Anglers also caught some nice- sized spotted seatrout, black drum and slot-sized red drum. Local hot spots were the Little River Rock Jetty, the lower Cape Fear River and the creeks and bays behind Bald Head Island.

Piers/Shore: Overall fishing was somewhat slow on area piers. Anglers who were bottom fishing caught a few croakers, spot, sea mullets and black drum. Anglers using plugs caught lots of bluefish and some Spanish mackerel. Surf casters caught black drum, sea mullet, bluefish and pompano.


Northern District | Central District | Southern District

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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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