By Ken Neill III
Seventy-five boats fished the Virginia Beach Billfish Tournament this past week. Fishing two days each, they caught and released 357 white marlin, 61 sailfish and 15 blue marlin. The Uno Mas, captained by Tom Lynskey, took first place by releasing 12 white marlin and three sailfish.
The Coast Guard Auxiliary will hold a boating safety class Sept. 6 at the Abingdon Volunteer Fire and Rescue Station in Hayes. To register and for more information call 804-684-0730.
A look at what is happening at some of our local fishing spots:
Waller Mill Reservoir: Bass fishing is consistently good. Bream, white perch and yellow perch are being caught in large numbers. Last weekend’s Hampton Roads Open Bass Tournament was won by Jay Armstrong and Jared Cope with a five-fish stringer weighing 20 pounds, 6 ounces. They also took big-fish honors with a 5 pound, 7 ounce bass.
Chickahominy River: Ed Allen’s Boats and Baits reports very good bass fishing. Limits of bass are being caught in the reservoir and tidal river below the dam. Fish up to 7 pounds were brought in this week. In addition to bass, bream, crappie and bowfin are providing good action in the lake. The catfish bite is very good in the river below the dam.
Poquoson Flats: Puppy drum are plentiful up near the marsh grass. Speckled trout activity is picking up around the eel grass beds. Some small striped bass and bluefish are being caught, as well as a few flounder. Spot are schooling near the flats.
Buckroe Fishing Pier: Spot fishing is picking up. Good numbers of croaker are being caught. There are some flounder catches and the occasional gray trout and puppy drum is being caught.
York Spit: Cobia continue to be caught by anglers anchoring up and chumming for them. Better catches have been made by anglers sight fishing for them when conditions allow. There are some Spanish mackerel to be caught trolling spoons while they are looking for cobia.
James River: Wilcox Bait and Tackle reports that spot fishing is improving. Croaker fishing remains good. Some flounder are being caught at the Hampton Roads Bridge-Tunnel and along Hampton Bar. Puppy drum action is good and catfish action is good up in the river.
Cell: Flounder fishing is good in the Cell/buoy 42 area. Croaker fishing remains good. There are some nice Spanish mackerel being caught, but it is a bit hit or miss.
Bluefish Rock: The expected hot bite did not develop. A few cobia were caught but they were on the small size. There are some flounder around. Spanish mackerel and small bluefish can be caught by trolling small spoons.
Mobjack Bay: Puppy drum action is good. Speckled trout fishing is picking up each week. Some nice spot are being caught. Croaker fishing is good and there are some gray trout being caught.
Back River Reef: Flounder are holding around the structures. Spanish mackerel and bluefish are biting spoons trolled around this area. Pigfish and some nice spot are being caught. A big sheepshead is a possible catch.
Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel: Some really impressive sheepshead catches are being made. Tautog are a common by-catch but they must be released as that season remains closed through Sept. 19. Triggerfish are holding on the structure. Sight fishing for cobia is very good in this area. Flounder fishing remains excellent.
Eastern Shore: Big red drum are being caught along the seaside of the Eastern Shore and from the Shoals near the mouth of the bay. Cobia fishing remains very good with large schools of cobia being encountered in the Latimer and Inner Middle Ground Shoals area. Croaker and some nice spot are being caught inside of the seaside inlets. Flounder fishing is also good inside the barrier islands. Flounder are also being caught near the Concrete Ships and near 36A.
York River: Grafton Fishing Supply reports that puppy drum fishing is very good. Good numbers of croaker are being caught. Spot are schooling up. Speckled trout activity continues to pick up.
Offshore: Billfish action is at its seasonal peak. Large numbers of white marlin are being caught, as well as good numbers of blue marlin and sailfish. Wahoo catches are good. Dolphin are being caught from out past the 100 fathom curve on into the beach. Tuna fishing is slow but there are some yellowfin tuna around. King mackerel, dolphin and false albacore are being caught from the Hot Dog and South-East Lumps on into the beach.