Long Island Fishing Report – May 27, 2021

West Marine
Jerry with a fly caught fish on a Bob’s Banger. Guided by Dave Flanagan.

Bluefish everywhere.

Weakfish run continues to amaze. Plentiful porgies as well.

Big stripers are popping up here and there, all over the island, during the full moon tides.

Sporadic fluking, but some big ones around.

Freshwater is on fire.

Frank from Bernie’s Bait and Tackle in Brooklyn says there’s plenty of bluefish scattered all over the NY Bight. There aren’t any heavy concentrations per se, but they’re appearing just about everywhere. You name the spot, you’ll find them there. The size rang is currently anywhere from 3 to 13 pounds. You never know how big the next one is going to be. Diamond jigs and tins are producing good numbers of fish.

A bunch of guys are beginning to load up on the trolling gear. There are some decent sized bass in the channels, so that’s where anglers are hunting. With the warmer weather lately, that makes good sense. The best surf action is probably taking place at Breezy in the early morning. It can be spotty, but you can often find a pick of schoolies for about an hour around sunrise. Once the sun starts cookin’, you might as well call it quits til the night tide. Lots of guys are tossing bait, like bunker, clams and eels. The former two are working well, but there’s been no word on how effective the eels have been. Lures are working, but the bluefish are doing a good job of stealing them.

Fluking has been very sporadic. The Coney Island flats have been producing some fish. The typical catch consists of about two dozen fluke, with two keepers. Some waters may still be a bit too cold for the doormats to come a’hunting.

A few guys are cashing in on some late season flounder action. Typically the big blues will push them out, for obvious reasons, so you stand a chance of intercepting some anywhere from the back of the bay, to the round house area out to buoy two on the tin can grounds. The fishing effort is low, as flounder fishing these days isn’t very cost efficient (chum + bait + time + 2-fish limit). There could be some late season tiderunners hanging around them though. Frank says it’s worth it to try.

Porgies are being caught, but the action is also sporadic due to the aforementioned water temp issues. The main concentration of fish can be found around Far Rockaway, inside the bay and outside on the beaches. There are some nice fish in the mix. Frank says the fluke and porgy fishing will both improve as the weather continues on its upward trajectory.

They’re all there, and there’s no reason not to give any one of them a shot. 

Josh at Gypsea Charters in the Rockaways reports:

Striper fishing continues to be lights out, with limits of slot-sized bass every trip, with countless releases. Fishing is as good as it gets, with fish of all sizes (including some 50 pounders) hitting the deck. 

On the fluke front, the quality of the fish has gone up but we’ve yet to see any real consistency. A new body of fish moved in this week, which produced a 10.5 pounder for Vinny. 

Their two boats are sailing from Howard Beach; the Gypsea is a 6-pack and the Star runs an open boat every weekend, by reservation only.

Text for booking details: 516-659-3814 

Paul at River Bay Outfitters in Baldwin has been hearing some really great info from the Jamaica Bay Area. Lots of bass have been getting caught up on the mud flats. The back bays in Paul’s area have also been producing. Duck Dennis has been getting out every morning and picking bass regularly. He’s getting mostly bass, but there are also blues biting on the moving tides.

There are lots of bluefish in the Jones Beach and Reynolds Channel regions. Unfortunately a good number of bad fishermen are taking way more than their daily limit of three fish.

On the freshwater side, Paul prospected Blydenburgh this Monday, and happened upon some excellent fishing. He ran a shop trip with a bunch of anglers and everybody had a great time. Paul recommends hitting the Lake from a vessel for best results. He rowed guys around in his canoe, and they picked bluegill, crappie, perch and bass. He’s planning a few more LI freshwater trips in the near future. Sign up on Paul’s website to partake in some awesome kettle pond fishing.

Kathy from Freeport Bait & Tackle says the main reports are all about bluefish. Captain Harold was sending pictures of them from Reynolds Channel. He said they’re ravenous, but if you’re lucky enough to get your bait below them, you can pick some decent fluke off the bottom. The fluke reports are mostly coming from inside the bay (versus outside in the ocean).

Bluefish are also in Jones Inlet, the channels and the bays. Anglers are targeting them with diamond jigs, deadly dicks, and really any kind of tin with some shine to it. Chunks of bunker are also doing the trick.

Kathy’s selling out of fluke rigs every couple of days. Luckily John at the shop is doing an excellent job of restocking them, so in they come, out they go, in a not-so-vicious cycle.

Some beautiful spearing is being caught locally and delivered to Freeport Bait and Tackle. They’ve got plenty of the frozen stuff, but when these fresh ones come in, you know they’re going to get you some fish.

People are buying mojos and umbrella rigs to target the stripers on the outside. Blues will hit those umbrellas six fish at a time. I’ve seen videos and Kathy’s heard stories of 60+ pounds of bluefish coming up on on trolling rig.

The North Shore porgy crowd is very happy. Lots of guys are coming into her shop to buy their porgy tackle, and running up north to capitalize on the great porgy run. Pretty much anywhere along the north shore bears potential.

Blue claw crabs are getting caught pretty well out east, but there’s no great show of them locally just yet.

Kathy’s son and daughter-in-law have been doing a great job of keeping the shop well-stocked. It’s been tough this year for most people to get tackle, but John’s got the right connects and has been getting regular deliveries of pretty much anything you could need. Stop in if you need anything.

The Capt Lou Fleet in Freeport reports:

Capt. Willie saw a very active morning yesterday on the fluke grounds. Unfortunately the keepers are few and far between, but the action is excellent. He reckons the eclipse must’ve stirred up the fluke a bit. Give him a call at 631-830-5251 for booking info. They’r sailing half-day trips daily.

Bay Park Fishing Station in Oceanside reports:

Lloyd Malsin of “Nansea” fished to the west last Thursday, going 12 for 15 on the bass. They released three overs and two shorts, and put seven slot fish in the cooler. All fish came on mojos, and 1 keeper fluke came from the bay on the way home.

This past Sunday, Robby and Chip Reiter of “Sea Reiter” put a 38 inch bass on the boat. The fish came from a 50 foot depth, about five miles west of Debs inlet.

Bill at Chasing Tails Bait and Tackle in Oakdale reports:

The bay has become overrun with bluefish of all sizes. They’re on the flats, in the channels, and all over the inlets. These yellow-eyed demons all have one objective, and that is to eat! They’re smashing topwater plugs and wake baits, inhaling swimbaits and diamond jigs, and destroying hard plastic shallow divers and bucktails. Tons of fish in the 4-8 pound range, and some really solid 10+ pound gorillas are making their way through.

The striped bass fishing has been slim pickins, but another solid run of them should be out our way any day now. A few decent fish have been caught at the local docks, and they seem to be loving clams this year. 

Weakfish are held up nice in the bay for the spring run. Some really solid fish are being caught in the early morning hours. Light tackle is key for these special fish, and soft plastics in bright colors on a jighead is all you’ll need to catch them. 

Fluke fishing is going well inside and outside. Solid fish are coming over the rails, with an occasional doormat in the mix. Fluke are loving bucktails and Gulp jigs; the classic squid-spearing combo works very well too.

In the fresh water, it’s post-spawn for the largemouth bass. They’re hitting topwater in the mornings and evenings, and during the midday heat you can use lipless crankbaits, senkos, jigs, and swimbaits. Pickerel are also out staging their next ambush, and they crush all of the same lures that bass do. 

Trout are mostly active in the early mornings and evenings right now. The hatches are big and plentiful, and the trout go off well into the night. Crappie, bluegill, pumpkinseed, and catfish are all out and active this time of year as well. They’re great fun for the entire family, kids love them!

Point Lookout’s Superhawk saw a couple near-eight pound fluke that took the pools aboard the 1pm trips. A couple long time regulars, Frank and Dino, caught these big flatties while drifting down “jumbo alley.” The bay fluke trips are great for anglers of all ages and skill levels.

Call Capt. Steve to make a reservation: 516-607-3004.

Lindenhurst Bait & Tackle reports:

Mikey “Mets” Hoffman and Pete Donovan got in on the hot weakfish bite happening off Ocean Beach.

Captree’s Laura Lee is all over the bluefish and weakfish this week. Limits are being acquired of both species pretty regularly. There is a good variety of species coming over the rails. Lots of fluke are being caught, and sea robins are always unavoidable. Early morning and evening trips have been particularly productive.

Bill at Chasing Tails Bait and Tackle in Oakdale reports:

The bay has become overrun with bluefish of all sizes. They’re on the flats, in the channels, and all over the inlets. These yellow-eyed demons all have one objective, and that is to eat! They’re smashing topwater plugs and wake baits, inhaling swimbaits and diamond jigs, and destroying hard plastic shallow divers and bucktails. Tons of fish in the 4-8 pound range, and some really solid 10+ pound gorillas are making their way through.

The striped bass fishing has been slim pickins, but another solid run of them should be out our way any day now. A few decent fish have been caught at the local docks, and they seem to be loving clams this year. 

Weakfish are held up nice in the bay for the spring run. Some really solid fish are being caught in the early morning hours. Light tackle is key for these special fish, and soft plastics in bright colors on a jighead is all you’ll need to catch them. 

Fluke fishing is going well inside and outside. Solid fish are coming over the rails, with an occasional doormat in the mix. Fluke are loving bucktails and Gulp jigs; the classic squid-spearing combo works very well too.

In the fresh water, it’s post-spawn for the largemouth bass. They’re hitting topwater in the mornings and evenings, and during the midday heat you can use lipless crankbaits, senkos, jigs, and swimbaits. Pickerel are also out staging their next ambush, and they crush all of the same lures that bass do. 

Trout are mostly active in the early mornings and evenings right now. The hatches are big and plentiful, and the trout go off well into the night. Crappie, bluegill, pumpkinseed, and catfish are all out and active this time of year as well. They’re great fun for the entire family, kids love them!

Celtic Quest Fishing Fleet of Port Jefferson sailed their final Jamesport trip this week. They did great out there so far with weakfish and porgies.

Port Jeff started out on a high note, with some more quality porgy and weakfish to be found. The future is bright on these grounds.

They’ll be sailing regularly, weather permitting. Go to celticquestfishing.com to buy a ticket.

Mark at Cow Harbor Bait & Tackle in Northport says the fishing on the north shore has been nothing short of outstanding lately. Fish are all over the place, from fluke, to porgies, to stripers and weakfish… can’t forget those beautiful, lovable sea robins either. Mark says fillet one and take it home, you’ll be surprised how good they taste!

A mantis shrimp spawn is on his radar for this supermoon. Deep, muddy areas are host to this activity, and the fish that flock to it tend to be high quality: tide runner weakfish, cow stripers, big sea bass, porgies and fluke.

Back bays and creeks will flood, and finding areas with reed grass will be another good tactic at catching fish during a moving tide.

Mark thinks it’s going to really take off around this May full moon.

Captain Stu Paterson of “Northport Charters” reports:

We had some beautiful weakfish on last weekend’s Saturday charter. They were feeding on grass shrimp in our local waters, and it was great to see the tide runners back in Northport.

Big porgies are still in our bays, and the biggest on the boat this week was 3.5 pounds. Sandeels are now here, and fluke are gorging on them in the LI Sound. As waters warm in the coming weeks, the larger stripers will be coming into their annual haunts. Bluefish are starting to put on a good show as well. June is around the corner and everything is starting to turn on.

Call or text to make reservations: 631-707-3266. Or check out the website at northportcharters.com

Dave Flanagan of “North Island Fly” reports:

The fishing is really starting to get good on the north shore. From the back bays to the sound, I’m seeing good numbers of bass and bluefish in a broad range of sizes. We’ve seen a good amount of slot-sized bass in the last week. I’ve been on a great topwater bite, and got my guy Jerry on this beautiful 32 inch striper. The bass smashed a Bob’s Banger. Even larger fish have been following the ones we’ve caught, right to the boat. This action should keep up all through the next month as we get into prime striper time.

Lots of sandeels are showing up on the sound side, which is going to set us up for an excellent June. We’ve been getting into some enormous hickory shad as an added bonus.

Surfcasting guide Bernie Bass has been on a consistent bite since I last spoke with him. He’s on stripers all the time, day or night. Bluefish are abundant, and ravaging his tackle. The big trick this week was learning to feed the stripers without enticing the gator blues. The man can’t even go in his swimming pool without “seeing” blues. Some might see this as getting lemons, but he made lemonade by getting his young nephew on the bluefish bite. These were his first fish from the surf, and the constant rod bending was sure to get him hooked. There’s still plenty of bait around, so Bernie expects the consistency to continue this week.

Chris Albronda gave me the goods on Montauk:

The striped bass and bluefish have moved in heavily, and you can find them blitzing underneath the excited birds. It’s like full-blown fall mode, and all we’re missing are the albies.

Fluke fishing has become more productive. A handful of double digit fish have hit the scales, and a few doormats were released back to the deep after a quick grip-and-grin. There was even one confirmed 15 pounder taken.

Black Sea bass are of the XXL variety, and are a welcome bycatch despite being out of season. Porgies made their way into the peconics, and should be back out here soon enough.

Everything is eating bucktails. There is a large variety of bait around: bunker, butterfish, sandeels, and full grown bay anchovies.

I believe with the moon and the nor’easter, the large bass will be upon the shores of Montauk by the end of Memorial Day weekend.

The surf has been good, with blues and schoolie bass all over. A couple bigger bass were caught, to about 30 pounds.

Surf guide Bill Wetzel of the Surf Rats Ball began his guide week with Jeff S on the north side of Montauk point. They found nothing there, so they headed a bit east and started catching a ton of bluefish in the 7-10 pound range. No bass this night despite the good looking water. The next night Paul and Elliot joined him for a pre-sunset skunk; once darkness settled in, Elliot picked up a couple rats on an SP minnow. Lots of weed and dirty water made for tough fishing. Eventually they headed east on the north side and hooked another rat.

Bill says this was one of the worst Mays he has ever fished in Montauk. Word is there’s some decent numbers of fish hanging in the rips, and Bill’s hoping they move in on this moon phase.

After the weekend, Bill decided to head a bit farther west into the Hamptons. There he and a friend found copious amounts of bluefish in the 7-12 pound range. He couldn’t pick anything on his super strike darter, so he switched to a Musso darter that would dive a little deeper. He immediately had a bluefish. Not wanting to ruin/lose the pretty plug, he switched over to a bucktail with pork rind. Twenty minutes in, he figured the fish out and began to hammer them one after the other. No bass, but enough blues to make the moonlit night a fun one.

David at Westlake Marina in Montauk says there’s still not a ton of boats in the water (to my surprise). One small boat got out today, and found plenty of action. The bluefish were biting to no end, and there were some nice big ones in the mix. Stripers were also on the chew; it was mostly shorts, with one keeper that came home.

The fluke guys are shaking their heads for the most part. You can find some keepers, but it’s going to be a grind doing the necessary picking-through of all the shorts. Just put in the time, and you’ll cull a limit.

The charter boats have been doing great on the booking front. Unfortunately the forecast this weekend is going to set them back a bit.

We look forward to more reports from Westlake when the show really starts.

Montauk’s Viking Fleet sailed offshore for a few days under the guidance of Captain Steven Sr. Hard winds, an east swell and upcoming full moon tides made for some fast, difficult drifts. Deep dropping was tough, but some medium-to-larg fish came up. Tile fishing was a bit easier the next day without the wind. They hit a couple wrecks after, finding cod and big Bergalls. On day 3, they hit the fluke grounds around Nantucket.

Conditions were against them the whole time, but everyone on the trip managed to bring home a nice cooler full of fillets.

Highlights of the trip include Peter Wang’s 30 pound tilefish, Louis Miller’s 8.5 pound fluke, and Peter Chiu’s 25-pound cod.

Back in Montauk this past weekend, Capt. Dave reported some excellent fishing on the Viking Starlite. Large porgies were the primary catch, and everyone caught a limit. A couple of bluefish were caught as well. Pool fish was Jose Chappo’s 2.75 pound porgy. 

Then, on Sunday, they experienced their best day so far this spring. Porgy fishing was outstanding, with many double headers. One striped bass cam up. Pool went to Brooklyn’s Leonardo Reinoso who caught a three pound porg-chop.

Long Island Fishing Forecast

Told you this was gonna be a good week on the fishing front.
The fisheries are absolutely exploding right now. Big fish of all species are being caught. Brandon Sausele just topped the leaderboard in the Montauk Surfmasters tournament with a 31 pound bass from the Montauk rocks. Chris Albronda mentioned a 15-pound doormat being caught, I know of some double digit weakfish, and Stu Paterson put his client on a 3.5 pound porgy. Big fish are riled up and in close to shore. It is most definitely time to get out and fish. A bunch of big fish were caught on the waxing side of the moon, and more opportunities will arise as it wanes.

It looks like it’s going to be a washout this weekend. Lots of rain and high winds. That sounds like an even better reason to get out. I’ll take advantage of the lull in work that weather causes, and finally wet a line. Some of us might even be hoping that the bbq plans get cancelled so we can catch a tide. Perfect timing, in my opinion.

It’s tick season, so be careful of that. I had to take a dose of doxycycline yesterday, and hopefully that will be my only dose. Last year I did a week-long regimen midsummer, and it was a terrible week. I felt slow, and stupid, and I got sunburnt so easily. Take the time to make sure you haven’t got any little bloodsuckers on you after an outing, to save you from the awful experience of a prolonged antibiotic regimen.

Besides that, I don’t have much for you… just get out and fish! If you’re not fishing this week, you are missing out on some of the best opportunities of the year. Toss some big presentations at night; the big girls are on the hunt.

Go get em. Tight lines.

West Marine store finder

1 thought on “Long Island Fishing Report – May 27, 2021

  1. Donald Hecht

    WARNING to whomever fishes the Jones Beach Work Dock Area. It appears that approximately every 100 yards someone has anchored fish traps which are around 100’-150’ from the shoreline. My best guess is that the traps are anchored with a cinder block and are marked with a floating bleach bottle. To allow for the tides, it looks like there is a lot of slack in the lines beneath and above the traps. This morning I snagged and lost three A27 jigs and saw three other fishermen also lose jigs on these traps. I have fished that back for 100s of hours and have never before been snagged.

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