Rhode Island Fishing Report
The Frances Fleet in Point Judith has been laid up for a few days thanks to the strong southwest winds, but the captain’s reported some much-improved fishing earlier in the week. Captain Greg got his customers on some quality fish last weekend, with high-hook taking 4 keepers to 8-pounds. Captain Rich did even better the following day, managing a load of keepers around the 6-pound mark. Bucktails and bait rigs both seem to be working equally well, and the fleet will continue to sail daily at 7 am by reservation.
Cheri, at C-Devil II Sportfishing in Narragansett, are back at the grind and reported some excellent striped bass action around Block Island this week. They have been getting limits of slot fish, with some bigger bass and bluefish in the mix. The fish have been actively hitting diamond jigs and they are starting to get them to rise on plugs. Fluking has also been great around the island thanks to the abundance of squid. They are catching fish on bucktails and fresh squid, with most anglers leaving with full coolers. Summer weekends are all booked, but they still have some weekdays and fall tog/cod trips left, so be sure to book before it’s too late.
Dave, at Ocean State Tackle in Providence, told me that anglers are reporting a good pile of slot striped bass around Bear Point, Prudence Island, and Fields Point. The spring tautog season still has a few days left and anglers are reporting extremely consistent action on the shallow rock piles across the state. Scup fishing has picked up across Newport, Jamestown, and Tiverton, while fluke anglers are finding mixed action in 80-85 feet of water. Dave is fully stocked with everything you would need and starting Friday he will be open daily from 5 AM to 630 PM.
Jay, at Pamela May Charters in Narragansett, reports that short fluke have dominated the bottom catch, but a few solid keepers seem to be showing up on each tide cycle, especially around Block Island. Some large bluefish have inundated the area and are providing some great light-tackle topwater and fly action, while a push of larger bass and weakfish have reportedly made their way into the bay. The weekend weather looks a bit rough, but there are plenty of worm hatches in the ponds right now to keep anglers busy when the conditions out front are unfavorable.
Connor, at Tall Tailz Charters reported some absolutely stellar fishing this week. The bigger bass have arrived earlier than usual, and they have found plenty in the 30-50-pound range! Live pogies have been the ticket and they haven’t been hard to find, so make sure you have your snaggers and hooks. Topwater offerings and smaller swimbaits have also worked well and don’t be surprised to find some gator bluefish in the mix. For bottom anglers, they have found some giant schools of dinner plate scup and the fluke fishing is starting to head in the right direction. The squid bite has gotten a bit more inconsistent, but those putting the time in are still finding some big schools in and around the bay.
Dustin from Rhode Island Kayak Fishing Adventures reports better striped bass and bluefish action throughout Narragansett Bay. Hard minnow-shaped plastics, topwaters, and the Butchie Built tube have been the top producers. Fluke fishing has been slow overall, but there are still some nice keepers coming from deeper water. The post-spawn largemouth bite has been strong for freshwater anglers, with large swimbaits being the best tactic.
Nick at Big Bear Hunting and Fishing told me that a few anglers in the area are still cashing in on the tautog bite, as the spring season winds down. Fluke fishing has been up and down, with shorts dominating the catch, unless you find some deeper water that is holding a fresh push of larger fish. The striped bass action has been steady, with 15-20-pound class fish taking sluggos throughout the bay. The bigger story in Rhode Island is the resurgence of weakfish. The fishing for these beauties is tremendous, and anglers should start familiarizing themselves with their range and their stringent regulations. The freshwater anglers are finding some big bass at dusk on Watermens with shiners, while the Memorial Day trout stocking should provide some great opportunities across the state this weekend.
Connecticut Fishing Report
Heather from Blackhawk Sportfishing reported another great week of fishing, with excellent porgy results and enough weakfish and bluefish in the mix to keep things interesting. The fluke trips have been loaded with short fish, but those who practiced patience were rewarded with some beautiful keepers. The squid trips have also been solid, with squid biting in the daylight hours and right through the night tides. Their trips remain by reservation only, so be sure to check their website for posted dates and availability.
Mike Roy of Reel Cast Charters continues to find plenty of striped bass of mixed sizes on light tackle offerings. He also was happy to report that a large slug of bluefish has moved into the area and are ripping up tackle. There were also some bonus weakfish in the mix, so a true multi-species trip seems to be the norm at this point. Be sure to contact Mike for a spring-run trip or to book into the summer/fall!
Evan from Black Hall Outfitters reports that the steady weather has brought about the steady fishing throughout CT! A few solid fluke have been caught locally, while the best reports remain from Montauk and Block in 60+ feet of water. Seabass have been sporadic across CT, but when you find a school, you can find a limit in short order. Scup fishing has been more consistent than the previous mentioned species, but the best results are also coming from deeper water. The bluefish action has picked up throughout the sound, specifically in and around the mouth of the CT River. Striped bass action has been steady for those tossing plugs or dunking bait in the rivers, and we should start hearing about some larger fish out front when the weather decides to cooperate.
Joe, at Diorio Guide Service, told me that fishing has really started to pick up. Specifically, bluefish of mixed sizes have filtered in with the bass, to provide steady action throughout the day. The stripers have been mostly around the slot-size, with some bigger specimens over 40-inches showing up this week. Topwater offerings and un-weighted soft plastics have been the go-to lures, but the Joe Baggs Patriot Fish on jighead has produced when the fish aren’t working the surface.
Captain Chris Elser has no complaints about the fishing action in the Western Sound. He is seeing some amazing topwater action of stripers from 18-32-inches that are feeding on sandeels. The big bluefish have also made their annual appearance out west, with fish to 17-pounds showing up this week. There are large schools of bigger bass just to the west, and more and more seem to be showing up every day. The amount of bunker is massive for this time of year, and that will no doubt attract…and keep some larger bass in the area. The only negative out west is the size of the fluke and sea bass remains on the small size, but with warming temperatures and the influx of bait, that should change for the better ASAP!
Fisherman’s World in Norwalk reports that many of the boats in the area are still heading west to the Greenwich area in search of large migratory striped bass. Each day these large migratory bass seem to be getting closer to our local waters, so we’re not far off from everything blowing open. Finding the bunker schools remains the best way to find larger bass, with 20-30-pound fish consistently taking bunker spoons and live bait offerings around the usual haunts. A good slug of large bluefish has also remained in the area and can be found on topwaters with some consistency. Bottom fishermen have found some quality fluke in 20-30-feet of water around Sheffield and Goose Islands, and like most of the northeast, weakfish seem to be around in better numbers than they have been in decades. Scup action has been picking up precipitously, but the best action remains on the other side of the sound. Freshwater anglers are reporting some shallow water bass in the reservoir, while trout anglers are cashing in on another stocking of the Norwalk River.
Rhode Island Forecast
The early summer fishing diversity continues for salt and freshwater anglers. Staple species like striped bass and scup continue to be around in good numbers and increasing sizes, while some freshly arriving gator bluefish and fluke are starting to make things interesting. If you’re looking to fill the cooler for Memorial Day, you can shoot for an early-season doormat, black sea bass in CT, or look to get a limit of tautog in Rhode Island before the spring season wraps up. Striped bass can be found in most of their early-season haunts, and don’t be surprised if a few large bluefish come to crash the party. Freshwater anglers should be able to play with some nice largemouth and smallmouth bass, as they continue to enter post-spawn mode; while the trout fishing should benefit from the much-needed rain that we’ll see this weekend.