Rhode Island Fishing Report- September 7, 2023

Rhode Island Fishing Report

The Frances Fleet in Point Judith reported continued strong fluke fishing this week. Captain Cole has been at the helm on the full day trips, and working the fluke grounds hard, and while numbers are down a bit, they saw multiple fish in the 12-pound range. The sea bass bite has picked up a bit this week and there are still some nice ling in the mix. The half-day trips have bounced back nicely as well, with a nice mix of sea bass and fluke. Check out fracesfleet.com for an updated schedule and to make reservations.

Dave, at Ocean State Tackle in Providence told me that the fall fishing patterns seem to be taking over. Anglers are reporting more and more false albacore this week, but they’re still moving quite a bit and could be finicky. It seems as if they’re still settling in, so it shouldn’t be long before we start hearing of better feeds and more consistency. The striped bass and bluefish bait continues to improve inside the bay, and the big Block Island bass bite hasn’t quit just yet. The tautog fishing is improving by the day as we approach the fall, while the sea bass and scup bite remains as consistent as ever. Offshore anglers are still finding a strong tuna bite relatively close to home, despite the recent storms, while shark anglers are still finding a good thresher bite in the usual hotspots.

Ralph, at Crafty One Customs reported strong striped bass fishing on the local reefs once again, with anglers catching plenty of fish from below slot to 40-pounds or so. There are still some giant gator bluefish in the mix, although they seem to be slowly thinning in numbers. Fluke fishing has fallen off, although the die-hard flat fish anglers are still finding some in their late season haunts. Most bottom fishermen are focusing on sea bass, which can be found throughout various depth ranges, and much improved tautog fishing. There’s about a month left before the Rhode Island Tog Classic, which is scheduled for October 8th, and the fishing should be in full swing by tournament time. False albacore anglers are finding fish on most trips, although they aren’t fully settled in yet, but there’s also been a nice mix of local mahi. If these trends continue, we should have a quite a fall run popping off as soon as it cools down a bit.

Eric, at The The Saltwater Edge in Newport told me that the recent warm water changed the pre-fall trend a bit, but for the most part nothing has changed besides the ambient temperature. The bass bite off Newport and the surrounding area has continued to fire back up, with some plenty of big fish after dark, and increased daytime action for big bass. The night bite is still the best in terms of fooling a big bass, but there are some big (albeit picky) bass around during the daylight hours. Early fall tautog fishing has been all the rage this week for bottom fishermen, as the activity in shallow water ticked up quite a bit over the past few days. The majority of local inshore anglers have albie fever, and there’s no shortage of feeds, however they haven’t settled in just yet. Most anglers are finding the funny fish, but they’re moving quick and can often be finicky. On that note, the reports seem to be improving daily, and the schools of fish have been consistent, so things should blow open any day now.

Connor, at Tall Tailz Charters in Newport reports that the fishing has remained as steady as ever, with a plethora of available species in his home waters. The striped bass bite remains strong, with plenty of local bass in the 40-pound plus class. Sea bass can still be taken by vertical jigging the drop offs, the fluke fishing has dropped off, but the tautog fishing is pushing early fall status. The offshore trips have been insane when the weather allows. Each trip has resulted in a full box of bluefin and yellowfin, with most coming on the jig. Topwater offerings and trolling the squid bars has also produced at first light. All of the false albacore that Connor has seen offshore seem to finally be finding their way inshore, and it’s only a matter of time before they’re crushing bait all over the inshore waters. Connor had some fall tautog trips open up on the calendar, so reach out soon, they won’t be available for long!

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Jay, at Pamela May Charters told me that he has been chasing the false albacore since they arrived in his neck of the woods, and he has had good luck finding a few that are willing to eat on most trips. The fish were moving quite a bit and were reluctant to feed over the weekend, but they seem to be settling in now. There are also plenty of striped bass and bluefish crushing topwater offerings, and plenty of bait in the area, so it appears the fall run is upon us!

Dustin at, Rhode Island Kayak Fishing Adventures reports that the false albacore have continued to filter in, and he continues to find them from both the kayak and shore! Bonito and Spanish Mackerel remain in the mix as well, with decent numbers of each on most trips. Striped bass activity has been lights out and includes some excellent topwater action during the morning hours. The bluefish numbers haven’t declined either, with plentiful gators that are willing to hit just about any offering. Bottom fishing is still at a bit of a crossroads, as the fluke fishing has waned a bit more, but the tautog and sea bass fishing has continued to improve. Freshwater fishing is also going strong and should only improve as the water cools. September is prime early fall run/false albacore time, and Dustin still has some dates available, so be sure to reach out asap!

Rhode Island Fishing Forecast

Rhode Island light tackle anglers are approaching their peak season, as on any given trip you’re likely to encounter false albacore, bonito, stripers and/or bluefish. The long-awaited arrival of false albacore is upon us, as they continue to show up in waves. The fish have been moving quite a bit, and tend to be finicky, but there are enough around, that you’re likely to find a few that will cooperate. If you can’t find the hardtails, you should have plenty of striped bass and bluefish to play with locally. Bass and blues of mixed sizes can be found blitzing on the plethora of small bait in the area, and big bass have also started to move back into the Bay on the bunker schools. A few big fluke are still around, but that bite continues to slow down as we approach fall. De but sea bass and tautog fishing continues to improve, as we transition into fall. Despite the warm temperatures the sea bass and tautog seem to be entering a fall pattern though, with better catches of both species on shallower structure this week. The tuna bite relatively close to home has gotten a bit tougher, but there seems to still be plenty of fish out there.

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