While the beginning few days of the month of April weren’t all that pleasant, the conditions have settled down dramatically and have allowed anglers some fantastic fishing opportunities the last few days. The week ahead also looks great, with temperatures nearing 80 degrees and slight winds and seas expected into the weekend. It could be yet another epic weekend of fishing.
Water temperatures are reading in the mid 60s and only look to be increasing from here and with the onslaught of fishing reports coming in from the past weekends fishing; if you’re not ready, you’re liable to miss out.
Offshore, once the blue water anglers were able to make it out as the winds and seas subsided, the fish cooperated greatly in a number of locations. Anglers fishing the Steeples, the Same Ole Hole and areas around and in-between all reported good numbers of wahoo on Sunday, with some weighing upwards of 70 pounds. Blackfin tuna a few yellowfin tuna and the first concentrated reports of dolphin, aka mahi mahi, being caught were also fairly common. Several boaters also reported some encounters with sailfish with a few caught and released and a few others just hooked up. Monday also produced some fish however conditions were not quite as nice as the latter part of the weekend and the fish seemed to be concentrated more towards the Same Ole Hole.
Bottom fishing was reported to be good starting around 15 miles out with larger fish and better fishing being found around the 20 mile mark and beyond. A lot of black bass are being caught in the shallower water but anglers have to work through the smaller ones, so making the run another five or so miles is normally worth the effort. Other catches including snapper and triggerfish are also a better bet the further offshore you head. King mackerel were found in the 15 mile range and as the water temperatures continue to warm; those fish are going to slowly migrate towards the beach within the next few weeks.
Near shore, anglers are eagerly awaiting the arrival of the Atlantic bonito and although numerous went out in search of them, no one reported any success in finding them out to about seven miles. That could all change by the time this report is published through, so be prepared on short notice if that’s something on your to do list.
Inshore, the red drum fishing has been good all winter season and has only picked up as the water conditions continue to improve. The area docks are holding a lot of fish as are the numerous area creeks. Live mud minnows work great but artificial are also producing good since the fish are less lethargic. Some speckled trout have also been reported coming from around the Wrightsville area but the better fishing is being found in the Cape Fear River. Black drum and Virginia mullet are also being caught in the river with some fish also being caught in the surf and off the piers.
From the looks of it, the upcoming weekend could be a good producer of fishing action and maybe some of the first action of the year from some species of fish. The weather is definitely looking fabulous for the weekend, so get out there and wet a line or two and see what happens.