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Arrived and got set up around 11am, only 1 other person fishing and he said he hadn't even gotten a nibble, said he was using cut bait. Wind was brisk I would guess about 10-12mph. I used fresh shrimp I had gotten at the fish market near road heading to Sandbridge (by the Hone Depot and Target). From the fist cast I was getting instant nibbles. My bait was gone within 30-40 seconds. After about an hour of constantly getting bites but just resulting in lost bait, I switch hooks to a smaller one and whammo, puffers. I caught a puffer on the next 3 casts as well. 4-6in. They were all over the place. Not wanting puffers I switched back to a larger hook 1/0. I then hit my first Flounder but had to release, just too small, then a speckled trout, 13in, too small, released it, then another flounder, a keeper! By now the 1st fisherman had left and two more arrived. One used minnows and he got a keep trout and 2 keeper flounders, the 3rd was using what looked like bait sized spot, and didn't even get a puffer that I saw. He then left and a 4th person showed up using squid and by the time I left, he too had gotten nothing but puffers. It seemed to calm down, even the puffers after low tide. The other interesting point, the two of us that caught something besides puffers, were keeping the bait moving, never letting it just sit on the bottom for more than a moment. The other three mostly cast and waited.(that I saw)

 

So recap of what I saw:

 

18,743 4-6in puffers

1 keeper speckled trout, 2 just too small

3 keeper flounder, 2 or 3 too small

 

Note 1: As I left, the 3 of us remaining even joked about how we didn't even see a single spot or croaker.

 

Note 2: Just before I left, I tried a Gulp artificial bait I had. From the middle nothing of note. But then I went to the end of the pier and tried to cast onto the 4 marker. in 6 casts, I got a BIG hit every time. Something hit it to just before where I had the hook. Everything after the hook was gone. If it was more puffer fish, they were a lot bigger, because the hits were strong and semi violent. If I didn't have to pick my daughter up, I would have stayed and tried some more. We'll see tomorrow.

The Bait I tried : Minnow Grub

 

 

 

Tomorrows forecast:

 

Sunrise: 7:05

High Tide: 8:17

Temp: Low 50's

Wind: W 6-7mph

My arrival: 06:00

 

Who's gonna join me?

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You caught a keeper flounder! nice, soon as sun gets up pretty good the puffers aggravate the hell out of you out there, they don't bite like that when it's dark, i don't know why?? The big bite you prolly experienced was either a puffer or blue maybe a flounder, but likely one of the other two, I tried to fish with gulp out there during the daylight and the puffers where tearing it up!! i snagged a few with my gulp minnow, that's how i know what they where. The gulp is good to use when it's still dark and the pier lights are on, flounder will tear it up. So far my plans are still green light for tomorrow morning, i will probably be out there around 5:30 or sooner so i can get my stuff set up. It's difficult to fish with cut bait, shrimp, or any bait because those damn puffer fish are swarming out there. Be glad when it gets to cold for those b@$t%^#s ! They're so bad out there they'll even chew on your live minnow. I'm bringing some of my shrimp, and gulp. and a few striper stuff because may get lucky and hook 1 or 2 running down the rocks in the mornin.

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You guys know that those puffers are great eating right? You might want to consider hanging on to a few. There's a video on UTUBE on how to clean them. The pier on NOB is probably the best positioned fishing pier in the area. Willoughby Bay is a huge nusery for everything from flounder to spot, croaker, speckled trout and red drum. And that whole seawall and jetty system are a huge bait bucket. Right off the end of that jetty is one of the best fishing spots in the lower bay. The bottom drops off sharply from 20 feet to 65 feet towards the carrier piers and that slope holds everything from big flounder and stripers to monster croakers. Too bad it's off limits now. But it stands to reason that some of those fish will follow that jetty and run smack into your lines. I was a long time Willoughby resident Living on the water there next to the marina on Bayville Court I could see that pier across the bay, then later I lived down at 7th view on the big bay side. Great place to live and there is decent fishing to be had from the beach. good luck!

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Yeah i've heard from several folks they're good to eat, i'll check out that video your talking about and consider it, what is a good keeping size for puffer to clean? How many does it take to make a decent meal for at least two people? John, i'll definetly be there in the morning, anyone else who is able to go come on out and socialize.

 

 

You guys know that those puffers are great eating right? You might want to consider hanging on to a few. There's a video on UTUBE on how to clean them. The pier on NOB is probably the best positioned fishing pier in the area. Willoughby Bay is a huge nusery for everything from flounder to spot, croaker, speckled trout and red drum. And that whole seawall and jetty system are a huge bait bucket. Right off the end of that jetty is one of the best fishing spots in the lower bay. The bottom drops off sharply from 20 feet to 65 feet towards the carrier piers and that slope holds everything from big flounder and stripers to monster croakers. Too bad it's off limits now. But it stands to reason that some of those fish will follow that jetty and run smack into your lines. I was a long time Willoughby resident Living on the water there next to the marina on Bayville Court I could see that pier across the bay, then later I lived down at 7th view on the big bay side. Great place to live and there is decent fishing to be had from the beach. good luck!

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Okay i watched the video and the video answered all my questions i had about puffer fish. I will probably keep a few because someone needs to thin the herd out there, it's insane how many of those b@$t%^^s are out there! I've seen them jump out the water trying to eat my bait off my bottom rig as i pulled it up out of the water at the nob pier last fall.

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Great report John. Wish I was there.

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maybe ill take the wife there, she wants to keep a puffer.............and put it in a fish tank, she LOVES them.

 

thanks for the report, hopefully i can join you guys out there one day...

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Long Bay Pointe

Bait & Tackle

Fiberglass Repair

Long Bay Pointe

Marina 

Rudee Head Boats



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