April 3, 2018Early Easter
By CAPTAIN DAVID WILSON
been so busy doing boat work that I didn’t have a chance to do a
fishing report for March, but it’s probably not a bad month to miss
since April is really when things begin to warm up and change.
Up until about twelve years ago, if you would have asked me when was
the most productive time to catch yellowfin, I would have said without
hesitation, late March through April. We had to deal with plenty
of windy spring weather, but if you could get there, you generally
caught a lot of fish.
For some reason our spring yellowfin fishing has been sporadic since
then, and the “box full” days are less frequent. Blackfin tuna
have sort of taken the place of the yellowfins, and the fishing has
been pretty consistent. Blackfins can be caught trolling or kite
fishing, but the vertical jigging has created opportunities to fight a
good fish on light tackle, and to do it in the winter as well.
Most people tend to prefer yellowfin over blackfin to eat, but there
really isn’t a huge difference. A little Italian dressing and a
hot grill makes them both delicious!
The last few weeks have been brutal on the Outer Banks. Three or
four back-to-back coastal storms have not only made it impossible for
the boats to get out, but have caused soundside flooding and ocean
overwash that are responsible for damaged property and roads.
Fortunately, things are in perfect order for the busy Easter week.
In between gales, the commercial boats have been bringing in lots of
dog sharks, but it’s hard to survive on a couple of days work over the
course of a month.
The water temperatures were on the rise before day after day of north
wind. The boats fishing in the sound were catching some puppy
drum, but when the temps dropped, the fish moved temporarily.
Same goes for the surf fishermen - Scattered puppy drum for now, but
once the water temp goes up a few more degrees, sea mullet and blow
toads should become abundant.
With Easter being so early this year, I’m having a hard time getting
used to the fact that it’s time for the vacation season to begin.
I drove back from Nags Head Saturday night and noticed all the rental
houses lit up and occupied. Lots of license plates from other
states can be seen up and down Highway 12. Yesterday, I talked to
some folks from Virginia who were enjoying an afternoon of fishing in
the surf. They weren’t the only ones, as I spotted quite a few
vehicles out on the beach.
If you need a weekend away before the crowds get here, I recommend you
give April a try. I haven’t seen a mosquito yet, and that’s just
fine with me!