Summer Flounder (Fluke)– NY Fluke season opens May 4th each year. They are perhaps the most common game-fish here on Long Island. Early Season fluking (May-June) typically takes place within bays and inlets, where later season fluking (July-Sept) takes place in deeper ocean water. We use a combination of conventional and jigging methods to target this tasty flatfish.
Targeted Species & Seasons
Black Sea-bass– The most common reef and wreck dwelling species we target is the Black Sea-bass. Their season begins June 23rd and ends Dec 31st, with bag limits increasing from summer to winter. Summer fishing for these fish is typically done on reefs or nearshore wrecks. However as the temperature drops, large Seabass travel into depths of 150ft or more, often inhabing offshore wrecks along with Cod and other offshore bottomfish. Fishing is done with baited Hi-Lo rigs.
Striped Bass– Striped Bass is probably the most coveted game-fish on Long Island. Their season begins in April and ends in December. These heavy fighters can grow in excess of 50lbs. Fishing is most productive in Spring and Fall, as the fish migrate. Depending on conditions, jigs, bait, or trolling may be used to catch bass.
Blackfish– Blackfish are targeted by NY anglers in the Spring and Winter. They inhabit rocky areas, reefs, and wrecks. A traditional crab laden Hi-Lo rig, or light jig paired with spinning tackle, is used to wrest these fish from the bottom.
Cod– Cod are a favorite of winter anglers, as they are often abundant on wrecks while other fisheries are closed. Fishing is primarily done in Winter and Spring, however they may also be successfully targeted during summer on wrecks further from shore. Fishing is done with jigs or baited Hi-Lo rigs.
Yellowfin Tuna– Yellowfin Tuna typically appear in canyon waters around late May, where they are caught on the troll. Later in the year, around late July-August, Yellowfin may be caught while chunking. Typically these fish range from 25-60lbs. These are schooling a tuna, and therefore multiple hookups are more than likely.
Bluefin Tuna– Bluefin Tuna are the largest of the Tuna family. They can reach in excess of 1000lbs, although most fish caught in NY waters are between 50-200lbs. They are one of the hardest fighting and best tasting fish in the world, thus making them one of the most sought after by anglers. Typically they appear in the canyons in April, and venture closer to shore by summer. Schoolie BF (30-100lb) are most common around mid-shore wrecks, although larger fish are known to cruise by. They are caught via trolling and light tackle jigging
Bigeye Tuna– Bigeye Tuna are aptly named for their rather large eyes. These fish dwell at considerable depths during the day, feeding on squid and other bait. They rise in the water column at dawn and dusk, and are usually caught while trolling at these times. They grow larger than yellowfins, reaching 300lbs, with the typical fish being 100-50lbs.
Mahi Mahi– Mahi are one of the most colorful fish which call our waters home. They are attracted to floating debris, and tend to congregate around lobster pots set on the canyon shelf. Mahi are caught via enticing them with fresh bait. It is not uncommon to boat a limit of Mahi in a short time. They grow upwards of 30lbs, with the common fish being about 5lbs.
Swordfish– Swordfish reside in depths around 500-2000ft. Like Bigeye, they rise during the night in order to feed on squid. Therefore, they are caught almost exclusively at night. Swordfish are prized both as a sportfish, as well as for their tasty steaks. They are about 75-200lbs.
Marlin– During the summer months, as the water temperatures rise, White/Blue Marlin often make an appearance in the Canyons. The White Marlin is significantly smaller than the Blue, only reaching 75lbs. The Blue Marlin can reach 1000lbs, although most near NY are much smaller. They are spectacular fighters, often jumping frantically to throw the hook. They are exclusively caught by trolling.
Tilefish– Tile-fishing, conceptually, is not too dissimilar to Cod-fishing, just multiply the depth and lead used. Tilefish dig burrows in clay deposits near the canyons in anywhere from 300-700ft. They are one of the best eating whitefish in the world. A typical fish weighs about 5-10lbs, although larger fish are occasionally caught. On our fish canyon trip, we bagged several fish over 45lbs, with one fish 1lb shy of the current world record.