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Seek quiet area to find your fluke

Reports on our very popular fluke fishery remain about the same as last week: they vary greatly from shop to shop, person to person. The best advice might be to seek an area not hit and hit again during the week; this will enhance your chances for some keepers.

Matt at Hillyers Tackle said one day they weighed in 10 fluke from 5 to 10 pounds but the very next day, they see almost nothing on the scales. Best bet for keepers are Two Tree Channel or the deep water off Black Point. Diamond jigging has been good for blues in The Gut and Pigeon Rip, and the number of blues is making it harder to come up with a bass during the day.

Striper fishing is much better after dark, drifting an eel on a three-way rig at Outer Barletts or Valiant Rock. The nice summer weather is bringing out lots of people who are catching bigger porgies just outside Niantic Bay or over around the Bartlett's Spindle. On the other hand, black fishing is very poor, our hot summer weather not usually the best conditions for a fish normally caught in the cooler fall.

Roger at J&B Tackle said their charter boat is scraping a few bass during their day trips but doing much better with stripers after dark. Roger took his own boat out for fluke over the weekend and caught about 40 shorts until he tried a spot away from the crowds, finally catching some big enough to take home.

Dogfish are thinning down some and porgies are on the increase but to date we're only seeing a few hickory shad around the mouth of the Mystic River and a small number of bunkers for bass bait in the Pawcatuck. There are some sea bass caught in the eastern Sound but those are mostly by accident by those looking for big fluke in deep water.

On the offshore scene, boats that ran out almost to the top of Block Canyon, roughly 65 miles south of Montauk, trolled up some yellowfin, white marlin and a 40-pound swordfish, the latter usually caught bait fishing at night.

Captain Jack at The Fish Connection reported some bass caught casting at times around Inner Bartletts, Race Point and over between the Gulls, that rocky spot approached with care and experience. Best bet for keeper fluke is in 50 to 60 feet of water on the south side of Fishers Island. Shore anglers caught bass and blues along the Thames and short fluke as far up as buoy 27.

Shore fishermen at the Stonington Dock caught some keeper fluke this week, said Don at King Cove, and people fishing from the Monsanto jetty landed a mix of fluke, porgies and school bass. Shore fishermen were also fishing around the bridge at Lambert's Cove, catching a variety of fish.

Porgies are very large so far and it looks to be a banner season for them. Fluke reports from the Rhode Island beaches are up and down, one day good, the next very, very poor. Bass catches from the reefs have also been inconsistent. Some days some large bass were caught on weighted bunker fished in deep holes between the high spots but not that much for people that like to cast lures into the rips in shallower water.

Captain Brad Glas of the Hel-Cat sent in his weekly report stating blues are "in solid" in different areas with a mix of sizes in one place and almost "all big guys" in another. They've been using bait as the dogfish are thinning but many people switch over to using jigs after starting with bait at the beginning of the trip. The jigs are productive and less messy but can be more work. Big fish of the week was a 14-pound blue caught by Rick Crawford from Virginia who fished with his brother Bruce who is visiting our area from upstate New York.

Mark at River's End said the surf fishing is pretty poor both for people driving over to Rhode Island and those fishing local beaches, one of the latter fished most of the week and caught only three bass.

Another spent a long evening at Harkness Park without a single hit. Blue crabbing is getting better in the coves along the lower Connecticut River plus the porgies improved both in size and numbers are on most of the rockpiles in this part of the Sound.

Tim Coleman is The Day's saltwater fishing columnist. He can be reached at thewreckhunter@aol.com

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