Fishing Report

March 24, 2011 


Oregon Inlet

The offshore fleet hasn't been out for bluefin tuna since Monday, when several were caught and one was reportedly struck by an orca as it was brought in. Wind has forced cancellations Tuesday and Wednesday, but the bluefin are still out there. Contact: Oregon Inlet Fishing Center 252-441-6301,


Things are still slow, but they're gradually turning on. For one, there's been bluefish in the sound. A blowfish was caught Sunday on the south beach near Frisco. But the big, old red drum haven't showed up this far north yet. Offshore, the first blue marlin of the year was released over the weekend. Contact: Red Drum Tackle 252-995-5414, www.reddrum ; offshore, Teach's Lair Marina 252-986-2460, www.teach .


The warmer water temperature has brought big red drum, puppy drum and scattered bluefish to the southern end of the island. While there have been some beach closures, including the southern tip as of Wednesday, there has still been good, fishable surf open. Be sure to call ahead. Offshore charters have caught yellowfin tuna and amberjack in the past week. Contact: Tradewinds Bait & Tackle 252-928-5491, www.fishtradewinds .com .

Cape Lookout/

Bogue Inlet

The piers have lifted a few bluefish, small croakers, spots, small ling, blowfish and black drum. Black drum have also been caught along the Coast Guard wall at Fort Macon, along with red drum, too. Bluefish have also been caught at the Cape Lookout rock jetty. Contact: EJW Outdoors 252-247-4725;; or www.ncoif .com .

Topsail Island

There have been lots of puppy drum, black drum and speckled trout caught in the creeks (though trout are catch and release only). It has been windy, but when boats have gotten to the shoals, larger red drum have been caught. At the piers, there are dogfish, skates, a few sea mullet, and at Sea View, a good black drum bite. Offshore, there have been yellowfin and blackfin tuna. Contact: East Coast Discount Tackle 910-328-1887, www.eastcoastsports .com .


Wrightsville Beach

The deeper creeks and the flats next to deep water have yielded red drum and black drum. A few bluefish are starting to show up at the inlets and in the surf, but they are best caught just off shore on the near shore artificial reefs. Near shore, bonito and false albacore haven't shown yet, but they should be here soon. With grouper and black sea bass closed, the Gulf Stream is the only option, and there have been catches of blackfin tuna, yellowfin tuna, cobia, African pompano and amberjack. At Swansboro Hole, there have been a few wahoo caught. Contact: Tex's Tackle 910-791-1763, www.texstack .

Southport/Sunset Beach

There's drum, both red and black, in the creeks. And at the pier and in the surf, there have been reports of sea mullet and blowfish. Contact: Dutchman Creek Bait & Tackle 910-457-1221; www.yeahrightcharters .com ; or


Falls Lake

Largemouth bass have been inconsistent the past week. Some have been caught up to eight pounds in 6 to 8 feet of water. Some males have been seen moving up and fanning spawning beds. Fish have been caught on spinnerbaits, crankbaits, swimbaits and jigs. Crappie have been caught in 3 to 5 feet of water close to cover. Farther upstream, on the Eno River, the spring spawning run of white bass has switched on. Water level: normal 251.5, Wednesday 250.3, last week 250.2, full pool 264.8. Contact: Outhouse Tackle 919-217-0085;

Kerr Lake

It's been a tough bite because of all the fresh water that's moved in, and it could get tougher with cold weather coming. Crappie have been shallow and may start spawning once it warms back up . Largemouth bass are also shallow and have bit on a variety of baits. Striped bass have moved a considerable distance up river. Blue catfish are biting, as evidenced by the new Virginia state record, a 109-pound fish caught across from Staunton River State Park on March 17. Water level: normal 300, Wednesday 303.8, last week 304.4, full pool 320. Contact: Bobcat's Bait & Tackle 434-374-8381;

Jordan Lake

Spinnerbaits worked in 2 to 9 feet of water have worked well for largemouth bass, and some of the larger fish may already be in spawning mode with the unseasonably warm temperatures. Crappie have been slow at times, but biting for those willing to put time in, and the channel edges north of the 64 bridge have been better at times than next to the bridge. Water level: normal 216, Wednesday 216.6, last week 216.6, full pool 240. Contact: Wilsonville General Store 919-362-7101.

Lake Wheeler

It's been a tough bite for some fishermen, but largemouth bass and crappie should be biting well any time now for boaters, and channel catfish should also be biting on the pier. Contact: Park office 919-662-5704.

Shearon Harris Lake

Largemouth bass have been biting on lipless crankbaits worked near the bank, and some fish may be pre-spawn mode. Crappie have finally started to move shallow and have been caught in 8 to 14 feet of water. Contact: The Tackle Box 919-557-8255;

Roanoke River

Both American shad and hickory shad have moved up in good numbers. They were being caught at Weldon, but when water was released in recent days, the fish moved up to the N.C. 48 bridge, where silver and gold spoons have been best. No rockfish have been reported, and a state shocking survey earlier this week didn't turn up any either. Contact: Colston's Tackle Box 252-537-6485;

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