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May 24 Report

With Memorial Day quickly arriving, the captains of the Beach Haven Charter fishing Association are loving the current fishing action. The only big question is deciding what species to target.

There are striped bass to be had in many bay waters, especially in the Great Bay area. Most of these fish are schoolie-sized which makes light tackle action a fun way to go. Some larger stripers are also to be found in the ocean with trolling producing some fish over the slot limit.

The bay fluke action has been intense since the opening of the season several weeks ago. The new size regulations have resulted in a goodly number of fish heading home for dinner. Captain Brett Taylor of “Reel Reaction Sportfishing” has had great success fishing inside Barnegat Inlet while Captain Gary Dugan on the “Irish Jig” is doing well in Great Bay.

The black sea bass season recently opened with a 10-fish per day limit, and many limit catches have been reported. Captain Max Goldman has seen this action on the “Star Fish.”

Coinciding with the top-notch fishing action, there are two other actions going on with the BHCFA, both involving its efforts to re-build the local reefs.

The association just received the first of two new truckloads of reef balls. These balls are a cost sharing effort with the Sportfishing Fund. The plan is to deposit some 20- reef balls each on the Little Egg, Garden State North, and Barnegat Light reefs. When completed the BHCFA will have deployed on all four reefs off Long Beach Island including Garden State South Reef.

The Little Egg deployment will be named the Captain Carl Sheppard Reef, in honor and recognition of his long and devoted service to the BHCFA. Captain Carl is one of the founding members and has held elective office for seventeen of its nineteen years.

Continuing their reef efforts, the Junior Mates will be hosting a sunset cruise on the “Black Pearl” pirate ship on Wednesday, June 22, from 7:00-8:30pm. Proceeds will benefit the reef fund. There will be a brief presentation on the reef project and its benefits. There will be music and a cash bar aboard the boat.  A donation of $75 per person is requested.   

Donations can be made on at the mate reef site section by credit card or PayPal, and checks made out to BHCFA Reef Project to the address on the website. The donations are tax deductible, and attendance on the cruise is limited to 75. Questions can be directed  to  BHCFA president  Captain John Lewis at