New York Fishing Reports

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Spring blackfish season

Montauk NY Blackfishing

Spring Blackfish Season
Spring blackfish season is looking promising for this 2018 season in New York, Blackfish start moving inshore middle of spring in Montauk. Blackfishing is excellent where there is structure. The same spots you were fishing for cod are going to hold blackfish in montauk - Rocks, wrecks and reefs. Blackfish do come in shallow water as well and can be found a short distance from any dock in montauk. Remember all your looking for is structure and you'll find blackfish in spring.

We will start with anchoring
when anchoring over any type of structure it is best to anchor up current out of the actual structure and let your anchor line out till you are over the structure. If a cross wind is present and is making your boat sway side to side a correction would be to double anchor. Double anchoring requires that after setting your first anchor, head back up current and away from your first anchor at a 45 degree angle and dropping a second anchor creating a V anchor pattern. You can then let out line on both anchors to position the boat over the structure.

Drifting over structure to jig for Blackfish
Jigging for blackfish has really gained popularity the last couple years with a few different companies making quality blackfish jigs. S&s blackfish jigs, Magic Tails blackfishing jigs and Joe Baggs jigs are all with me when I head out and all have their purpose. The idea behind this type of fishing is that you can present your bait, hook and sinker all in one small package. Blackfish are very curious by nature and when another blackfish is eating a crab, they will bang it into a rock to breck away the claws and make for an easier meal. While they do this other blackfish are alerted to the sound and come to check it out. By jigging all your doing is tapping the rock your jig is sitting on to alert the blackfish to your crab, the blackfish look over see a nice happy crab with no other blackfish to compete with, the swim over and bang – game on.

Best Bait for Blackfish in Montauk
With fiddler crabs on the no fly list your bait is going to be green crabs, white crabs or hermit crabs. With green crabs most likely your most available and easily obtainable this is what I'll focus on. Typically your going to cut a green crab into half or quarters on the big guys. Small ones the size of a 1/2 dollar or less you will use whole but you have to either crack them or pop the top shell off. The easiest way to keep on your hook is to insert the hook into one leg and out another leg, this gos with pieces or whole crabs. Another option is using what is called a snafu rig which consists on two blackfish hooks snelled close together that can be inserted into both sides of the crab. The thought process is that either side the blackfish grabs, he will get hooked. Don't get your hopes up completely as I have seen many empty hooks retrieved. Blackfishing takes discipline, it takes you not trying to set the hook on the first bight, maybe not even the second. You have to wait for that tell tail tug, the tug that happens when the blackfish moves the bait from its front nibbling teeth to its back teeth to actually chew.  That's when you slam em, lift your rod tip high and crank him off the bottom and out of that structure. A stout rod and a high line retrieve ration reel is a must if your serious in putting quality blackfish in the boat. The structure in montauk isn't going to be nice to you if you come unprepared. 

Keeper Blackfish are old.
Blackfish grow at a very slow rate, please follow regulations and remember only keep a fish if you want to eat fish that day.

Visit the Main New York Fishing Reports Page for up to the second fishing reports.

Article Written:

Edward Murphy