Mid-Atlantic Fishing Report February 12, 2019

Mid-Atlantic Fishing Report

Virginia Beach, Outer Banks & Eastern North Carolina

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Anglers looking to get on some quality fish this time of year have been successful during Virginia’s seabass open fishery which is right now! Seabass are among one of the best eating fish during this time of year and so they are often highly sought after.  This is a one-month fishery that is highly regulated with a no-cost permit requirement. Over the past few weeks, fishing the ocean wrecks in the Chesapeake Bay have been steady in producing some serious jumpos! Those who are looking to fill their coolers are taking full advantage this month until the season closes.  So far, the season is starting out with a bang! Tautogs are also available out at ocean wrecks as anglers have been successful with landing quality catches.

Chopper bluefish have been plentiful and there for the taking. Anglers seeking them have been getting all the chopper blues they want. They have been making their presence known in and around the wreck areas and have been found mixed in with the seabass. The bluefish range from small fish up to about 33 inches long.

That’s not all that February has offered…2 Orcas were spotted off of Virginia Beach on February 3rd. What I would have given to had been the one to spot them! Other boats have been venturing out to go whale watching this time of year and it has not disappointed. Beautiful humpback whales and Harbor Porpoises have also been seen cruising through near the Virginia Beach oceanfront. This should be a must on everyone’s bucket list, weather you’re visiting or just a local!

In addition to all of the action in the bay, anglers have been catching their fair share of boston mackerel right off the beaches…talk about bluefin candy! This species makes for some great bait to take offshore if you’re looking to get on tuna.

Offshore anglers out of the Virginia Beach area kicked off February with some quality catches of bluefin tuna. One angler landed an impressive bluefin that weighed in right at 290 pounds! Also mixed in with the bluefin have been catches of blackfin tuna, yellowfin tuna, and mahi-mahi.


Out of Oregon Inlet, offshore boats are having some of the best action on tuna, mainly bluefin with some yellow and blackfin mixed in. Reports are coming in of scattered catches of black drum and red drum off of the point in Buxton and southern beaches. Look for tuna fishing to remain consistent, along with the red drum bite that will increase as water temperatures slowly warm back up. Bluefish will also start to be more prevalent so anglers can start looking to catch those chopper blues up and down the beaches as they make their way to inshore waters.


One of the hottest fisheries this time of year is Eastern North Carolina! Captain Mitchell Blake of FishIBX reports that striper fishing in the feeder rivers in the Pamlico Sound such as the Tar, Neuse, and Pamlico River are heating up. This fishery has been seeing some healthy rockfish which have started a pre-spawn run up the Roanoke and Pamlico Rivers. The best thing going in Eastern NC is a mixed bag of crappie and striper hands down! Hit up FishIBX if you want in on the action while it’s hot. In the upcoming days the annual shad migration will kick into high gear so stay tuned!

Happy fishing,
Kristi Anderson
1Fish2Fish YouTube Channel

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