Tautog season open; DEM begins construction of fishing pier at Colt State Park
Tautog season opened August 1 and will run through October 18 with a three fish/angler/day limit. The limit increases to six fish/angler/day from October 19 to December 15. The minimum size for tautog is 16” and there is a ten fish per boat limit (does not apply to party/charter boats).
The Department of Environmental Management, in partnership with The Nature Conservancy, announces the start of a reconstruction and expansion project for the fishing pier at Colt State Park in Bristol. The site will give disabled anglers and others improved access to one of the state’s prime fishing areas.
The fishing pier was originally built in the 1980’s. Although the structure of the existing pier will remain, all of the pier decking and railings will be removed and replaced, and the timber float and piles that anchor the float to the eastern side of the existing T-pier will be rebuilt and relocated. The expansion project also includes construction of an ADA accessible, 66-foot T-shaped extension to the existing pier. The rails will be lowered to a height of 34 inches in four handicap-accessible stations at the end of the pier extension to allow for fishing from a wheelchair. The new pier is expected to open in spring 2014.
Where’s the bite
Striped bass fishing slowed this week, except for off Block Island where it is very strong. Angler John Stavrakas said, “We went back to the SW ledge on Thursday…we had a great day fishing the flood tide, for bass to 38 lbs. mixed with bluefish. We fished eels and were halfway out on the ledge.” Ken Landry of Ray’s Bait & Tackle, Warwick said “We fished all over the Island but the southwest side was holding the big fish. Justin (White of White Ghost Charters) landed a 54 pound bass, the smallest fish we kept was 42 pounds.” Eric Appolonia of North Kingstown fished with his son Alex Sunday and said, “We fished with umbrella rigs and with amber colored tube (and worm) on the south west side of BI. Tube and worm produced the largest bass to 35 pounds.”
Scup fishing has been strong with anglers often catching their limit (30 fish, ten inch minimum). They have been large too. Ken Landry noted that “There are scup everywhere in the Bay from Conimicut to the Bridges anywhere there is a rock pile or structure.”
Fluke fishing remained strong when wind and tide were in line which was not often the case last week. The Francis Fleet party boats reported a strong fluke bite on Sunday and Monday. They also reports a strong black sea bass and cod fish bite. Visit them at www.francesfleet.com for more information. My wife Virginia caught a keeper fluke in the trough between Rose Island and the red channel maker this Sunday in a half hour window before wind direction changed and made hooking fluke difficult. The bridges are holding fish, particularly the Newport Bridge. Capt. Rich Hittinger said, “…the fluke fishing has been very good all around Block Island in 55 to 65 feet of water… Jacob Butterworth of Warren caught a 6.9 pound fluke on my boat last week while we were drifting eels off the SW corner of the island looking for bass. Tom Pelto and his father fished the mouth of the Sakonnet River just south of the 80 foot line last week for fluke and black sea bass, and on the RISAA blog Tom wrote: “By the time we stopped at the bottom of the tide we limited out on sea bass, all between three to five pounds, with smaller runts mixed in. Amazingly we hooked six fluke and five were legal fish.”
Captain Dave Monti has been fishing and shell fishing on Narragansett Bay for over 40 years. He holds a captain’s master license and a charter fishing license. Contact or forward fishing news and photos to Capt. Dave at [email protected]