Patchogue Snapper Derby • Shark ID Chart • More On Local Crabbing • Local Docks Continue To Provide Family Fun • Summer Weakfish

Posted by Joe Wolf on


The 40th Annual Patchogue Village Snapper Derby will be held on Saturday August 26th, from 1-2PM at Patchogue's Mascot Dock  Bring your own fishing pole, J & J Sports- Patchogue Fishing Center will supply bait and bucket.  Ages 6 & up between 1:00- 2:00PM. 

Entry fees will be collected at the dock and are going to be $5 a person or $8.00 per team of 2.   Prizes will be awarded to 1st fish caught, biggest fish caught and most fish caught for each group! BYOP (Bring Your Own Pole)  only. The shop will be providing bait, buckets and the prizes. For any questions please contact Patchogue Recreation at 631-475-4302

The Local docks are experiencing some great fishing opportunities.  Snappers at the dock have been growing by the day. Right now they are a fun size to catch fishing with small shiners on a #4 or #5 long shank snapper hook under a float will do the trick. Small tins like Kastmasters or Johnson Sprites and Snapper Poppers have also worked well. The trick is to be patient eventually they will bite. Try Patchogue's Mascot Dock, Or any of the Brookhaven Fishing Piers like Blue point or Pine neck docks.
Also in the mix are plenty of Kingfish and Blowfish. Use a hi low rigs with tiny hooks baited with pieces of clam on the bottom. Wait for a tiny nibble and set the hook. They have been plentiful and make a good meal.

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Note: we have crab nets in stock.  Local pick up only.  Call for details 631-654-2311
With the end of August and the start of September Blue Claw Crabs are in abundance along the south shore docks and creeks. There are multiple ways to catch them and all can be very successful
Using a flashlight and crab net at night while walking the dock is a tried and true method. The crabs will cling to the dock and pilings and can be scooped up when you see them with the light. Walking the shallows or drifting in a small boat with a light and net will also work well.Having an extendable net can be very beneficial. Sometimes having one will make those far out of reach crabs easier to reach.

Trapping Crabs in a commercial style trap baited with either Bunker or Mackerel is a great way to get a bunch of Crabs. Check your local regulations before using one of these traps. Commercial style traps must be fitted with a Turtle restricter. These traps have a bait compartment, after going in the crabs can't get out.

Pull crab traps ( spring traps) baited with Bunker or Mackerel are always good to use especially when Snapper fishing. Throw them out and pull up and check every few minutes while fishing. These traps allow the crabs to come and go freely so they must be pulled up repeatedly. This type of trap usually has a bait compartment, if it doesn't the bait must be attached with a wire or zip tie in the center of the trap.

Weighted throw lines are lines with a small lead weight and a ring that you can attach Bunker, Squid, Mackerel or even chicken to. Toss out the line leaving some slack in it. When the crab starts eating the bait the line will start to get tight. Slowly retrieve the line hand over hand and scoop the crab as it gets to the surface.

The size limit on hardshell Blue claw Crabs is 4 1/2 inches point to point on the shell (not the claws) with a limit of 50 crabs per person per day. The size limit on soft shell Blue Claw Crabs is 3 1/2 inches point to point. If you are fortunate enough to catch a few soft shell crabs do not put them in your bucket with the other crabs, they will eat them.

The way to tell the difference between a male and a female crab is to look at the underside of the crab. A female crab will have a V shape or christmas tree shape and the underside of a male crab will have the shape or a Y. Female crabs also have red tips on their claws. All females with egg sacks most be released. The underside of a female crab will have a brown or purple sponge on it if it has eggs.

Blue Claw Crab Dip Recipe:
After steaming, clean 8-10 large Blue Claw Crabs putting the meat in a glass bowl, be careful to remove any small pieces of shell. Add 1 package soft cream cheese, 1 tablespoon of Old Bay, 1 teaspoon of Worcestershire sauce, 1 teaspoon of crushed garlic (wet), and 1/2 0f a white onion finely chopped. Mix thoroughly, cover and refrigerate for 45 minutes. serve with Ritz crackers. ...More Recipes

Still plenty of Fluke to be caught right now before they start making the trip back offshore again. The bays have a combination of shorts and keepers in each drift. The key is persistence. Keep culling through shorts to get your legal sized fish.

Read more "Stories and Reports" from  J & J Sports Blog Posts: Click Here 


In the ocean off Moriches and Shinnecock- in about fifty feet of water - some nice Fluke have been "setting up" for their migratory trip. A few more keepers are coming in the ocean trip. Try using bigger baits to attract bigger fish. Five and six inch gulp, whole squid or large spearing all seem to be producing pulling a few more keepers.
Fishing Montauk off the lighthouse along the sand bottom has surrendered a few large fluke this past week. We heard reports of a few double digit fish.

Fluke fishing continues to produce around the island with both the north and south shore holding plenty of keeper size fish. The Peconic bay has had plenty of keeper fish found in both deep and shallow water. Most of these fish reported have been on gulp and bait like squid and spearing. The south shore has been great for fluke with places like the back side of shinecock inlet on both the east and west side. When fishing this area it’s best to go when the water is moving so an incoming or outgoing tide is the best.

Still a lot of Porgies around on the North Shore as well as the south shores Shinnecock Inlet. Plenty of keepers to be caught. There are larger fish on the South shore along the rocks. Clams, sandworms and squid are all great baits. My favorite rig to use is a high low rig. Try going around the high tide for the best results.
Don't be surprised if you catch some triggerfish too. Fun to catch and fine to eat.

Striped Bass and Bluefish
The incoming tide has increased the striped bass and Bluefish activity down at Shinnecock Inlet and Moriches inlets. Schoolies were breaking on "rainbait" (small baitfish ) in the early mornings. With this type of bait around, the best lures to use are small diamond jigs or topwater plugs.

Bass fishing remains good around the island with most fish being caught in deeper waters like moriches and Shinecock inlet as well as off shore on the bunker pods. When fishing for bass on bunker pods the best way would be to troll things like umbrella rigs and bunker spoons. When trolling it’s best to go right near the pod of bait in order to lure the fish off it. When using umbrella rigs it’s best to use dark colored tubes in order to represent sand eels which run in our area in the summer and fall.

Bluefish have still been caught around the island in mainly our inlets because they are bigger fish and prefer deeper cooler water. Shop member Ron reported great blue fishing in the Peconic Bays with most being cocktail size. Fish this size are known for great eating because they are less oily then there larger counter parts and these fish will still put up that great bluefish bite.

Summer Weakfish continue to show up through-out the Great South Bay. Patchogue locals are using BAIT: Squid, LURES: bucktails or small diamond jigs will all produce. 

Sea bass , continue on the Artificial Reefs outside the inlets ! Using piece's of clam on a Hi-Lo rig over some structure is all you need to catch a limit of fish. Clam chumming will also be a key factor in increasing you catch . Sea Bass jigging has become more popular in the community, plain single hook diamond jigs , hammered gold or hammered silver are very popular many tip these baits with squid strips or spearing increasing your chances at bigger fish and a shot at a nice fluke hanging around !!

The wreck of week is the Shinnecock Reef. This reef is only a couple of miles south of the Shinnecock inlet (40’ 48.600 72’ 28.930) and has some great fishing opportunities including sea bass , porgy , trigger fish and mackerel. The best way to fish this reef would be to anchor up and drop some bait like clam or squid.

Offshore Report: Plenty of action in "The Hudson Canyon" this past week.  Mahi, Tuna and Blue Marlin were taken.   These fish were landed on squid bait but most fish were taken by trolling.

Shark and Tuna Fishing? A Permit is Required: 

 Shark Identification Chart (PDF)    

 Tuna Guide (PDF)   

Permit Descriptions: All owners/operators of vessels in the U.S. Atlantic Ocean, Gulf of Mexico, and Caribbean must obtain a federal permit to recreationally or commercially fish for regulated Atlantic HMS (sharks, swordfish, tunas (bluefin, bigeye, albacore, yellowfin, and skipjack), and billfishes (recreational only; white and blue marlins, sailfish, and roundscale spearfish)

 Click Here To Register 


The shop is stocked with live shiners every week. Patchogue locals have been using them to hook up with Large Mouth Bass (Black Bass) at the local lakes ( Great Patchogue Lake). Fish them under a small float with a smaller sized hook (#6 eagle claw hook) allowing them to swim naturally. Use nightcrawlers if you want to target smaller panfish. They have been active along the shoreline. 

A New York State Freshwater Fishing License Is Required-Click To Obtain A License Or Stop down at the shop ( J & J Sports ) and we'll sign you up. There's nothing worse than getting a ticket just because you went fishing.

Read more "Stories and Reports" from J&J Sports Blog Posts: Click Here


The lake of the week is Lake Ronkonkoma. Lake ronk is located in ronkonkama off of portion road and is our largest lake on the island . This lake provides some unique opportunities to catch species not common in most of our lakes including Waleye , white perch and small mouth bass. The catch Waleye the best way would be to fish at night using lures like senkos, rapalas and swim shads. To catch small mouth you can use the same methods that you would use for large mouth bass like crank baits and bass assassins. This lake still has all other game fish like large mouth and yellow perch. Since this lake is so large it can be difficult to fish but there is plenty of public access with a county park on the east side of the lake. There is also a town of islip boat ramp on the east side, but remember only electric motors can be used on this lake.


Send your reports, photos or your favorite fish recipe to: REPORTS@JJSPORTSFISHING.COM   Don't forget to include, names, location and details (when possible: lures or bait used, tides, etc….) comments or questions are welcome. Call (631) 654-2311

Fun Fish- Long Island is full of "other" types of fish that are not only fun to catch but fine to eat too. Did you ever try Triggerfish? A tough critter with even a tougher skin.  However, once cleaned <Fillet A Triggerfish Video>  they are a fine meal.  Plenty of Blowfish around too. <Fillet A Blowfish Video> Called "chicken of the sea" because they are a tasty treat. Easy to catch and (if big enough) a great meal. Don't underestimate the tenacity and taste of Sea Robbins. <Fillet A Sea Robbin Video> These scrappy critters are plentiful and tasty too.  Catch them on bait or lures with a light tackle combo for an exciting time. More Fun Fish Facts on the attached PDF sheets:

Attached is a list of some "Fun Fish Facts Around Long Island." Most are edible and plentiful too. So enjoy the summer and tight lines. (PDF)

Attached is an additional list of more "Fun Fish Facts-2 Around Long Island." Most are edible and plentiful too. So enjoy the summer and tight lines. (PDF) Updated



Fishing opportunities of the week: Sunken meadow state park is located on the north shore in kings park. This park offers plenty of opportunities to hike, bike, swim and of course fish. There is a fishing pier at the park and has great fishing for species like sea bass and porgy. This park is open year round from sunrise to sunset. Fishing is available all year round, but there is a permit needed and can be obtained online. The swimming season lasts from May 27th- September 17th. For all information The phone number is 631-269-4333 and the website is

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