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Surf Fishing Round-Up

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Wednesday, March 14, 2018
It was all about the weather this week
Tuesday, April 24, 2018
Perch bite up and down

Perch bite solid, calico bass excellent
Barred surfperch and halibut were the top dogs along this stretch, reported Hook, Line and Sinker in Santa Barbara. The perch bite has been solid with good schools of quality fish roaming most beaches. The grub bite and the Gulp! bite have been good for numbers, usually a limit, but the bigger fish have come on the hard jerkbaits. The perch-pattern Flash Minnows have been hot. Jalama, Goleta, East and Carpinteria beaches have been holding. The halibut bite has also been very good with fish scattered over most beaches. Recent grunion runs have driven the bite. Flash Minnows have been a go-to lure and salted anchovies have been the best natural bait.

MALIBU — The calico bass bite in the shallows was excellent this week reported Wylie’s. A shop regular reported catching and releasing two fish over 5 pounds to go with a slew of 3- and 4-pound fish. The fish have been active on the reefed beaches holding over the transitions to sand. Johnnie bass, chocolate rockfish and juvenile white seabass have also been in the mix. Kayak fishers are also reporting lots of juvenile white seabass holding outside the breakers. Squid chunks have been a top bait but swimbaits have also made some catches. Pier anglers reported mostly mackerel this week. The perch bite has rebounded off Ventura and Oxnard, with anglers reporting more and more ripe hens in the catch.

REDONDO BEACH — The halibut bite perked up on the back of the last grunion run, reported Just Fishing. Anglers reported good catches all along the South Bay. Torrance Beach was a standout spot. Grunion and smelt-pattern Flash Minnows were tough to beat. A slow-rolled Krocodile was another good lure choice. Harbor anglers also reported legal fish taken on small plastics. The perch bite was also good this week. It was limit fishing on palm to hand-size fish with a few better models scattered in. With few anglers reporting, it is tough to gauge the bite. It may be better than most think. Rock hoppers off PV are taking more and more calico bass.

SEAL BEACH — The barred perch bite was top draw along this stretch, according to Blue Water. Anglers reported fast action on fish to 1½ pounds. The grub bite has been good for numbers. Bloodworms and lugworms were best for the larger models. Surfside, Dog Beach, Bolsa Chica and Huntington Bluffs were all holding good schools. Staging grunion have lit up the beaches along shoreline Drive and Cherry Beach. Anglers report tons of small halibut in the surfline. All-white Flash Minnows have been the hot bait. Big fish of the week was a 26-inch fish taken off Cherry Beach. Two legal fish were also taken off the Seal Beach Jetty. No sign of the local striped bass population.

NEWPORT BEACH — The arrival of bloodworms sparked good croaker catches this week, reported Ketcham Tackle. The Wedge Jetty, the piers, the street jetties and River Jetties all kicked out croaker catches. Good numbers of barred perch were also in the mix. The perch specialists have been grubbing along the stretch from the piers to the Wedge. Several hens over 2 pounds were reported. Larger grubs will keep the quality up. Good halibut catches were also reported at the harbor mouth, along the street jetties and along the stretch from River Jetties to Newland. White Fluke baits have been hot.

DANA POINT — The perch bite was very good this week, according to Hogan’s. Anglers reported finding schools on most beaches. Strands and Salt Creek, Doheny, State Park and Rivieras all kicked out fish. Most of the perch have been under a pound but there have been kickers up to 2 pounds. Mussel was a top bait. A few larger fish came on salted anchovy. Most anglers report near-limit fishing. The halibut bite has been good but there have been few legals this week. The many smaller bucks in the surfline portend the arrival of bigger females. The night bite for sharks at Doheny has been improving.

OCEANSIDE — The halibut were biting on the beaches and in the lagoons this week, reported Pacific Coast. The trick was to find a legal one. The spots were littered with smaller fish. A few anglers have been scoring legal fish with live sardines or smelt. The extra effort has been worth the while. The barred perch bite has also been very good. But size has again been a problem with few fish over a pound. Grubs, Gulp! Sandworms and mussel have all been working well. The best bite in the lagoons has been for a mix of sand bass and spotted bay bass. Anglers fishing small plastic swimbaits and jerkbaits are scoring several quality fish a day. Look for this stretch to explode in the coming weeks.

SOLANA BEACH — The halibut bite was very good all week, reported Blue Water. Anglers reported good numbers of fish at the lagoon mouths and adjoining beaches. You have to weed through at least a half-dozen fish to get a legal one, though. With this many small fish in the shallows, the bigger spawning hens are not far behind. The grub bite for perch has been excellent with most anglers reporting limits on smaller models. Del Mar, Torrey Pines and Mission Beach have been holding good schools. The catch of the week was a giant thresher shark lost at the leader on Cardiff Beach. The fish took a mackerel chunk fished after dark.

— Compiled by Gundy Gunderson

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