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long island
New York Fishing Report for December 2016

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Long Island

The first day of winter has arrived and with it has been a mix of cold and warm weather. This hasn’t made things easy for late year anglers but the fish are still biting. Herring are the stars of the end of the season it seems but reports of sea bass and cod are around and have been claiming great results.

At Stella Maris, Stretch reports that the herring are still being pulled from the Coney Island Pier and out of the bay. At night time, these fish can be found under the lights and have been yielding just as much success as during the day.

John Sr. from Terminal Tackle has had some herring around but notes that there are not as many as people had expected for this time of year in the local waters. The best fishing has been at Centerport Dam and Huntington Harbor. Stony Brook, Port Jeff and Mt. Saini are also good places to check as anglers have been running into them there as well.

At Miller Place Bait & Tackle, Jim backs up the claims of the herring running through the back of Mt. Saini Harbor. He has also heard of the local, year-round schoolie stripers being found not far behind the herring.

Further East, at White Water Outfitters, Jake reports that the local boats have been filling their limits on sea bass and cod lately. The boats have been making the trips out to about 30-40 phantoms for fishing and whether you’re targeting cod or sea bass, most anglers have been leaving with a full limit and stuffed freezer.

Finally, at River Bay Outfitters, Paul has not seen any action on the saltwater front but the freshwater has continued to be hot. The Connetquot River is still producing plenty of trout and will remain open all year. This is a spring fed creek so it should be clear of ice and keep the water temperature warmer than other areas. This helps not only the fish but the anglers too. So, when all else is slow, look to load up the fly-fishing gear and snag some trout while the crowds are low.

Fishing Forecast for Long Island

For the time being, herring are running the show for Long Island anglers. There is nothing wrong with spending an afternoon or night chasing them to keep us out of trouble. For anglers looking to take a trip out offshore, Montauk is the hotspot at the moment for cod and sea bass and can make for a day to remember.

On the freshwater scene, look to keep hammering away at the trout in rivers and creeks until the weather stays cold enough for ice to form on the local ponds and lakes. Just make sure to give the gear a check before its time because the ice can come and go as quick as the fish.

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