No Fluke

Shallow Water Striper University set for February 18 and 19


Shallow Water Striper University will be held February 18 and 19, 2012 at the Sheraton Motor Airport Inn on Post Road in Warwick.

New speakers and new topics are planned including information on how to become a better striped bass angler. In a press release, Captain Jim White of White Ghost Charters, event organizer, said, “New this year, will be 'Hands On Tables' where on Sunday afternoon, you will learn from the experts how to rig baits, tie knots, read a map, use your electronics, build your own plugs, use and rig live and cut bait, and much more. You will be able to go from expert to expert and have your questions answered, receive one-on-one demonstrations and learn more than you ever thought possible.”

Speakers this year include: Capt Joe Pagano, Capt. Jim White, Don Smith & Peter Vican (two of the best big bass anglers in New England), Dave Pickering, Armand Tetreault (RI Poppers), Roland St. Denis on Kayaks, Capt. Pat Rena (T-Man Tackle), columnist Capt. Dave Monti, Capt. Jack Springel, and Mike Laptew.

The cost of the weekend remains the same as last year, $89 per angler. Reservations are now being accepted, Call Captain Jim White with questions at 401-578-9043.

Commercial menhaden boats allowed back in Bay

Jason McNamee, principal marine biologist of DEM’s Fish and Wildlife Department, said last week that, “We have reopened the Bay to commercial menhaden fishing. We have been monitoring through our independent helicopter flights since the closure and over the past two weeks or so, we have seen the number of schools climb pretty high in the Bay [82 schools as of the last count]...we were able to observe a spotter flight to get a biomass estimate. We also received a spotter estimate over the weekend from an independent aerial survey study...Based on all of this information, we were compelled to reopen the fishery. We will continue to diligently monitor the biomass in the Bay. We have spotter flights and helicopter flights planned, so all of those safeguards are still in place.”

The DEM menhaden species management plan outlines commercial equipment that can be used to fish, quotas, etc. and the fishery is highly monitored.

Corrected opening date for scallop season: November 5

The Department of Environmental Management (DEM) announced that the bay scallop harvest season opens at sunrise on Saturday, Nov. 5 (not Nov. 7 as previously announced) and continues until Saturday, Dec. 31 at sunset.

Striped bass record holder to speak at RISAA event this Monday

Rhode Island striped bass record holder Peter Vican, Don Smith and Captain Bill Silvia will speak Monday, Oct. 24 at 7 p.m. at the Rhode Island Saltwater Anglers Association monthly meeting at the West Valley Inn in West Warwick. Captain Silvia will speak about fishing for monster fluke.

Bait and tackle shops are a great resource

I was reminded how helpful bait and tackle shops can be to anglers this weekend when I visited John Littlefield, owner of Archie’s Bait & Tackle, East Providence, with my fishing partners for the day. It was the first time Greg (9 years old from East Providence) was going saltwater fishing. John took great care of Greg Anthony and Charlie Wood of Barrington, sharing tackle, bait and location tips to make sure Greg hooked up with some fish on his first outing. We fished from shore for tautog and within the first 45 minutes, Greg hooked three tautog, making his first outing a success. I ask a million questions when visiting bait and tackle shops and you should too. They are very helpful. John, thank you for making this young angler’s first outing a success.

DEM releases first annual report on fishing license program

DEM’s Marine Fisheries Section has released the first annual report on RI’s Recreational Saltwater License Program. The report provides an overview of the program, covering the nearly 18 months since it took effect, and sets forth a proposed FY12 programmatic budget, drawing upon the license fee revenues received since April 2010 and projected through June 2012.

The report is being submitted to the Rhode Island Marine Fisheries Council, and will be reviewed at their next public meeting on Nov. 1 at 6 p.m. (Corless Auditorium, URI Bay Campus, Narragansett).

Charter boat captains offer fall fishing tips

I asked three charter boat fishing captains about fall fishing tips they might have. Here’s what they had to say:

Captain John Rainone, L’il Toot Charters

·Fishes for scup, tautog and black sea bass this time of year

·Drifts or anchors up near/on structure...rock piles, jetties, wrecks, etc.

·Crabs of all, Asian, fiddler, hermit… whole of cut up for tautog; uses squid or clams for scup and black sea bass

·If you are in a spot catching just small fish… pick up and look somewhere else where the fish are larger and the throw-back ratio is better

·Prefers using one hook, rather than two, for all three species as it helps prevent bottom tie-ups

·Fall fishery is great for children and families… you feel the bite and then feel the fight all the up to the boat or shore

Captain Jim White, White Ghost Chartres

·Focus now is black sea bass, scup and tautog in Narragansett Bay

·Fish anywhere there is structure

·Asian crabs for tautog and black sea bass

·Green crabs when there are no Asian crabs around

·Fish for black sea bass and scup with squid, small crabs, clams or drift small jigs. Go to bait are Berkeley Gulp products (Sand Ell, Shrimp, Crab, Worm)

Captain Rick Bellavance, Priority Too Charters

•Prime bottom fishing season… many species on same trip… blues, bass, tautog, scup and black sea bass (fishing around Block Island is outstanding)

•Can drift and anchor up to structure using sea clams and squid for bait

•20 pound Power Pro for bottom fishing rods

•Fishes East Grounds, West Grounds, S/W Ledge, and a lot of rock piles south of Block Island, tends to fish less popular spots

Where’s the bite

Tautog. Windy weather and high seas keep many anglers on shore this weekend and Monday for tautog fishing but the bite is improving as the water cools. Chris Catucci of Warwick caught two nice keepers and a dozen shorts from shore on Warwick Neck using green crabs and Eagle hooks. Tautog being taken at Monahan’s Dock and Hazard Rock in Narragansett said Al Conti of Sung Harbor Marina but bite around Block Island and off shore is slow. Kevin and Albert Bettencourt of East Providence caught nice tautog last week at Conimicut Light but the bite was not as good as the week before last.

Striped bass fishing remains good at Block Island with fish to 44 pounds being taken on eels. Some fish being taken along coastal shores and in the Bay. Key to success on Block Island is getting eels down into the strike zone before the bluefish get them. I caught two small school bass in Greenwich Cove, East Greenwich this past Sunday using swimming lures that mimic peanut bunker. John Littlefield of Archie’s Bait & Tackle, East Providence said, “Anglers are catching bass from shore using menhaden chucks or live lining them from Conimicut Point to Warwick Neck.”

Scup and black sea bass still very plentiful in the Bay and offshore. Al Conti of Snub Harbor Marina reports Point Judith, Center Wall, and Nebraska shoals are still producing good numbers of scup and black sea bass. As reported last week the scup have been very large.

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. Your fishing photos in JPEG from, stories, comments and questions are welcome… there’s more than one way to catch a fish. Visit Captain Dave’s No Fluke website at or e-mail him at


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