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Fishing Report: October is a great month for fishing

Providence Journal logo Providence Journal 10/22/2021 By Dave Monti
Jenna Lombardo and Brandon Hagopian, both of Cranston, with the 1,000 bluefin tuna they caught off Cape Cod last Sunday. © Courtesy of Dave Monti Jenna Lombardo and Brandon Hagopian, both of Cranston, with the 1,000 bluefin tuna they caught off Cape Cod last Sunday.

October is a great fishing month.

Anglers have plenty of different fish to target. Striped bass mixed in with bluefish and false albacore are still running strong, tautog fishing is cranking up, the cod fishing bite off Rhode Island is good, large scup are still around and bluefin tuna is still being caught in Massachusetts and Rhode Island waters. And, the warming water (due to climate change) continues to bring us an abundance of black sea bass.

That’s eight popular recreational species to target, so get your gear and go fishing while the weather is still mild.

RI couple lands a tuna off Cape Cod

Brandon Hagopian and his girlfriend, Jenna Lombardo, both of Cranston, caught a 1,000-pound, 124-inch bluefin tuna last Sunday fishing off Cape Cod.

They caught the tuna not on a large sportfishing boat but on Brandon’s 24-foot Cobia center console. The fish took seven hours to land.

“The bluefin stayed deep and they chased it around most of the time [so the line would not break]," said Brandon's father, Jack Hagopian. 

"They also had to navigate it out of a lobster pot at one point. They were able to harpoon it approximately 15 feet from the boat.”

Congratulations, Brandon and Jenna This is a very nice fish.

Ice Fishing seminar set for Monday 

Tired of spending the winter sharpening hooks and dreaming of expensive fishing vacations in Florida? Well, don't think they are your only fishing options this winter. Learn about ice fishing during a Rhode Island Saltwater Anglers Association online seminar at 7 p.m. Monday, Oct. 25.

Guest speakers will be local captain, frequent seminar speaker and RISAA member Capt. B.J. Sylvia, with assistance from expert salt and freshwater angler Greg Vespe.

New technologies, coupled with improved winter clothing, have combined to allow even more comfort and success with ice fishing. There are plenty of spots within a few hours' drive and even locally here in Rhode Island. The seminar will cover the different species most likely to be encountered, including northern pike, lake trout, brook trout, crappie, bass and a mix of other fish.

Safety, light tackle, jigging, tip-ups and more will be described, in addition to the use of fish-finders. Also, the locations of lodges that cater to ice fishing will be covered. If you have never considered ice fishing it's time to take a look.

RISAA members may attend for free. Non-members are welcome with a $10 donation to the RISAA Scholarship Fund. Membership in the association is $50 a year. For information, visit www.risaa.org or call (401) 826-2121.

Peter Szydlo of Warwick and Dunnellon, Fla., with some of the tautog that he and his friend, Charlie Prisco, also of Warwick, caught last week at General Rock off North Kingstown. © [Courtesy of Dave Monti] Peter Szydlo of Warwick and Dunnellon, Fla., with some of the tautog that he and his friend, Charlie Prisco, also of Warwick, caught last week at General Rock off North Kingstown.

Where’s the bite?

Striped bass, bluefish, false albacore. The bite has been mixed along the southern coastal shore from Westerly to the Sakonnet River, with anglers catching bass and blues with some false albacore mixed in as the fish feed on large schools of bait everywhere. “The striped bass bite along the southern coastal beaches and jetties is very good," said Elisa Cahill of Snug Harbor Marina in South Kingstown. "Customers are catching fish in the 40-inch range so the fall migration has started. The striper fishing off Block Island is not as good. We are also experiencing a good false albacore bite." Ken Landry of Ray’s Bait & Tackle in Warwick reported: “The bluefish and striped bass are on the surface in the Bay; just watch for the birds on the surface. Anglers are catching school bass, but you never know. There are some schools with 20-pound bass in them, too.” "East End" Eddie Doherty said: “Most striped bass swim around Provincetown during the fall migration, but this year many decided to use the Cape Cod Canal shortcut for their journey south. The altered route combined with a continued presence of baitfish as well as higher than usual water temperatures have made this the best fall striper season in my memory. Action has slowed down now, but should pick up again soon.”

Tautog and cod. Tautog fishing remains very strong and is getting better every day as the weather starts to cool. I fished off Newport this weekend and did well. “In the Bay and out in front, the story is pretty much the same," Landry said. "One day customers are catching shorts and the next day all nice keepers. This happened to a customer who is fishing Rocky Point on a regular basis." Charlie Prisco of Warwick and his fishing partner caught four nice keepers, with the largest in the low-20-inch range at General Rock in North Kingstown. “The charter boats have been fishing for tautog off Newport to stay out of some of the high wind and seas we have been getting and they are doing pretty good there," Cahill said. "The fish are still in close, so Point Judith is producing tautog, too. With a few cold days this week, they may go deeper now."

Freshwater fishing continued to be good this week in ponds and waterways stocked with trout by the state Department of Environmental Management. 

Dave Monti holds a captain’s master license and charter fishing license. He serves on a variety of boards and commissions and has a consulting business that focuses on clean oceans, habitat preservation, conservation, renewable energy and fisheries-related issues and clients. Forward fishing news and photos to dmontifish@verizon.net or visit www.noflukefishing.com.

This article originally appeared on The Providence Journal: Fishing Report: October is a great month for fishing

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