Photo ID – Squid Flies may be the trick for late September and early October.
Strange things happened along Maine’s coast during the 2012 fishing season.
First, an invasion of squid occupied the inshore waters of Maine from Kittery to Penobscot Bay. They were so thick; I caught them while jigging for mackerel with a standard sabiki rig and with a fly while chasing striped bass. In the middle of the day! People who actually wanted bucket loads of squid did so easily at night from a well lit dock area or on a boat with a strong light like a Coleman camping light. I for one have never seen such a strong run of squid from July through August.
The numerous squid I caught were in four to 14 inches in size. There wasn’t any consistency to the size during a given bite.
I haven’t spoken with anyone who has a good reason why so many squid invaded Maine’s inshore waters this year. Does anyone have a good response to why it happened? Personally, I know nothing about squid except striped bass love them. It’s their favorite food.
Then there was the verified, mid August shark sighting at the Great Island Boat Yard in Harpswell, Maine. That’s way inside, not just outside the beach. There was another report of a shark just 50 yards of the beaches in the Wells area. That action closed the beaches at least for one day.
On August 15, 2012 I recorded an all time, personal high water temperature of 77.6 degrees Fahrenheit in the Cundys Harbor waters at high tide when the coldest water of the day had flushed in. That temperature range is not conducive to hot striped bass fishing. Hopefully cooler nights and shorter days of fall will change water temperatures inside to at least below 70 degrees. Otherwise it will be a difficult
fishing season during late early October.
On the optimistic side, bait and striped bass may linger longer into late October unless a big tropical storm or hurricane runs the east coast and sends migrating fish out of Maine waters. Hope for an easy, fall storm season.
I know a lot of sportsmen don’t fish the salt during October with all the hunting sports beginning. But, watch the weather closely. If there are no big storms in early October and the sun shines bright, try a day of salt fishing and you might catch the striped bass of a life time. Big fish are in Maine waters and they will feed heavily and stay awhile longer if conditions are right.
My personal choice of flies during the fall are yellow gurglers and a small brown and yellow Clousers. Baby bunker flies and silverside imitations will also produce. And don’t forget, if the squid are still around, try using a squid fly.
Fall striped bass fishing is usually a surface feeding activity as they are fattening up for their long southerly migration. You can encounter them almost any time of the day or tide in feeding frenzies of the surface.
Don’t go rushing into the feeding school of fish. Approach them with stealth and you will be rewarded with many hook ups in an hours time.
If the school of fish does spook, hang around the area waiting for the stripers to coral the bait into another circle for easy picking. That’s when another feed will happen. Just be patient.
Have a fun and productive late season of striped bass fishing during the late fall. And as always, be careful out there. There aren’t many boats around to help you if you get in trouble.