The Summer is flying by at the Virginia Beach Fishing Pier. While the Blue Crabs have been really plentiful this year, some nice fish are also being caught.
Spanish Mackerel have been providing anglers with some good action most days, they are delicious table fare as well. Most of the knowledgeable fishermen target Spanish at first light and late afternoon and evening, don’t let that stop you from casting lures at other times. I have seen them caught in the middle of the day and even in the lights on the water at night.
Gotcha Plugs, like those shown below, are good for many different species caught along the oceanfront.
Some days there are Bluefish and the occasional small Cobia or Striped Bass around the VA Beach Pier. Cut bait and lures can both work at times for these species.
Bottom fishing has produced a mixed bag, which is normal for this time of year. Some nice Roundhead are still being caught, along with Spot and Croaker with Bloodworms, Squid and Shrimp on double hook bottom rigs. These fish typically get bigger and swim in larger schools throughout the Summer months and well into the Fall.
While Spadefish have been less plentiful this Summer, some years see an increase in size and total catch as Fall approaches.
Summer Flounder not usually caught in large numbers on the Virginia Beach Fishing Pier, some undersized fish and a few that surpass the 17 inch minimum size limit are reeled in this time of year.
And then there is the huge number of Blue Crabs being taken this season. We get female crabs almost exclusively in the ocean water, but they have tasty backfin and body meat, even though their claws are smaller than the male crab.
Be sure to call us at (757)425-2333 for the latest info.
The fishing and crabbing on the Virginia Beach Fishing Pier continues to be pretty good. A mixture of bottom fish like Spot, Croaker, Roundhead and some small Puppy Drum are being caught.
Anglers casting lures, like Gotcha plugs and Squid Spoons have had some really good afternoon and evening runs of Spanish Mackeral , with some fishermen catching their 15 fish limits. The minimum size is currently 14 inches for Spanish.
Bluefish are also being caught on the lures, but are likely to hit cut bait on a bottom rig or Fire Ball rig too, more than the Spanish. Bluefish limits are set at 10 fish per angler, but can be any size.
We hope to see the Spadefish catch increase as the water gets about as warm as we see it at the oceanfront. The tackle shop carries the clams used by most fishermen who target Spadefish.
This has been one of the best Blue Crab seasons we’ve seen on the VA Beach Pier in recent years. Crabbers can keep a bushel a day per person.
In the Ocean waters we see female crabs almost exclusively, so many are going to have egg sponges on their bellies. The ones with dark brown sponges need to be returned to the water with their eggs.
The females with the lighter yellow and orange sponges can be kept because they have laid their eggs. I have included a quick guide below.
Sharks, Rays and Skates are also available in the Summer.
Check in the Pier Tackle Shop for answers to any questions you may have about fishing and crabbing and any gear you need.
Hopefully the 2017 season will continue to be good at the Virginia Beach Pier and other local waters.
The Va Beach Fishing Pier Fall hours are shortened for the last few weeks of the season. Sunday thru Thursday we are open from 8 AM – 8 PM. Friday and Saturday hours are 8 AM – Midnight. Please call 757-428-2333 for any additional changes.
September was a disappointment in some respects. The wind and record rainfall made many days unfishable. Although some of the usual fall fish, like Spot, Bluefish, Speckled Trout and Spanish Mackeral, have been caught from the pier, the numbers were definitely down.
The water is still very warm, the upper 70s, for this time of year. As we have cooler nights in October, we are still in a position to have some nice runs of fish. Croaker, Puppy Drum, and Striper are always a good possibility, with Black Drum, Pompano and Summer Flounder as icing on the cake.
The Virginia Beach Fishing Pier is usually open for a few more weeks if the weather and the fish cooperate, but call ahead for current hours.
Wind and rain have been a big factor at the Virginia Beach Fishing Pier in 2016. The last couple of weeks have produced some good Bluefish catches, mainly on Gotcha plugs, and because the water temperature has remained below normal the Clearnose Skates and some Blowfish are still being caught.
While Spot and Croaker have been somewhat scarce for this time of year, some Roundhead have started to show up. We hope the weather will normalize and the bottom fishing will begin in earnest.
This week also had some Blue crabs coming over the railing and the season on crabs is predicted to be very good this year.
It’s time to start the new season at the Virginia Beach Fishing Pier. We will be opening on March 25, 2016. The Spring operating hours are 8AM-8PM, weather permitting. Call (757) 428-2333 for more information.
Some years Easter weekend can be very cooperative as far as the weather is concerned, but we don’t know what the fish are thinking until we have some anglers testing the waters.
So, get your gear sorted and come join us on the VA Beach Pier. If you don’t have your own fishing tackle, the Pier Tackle Shop has rental rods and bait available.
The Gift Shop is open, but Ocean Eddie’s Restaurant usually opens around May 1st.
For more information, call the pier at <strong>(757) 428-2333</strong>.