Beach Haven Fishing Swings Into Summer

Jim Hutchinson Sr.

Fresh Chum
The captains of the Beach Haven Charter Fishing Association have been busy on the water this past week.

Captain Dave Kreines of “Byte Me” Sportfishing had some spare time on his hands recently so he did a little drifting on the ICW behind Beach Haven and picked up a pair of short fluke and a 4-pounder. The next day he had a cancellation and drifted behind Holgate and boated a 4.5-pound fluke. Both days’ fishing was a total of 3 hours.

Captain Carl Sheppard on the “Starfish” has been doing well reef fishing for sea bass and some small fluke. His best catches have been south of the inlet. One day he had a crew of 12 from Bensalem, Pa., out and they totaled about 125 black sea bass along with a couple of short fluke. Jigs outperformed bait. Another day he had the Zinn family out and they picked up some sea bass and short fluke. When large swells made ocean fishing tough for the youngsters, he got them into calmer bay waters where they had fun with smooth dogfish.

Captain Jimmy Zavacky had a full crew on the “Reel Determined” which left the dock at midnight last Friday night for some offshore fishing. Offshore mate in training, Liane Lopez, was getting instruction from Captain Jimmy and Pat Zavacky. At first the bite was slow but eventually they found some yellowfin along with a missed big eye and a white marlin in the baits. Thirteen year old Teddy Janice picked up a very nice 17-pound mahi-mahi, and he and Liane caught their first yellowfin tuna. They reported plenty of life spotted in the canyon.

Captain Ray Lopez had the “Miss Liane” out last week for a day of fishing on the Barnegat Light Reef. They picked up three keeper fluke, one jumbo sea bass, and some feisty 2-4 pound bluefish near the inlet. The largest fluke was almost 24 inches and the sea bass was about 4.5 pounds.

Captain Bob Gerkens had his initial fishing run of the season on the “Hot Tuna” fishing the shark tournament at the Beach Haven Marlin and Tuna Club last Saturday. Although they caught no mako sharks they picked up a blue shark and hammerhead. Bob says he plans to start focusing on tuna the rest of the month. It is not too late to sign up for the Association’s junior mate program.

Captain Fran Verdi on the “Francesca Marie” was scheduled to have a fluke charter recently but it was canceled at the last minute. When he could find no one to fill the slot, he got up early and headed out on my own to the wrecks and fished in 80 feet of water, looking for Sea Bass. He got set up and had some nice action right away. He was able to put a Father’s Day dinner for eight in the box in no time. He plans to target sea bass one more weekend before switching over to ocean fluke fishing.

It is not too late to sign up for the Junior Mate’s Program conducted by the BHCFA. It begins Thursday, June 25, at 7pm at the Maritime Museum in Beach Haven. Information on the program can be found at