August Fishing Sessions (Last Update: COMPLETE)

Hello, Blog readers!

The month of July was pretty hot (fishing and weather wise) and the end of Summer is practically here. Therefore, I only have 1 more month of vacation before I start grinding some intense Physics. =)

My father has arrived this past Wednesday (07/31st), and he is staying until August 22nd. I only get to see him for 20 days or so each year; so, I'll be spending most of my time working on the Blog and fishing with him! We are already planning a trip to MA - I'll let you guys know how things will turn out.

Here's your picture of the month:

"Things that you don't see when you stay at home:" Fishing in China is quite different, huh? =)

Anyways...So...What has been going on lately?

- I got added to the "Recycled Fish" Volunteer list:

You may click on my name to view my profile. It's certainly a pleasure to be part of the Recycled Fish organization, which deals with so many problems that fishing faces nowadays (read more about its mission here).

- New "Fishing Post" on the Schuylkill Banks coming up:

After the Recycled Fish 2012, Team Extreme Philly Fishing decided to donate half of its fund raised money to the SRDC (Schuylkill River Development Corporation). Now, I'm working with them on a "fishing poster" that will be placed under the Walnut Street Bridge, right next to the Schuylkill River.

As for the contents of the poster, it will certainly portray fishing, environmental conservation, and other topics related to the Schuylkill River.

- I uploaded and remodeled the photo section on the Facebook page:

Now, each photo album portrays a single Species of fish, and they are all sorted out by Species and location. Therefore, it looks more like a "fish database" now. Enjoy!

I also uploaded a "Master Species Folder" on my Facebook profile that is set to "Public." Therefore, every one should be able to see it. Just click on "photos," "albums," etc.

- I am currently trying to change my status in the USA:

You can read more about it here. If you read it, you know that you are able to contribute! If you want to write a letter of recommendation for me for the immigration office, that would be well appreciated! Just be true, be yourself, and let us all know what you have learned through the Blog.

Thank you!

- The 3rd Catfish Tourney on the Banks is scheduled for August 18th:

For a complete set of rules, click here. If you are interested in participating, send me an e-mail at for the application form!

And now, I'll leave you guys with the August Fishing Sessions' post...

--- August 5th, 2013 ---

Location: Nameless Ponds (East Sandwich, MA)/Cape Cod Canal
Time: 6:00-6:45 a.m./7:00-8:00 p.m.

Fishes caught:

- 5 Bergall

- 2 Black Sea Bass

Trip to Massachusetts: 2nd day of the trip, my father and I hit 2 nameless little ponds in East Sandwich while everyone else was sleeping. We fished it only for 45 minutes and ended up skunked. We didn't get a single bite on top water, Senkos, Gulp Minnows, etc. It was quite the bummer because we were very excited about it!

Those two ponds looked pretty shallow, and they were both covered in vegetation. We saw only a couple ripples on top water, mainly done by frogs and small fish.

It was still a nice feeling to explore a new place! From the lack of access to it, it didn't seem like a lot of people went there to fish.
Nameless Pond #1. Not a lot of life in it.
Nameless Pond #2 - this one was filled with frogs and small fishes. Unfortunately, I didn't have my micro-fishing gear and freshwater live bait with me. =/
After coming back from Nantucket Island, we hit the Cape Cod Canal for 2 hours!

The Cape Cod Canal is known for producing good amounts of Striped Bass, among other good Species of fish!

Unfortunately, we caught the worst possible tide for it - near lowest tide. The current was very strong. We also caught the worst possible time for that location - sunset. The amount of bugs flying around there was just unbelievable!

My father, brother-in-law, and I got bi
tten like crazy. Not a good thing!

We did end up the day with a bunch of Bergall (Cunner), though. They turned out to be the dominant population at the Canal - little fish with strong teeth, "bait-stealers," and also similar to a Tautog in terms of body coloration.

We fried a bunch of them, and they turned out to be bony, but delicious! I also caught my first Black Sea Bass there!
My first Bergall! At the time, I had absolutely no idea what it was. It was a cool looking fish, though!

Notice the little white teeth. They are voracious fish, "bait stealers," and usually considered an annoyance by anglers that fish on the bottom with live bait.

Another little Bergall.

My first Black Sea Bass. We didn't have any keepers that day (14 inches+); however, it was still nice to pull such a beautiful fish from the canal! Very rewarding.

This fella was probably the biggest Bergall of the day. There were a couple there that were this size.
--- August 6th, 2013 ---

Location: Lagoon Pond (Martha's Vineyard - MA)
Time: 3:00-5:00 p.m.

Fishes caught:

- 4 Scup
- 1 Black Sea Bass

Trip to Massachusetts: On the 3rd day of our trip, we went to Martha's Vineyard. Beautiful place with plenty of fishing spots!

Since half of the island had jetties out in the sea, there were practically no waves around it! So, my freshwater gear worked great.

We walked all around the place, ate a lot of seafood (if you ever go there, you have to try the Lobster Roll), took a bunch of pictures, and finally stopped to fish!

I chose a little jetty in Tisbury, on the northern side of the island. Once again, we fished for about 2 hours or so. I was able to pull 4 Scups (2 keepers) and a Black Sea Bass on clams. My father finished the day with a Black Sea Bass, and he also missed a couple Scups (he was fishing a "snaggy" area).

If I could, I would fish there everyday.

First Scup (Porgy) of the day! I got it on clams, right off the bottom.

Same fish, another angle. A good keeper (10 inches+)

My father with a small Black Sea Bass. Gorgeous fish!

A nice scenery picture from the jetty in Tisbury, right next to the Lagoon Pond. You can get a nice view of Oak Bluffs at the end too.

My father fishing on the jetty.

The last Scup of the day - beautiful coloration, huh?

--- August 7th, 2013 ---

Location: Cape Cod Canal/Little Stellwagen Basin
Time: 6:30-8:30 a.m./5:30-7:00 p.m.

Fishes caught:
- 10 Bergall

Trip to Massachusetts: On the 4th day of our trip, I was able to sneak out to the Cape Cod Canal one more time, early in the morning!

Thankfully, there were only a few mosquitos around, especially since it was cold and windy. My brother-in-law and I fished from 6:30 to 8:30 a.m., finishing the day with a bunch of Bergall and a couple Black Sea Bass (no keepers, though).

I tried for Striped Bass for an hour or so without any success. There were about 40-45 anglers on that portion of the canal, and I didn't see any of them catch a single fish. Quite a bummer! I did see a couple big fish swim by - what seemed to be Bluefish. On the other hand, my experience with Saltwater fishes is pretty limited; therefore, it could as well be anything. Haha.

For 2 hours of fishing, we caught about 20 fish altogether. Not bad!

This time, we had more experience. Therefore, we were able to target bigger Bergall at the Canal.
A good picture of the Cape Cod Canal, famous for producing good amounts of Striped Bass and some other unusual catches.
 Another view of the Cape Cod Canal.
Later in the day, we decided to go to Provincetown - the eastern side of MA.

Unfortunately, there weren't as many accessible places to fish there. Parking itself was very difficult on the Cape Cod Bay side, not to mention that the fishing... pier in the center of the city was closed. Therefore, we decided to fish the surf on the northern side of Provincetown.

After 2 hours or so, we ended up with nothing! There were a couple more people fishing there, and none of them caught anything. We had a couple crab bites, and that was pretty much it.
Surf fishing can be very rewarding at times; however, my luck with it has been very poor recently. =/
My father...waiting for the fish to bite! Hehe.
Not quite a good way to finish our vacation; however, the weather and the scenery made up for it!
--- August 11th, 2013 ---

Location: Absecon Bay Inlet
Time: 3:00-7:30 p.m.

Fishes caught:
- 3 Bluefish
- 5 Black Sea Bass
- 1 Atlantic Croaker
- 1 Fluke (Summer Flounder)
- 2 Bergall

I spent 3 days with my family in Atlantic City. Fishing was very good at the jetties on the Absecon Inlet! My dad, brother-in-law, and I finished with multiple Species of fish, not to mention that we even took some Croaker home. They were delicious, by the way. =)

On the first day, we ended up with a couple Black Sea Bass (no keepers), Fluke, Bergall and a couple small Bluefish. We experimented a couple different baits: mackerel strips, squid and clams. Clams turned out to work best!

Before the trip, a nice little breakfast on Northeast Philly while waiting for the bus. Hehe.

One of the many small Black Sea Bass that we caught that day. Readers, keep in mind that keepers must be bigger than 12.5 inches! A lot of locals complain that they never really get to that size; however, it's due to overharvesting and poaching that they CAN'T really grow big. I've seen plenty of people taking small ones home...and that's very wrong. In other words, it's not sustainable at all.

A view of the jetty that we were fishing at. It's located right in the Absecon Inlet. Great place to fish for.

A photo of my dad trying to find a nice place to stick his fishing rod. Notice the background: lots of people around. They were having quite a big party that day on the nearby park. Lots of music and food on the street.

The first Atlantic Croaker of my life, caught on a piece of clam. They fight fairly good for their sizes, and they taste awesome if cooked correctly.

My dad with a Fluke. You guys can't really see it from the picture; however, this little guy swallowed a whole 3/4oz jig with a Zoom Fluke on it. It wasn't a keeper, so it was safely released (no blood shed).

Later in the day, I caught this small Fluke on a whole little Bluefish. Hehe. It was awesome because he literally ate half of it! Powerful jaw.

There were schools of small Bluefish swimming all around the jetty, blended with Bergall (Cunners). As soon as I put a little "Gulp! Minnow Alive" on a 1/64oz. jig, they started to chew on it aggressively. 

Last fish of the day -- the smallest Fluke I ever caught. =)

--- August 12th, 2013 ---

Location: Absecon Bay Inlet
Time: 9 a.m.-1:30 p.m.

Fishes caught:
- 1 Tautog
- 3 Spot Croaker
- 15 Atlantic Croaker
- 1 Bergall
- 5 Black Sea Bass

We went back to the same jetty on Tuesday - the 2nd day of our trip to AC.

There were a couple people there fishing for Croaker with Bloodworms. Since we didn't have any of it, we used clams. They worked very well!

We ended up with a bunch of Atlantic Croaker, Spot Croaker, a couple small Bluefish and Black Sea Bass. Hands up for a Tautog, caught at the end of the jetty (among rocks) with a little piece of Crab. Since it was below 15 inches (legal size), that fish is still there. Pictures of it are below.
The 1st fish of the day: a small Bergall that was lurking among the rocks. Many anglers actually confuse Bergall with small Tautogs mainly due to their physical similarities and the "color-change" ability of the Bergall. Their color can actually range from reddish to brownish. Neat, huh? 

We caught a good timing for the tide on the second day. Therefore, we ended up with tons of Atlantic Croaker and Spot Croaker. I caught 15; however, my brother-in-law and my father also caught a bunch of them.

My father with an Atlantic Croaker.

A good sized Spot Croaker.

We got tons of little Black Sea Bass on the clams.

A beautiful Tautog, caught among the rocks at the end of the jetty. Since it wasn't legal size, the fish is still swimming around there! =)

--- August 13th, 2013 ---

Location: Absecon Bay Inlet
Time: 1:00-5:30 p.m.

Fishes caught:
- 1 Northern Puffer
- 1 Bluefish
- 3 Atlantic Croaker
- 7 Black Sea Bass
- 1 Bergall

On the last day of our trip to AC, we went crabbing on the back bay. However, the weather was brutal -- really bad thunder storm in the morning!

After crabbing for 3 hours, we caught only a couple small ones (like 5 of them). So, we all decided to go back to the jetty!

We fished there from 1 to 5:30 p.m., ending up with tons of Atlantic and Spot Croaker!

Highlight of the day goes to a new Species for me: the Northern Puffer. I was very happy with it -- gorgeous fish! Heh.

As soon as we got to the back bay for Crabbing, the skies were turning dark! =( The storm was so bad that our street was flooded for a good 10 minutes or so.

Before going to the jetty, I caught a little Bluefish in the Back Bay. I saw a school of small fish and I started wondering what could they be. I found my answer soon after. 

A new Species of fish for me: the Northern Puffer. Certainly a gorgeous fish, and a good fighter too (relative to its size). It was fun to see it swimming away.

Another view of the same fish. It was caught on a small hook, on the bottom, with a piece of Clam.

My brother-in-law with an Eagles shirt and an Atlantic Croaker. I didn't get as many on the 3rd day; however, my father and my brother-in-law were on fire. They caught most of the Croakers for the day.

And, of course, I ended up the day by exploring the in-betweens of the rocks. No signs of Triggerfish or any other new Species of fish. Finished with a small Bergall.

--- August 14th, 2013 ---

Location: Newton Lake/Knight's Lake
Time: 11:30a.m.-2:30p.m./3:00-3:30p.m.

Fishes caught:
- 1 Pumpkinseed
- 4 Bluegill
- 1 Western Mosquitofish
- 1 Channel Catfish
- 1 Largemouth Bass

My father and I decided to go to the Newton Lake at Collingswood - NJ. 

I was very surprised to see that the Lake is finally "clean" from the vegetation! On one hand, there are way more open spots for fishing, kayaking, etc; on the other hand, most spots for top water are gone. The cover for Largemouth Bass and Northern Snakeheads is also almost entirely gone. My good spots totally disappeared, leaving the lily pads and spadderdocks as the main cover for fish.

Also, I noticed from the signs there that the Lake was no longer being treated only with a harmless Algaecide for wildlife and humans alike (original plan for late July was the continuous use of the Captain chelated product); but with a pesticide instead!

That's truly a shame because the pesticide is toxic to fish and aquatic invertebrates, not to mention that any contact with that body of water may cause harm (i.e. kids swimming, animals drinking, other types of ingestion, etc). That pesticide may also contribute to loss of oxygen, resulting in a fishkill for smaller Species of fish.

Anyways...what is done is done. We ended the day with a bunch of Bluegills, a couple Black Crappies, one nice Channel Catfish, and a new Species for me: a Western Mosquito Fish (analyzed under a microscope to count the anal fin).

Good stuff.

It doesn't matter how many Pumpkinseed I get. I'll always get fazed by their coloration. In my opinion, they are definitely the most beautiful one among the 4 common Species of Sunnies around the area.

After the Pumpkinseed, comes the Bluegill! From the picture, I guess you guys can already figure out where its name came from, right? The one portrayed in this picture is actually a great Specimen -- a well defined gill raker, not to mention a strong shade of blue.

A new Species for me: the Western Mosquitofish. I saw a very small school of them by the margin of the Lake; therefore, I switched to size 26 hooks. Hehe. Success on the first try!

For my surprise, this Channel Catfish grabbed my suspended Gulp! Minnow at Newton Lake. When I set the hook, my father got all excited about it: "'s pulling the drag." Haha. Nice Channel Catfish from Newton Lake!

Another view of the same fish. It was safely released, and hopefully it's living there peacefully.

After fishing Newton Lake for quite a while, my father and I decided to go to Knight's Lake to take a look. The place was almost unfishable -- full of vegetation! I managed to land a small Largemouth Bass: my only catch from there.

A view of the place: Knight's Lake is choked with vegetation. However, if someone can find an empty spot and cast some cutbait there, Catfishing can still be rewarding under those circumstances.
--- August 18th, 2013 ---

Location: Schuylkill River
Time: 11:00a.m.-2:30p.m.

Fishes caught:
- 5 Bluegill
- 1 Yellow Perch
- 3 White Perch
- 2 Channel Catfish
- 1 American Eel
I took my dad "Multi-Species fishing" on the Schuylkill Banks. We finished the day with good diversity -- including White Perch, Bluegill, Pumpkinseed, Channel Catfish, Flathead Catfish, American Eel, Smallmouth Bass (it got away, but it was caught on a piece of American Eel on the bottom!), and a Yellow Perch. 
Pictures are below:
A Yellow Perch from the Schuylkill River! It's been quite a while since the last time I got one.

A Bluegill. During the Summer and Fall months, schools of Sunfish travel through the Banks of the Schuylkill River. When I first started to fish here in Philadelphia -- back in 2011 -- I remember clearly that I caught a very different type of Sunfish on the Banks (perhaps a Warmouth). However, I lacked knowledge at that time and I never really took pictures of the fish. Now, I'll never know what it was. The fun part with the tidal Schuylkill River (open body of water) is that you never know what you will be able to pull out of there. 

My father caught this small Flathead Catfish on a piece of nightcrawler. Heh. He was very excited about it, since he never even saw a Flathead in real life. Sometimes, size is not about everything.

And, of course, we caught a bunch of White Perch. I got very few. My father, however, killed them on nightcrawlers -- one after another.
--- August 20th, 2013 ---

Location: Neshaminy Creek
Time: 1:30-7:00p.m.

Fishes caught:

- 1 Pumpkinseed
- 1 Bluegill
- 5 Green Sunfish
- 2 Rock Bass
- 25 Redbreast Sunfish
- 2 Largemouth Bass

I had my last fishing session with my dad for the year of 2013 on August 20th! We decided to hit the Neshaminy Creek with "Gulp! Minnows."

It was certainly a blast! We ended up the day with Rock Bass, Redbreast Sunfish, Bluegill, Pumpkinseed,
and Green Sunfish. My dad caught 2 nice Smallmouth Bass and I caught 2 nice Largemouth Bass -- the biggest being a 2lber (I didn't take photos because I wanted to release them right away). Apart from the Largemouth Bass, everything else was caught on "Gulp! Alive Minnows." That's why I'm always recommending people to purchase 1/64oz jigs from the Trout Magnet company and the "Gulp!" 2-3 inch minnows.

Almost all Species of fish kill it! It's also great bait for Crappies, not mention that Bass will hit it as well. Golden!

My father came to the USA to visit on July 31st, and he left on the 22nd. I stayed with him for 22 days or so, and now I won't be seeing him for a year. Unfortunately, that's how life is! The good part is that we spent a lot of time fishing together, just like the old good times, back in São Paulo. Our last session, on the Neshaminy Creek, was something we will remember for a long time. =)

I already miss him a lot, and I'm sure that he misses me as well. Therefore, I always tell everyone around me: guys and girls, spend as much time as you can with your family -- the people who you can trust the most in the World. If you live with them, Carpe Diem!!!

My father with a nice Smallie from the Neshaminy Creek.

Probably one of my best rewarding catches of the day: a Pumpkinseed X Green Sunfish hybrid. If you want a guide on how to identify them, click here.

One of the best feelings in Summer: wading in the Creek on a hot and humid day! You guys should try it if you haven't yet. It's really as close as you can be with Mother Nature.
--- August 23rd and 24th, 2013 ---

Location: Schuylkill River
Time: 11:30a.m.-3:30p.m.

Fishes caught:

- None

Nothing much to say. I hit the Schuylkill River twice during day time, only to get skunked! I had plenty of small bites on my cutbait rods; however, no takers. On both days, I missed a fish just before netting it. It was quite frustrating.

But hey -- it was still great to be out there. The weather was awesome: plenty of other people fishing around, beautiful ladies getting a tan, not to mention that you can always sit under a shade on the Banks.

Good environment!

Lonely rods for the past 2 sessions on the Banks. Plenty of bites, but no fishes landed.
--- August 26th, 2013 ---

Location: Schuylkill River
Time: 5:30-9:30p.m.

Fishes caught:

- 4 Flathead Catfish (17lbs kicker)
- 8 Bluegills
- 1 Green Sunfish

Fall is coming -- a great time for Flathead fishing!

Before Winter comes, I advise readers to prepare their live baits (i.e. Sunnies, Chubs, Shiners) and try the Schuylkill River for at least one night! Who knows -- you may catch a fish of a lifetime.

Taking in consideration that I was getting so skunked during day time, I decided to shift for night time fishing. Since my classes at Temple also started this week, it fits my schedule as well! =)

I arrived at Kelly Drive around 5:30 p.m. I got myself a couple Sunnies on the Gulp! Minnows, and set my rods for the big Flatheads. No monsters; however, I ended the night with 4 Flathead Catfish -- a 17lber kicker.

Pictures are below:

First Flathead Catfish of the night -- a 2lber. I was quite disappointed by the size of the creature; however, a fish is a fish! I wasn't getting skunked anymore. Haha.

Same fish, different angle.

Soon after, the size started to increase. The second fish came up at 4lbs -- double the size of the first one.. It certainly made me more excited about the night.

After finally adjusting my camera to night mode, I was able to take a decent picture of a Flathead.

The night ended in a wonderful way! I was able to land a 15 and a 17lber Flathead Catfish on live Sunnies. The one above is the 17lber. Certainly a gorgeous fish!

--- August 28th, 2013 ---

Location: Schuylkill River

Fishes caught:

- 5 Flathead Catfish (11lbs kicker)
- 5 Bluegills
- 1 Green Sunfish
- 1 Largemouth Bass

Great night on the Schuylkill River, and my last fishing session for August! I fished it with my friend Kevin W. and Donald G.. We finished the night with 15+ Flathead Catfish, totaling more than 100lbs in weight.

Don got the first Flathead of his life -- a feisty 38lber (picture below). Kevin got his new PB for Flathead -- 14.5lbs (picture coming soon). I didn't get anything gigantic (my kicker was 11lbs); however, it was great to see my friends landing fish!

Pictures are below:

While fishing for bait, I landed the SMALLEST Largemouth Bass in my entire life! Hands up for Micro-Fishing!

Our first fish of the night was Don's Channel Catfish. That was the only "nonFlathead" catch of the day -- Don G. with a 5.75lbs Channel Catfish.

Soon they started to arrive, and we were already all sweaty from the humidity of the night. It was very rewarding, though. Above is my first Flathead of that night.

Another small fella. Probably one of the smallest ones we have caught at that night.

Another view of a small Flathead Catfish.

Kevin with one of his regular Flatheads of the night (most of the ones he caught were bigger than the ones I caught). Kevin was actually using 5-7 inches bait for his Flatheads whereas I was using 3-4 inches for mine. I guess the rule is golden: bigger bait for bigger fish.

Another good sized Flathead Catfish by Kevin W.

And then, suddenly, Don's rod went wild! We knew that it was a nice sized fish, since we were using 6 inch Bluegills at that time. I grabbed the flashlight while Kevin got the net. He fought the fish for a good 15 minutes! In the meantime, we were watching the line running from left to right and vice versa.

After a lot of sweat, we finally landed the beast: a 38lber Flathead Catfish -- the biggest one of the night, and Don's first Flathead of his life (what a lucky guy! LUCKY GUY, DON!!!). Congratulations on the big catch, Bro! We were all so psyched after the three of us landed that fish. It was certainly a group effort to land it.

Truly a feisty fish: 44 inches in length, 22 inches of girth. It measured 38lbs even on the digital scale.

Here's another photo of the beast, so you guys can compare the size of the 38lber with a much smaller (but also nice) Flathead Catfish.

Same fish, another angle. Don was getting pretty tired of holding the fish up at that time. Hehe. I mean -- 38lbs, especially after 15 minutes of fight. That's some intense exercise.

And, the last picture of the beast!

After all that commotion, we were still able to land a couple more Cats. I ended up landing two more Flatheads, with an 11lb kicker. I also lost 2 nice ones, probably around 10-15lbs.

Kevin W. landed a bunch of Flatheads throughout the night, having his PB at 14.5lbs. His baitrunners were going crazy!

Same fish, another angle.

It was quite funny: while I was reeling in my fish, Don's fishing rod started to move. When Don landed his fish, Kevin's rod started to get a hit. Haha. So, we were able to get all the three fish in the picture almost at the same time.

Someone was passing by with his girlfriend (I assume); so, I asked them to take a couple pictures for us! Thanks, dude, whoever you are! He also got a picture of his girl with the three of us. Haha. 

It was overall a great and pleasant evening. We missed a lot of fish and we also landed a lot of fish. We were super tired at the end of the fishing session; however, Kevin wanted to fish even more! Haha. I guess his monster will have to wait a little bit.

Fall is almost here, guys! Time to enjoy some prime fishing before Winter comes.

And this completes the August 2013 fishing sessions' post. It was awesome to fish with my Dad in Boston, Martha's Vineyard, Atlantic City, and multiple spots around Philly and New Jersey. I collected many new samples during this month, expanding my Species list.

I can't wait for Fall to come, though! There will be some monsters lurking around. =)