Striped Bass Night Fishing
A good reason to fish for Striped Bass at night is that they move from the deep in to shallow waters.
Stripers are normally cautious fish that prefer the deep. However night offers them enough protection that they’ll often enter water barely deep enough to cover their backs to feed. Look for them along beaches.
Techniques used at night won’t produce the same results during the day.
Tip: Estuaries are an excellent spot to fish for Striped Bass at night.
Many baitfish come out at night in force, like the sea worms, and they’re a favorite of stripers and are a major source of food.
Most larger striped bass avoid strong sunlight by sinking to the bottom during the day and will only go after easy prey, avoiding fast moving lures.
Large striped bass are not the only bass to avoid direct sunlight. It’s common for most fish to avoid direct sunlight.
Places like Cape Cod are very effective for catching stripers just after sunrise by trolling.
Try trolling for them in the shallows with threadfin, minnows and gizzard shad pods
- Casting towards the shore is another successful technique along with drift fishing
- You can also be successful using poppers and surface swimming plugs
- Avoid making noise and turn off your motor if possible. Striped bass are very sensitive to the sounds made at night as their sense of sight is much reduced
- If fishing from a boat, consider using an electric 12-volt motor
- The use of wire lines is an effective technique when trolling the deep, irrespective of the time of day and at times and places where striped bass show only during the early morning hours.
This habit however, is not so deeply ingrained and even with their reluctance to enter shallow water on a bright day, schools of striped bass often rise to the surface in pursuit of baitfish any time during the day. Occasionally you might find them come within easy casting distance of the beach.
Striped bass numbers have increased since the 1980’s when their number approached the threatened species level. Since then anglers and government programs have set about rebuilding the population through stocking programs, which has meant the population has recovered to pre 1980 numbers.
There are now size limits and commercial quotas in place to protect the Striped Bass.
Before heading out be sure to check with your local government or bait shop for information on quotas and fishing limits.