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Michael Ferraro | West Chester PA | Saturday March 26th 6:54 pm
A couple in the Octoraro yesterday. Nothing in the river, herring in Deer creek. May be shad as well but too high and dirty.
Joseph C. | Phoenixville & Princeton | Friday March 25th 1:26 pm
Trenton train bridge, that is...
Joseph C. | Phoenixville & Princeton | Friday March 25th 1:25 pm
1 hour of fishing at the train bridge produced 1 buck shad on a dart. Can anybody tell me what the depth of the river is right below the bridge. I've heard conflicting reports ranging from 15 to 30 feet.
Joseph C. | Phoenixville & Princeton | Friday March 25th 1:21 pm
Hey Ralph, ...Scuttlebut has it that the Wing Dam is fishing pretty well. You'd have lots of room to swing a fly rod there, I think. Let me know if you try it. I've never done much more than walk out there. Cheers!
NickD | | Thursday March 24th 5:38 pm
Hope the weatherman is wrong. Night temps in teens in the catskills and 20s here will put river temps back into early march levels.
KennyP | Delaware River - Tri State Monument | Thursday March 24th 10:26 am
Haven't gone out yet, waiting to hear better reports, so far with water temps in the mid 40's and the extended weather forecast saying for the next 6-10 days below average temps w/ above average precip is making me think we all have a few more weeks until the river starts warming up, low to mid 50's is the light switch for the area I fish. Best of luck to all the ones who get out there early, love reading the reports, regardless if anything is caught.
Terry Steinmetz | Bangor Pennsylvania | Thursday March 24th 9:19 am
The Delaware River shad
Ralph K | Hamilton | Wednesday March 23rd 12:38 pm
Joseph C. I agree. I get to the river when I can while checking the tides. The outgoing tide is very strong. You have peaked curiosity about the Schuylkill and fly fishing but it's a hassle to get to. I'll spin in Trenton and wait until they reach the gap to use the fly rod. Let's hope for a great run and fishable waters!
Fishermanfrank | Southampton | Wednesday March 23rd 9:32 am
Fishermanfrank, fished at New Hope Yesterday from 10 till 3:30 Water was high & fast 49to 51 degrees 9 caught In afternoon between 4 boats . Some leaves & scum on lines sun &wind gusts all day
Joseph C. | Phoenixville & Princeton | Wednesday March 23rd 7:25 am
Ralph, I think it's like this early in the season every year. There are going to be people who get to the river at just the right day / time / tide and find a fish or three as early as the first week of March. For the rest of us it's going to be a crap shoot until the water warms up and the bodies of migrating fish are more consistently within reach and paying attention to our lures.
Frenchmxjf | France | Wednesday March 23rd 4:51 am
Dоn't wаste your time with explаnаtions, рeорle onlу hеаr whаt thеy want to hеаr.
Ralph K | Hamilton | Tuesday March 22nd 9:35 pm
Fished Trenton at high tide this afternoon. 0 bites Was told only 3 shad caught earlier in the day.. Hope Thursday rain does not blow out the river
Dennis Scholl | Hellertown | Tuesday March 22nd 9:37 am
Just a note to let others know that the shad print has been taken.
Eric Dolby | 209 Willow Grove Street Hackettstown Nj 07840 | Monday March 21st 7:55 pm
This is my first time trying to apply. I'm a little confused as how to apply.
Kevin | Yardley | Monday March 21st 7:14 pm
Brandywine Shad Festival set for May 22, 2022 is looking for volunteers to assist with fishing instruction for kids attending the event. All tackle will be provided at the event. If you're attending and can volunteer an hour or so, it would be greatly appreciated. Contact Jim Shanahan at if you can assist. The future of our resources our the youth of today. Thanks in advance for your time. Kevin
Dennis Scholl | Hellertown | Monday March 21st 5:52 pm
Hi. If there is someone who would like the print in the attached photo, it is your's if you come to Hellertown and get it. No charge. I'm downsixing things and this is something that just won't fit anymore. The photo was taken by photographer Sal Patera sometime in the mid-80s when shad were bigger. He gave it to me as a thank you for a day we shared on the river. Whoever gets in touch with me first can have it for your fishing room or den. It is 23.5 inches wide and 18.5 inches down. Nice wooden frame. It shows no wear or loss of color whatsoever. Email me at if you are interested.
Joseph C. | Phoenixville & Princeton | Monday March 21st 1:11 pm
I fished the Schuylkill Sunday morning on the falling tide from 0700 to 0900 when the front moved in. The place is always hit or miss early in the season, but with the water in the mid 50's I thought I's give it a shot. Nothing but a couple snagged gizzard shad and a snagged sucker until the sun got high enough to warm the water a touch. Then I landed one buck and LDR'd another. It was just a few minutes of fishing and then the wind turned around and the clouds moved in. I was done.
RICHARD FASANELLO | | Sunday March 20th 11:11 pm
DENNIS, I was there that St. Patrick's day to witness the catch. The river was low enough that the wing dam was dry on top. My fishing buddy and I walked out to the knob anchoring the dam at the opening. I knelt down and shaded my eyes (and aided by polaroid glasses) to see if any shad could be seen moving through and sure enough we did see them.
RPS | Greeley | Sunday March 20th 7:38 pm
On 3/24/12 I caught shad at Zane Grey the water temp. was 52 deg.
Dennis Scholl | | Sunday March 20th 5:23 pm
I hope you guys can read this (blow it up) It's the front-page story from the Spring 1990 DRSFA newsletter. Check out the dates in the article. You may be surprised.
RPS | Greeley | Sunday March 20th 7:57 am
Still big chunks of ice in front of boat launch at Zane Grey.
| | Saturday March 19th 7:49 pm
Snow pach is gone until a "surprise" March storm renews it.
charlie 1st | south of easton | Friday March 18th 5:58 pm
I did well today with multiple doubles one of which was a 24 inch roe for a total of about 15 shad with even mix of roe n buck. didn't get any bites after 12pm fished a total of about 3hrs. water temp was 45 degrees.
Kevin | Yardley | Friday March 18th 6:16 am
Fished Wednesday from 1030am. One other boat out . River up some debris on the lines. Fished plug rig , jet divers and flat lines in 9.5 ft of water. Slight stain. Water temp 42 rose to 45.6 by 4pm. No hits. Great to be on the water to dust off the winter doldrums.
Joseph C. | Phoenixville, PA / Ewing, NJ | Thursday March 17th 8:48 pm
I had a spare rig in the car, but it was for bucktailing for stripers. Your mentor was right and following that sage advice has made me late getting home more than once.
| | Thursday March 17th 7:40 pm
I always have a spare outfit for incidents like this. One of my fishing mentors taught me this. He said "Traveling to a fishing spot and having a mishap should be no reason to have to quit sooner than you planned to."
Joseph C. | Phoenixville, PA / Ewing, NJ | Thursday March 17th 1:26 pm
Mission had mixed results: I landed 1 buck shad but tripped over my feet as I was doing it, fell and broke my rod 1/3 down. I now have a fine ice fishing rod. But the fish are there and willing to hit my dart at ~45F.
Joseph C. | Phoenixville, PA / Ewing, NJ | Thursday March 17th 9:57 am
Here I go! My 1st attempt of the season. Trenton.
Charlie | | Monday March 14th 2:01 am
Thanks WG. Once I start snagging Shad by accident when I’m jigging for walleye I drop out a line for Shad just in case
WG | | Sunday March 13th 9:48 pm
@Charlie, that’s incredible to hear American shad caught in 39 degree water! Obviously we all know they are pushing upriver but there must be many thousands going by to hook them at 39 degrees! Nice work! More will be caught in the lower river this week as the temps will be rising all week! Good luck all
Under the Radar | Piscataway | Sunday March 13th 3:08 pm
There are still a good number of shad coming up the Raritan. Catch em every year. Juast gotta be under the radar. Ha,ha!
JeffK | Hilsborough NJ | Sunday March 13th 11:14 am
NJ tributaries are closed to shad fishing. The only one I know that has a significant run is the Paulinskill, but the run was stopped by the Columbia dam a short way up from the Delaware. People fished in the section below the dam and many of the bow fishermen that used to shoot at King Coles moved there. The Columbia dam was recently removed, but the area is still closed off. Hopefully the Paulinskill will have a nice run with the dam gone. (trout fishermen would hook them on trout magnets) The lowest dam on the Musconetcong was removed as well and some shad were taken there last spring. Not sure if there is a solid run yet.
charlie | Yardley area | Friday March 11th 6:49 pm
We got shad this morning using poor mans downriggers. All were good size with a mix of roe and buck. water temp was 39 degrees. Nothing after 12pm.
Riverwolf | | Thursday March 10th 12:43 am
Fished 1hr south of hits no bumps......river 5.4 ft 43* and clear......rain will raise river.....
Twins | | Wednesday March 9th 2:50 pm
Water temps are in the mid 40s on the Susky, soon, very soon.
Rob Wright | Montague | Tuesday March 8th 6:59 pm
It's good to see the blog back up. Thank you Rusty and Steve. The beginning shad could be in the bay waiting to come north. I can't wait. Hope this year is a banner year. Good luck to all.
Dennis Scholl | Hellertown | Tuesday March 8th 2:58 pm
Hi. Check the classifieds for some great shad dart molds I'm selling. Call me at 484-397-7974 or email me at for more information. Plenty of info. in the classifieds.
Tom | Elverson | Tuesday March 8th 11:01 am
I recently heard that they will be charging for parking at the Phillipsburg ramp again, is that correct? Any idea of the cost or if they will issue permits again?
Dave D, | NJ | Saturday January 29th 11:51 pm
Richard. Yes that is how I interpret it also. The regs I a referring to are on the PA Fish Commission website under Delaware River and Estuary. Read the footnote for Shad at the bottom marked with **. The 100 ft rule goes back to original reciprocal license agreement between the two states. I only used it as a hypothetical example as that is what used to be used as a reference to define a line of demarcation. Reason I asked is that I had a spot that I considered giving a try but would be fishing is 50 yards or so off of the main river. NOT WORTH RISKING A TICKET, so I will stick to my usual spots in Lambertiville.
Richard Fasanello | | Saturday January 29th 9:49 pm
DAVE D. I could have made my answer clearer. My first sentence was intended to indicate that tributaries are not part of the Delaware and are therefore closed to shad fishing as not having sustainable runs. So you are correct that NJ forbids shad fishing anywhere except in the Delaware River proper. I am not finding the PA 100 ft. rule. Perhaps you can steer me in the right direction.
Dave D. | NJ | Saturday January 29th 9:17 pm
(Richard: Now to fix my typos) I understand that and thank you for the information. My question was more in reference to fishing at the confluence of tributaries to the Delaware River on the NJ side. (PA clearly spells out that you can while the 2022 NJ compendium does not). So I guess anybody fishing for shad 100 feet upstream in tributary water on the NJ side would be doing so illegally (?)
Dave D. | NJ | Saturday January 29th 8:57 pm
Richard. I understand that and thank you for the information. My question was in regards to fishing at the confluence of tributaries to to Delaware River on the NJ side. (PA clearly spells out that you can). The 2022 NJ compendium dos not. So I guess anybody fishing for shad 100 feet upstream in a tributary water after would be doing so illegally on the NJ side (?)
Richard Fasanello | | Saturday January 29th 4:38 pm
DAVE D. The ASMFC requires any water that doesn't have a sustainable run be off limits. Up till now, the Delaware has been the only local river to qualify. Recent young of the year surveys have resulted in a not-sustainable status for it. I am under the impression that even catch and release is out of bounds but there is no talk of closing it down altogether in the Delaware, only talk of tighter restrictions. Perhaps the ASMFC has changed their position or the sates are defying the ban. If my striped bass in the Gulf of Maine/Bay of Fundy theory proves to be true, nothing will result in stocks rebuilding to historical levels and the threshold of sustainable run will need to be lowered to a point where there is no longer a downward trend to stocks, but to where a status quo prevails.
Dave D. | NJ | Saturday January 29th 2:30 pm
Does anyone understand what the law is pertaining to fishing for shad in tributaries to the Delaware River on the NJ side under the current moratorium? PA clearly defines this as being completely legal, but the NJ freshwater compendium only makes reference to the "Delaware River Mainstem" and lists the season as closed in all other waters. So.... does that make it illegal to fish for American shad up into the mouth of a tributary? I thought that both states were trying to coordinate the regulations so that there is some consistency (?) Does anyone have any experience or thoughts on this issue?
| | Saturday January 15th 1:18 pm
St. Johns River, FL finally cool enough for shad migration and catches are being reported.
Robert Wright | Montague | Wednesday January 12th 4:48 pm
Can't wait for the run. Making my shad spoons now
Joseph C. | Phoenixville & Princeton | Tuesday January 11th 9:29 am
Happy New Year everybody! I'm rigging up a new reel with 6# braid in yellow. I think it will cast a little better than the 8# I've been using and I can use it with the noodle rod for snap jigging, too. It looks like I might be distracted with some Ice fishing this weekend - yowza!
| | Wednesday December 22nd 5:56 pm
As reported on "shad on the Fly" website from Florida, anglers are anxiously awaiting the report of the first shad from the ST Johns River.
Duke E Smith | Bethlehem | Friday June 18th 2:40 pm
Last harrah for this season.fished narrowsburg caught 7 on spinning rod and 19 on fly rod in rapids .fish r spawning now most fresh some spawned out some dead ones coming down.loads of fish up here.had a bad early season but late season was great.river in good shape could probably catch fish here and farther up for another 2 weeks yet but I am done.have a good off season going to go for trout til the forth then switching to bass and striper.
Duke E Smith | Bethlehem | Tuesday June 8th 11:18 am
Strictly wade and walk way in.