King & Spanish Mackerel

  Mackerel are among the fastest and hardest striking predators that we target. The artificial reefs and live-bottom areas outside Bogue Inlet hold great numbers of King Mackerel from May until November. 8 to 15-pound fish are the average (and better eating), but our area produces a number of 30-50 lb. Kings each year so the big one is out there (usually in the Fall). Trolling live baits is the ticket for bigger fish, but trolling spoons and lures often gets better numbers. The smaller, better-tasting Spanish Mackerel move up to our area in May, showing up at the nearshore reefs, pushing bait near the inlets, and even moving inside the ICW during the heat of summer. The schoolie-sized Spanish roam in large schools and can be caught by trolling or casting artificials and flies. The big breeder Spanish hover over the reefs and can be teased into a frenzy with live chum and then caught on artificials, flies, or live baits.