We are fully engaged in the Fall blitz before the stripers move south for the winter. Summer patterns of fish activity are behind us. This is a great time to be out on the water, so don't too caught up in a return to school, anticipation of bird season or football games or raking leaves. Some of the best fishing of the entire season is happening right now.
Swarms of peanut bunker (juvenile menhaden) are filling the bays, flats, coves and beaches near the mouths of the New Meadows, Kennebec and Sheepscott Rivers. The striped bass, large mackerel and a few big bluefish are gorging themselves on these little baitfish. The young of the year alewives are dropping out of the ponds and moving down the rivers on their way to open ocean. There are schools of spike mackerel offshore that can generate a bass feeding frenzy when they sweep past outer ledges and islands. We are also seeing silversides and sandeels close to the mouths of the rivers. The pollack are stuffing themselves on all of this forage and falling pray to big bass in the process.
If you are out fishing on your own from boat or shore be prepared to keep moving until you locate the bait and the fish. There are stretches of water that seem devoid of life but rest assured that "it is happening" some place all day and all night. The fall runs of baitfish always seem more concentrated than in the early season. If you aren't seeing birds, clouds of bait, surface feeding schoolies move, move, move.
This is a great time to fish in Maine. Our saltwater fly fishing doesn't get any better than this.