Porgy Pagrus pagrus
|New York State Fishing Regulations||For Party and Charter Boats|
|Season:||May 1 thru Dec. 31|
|Limit Per Person:||30|
|Season:||September 1st through October 31|
|Limit Per Person:||45|
|The porgy, which is also known as
scup in the Mid-Atlantic region, is a common, bottom dwelling species
that supports large recreational and commercial fisheries. Pound
for pound it is one of the hardest fighting fish in the sea.
Porgies have a range that extends from New England to Florida but they are most abundant from Long Island to Massachusetts. They can weigh upwards of five pounds but are most commonly available in the one to two pound range.
Primarily bottom dwellers, they are fond of frequenting wrecks and other undersea structures. They migrate to deeper offshore waters in the fall and return to the shallower waters as they warm in the spring.
We catch porgies with clam bait anchored or slowly drifting on bay and ocean wrecks and reefs. They are most abundant in our area from July through November and are often mixed with sea bass and blackfish. Porgies are easy to catch and when fishing is good, double headers are common.
Porgy bites are often relatively light, for that reason fishermen with lighter more sensitive rods and line often do the best. 20 lbs test line, either braided or monofilament, is about right. Spinning rods and light conventionals are good.
Porgies have small mouths and are usually hooked in the lips so the hook can easily rip out if you reel too fast or hook them too hard. The best porgy fishermen hook these scrappy fish by lifting the rod slowly about 3 feet then reeling them in slowly. When they reach the surface, they should be lifted into the boat by lowering the rod tip to within one foot of the water, then with one motion lifting the fish out of the water, over the rail, and into the boat. Actually this method of boating a fish should be used whenever you are not going to net or gaff a fish.