Tackle and Tactics: Jigging for Tog/Blackfish

Tackle and Tactics: Jigging for Tog/Blackfish

Tackle and Tactics: Jigging for Tog/Blackfish

Tackle and Tactics: Jigging for Tog/Blackfish

When it comes to fishing for blackfish, there are a few key things to remember. First, blackfish are most active in the fall months. This is when they are feeding heavily in preparation for winter. October is a great month for togging in Southern New England. Second, blackfish can be found in a variety of habitats, from reefs and wrecks to sandy flats and rocky shorelines. Where you will find them is a huge indicator of the type of gear you will need to catch them.  Third, blackfish are relatively easy to catch once you know what you're doing. With the right tactics and gear, you'll be landing these fish in no time!

Catching blackfish on long island sound

In the past, blackfish was what you might consider a “blue collar fish”. Rather tricky to catch, and a whole lot of gear needed. Gone are the days, though, where you need buckets of knives, crabs, and rigs. Thanks to bucktail jigs, togging has become a whole new game. One of the best ways to catch blackfish is by using jigs. Jigs are versatile lures that can be used in a variety of situations, making them perfect for targeting blackfish. Today you can find a jig of just about every size and color - making fishing for tog a whole lot more fun! You’ll see from a look at our website alone a full collection of blackfish jigs in every style, color and size. 

One thing to remember when fishing with jigs, it's important to use a heavy-duty rod and reel combo, as blackfish can put up a good fight. We also recommend using braided line, as it will give you more sensitivity when feeling for bites. 

bucket of blackfish

Perfect Jigs for Catching Blackfish

There are a few different types of jigs that can be used to catch blackfish. One of our favorites is the bucktail jig. Bucktail jigs are typically made with a metal head and natural hair tail, which gives them great action in the water. Another popular option is the soft plastic jig, which can be worked in a variety of ways to attract blackfish. No matter what type of jig you use, make sure to choose one that is heavy enough to reach the bottom where blackfish are hiding.

Your choice of jig is going to come down to your preference. The main thing to focus on is making sure that you have a number of weights on hand to deal with all of the different current conditions that you encounter. All of our jigs have strong hooks that attempt to keep the hook facing upwards -and hopefully, away from getting snagged between rocks.

Bait for Blackfish

Crab is the best bait you are going to get for blackfish. Green crabs and Asian crabs will both work equally as well. Depending on the size of the crab, you can either hook the crab whole or hook it in a way that ensures the crab will remain upright in the water. If the crab is bigger than a half dollar you will want to use a pair of shears, or a knife, to cut the crab in half before putting on your hook. 

The Right Gear for Catching Blackfish

Most of the time you will want to use a spinning rod when togging. Some of our favorite rods when jigging for blackfish are The Shimano Teramar XX Northeast Spinning Rod, Centaur Constellation, Daiwa Saltiga Slow or a Custom Rod.

Techniques for Catching Blackfish

In terms of tactics, blackfish can be caught using a variety of techniques. One of the most popular methods is bottom fishing. This involves using heavy weights to get your jig down to the bottom where blackfish are hiding. Once you feel your jig touch bottom, lift it up a few feet and then let it fall back down. Repeat this process until you feel a bite. Another effective tactic is known as drift fishing. Drift fishing entails casting your jig out and letting it drift with the current. This is a great way to cover a lot of ground and find where blackfish are holding.

Using a crab on a jig is a great technique that allows the angler to attract the blackfish in a more natural way. The angler can “crawl” the crab over the rocks - just as a crab would live in the wild, therefore attracting the blackfish and making it more likely to catch.

Now that you know the perfect jig to use and the best tactics for catching blackfish, it's time to get out there and start fishing! Remember to always check the regulations in your area, as blackfish have a size limit and a bag limit. With a little practice, you'll be catching blackfish like a pro in no time!

Do you need help finding the perfect jig? Visit our website today or give us a call at (860) 739-7419 and we'll be happy to assist you. Happy blackfishing!​

Meet the Author

Capt. Kyle Douton is the third generation of charter captians at J&B Sportfishing & Tackle Co. He is pictured with his son Jackson soon to be the fourth generation. Kyle spent his childhood on a charter boat or in the tackle shop and is now Vice President of J&B Tackle. He brings 70+ years of experience to J&B and jbtackle.com by taping into the family knowledge bank.

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