A variety of saltwater fish are caught by recreational anglers in North Carolina. Among the most popular sports are deep sea fishing, surf fishing, and pier fishing. Anglers also catch saltwater species in Pamlico Sound, Albemarle Sound, and other inshore estuaries.
In 2011, the dolphinfish or mahi mahi was the most popular saltwater fish species caught in North Carolina. Anglers landed 3.5 million pounds of dolphinfish in 2011, up more than 7 percent from the previous year.
Striped bass was the second-ranked saltwater species harvested by anglers in 2011. Anglers caught 2 million pounds of striped bass, a 350 percent increase from 2010.
Bluefish, yellowfin tuna and Spanish mackerel rounded out the top five recreational species landed in 2011. Catches of cobia were down 70 percent, as were porgies and amberjacks landings.
source: NC DMF