The Atlantic cod is a cold water species that occurs from the Canadian Maritimes to North Carolina. Cod occur seasonally throughout the Mid Atlantic region, from New York to North Carolina.
Atlantic cod are indentified by brown to greenish flanks, prominent chin barbell, three dorsal fins, two anal fins, and broom-shaped tail. Atlantic cod vary greatly in size from a few pounds up to monster fish of 80 pounds or more. Larger cod are usually caught well offshore.
In the Mid Atlantic region, New Jersey and New York are leading states with some of the best fishing occurring out of Montauk. Although rare in the southern half of Mid Atlantic, anglers sometimes encounter cod during winter wreck fishing trips.
The most popular baits for cod fishing include sea clams, squid, and crab. Cod are also caught with diamond jigs or other shiny lures. Because of the depths involved, anglers usually choose medium to heavy outfits. When fishing deep ocean wrecks for cod, anglers sometimes employ electric reels and other specialized gear.