Fishermen are finding good flounder fishing in the back bay areas of Ocean City and Assateague. Many are now targeting the doormat sized flounder and have been finding that the old adage about big fish liking big baits to be true when one is talking about flounder. A specialized group of fishermen have been live lining spot in the channels that feed into the inlet area such as the East Channel. Some real whopper sized doormats were caught this week in this manner. Other fishermen have been enjoying drifting along and fishing the classic baits of squid and either bull minnows or silversides. Sunday was pretty windy and stirred things up a bit; but for the most part water clarity conditions have been good. A large number of small sea bass have moved inside the inlet and have been tearing up baits but if you have children on board these little rascals can provide non stop action for the youngsters on board.
Tautog are still being caught in and around the inlet but most are fairly small; but they do provide some fishing opportunity for those who are shore bound. Flounder are also being caught from the bulkhead areas and this is actually where some of the most productive live lining is taking place for big flounder. The night crew has been catching a few striped bass and a number of bluefish and sea trout at night from the Route 50 Bridge and nearby bulkheads and jetties.
Surf fishermen are seeing water temperatures now over 70-degrees at times and the best fishing tends to be in the early morning hours and late in the evening. Those who are throwing big baits out such as cut menhaden are catching a lot of sand tiger sharks, sandbar sharks and cow-nosed rays. A few striped bass are caught now and then as well as small bluefish. Fishermen did well in the evenings this past week with kingfish and they also caught a summer mix of small bluefish, croaker, spot, flounder and silver or sand perch. Ben Fleming strikes a pose with his mom Carla and a sand tiger shark just before releasing it back into the ocean.
The party boats that fish the artificial reefs and wrecks report fair fishing for sea bass with some fishermen achieving double digit catches. These catches have been supplemented though with tautog and flounder. No word on anyone finding croakers in the inshore sloughs yet but hopefully the fish will show up soon; they are always a welcomed addition to a days catch; especially on the way in.
The boats that have been heading to the offshore fishing grounds in search of tuna and other species have been finding them recently in a number of areas. Boats have been bringing back bluefin tuna in the 80-90 lb category from locations such as the Hambone, Chicken Bone, Massey’s Canyon, Lumpy Bottom and the Rock Pile to name a few. The boats are also bringing back a mix of dolphin, large bluefish and yellowfin tuna. Several boats even brought back catches of king mackerel from the Lumpy Bottom area.
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A Couple of Closing Notes...
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