Restless Lady Report September 2, 2015Todd and crew went to the Washington Canyon yesterday on an overnight trip.
By Scott Lenox Several of the boats in the Fish in OC fleet will come out of the water during the winter, but other boats in the fleet will travel during the offseason. This planner is full of information about our beautiful town – everything from hotels, condos, restaurants, shopping, amusements, attractions, golf, fishing and more. From offshore charter boats to local marinas, this guide is full of useful information about fishing the waters of Ocean City, Maryland. The Bay Bee is equipped with the finest up to date fish finding and navigational equipment and fishes for flounder, sea bass, tautog, trout and snapper blues.
The Bay Bee offers special children’s fares, clean restroom accommodations and fish cleaning service. Surf fishing along the Delmarva coast generally begins in April, as migrating striped bass move out of the Chesapeake Bay and travel north to their summer grounds off New England.
Most surf anglers target the stripers with cut bait, especially menhaden (bunker), spot or mullet.
For terminal tackle, most striper fishermen use a sliding sinker “fish finder” rig, although double hooked top and bottom (hi-lo) rigs also work well. Striper fishermen usually cut the menhaden, spot or mullet into “chunks” and hook the bait once with the hook protruding.
Big baits such as a bunker head, especially when fished with a five to eight ounce sinker, require a relatively heavy rod. By mid-June, when most of the stripers have gone north and the black drum have moved up to Delaware Bay to spawn, most surf anglers turn to lighter tackle and smaller fish. To fish for these smaller species, all you need is a 7 to 9 foot rod on a reel filled with 12 to 15 lb. For kingfish, as well as the other species, a small (1-inch) piece of bloodworm flavored Fish Bites® can be very effective.
In late summer, some surf anglers target the many species of sharks that move into the beaches, especially at night. In addition to the red drum, the fall surf can produce bluefish, black drum, weakfish, speckled trout, flounder and kingfish. Captain Jeremy Blunt on board the Wrecker out of The Ocean City Fishing Center had a good day in the Washington today catching a beautiful 154 pound bigeye tuna and 11 yellowfin tuna.
I’m pretty confident that today will be the last day anyone tries to fish until midweek next week.
As you can see Ocean City is right in the middle of the projected storm cone so a little move north or south could make all the difference in the world.
Captain Monty Hawkins of Morning Star moved to Sunset Marina and put 34 lines on the boat to ride out any wind and tide. If you live anywhere in the vicinity of Ocean City, or any area that may be affected by Joaquin, be safe. Let’s hope that the weather makes a turn for the better after Joaquin hits the road, and we can start to talk more about the fishing than Mother Nature. The chunking in the Washington Canyon is good for yellowfin and bigeye, the marlin bite is good in the Baltimore and Poor Man’s Canyons and deep dropping for tilefish and sea bass is good in all three. The Boss Hogg out of Sunset Marina with Captain Brian Porter put his crew on several species of fish after chunking and deep dropping in the Washington.

Captain Joe Drosey on board Rhonda’s Osprey had another beautiful day trolling the canyons for white marlin today. The Wrecker with Captain Jeremy Blunt and mate Brian Behe fished the 2nd and final day of the Ocean City Marlin Club Kid’s Classic Tournament today with some adorable junior anglers. First stop was the lobster balls and caught a limit, 60, of mahi and left them chewing, mahi covered up every ball.
The spring striper run can last through May, with even a late straggler or two well into June.
The bunker is usually available fresh, while spot and mullet are mostly frozen this time of year. The fish finder rig is generally tied with a short, four to six-inch leader in 80 to 130 lb. Most are in 10 to 13 foot lengths and are rated for 3 to 8 ounces, 4 to 12 ounces or similar ranges. Many anglers nowadays put a two-inch strip of clam or crab flavored Fish Bites® artificial bait on the hook first, then follow with as many sand fleas as they can fit on the hook. Black drum can also be caught in these areas, but don’t be afraid to fish up on the bar in the “white water” when targeting blacks, especially during high tides. They come a little later, usually around Mother’s Day, and nowadays they are not the guarantee they once were, but anglers fishing cut bait often find blues, especially in May. King whiting, known locally as “kingfish”, along with Norfolk spot and Atlantic croakers and occasionally a weakfish or “trout”, become the target species. Other favored natural baits include real bloodworms, small pieces of peeler crab, sand fleas, squid, shrimp, and small strips of cut bait such as spot, mullet or bunker.
Big reds move into the beaches in the fall to forage for crabs, spot, small bluefish and migrating mullet. A fish finder or double hook top and bottom rig will both take reds, though most anglers prefer the single hook fish finder. Late fall (November) into December and even January can produce another striper run, depending on water temps and where the bait is. Stripers, flounder, bluefish, puppy drum and speckled trout can all be caught at times by anglers using a variety of lures such as Mirr-O-lures, wooden darters or lipped plugs, Rebel lures, or simple jig heads with plastic curl tails. Trolling was slow, and set up the drift to chunk and caught a limit of yellowfins, 24, between 20-30#'s.
The Bay Bee is designed to carry passengers on a four hour fishing excursion in the Sinepuxent and Assawoman Bays. Hook the head under the “chin” and out the top of the head in the tough area above the lips. The reel, either spinning or conventional, should be capable of holding 275 to 300 yards of 20 lb. Blacks can also be in very close to the shorebreak, just behind the dropoff at the edge of the beach.
Top and bottom (hi-lo) rigs are preferred, with either plain hooks or hooks with small spinner blades or floats. Again, fish a “hole,” if you can find one, or a break in the bar where there is a rip current, but don’t be afraid to cast out to the sandbar, especially during high tide, when many species will forage for crabs, bean clams or sand fleas in the shallower areas. Bait with a chunk of fresh or frozen spot, bluefish, bunker or even a large strip of squid or a squid head.

The past few years have been disappointing for fall striper fishermen on the beach, however, as we have had a lot of northwest winds, which push the warmer water offshore.
Fishing around the stone jetties or where there is a break causing a rip current can be productive. Most anglers nowadays use circle or octopus circle hooks, especially if they are going to release their fish.
Many shark species are protected, however, so make sure you can identify what you are legally allowed to keep. The run started later than usual, in late September, but lasted longer, well into October, and many anglers recorded multiple catches of reds in the 40 to 50-inch range. The bait follows the warmer water and the stripers stay with the food, but every year is different. This same setup of Fish Bites® and sand fleas has also taken many stripers in the past few years.
The only real change in terminal tackle for targeting bluefish might be the use of “floater” hooks with brightly colored floats that keep the baits up off the bottom. Some anglers prefer even smaller hooks, but I find that they are not necessary, and I like having a hook with enough strength in case I do hook something larger like a striper or puppy drum.
What happens in a given year, however, is anyone’s guess, and a lot depends on the weather and the bait migrations. Black drum feed primarily on crustaceans, so the favorite baits are peeler crabs, clams and sand fleas. Some anglers prefer them, and they are nice for keeping your bait away from skates and crabs. There were a lot of very small bluefish in the surf in 2014, for instance, and they stayed for weeks, giving the reds something to feed on. Sand fleas (actually mole crabs) have become the favored bait for spring blacks, primarily because of availability.
I often keep one small-hook rig out baited with small strips of “meat” or FishBites® to catch kingfish or spot.
You can dig your own “fleas,” of course, and you’ll need a container with plenty of holes in both the sides and bottom to allow for air and most importantly, to let the crabs’ own urine to drain.
If you can get peeler crabs, they are another effective red drum bait, as are sand fleas (three or four on the same hook). Cut the peeler in half or quarters, depending on the size of the crab, put the hook through the body at the joint of a leg, then rotate the legs up around the hook shank and secure with a rubber band. Just keep the crabs in a cool spot out of the sun and wind and they will live for quite a while. This bait will also catch the occasional black drum that moves back into the beach in the fall.

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