Maryland Fishing Report
May 17th, 2019
Summer season is here! New rockfish regulations are in effect and the forecast is looking pretty nice! Recent heavy rains put a damper on things but with warmer, dryer weather over the next few days we’re expecting the bite to pick up! Now that warmer weather has arrived, there are so many opportunities to get out with loved ones and share the experience of fishing. There are state parks with easy access fishing piers, public beaches which allow fishing and launch sites to get out on the water in either a boat or a kayak! The tough choice then becomes, what fish do we catch?
The trophy season left us wet and hoping for more but the 2019 “regular” rockfish season started yesterday, and that has us pumped! Truth is, there are plenty of fish to be caught, it has just been a matter of finding them. Bait on the bottom will tend to land a healthy mix of catfish (channel or blue), while trolling spoons and smaller 6″-9″ shads on either tandems or umbrellas will be the most popular way to target rockfish. Light tackle jigging will also be a great way to target these fish in key transition/holding areas this week. Make sure you check out the rockfish regulations map to make sure you’re not keeping fish from an area you shouldn’t be!
Chumming/Chunking near Love Point, Podickory Point, Hacketts Point, Thomas Point Light and Bloody Point will all be good this weekend. Soft shell crab will be an excellent choice for bait while fishing in these areas. Expect a healthy mix of catfish to take baits like large chunk LY in these areas. Jumbo bloodworms are another good bait to try to land a nice rockfish while fishing in these areas.
Trolling efforts will be focused to a few of the key channels ledges near the mouths of the tidal rivers in the upper bay. Areas like the deep channel ledge off Bloody Point near the mouth of the Eastern Bay, the mouth of the Magothy River, Chester River and South River. Popular colors are going to be chartreuse and white with waters in the rivers somewhat cloudy and clearer in the main bay.
Jigging areas like the bay bridge pilings, channel ledges between Love Point and Bloody Point are going to be hot spots to jig this week. Some other good spots are the sewer pipe just north of the bridge and around channel ledges in the Susquehanna flats. A skirted 1-1.5oz G-Eye jig with either a 6″ Bust’em or a BKD as a trailer will land some fish. Casting Yo-Zuri crystal 3D minnows around rip-rap and channel ledges will also catch some fish in the early mornings when the fish are shallow feeding.
Fishing for Snakehead the past week has been somewhat challenging. Finding these fish in flooded roadways in Dorchester county has been somewhat easier! With all the rain and high tides recently, many of the popular Snakehead spots have been slow. Look for these fish deep in cover. In flooded or high water areas, use a topwater bait around the edges and work it slow. You can catch them under a pop-n-cork rig with either a live minnow or a fluke as the bait. In more open water areas, spinnerbaits like a Mepps #4 Aglia or a Z-Man chatterbait will produce some bites. For more lures to use, check out our Best Snakehead Lures video!
Our Monster Snakehead Hunt is coming up soon! Anglers will get a chance to win a snakehead mount that will hang on our walls forever, plus take home lots of cash! Head over to the Monster Snakehead Hunt page for more information and to sign up!
Over the last three years we’ve seen catfish catch rate go up quite a bit. Fishing bait on the bottom in the tidal rivers, creeks and in the main bay stem will most likely catch some catfish. Larger chunks of LY will land larger fish while Nightcrawlers, Bloodworms, Razor Clams and Soft Crab will all catch fish.
To find some of the bigger blue cats and flathead catfish, head over to the Potomac near Chain Bridge and toss some large chunks of LY. Some real river monsters being pulled out of that area!
The white perch bite has been good nearly all year! They are being found in the rivers and creeks near structure as well as out in the main bay holding close to hard shell bottom in 10′-15′ of water. Bloodworms or razor clams on bottom rigs as well as spinner baits like the Perch Pounder or Worden’s Rooster Tails fished around structure like rip-rap, bulkheads and bridge pilings will catch plenty of fish.
Some of the more productive areas this past week were on the eastern shore. Areas like the Chester river, Choptank river, Wye river and Eastern Bay were all good areas to target perch.
With all the rain and flooded creeks and rivers, bank fishing for largemouth slowed considerably this week. Getting out on the water we were able to find fish holding near submerged structure like flooded brush, bushes and logs. Mostly smaller fish in these areas. Bigger fish were found in 5′-10′ of water with chatterbaits, squarebill crankbaits, 4″ swimbaits and craw imitation jigs.
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