Unfortunately the tautog season closed December 1 and will not open up till January 1; so shore bound fishermen around the Ocean City Inlet will have to either practice catch and release or focus on bluefish and striped bass. Large striped bass are being caught in and around the inlet by fishermen casting swim shad lures or by drifting live eels.
Large bluefish have been invading the surf area often in large numbers which fishermen like to call a blitz. Most fishermen are fishing in the surf with bottom rigs baited with cut baits of menhaden or finger mullet. They are catching large striped bass and large bluefish up and down the beaches. Bait stealing spiny dogfish are also unfortunately part of the equation.
There is reportedly a lot of bait moving southward just off the beaches and can often be marked by diving gannets and breaking fish. Large bluefish and striped bass are following these schools of bait and feasting as they travel south. Fishermen have been trolling and jigging on these fish and catching some real whoppers in the process. Richard Gunion sent in this picture of a big bluefish he caught off Ocean City.
Now that tautog season is closed along with sea bass there is not much incentive for fishermen to head out to the wreck sites to bottom fish; although private boats are enjoying the bluefish and striped bass action close to shore.
If you submitted a photo and don't see your picture in the regular report please look in the photo gallery that we periodically run. Click here for this week's gallery!
Real-time water information for selected points in the Coastal Bay
Click here to view recent bay region satellite images at mddnr.chesapeakebay.net/NASAimagery/EyesInTheSky.cfm
A Couple of Closing Notes...
Don't hesitate to e-mail your recent
fishing/crabbing photos and trip information. Send your photos via E-mail by the
following Monday in order to be included in the next update. The file should be
in .jpg format with the longest side sized at 600 pixels. Please keep the file
size under one megabyte if possible. The photo should clearly depict the angler(s), fish, and ethical
handling practices. For information on ethical angling practices please
reference the Catch and Release information located at URL:
Include the following information:
Weight/length of catch
If anyone in your picture is under 18
years of age, we must have a
signed by that person and a parent/guardian before we can post your picture. By sending any photos or art to the Maryland Department of Natural Resources you are giving DNR permission to use the image(s) online and in print. You are also giving DNR permission to distribute the photo for non-commercial purposes to other media, print, digital and television for their use. You are not giving up your copyright, but are allowing the photo(s) to be used for educational and news purposes.
Send your photos and information to
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