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Vol 46 | Num 21 | Sep 22, 2021

The Offshore Report Ocean City Report Chum Lines Delaware Report Ship to Shore The Galley Issue Photos
Ocean City Report

Article by Capt. BJ Pietryak

The September full moon, known as the fall equinox, is this coming week. The summer is officially coming to a close, however someone forgot to tell Mother Nature because she is still sending 80+ degree days making this past week some of the best fishing we have seen all summer. Flounder, and I mean big flounder are everywhere. Many wrecks nearshore are loaded with sheepshead and triggerfish. Spanish mackerel are all around along with big pods of bait nearshore holding bluefish below them.

Back Bays and Surf

The back bays of Ocean City are alive and well with tons of fish in many species to be caught. Flounder, the main staple of bay fishing, has been some of the best fishing we have seen in years. Just about every channel and cut seem to be holding a big flounder. The Thorofare leading in from the ocean is your best chance to catch multiple species of fish in one spot. Big flatties can be found in the deeper holes on the south side of the inlet with squid and minnow combos being the best bait. While fishing here for flounder keep in mind that many other fish also use this gateway to the back bays. Nice size sea trout, redfish and sheepshead can be found when tides do not produce the best situation for flounder. Keeping a paddle tail or swim bait ready on a spare rod can help to add to your fishing experience. Sheephead are usually in the deep hole just outside of the inlet, but can also be found along the rocks as well as near the Rt. 50 Bridge.

Redfish along the rock wall are starting to bite at a more regular interval. Casting along the rocks and allowing the jig to drop towards the bottom will likely cause a strike if fish are around. Too many anglers retrieve the lure too fast, not allowing it to fall near the bottom. Yes, using the deeper method will result in a lot more hang ups, however if you are not near the bottom you most likely will not get the bites. Sea trout on the other hand tend to stay higher in the water column and will attack even a top water lure properly placed. Small rockfish are also still around near the rocks, and as the water cools they should become easier to catch. A few reports of both blues and rockfish have been caught below the Rt.50 Bridge. Several nice sized flounder are also in this location. Target the deep trough just south of the bridge during a falling tide to capitalize on the bigger fish. Further up the bay to the north flounder can be found in most channels and entrances to creeks and marinas. Squid and live minnows are the preferred bait, but I have received a lot of reports that Gulp baits are also working rather well. The 2nd Street Bulkhead area is producing some nice flounder as well as a few rockfish and bluefish. Most of the rockfish are undersized unless you're fishing with Big Bird Cropper. He truly has the rockfish and blues dialed in, and once again this week he posted several pictures of more keeper fish he caught on his Roy Rig. Near the Rt. 90 Bridge croaker are still being caught although they have not been in the numbers that they were seen in past weeks. Small Fishbites and squid strips are the best bait for this species. As the water cools these fish will head back offshore so get out and catch some before they are gone for the season. Flounder behind Assateague Island remains pretty strong with the only trouble being finding the deeper holes that hold fish. The area nearest to the airport is reported to be the best. The back areas behind the island also are holding a ton of juvenile rockfish. Although these fish are not keepers they are a ton of fun to catch on light rod and line. Use a swimbait or jig tipped with a bright color rubber worm to fool these fish. The bridge structure at the Verrazano Bridge will also hold nice redfish and sea trout.

The “Miss Ocean City” reports good catches of flounder on their trips with this week's top catch going to Joe Abbaticcio who ended up with a flounder buffet. The boat sails every day so be sure to book now! Norma Jean Curreri was rewarded with some nice sheepshead, triggerfish and redfish while fishing the bay this week. “Ocean City Guide Service” has also been slaying the fish in the bay with several good catches of flounder, redfish and small rockfish.

Nearshore Wrecks & Reefs

The nearshore waters are also alive with fish. Flounder, sea bass triggerfish and sheepshead can be found on most wrecks and reefs. Walter Moore caught some nice sea bass and mahi on his trip this week. Walter used squid to make his catches with his only complaint being the rough ride back in. The best sea bass fishing is reported to be out at the Great Eastern Reef with many anglers coming back to the docks with nice size limits. This year has been nothing short of fantastic when it comes to sea bass. Normally by this time of year the water is way too warm and the only sea bass you catch are way undersized. The Jack Spot is also holding some nice sea bass along with some trophy flounder. Flounder and triggerfish are on all of the wrecks with many also holding big schools of sheepshead. Squid is the go to bait this time of year, however many tackle shops have live spot which will often result in a better quality of fish. The “Morning Star”, “Judith M” as well as the “Ocean Princess” are all reporting great catches of sea bass, triggerfish, sheepshead and some big flounder.

Well friends, that's a wrap for this year, so check out the winter addition coming soon and I’ll see you next spring!

Until then...
Tight lines and fins up

Coastal Fisherman Merch
CF Merch



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