Summertime is a great time to get kids out fishing
The 12th annual Kid’s Classic fishing tournament hosted by the Ocean City Marlin Club is scheduled for July 15-17. The tournament, open to anglers 19 years old and younger, benefits the Wish-a-Fish Foundation.
Registration for the event is Friday, July 15 from 6:30 to 8:30 with a captain’s meeting starting at 7:30. Fishing days are Saturday and/or Sunday with lines in at 6:30 a.m. and out by 3 p.m.
Parents may help reel in fish. Circle hooks are required if fishing in the Offshore Division. Along with other rules, green sticks and live bait are not allowed.
Prizes to three places will be awarded for most billfish released and heaviest fish. Fish eligible for heaviest fish are bluefish, bonita, dolphin-fish, mackerel, rockfish, sea bass, tog, tuna, wahoo, shark, and for unusual catch. There will also be a prize for heaviest stringer weight of five fish for croaker and spot.
A carnival and awards banquet is scheduled for Sunday from 5 to 8 p.m. at the clubhouse.
The Wish-A-Fish Foundation hosts fishing events in Maryland and Virginia for special needs children and their families. The foundation’s first event was held in 2000 and included 23 families and 38 children (special needs children with serious or life-threatening illnesses, physical or developmental disabilities plus their brothers and sisters). It has grown to three or four events per summer and now hosts 100-125 families each year. Dozens of volunteers who love to fish also enjoy sharing their passion for the outdoors.
For more information, visit ocmarlinclub.com and wish-a-fish.org.
Kent Island Derby The 11th annual Kent Island Fishing Club’s free Youth Fishing Derby will be held Saturday, August 13 from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. at the Romancoke Pier on Route 8. Awards and lunch will be held at the Kent Island American Legion #278 from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. For more information contact Lou Wade at email@example.com.
Fishing report Striped bass can be found in the lower sections of the upper Chesapeake’s tidal rivers. Out in the bay, chumming fleets continue
to set up on stripers holding on major channel edges at Swan Point, Love Point, and the edge from Sandy Point Light north to the mouth of the Magothy River. A good tide is a must and a falling tide tends to be the best.
Anglers are spotting fish on depth finders before setting up with the best catch reports coming from those who allow their baits to sink to the bottom at the back of a slick. Nonetheless, it’s usually a good tactic to fish baits at different depths and varying distances. To limit killing sub-legal fish, Gamakatsu makes a great circle hook in 5/0 and they will not kill as many undersize fish as a regular J hook.
In the middle bay region, when it comes to chumming or chunking for striped bass, the outer edges of Hackett’s, Dolly’s Lump, and Tolley’s have been good places to look for suspended striped bass to set up on.
Trolling deep with spoons or swim shads behind inline weights or planers is a good tactic when trying to cover territory. Light-tackle jigging is a fun way to lure fish suspended over the bottom. Another option is to catch some small white perch in one of the tidal rivers and try some live-lining along shipping channel edges.
In the shallows, old piers, prominent points, bridge piers, and rock structure are all good places to cast topwater lures for rockfish with the best action usually in the early morning and late evening hours. These areas also hold white perch, which can be caught by casting beetle-spins and small spinners or jigs. Perch can often be caught throughout the day. I tossed a Mepps #2 spinner at them the other day with plenty of luck and attracted a couple of nice channel catfish as well. Smaller dropper jigs or bottom rigs baited with bloodworms will do the trick for perch deeper in the water.
A few croaker are being caught in the middle bay region with the majority of the reports coming from the lower Choptank River. The best croaker fishing in Maryland waters continues to be in the lower bay.
Recreational crabbing continues to be good in most of the tidal rivers and creeks in the lower bay and middle bay regions. There has been some improvement in the upper bay tidal rivers and this may improve further with time and less rainfall.
In the surf on the Atlantic coast, kingfish are being caught on small baits in the early morning and evening hours. Bluefish are being caught on finger mullet rigs and there are plenty of inshore sharks and rays for those seeking a little more pull.
In the back bays, flounder fishing has improved with warmer water temperatures and clearer water. The channel areas offer the best daytime fishing and channel edges are great places to target on a falling tide in the morning or evening hours.
Offshore, yellowfin and bluefin tuna are being caught at traditional spots like the Fingers, Jackspot, Hot Dog, and Massey’s Canyon. The size grade on the yellowfin tuna has improved recently with fewer throwbacks reported. Mahi-mahi, large wahoo, and bigeye tuna have also been part of the mix lately at the canyons.
Duck blind know-it-all Poison hemlock, the juice of which killed Socrates, is blooming now and is widely distributed throughout the U.S. and Maryland.