Steve Doctor, Maryland Coastal Fisheries Biologist - The cold water continues to be stacked up on the beach. The surf temperature was 67 degrees on Sunday. This has affected the fishing dramatically.
The break line of the cold water is right over the 20 fathom line. This is where the bluefin tuna continue to concentrate. Last year most of the fish caught were right at 47 inches. This year the bulk of the fish are running between 51 and 56 inches, and weigh an average of 90 pounds. There were also a couple of bluefin that weighed between 160 and 221 pounds landed this weekend as well.
The bluefin are being caught on pink and white, and blue and white Islanders fished down deep. To get the lure deep fishermen are using planners, downriggers, and way way backs. The way way back method is a problem when the fleet gets jammed in tight as often happens so take the time and learn how to rig a planner.
The canyon cowboys continue to plow the deep with limited success. We did see a few yellowfin tuna and dolphin cross the dock but considering the effort being put offshore the pickings are slim. Other than the cold water up against the beach, the sea surface temperatures are just a pool of lukewarm water with no break or other features to seek out and fish. There has been no weedline yet either.
This week should see a continued effort to find some billfish in preparation for the white Marlin open. Hopefully the cold water upwelling will dissipate along the beach, so at least the bathers will be happy. Fishing at the Norfolk canyon is starting to pick up so good fishing should show up here at any time.
Click here to view recent bay region satellite images at mddnr.chesapeakebay.net/NASAimagery/EyesInTheSky.cfm
A Couple of Closing Notes...
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