Spawning activity is over in the Chesapeake Bay Tributaries and the Delaware River and appears to be winding down in the Hudson. Schools of large bass surprised fishermen in New England by showing up a little early last weekend, capped off by a 64-pounder landed in Cape Cod!
The spring trophy season the Chesapeake has ended, with the size limit dropping from 35 inches to 20 inches this week. Overall, the Maryland DNR Report says it was a disappointing trophy season on the bay with fishermen struggling to catch fish that met the minimum size. There’s speculation that poor river conditions during the spawning season caused many bass to leave the bay early without spawning, a claimed supported by the anecdotal evidence that many of the early-arriving large stripers in New England still have eggs in them.
Right now, there are plenty of 20- to 28-inch stripers in the Chesapeake, but it seems the vast majority of large females have left the Bay.
Delaware Bay and Southern New Jersey
Stripers to 35 pounds are still working their way out of the Delaware Bay according to our Southern New Jersey Fishing Forecast. Some of these fish are moving along the South Jersey beaches.
Northern New Jersey and Raritan Bay
A school of monster stripers moved into the nearshore waters off Ocean County last week, with fish in excess of 50 pounds falling to Mojos and Bunker spoons. This wave of big fish is likely from the Chesapeake, stopping when in found the schools of bunker off New Jersey. Read the Northern New Jersey Fishing Report.
Big stripers are being reported in the Hudson River as they move up to their spawning grounds. They fish are following herring in the upper river and bunker in the lower river.
Big stripers are being caught off the western South Shore of Long Island, mostly by fishermen trolling with mojo rigs and bunker spoons.
More large bass have been dropping out of the Hudson and into Long Island Sound this week, where fishermen are finding them off the Western North Shore. Check out the Long Island Fishing Forecast for details.
Connecticut and Rhode Island
The bulk of the large stripers moving though Long Island Sound are coming from the Hudson River right now. But big stripers from the Chesapeake are moving into Rhode Island waters, some of which will be heading west into Long Island Sound. As it stands, numbers of 40-inch-plus bass are increasing around the Connecticut Rivers. Read the Connecticut Fishing Forecast.
Big bass are holding in upper Narragansett Bay where they are finding warmer water and big schools of bunker. Find out where else the bass are biting in the Rhode Island Fishing Report.
Cape Cod and Massachusetts
Both sides of Cape Cod are seeing big stripers, with a school of large fish hitting Buzzards Bay early in the week and seemingly moving through the Cape Cod Canal, with boaters finding large schools of large bass in Cape Cod Bay late this week. The backside of Cape Cod is holding keeper-sized fish, but if this year’s migration follows the pattern of last year, those large Cape Cod Bay fish will settle in off the ocean beaches in the next couple weeks. Read more in the Cape Cod Fishing Report.
Twenty-pounders are steadily moving north toward Boston Harbor, but they may not have arrived just yet. The North Shore is flush with keeper-sized fish, but the bigger ones are still on their way. The Massachusetts report has all the details.
New Hampshire and Maine
New Hampshire has keeper stripers, and larger numbers of schoolies are being caught in Maine, especially around the rivers. Check out the Northern New England Fishing Report to see where the best bite has been.