To avoid burying the lede, there are migratory stripers on Cape Cod. Specifically, Martha’s Vineyard. Larry’s Tackle reported the first liced-up striper on Sunday, and there have been a few more since.
In fact, we received a few messages of Cape Cod stripers with sea lice last week, including one in Bourne. It’s a bit early, but within a week or so of when we usually get our first batch of fresh stripers.
As expected, the first-arriving stripers have been smaller, though Evan at Eastman’s heard tell of a 31-incher taken this week. This fish was most likely a holdover, but if you’re catching a striper that size in mid-April, it’s origin doesn’t feel too important. The warmer temperatures will perk up the Cape’s resident bass and help draw the tautog into shallower water.
There hasn’t been much tog fishing to report since the season opened on April 1…until this week. Word of a few blackfish in Buzzards Bay reached Evan at Eastman’s Sport and Tackle and Derek at Red Top Sporting Goods. Red Top has green crabs in stock, and Eastman’s is planning to have them by the weekend.
The freshwater fishing is excellent thanks to the milder weather this week. Red Top checked in two 5-pound-plus brown trout (rumor has it some larger broodstock trout were planted by the Sandwich Hatchery in recent days.) Stickbaits have been working well with larger trout. Evan at Eastman’s said shiners and worms have been working well on trout as well.
Largemouth fishing keeps getting better, and Derek reported that in the warming water, topwater lures like the Whopper Plopper are also beginning to catch.
I’ve been fishing swimbaits and glidebaits for largemouth this week. Last Friday, I caught a good-sized largemouth, and Tuesday and Wednesday nights, I fished wakebaits at a few small ponds and found good action, but nothing larger than 2 pounds or so. My co-workers Andrew Burke and Anthony DeiCicchi both had three-pound-plus bass while nighttime fishing with wakebaits this week. As nice as those fish are, they are less than half the size of the biggest fish Derek at Red Top had heard of this week, an 8-pound, 4-ounce giant that fell to a swimbait.
Fishing Forecast for Cape Cod
The largemouth bass are in their prespawn mode and feeding heavily, and it’s the best time to go out and take a crack at catching a new personal best. Of course, I might have lost many of you after mentioned that a different species of bass appears to be returning to the Cape.
If your goal is to catch a striper this weekend, I recommend heading into some backwaters and fishing a falling tide with small soft-plastic jigs. While you’re most likely to encounter a holdover, fresh fish will beeline for these areas as well, as they will have the warmest water right now.
Tog fishing should be improving every day, and prospecting over some structure in Buzzards Bay or off the Elizabeths could turn up your first keeper of the spring season.