October 4, 2023

Hardcore Game Fishing

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Striper Migration Map – March 31, 3023

The Striper Migration Map is back! Inshore water temperatures are warming and there are indications that bass spawning and prespawn activity are a bit ahead of schedule. Some early spawning has been reported in Chesapeake Bay tributaries, and big pre-spawn stripers are moving into northern New Jersey waters.

Signs are pointing to a great striper fishing season! Now is the time to sign up for the Striper Cup and get your sign-up package complete with a Rapala lure, Columbia PFG shirt, and great discounts on gear.

Maryland/Chesapeake Bay Striper Fishing Report

Maryland’s spring striped bass catch-and-release season will be closed April 1 through May 1. The MD Department of Natural Resources website includes maps of which areas can be legally fished.  The Susquehanna Flats striped bass catch-and-release fishery had been providing some good action leading up to its closure. Anglers have been trolling the steep and deep edges of the shipping channel in the upper Bay and connecting with some pre-spawn striped bass headed for the upper Bay spawning sites. The shipping channel of the middle Bay has been a good location for large pre-spawn striped bass. Light-tackle anglers were also finding success when they can spot schools of menhaden that the striped bass are working on and jigging with large soft plastics in deep waters. Remember, all fishing for striped bass in the main part of the Bay will be closed from April 1 until May 1. The tidal rivers are closed to catch-and-release fishing for striped bass.

For a complete Maryland/Chesapeake Bay Fishing Report, visit Maryland DNR.

Layla Purdy is all smiles with this beautiful striped bass she caught at the buzzer, before slipping it back into Chesapeake Bay. (Photo by Travis Long)

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New Jersey Striper Fishing Report

Striped bass fishing in southern New Jersey has been good with anglers catching on natural baits in the rivers and backwaters and finding limited success during the day and better fishing during the night tides on artificials. Bridges in south Jersey are holding striped bass up to keeper size.

Last week there were some unexpected large fish caught in the ocean north of Manasquan. Otherwise, striped bass are being caught in all the usual spring spots, with Raritan Bay the epicenter for bait and bass. Stripers of all sizes, including 40-inch class fish and a few up to 40 pounds, were reported this week by our New Jersey field editor, John Oswald.

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New York Striper Fishing Report

Resident or “holdover” schoolie stripers are stirring in backwater areas on Long Island. Fresh migrating fish are trickling in from the west. Stripers are active in the lower Hudson River.

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Connecticut/Rhode Island Striper Report

Holdover striper fishing in the Housatonic River and in Connecticut River tributaries should improve as the fish will only get more active with warming water and the arrival of river herring. There have also been reports of schoolies on the beaches in far western CT. Holdover stripers are also stirring in some of the Rhode Island salt ponds and rivers.

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Cape Cod/Massachusetts Striper Report

Holdover striped bass have been reported in some fresh and brackish waters on Cape Cod and around Boston, with river herring trickling into the runs and ospreys returning to their posts. Fresh migrating fish are probably 2-3 weeks away.

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The post Striper Migration Map – March 31, 3023 first appeared on On The Water.

Did you miss our previous article…
https://www.hardcoregamefishing.com/5-techniques-for-early-spring-smallies/

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