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Fish News: Strong, Cold North Winds Slow Down Fishing

Fish News
Strong, Cold North Winds Slow Down Fishing
by Dr. Ken Neill, III

Striped bass fishing has picked back up to our south. The days are getting longer and these fish will be making their push back to the Chesapeake Bay over the next few weeks. Tautog action has been pretty good on the ocean wrecks. The Triangles have been the best location. Sea bass remain stacked on the deep-water wrecks. Our flounder regulations have been set for this year. We will be allowed to keep fish at least 16.5 inches long. The bag limit is 6 fish per angler and there will be no closed season this year. This means that you have a shot at these fish in March this year.
Feb. 20: I went fishing for Tautog with Dr. Julie Ball and her husband, Robin Ball. We fished the Triangle Wrecks area. Now, I have fished with them a fair amount over the past year. Most of it has been in my neck of the woods, offshore fishing and fishing for striped bass--fisheries that I am very comfortable with. I do a lot of tog fishing but Julie is a noted expert on the species. She caught the largest tog in the state last year and one of the largest every caught. She writes about Tautog and gives lectures all over the state. I was a little nervous how I was going to stack up. She didn't make me feel any better when the first thing she asked when they showed up in the morning was, "Are you sure that you know what you are doing?" I got us out to the wreck and things did not improve. It must have taken a dozen attempts before I was anchored over the structure the right way. Robin was the anchorman. I bet he was sore the next day. Right off, Julie caught the first fish. Things got better. Fishing was not great but I was doing pretty good.. For a while, I had caught more fish than the two of them put together. I was already writing this in my head. It was going to sound great. Well Julie got hot and messed up my entire write up. She ended up catching as many as Robin and I put together. She also caught the one citation of the day at 9.5 pounds giving her bragging rights to the first, most, and biggest fish of the day. The worst part about it was that she was so matter of fact about it that she did not even bother to rub it in. It was like she just did not expect it to turn out any differently. I should have had Robin pull up the anchor and headed for home as soon as I was in the lead. I'll remember that next time.
Feb. 19, I went out after jumbo sea bass with Jorj Head, Stevie Powell, Dave Moss, and Bob Manus. We fished the Eureka, the Nancy, and the Chenango. Our best catch was when we anchored on the Chenango. Fishing was not red hot anywhere but we did manage a nice mess of fish. Dave Moss caught our big fish of the day at 6.5 pounds.
Notable Catches:
Feb. 19: Dave Moss: from Seaford: Sea Bass: 6 pounds 8 ounces: Chenango
Feb. 20: Dr. Julie Ball: from Virginia Beach: Tautog: 9 pounds 8 ounces: Triangle Wrecks

Dr. Neill writes a weekly column for The Peninsula Salt Water Sport Fisherman's Association (

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