A Tale of Two Sheepshead

By Scott Lenox

A Tale of Two Sheepshead

It was a beautiful day today in Ocean City and a great day to be out on the water.  The wind picked up a tad out of the east, but the ocean was pretty calm and some guys were able to get out to the canyons, the party boat fleet was on the inshore wrecks and there were plenty of anglers fishing the back bay for flounder and the rocks for tog and sheepshead.

I had the pleasure of tagging along with Steve Doctor and his crew from the MD Department of Natural Resources for a research trip behind Assateague Island for an upcoming episode of Hooked on OC.  Not only was it a lot of fun, it was a very educational trip for me.  I’ve fished the bays behind Ocean City for over 25 years now and I didn’t know about some of the stuff that these researchers catch on a regular basis.  We pulled a 16′ trawl net and a 100′ seine net a couple of different times and I was amazed by the amount and diversity of the species that we collected.  Here is a list of just what I remember in no particular order….flounder, spot, blue crabs (male, female, peeler, soft shell, suk), silverside, perch, needlefish, pinfish, half-beak, grass shrimp, bunker, bay anchovy, brown shrimp and sheepshead.  It was a really cool trip and it should make for a really cool episode of Hooked on OC.  Dave Messick took some awesome shots while we were out and was nice enough to get them to me for the report.


Juvenile Flounder






Brown Shrimp


Juvenile Sheepshead


Trawl Haul


Pulling the Seine Net


We may have caught some of the smallest sheepshead that I have ever seen in the south bay on our research trip, but Captain John Prather of Ocean City Guide Service caught some of the biggest I’ve seen on the south jetty.  Captain John had five really nice sheepshead at the jetty on sand fleas.  The biggest fish was a beauty at 7.5 pounds.


The Angler with Captain Chris Mizurak had a beautiful day on the ocean with lots of throwback sea bass (closed season) and flounder.  Ryan and Brian managed a couple of nice keepers out of the trip.


Offshore, Captain Joe Drosey on Rhonda’s Osprey proved that the white marlin are still in the building when he put his crew on five releases in the Baltimore Canyon.  Rhonda’s Osprey also boxed a couple of yellowfin tuna and 11 mahi.


This past Saturday, Captain Brandon Speilman on Reel Direct had a great trip to the canyons going 9 releases for 12 white marlin bites and adding two 70+ pound yellowfin tuna.  He was able to get a flag shot in the dreary conditions back at the dock.


Captain Jeremy Blunt on board the Wrecker out of The Ocean City Fishing Center had a good day with the tuna today.  Captain Jeremy put his crew on nine yellowfin tuna and some skippies on the troll.


I got a report from Nick Denny who fished the inlet this afternoon with green crabs and slayed the tautog.  Nick released 25 14″-15″ tog and boxed one 17″‘ keeper.

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