Fishing report

The locations

Morgan Run: Despite a mid-week downpour, the stream will clear by the weekend allowing anglers to use black ants in sizes 18 to 22 for trout, says Robert Sollott of Angler's Hollow. Also try a caddis pupa, size 14 to 16, or a size 8 stimulator.

Prettyboy Reservoir: Largemouth and smallmouth bass are moving up in the shallows for the spawn, says Duke Nohe. They can be taken with spinner baits, jigs, plastic worms and plugs. White perch are being caught in 5 to 25 feet of water by trolling spinners and night crawlers.

Loch Raven Reservoir: Bill Caudell at the Fishing Center says the coves are holding crappie, bluegill, largemouth bass and pickerel. Crappie will eat shad darts tipped with wax worms or minnows. Largemouth bass can be caught with poppers.

Susquehanna River: Catfish can be taken at Elk Creek with clam snouts, shrimp and prepared catfish baits, say the folks at Herb's Tackle Shop. Largemouth bass are taking plastic lures and spinner baits on the Susquehanna Flats. Smallmouth bass will take small crawfish lures in the river. And the white perch love blood worms.

Gunpowder River: The temperature on the Gunpowder is 65 degrees at York Road, says Wally Vait, owner of On the Fly in Monkton. The sulphur hatch has begun. Sulphur dries and nymphs, sizes 16 and 18, should work. Size 14 to 16 bead-head pheasant tail nymphs and size 6 to 8 foxy minnows also are good choices.

Middle River: Chris Kotula of The Fishin' Shop on Pulaski Highway says largemouth bass are taking a range of artificial and natural baits. Plastic lizards, sparkle worms and spinners are a good first choices. Catfish are being caught on prepared baits with catfish chum and beef blood being great attractants.

Patapsco River: The lower river is producing white perch and catfish. Blood worms and chicken livers are working. On the upper part of the river, trout and smallmouth are biting. Try smaller nymphs for the trout and weighted black woolly buggers for the smallmouth bass.

Patuxent River: Croaker, white perch, sea trout and a few spot are being caught, says Ken Lamb at the Tackle Box in Lexington Park. Trollers can catch big stripers, to 50 inches. Big Al at C&EJ;'s in Lothian recommends shore fishermen head to North Beach, Solomon's Island, and Sandy Point to hook into croaker, sea trout and jumbo spot (7 to 10 inches).

Chesapeake Bay: Fishin' Charlie at Angler's Sport Center says flounder up to 22 inches have been caught on the flats on the Kent Island side of the bay. Use squid strips and minnows. Head to Sandy Point, Mattapeake or the Old Severn River bridge early in the morning and in the evening for croaker; they'll take blood worms and bait shrimp. White perch can be caught on oyster bars in 17 to 22 feet of water at such places as Hacketts or Podickory points. Use blood worms and grass shrimp.

Eastern Shore: Croakers, up to 18 inches, are being taken with bait shrimp and blood worms at the Choptank River piers near Cambridge. On the upper Choptank, white perch are being caught on bloodworms. Guide Gene Kane says the water temperature in Eastern Shore ponds has climbed to the mid-80s in 10 days, sending largemouth bass to spawning areas. Worms and poppers are taking their share of bass. Try Leonard Mill Pond north of Salisbury.

Ocean City: Sue Foster of Oyster Bay Tackle in Ocean City says the stripers are being caught periodically from the U.S. 50 bridge. For more consistent action, look for bluefish up to 24 inches in the surf and at the piers. Frozen mullet work during the day. At night, gotcha plugs and bucktails work at the Oceanic Pier while spec rigs work at the Shantytown Pier. The party boats are doing well on sea bass and tautog.

Potomac River: The upper river has clear water with temperatures in the low 70s. Smallmouth are taking tube baits and topwater poppers, says Guide Ken Penrod. In the tidal Potomac, largemouth are being caught on crankbaits, spinnerbaits and dark colored jigs. Fish Bulltown Cove and near Mattawoman Creek.- Kevin Washington

Crabbing report

Early signs: The season's young, but crabs are beginning to stir. Most of the catch is commercial from pots in up to 50 feet of water. Sportsmen will find some action in the shallow creeks of the Eastern Bay, including Shippen, Piney, Cox and Crab Alley. As the shallow creeks warm first, you may catch a few dozen heavy males just beginning to come out of hibernation. Ocean City's Back Bay is yielding mostly females. Crisfield crabbers are catching about six a day in pots from private piers. No action has been reported in the upper bay. For more information, please check my Web site at www.members.home.net/thecrabman.- Mike Kobus

To hear the fishing report, call SunDial and enter category 5378 on your touch-tone phone. The phone number is 410-783-1800 in the Baltimore area; 410-268-7736 in Anne Arundel County, 410-836-5028 in Harford and 410-848-0038 in Carroll. Or go to the Sun on the Internet at http://www.sunspot.net

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