Morgan Run: Ants may ruin a picnic, but they're welcome on the water. All sizes, from big carpenter ants to size 20 and 22 ants are attracting fish, says Robert Sollett of Angler's Hollow in Westminster. Sulphurs are taking their fair share of fish as well. Water temperature is in the upper 60s, flow is good and it's just a little dingy in the deeper spots.
Prettyboy Reservoir: After several days of cloudy, cool, damp days, the heat is on, says Duke Nohe. Largemouth and smallmouth bass are averaging 1 to 3 pounds. Catch them on pig and jigs, spinnerbaits, jointed Rebels and medium running plugs. Anglers are still catching white perch by trolling small spinners trailing a night crawler. If you want to take a kid fishing, grab some worms and head for the coves for bluegills.
Loch Raven Reservoir: "You can catch 100 perch a day, if you want to," says Kevin McComas at the fishing center. "If you want a good-eating fish, it's not hard to fill a bucket up." Anglers are trolling in 30 feet of water using spinnerbaits with a piece of worm and a half-ounce weight attached. Post-spawn bass have moved deeper into the coves and are biting jigs, spinnerbaits and rubber worms. The grass beds are coming up now, and the fish are starting to move in.
Susquehanna: Capt. Mike Benjamin of Herb's Tackle Shop says largemouth fishing "has been phenomenal" in every river in the upper bay. Use rattlebaits, spinnerbaits and regular spinners. Best action is in the grass beds and around the pilings and in the boat yards. Anglers are taking rockfish near Lapidum State Park on rattlebaits, Bass Assassins, bombers and Rebels. Catfish are plentiful in the Elk, Sassafras and Bohemia rivers. Fish with cut herring and bloodworms. Above the Conowingo Dam, largemouth bass are biting crankbaits and spinners. Crappies up to 13 inches are taking shad darts and bloodworms at Broad Creek.
Gunpowder River: There's still a couple of weeks of sulphur action left, says Wally Vait of On the Fly. Anglers also will find good fishing with beetles and ants. With water still spilling over the dam, flow is good, clarity is excellent and the temperature is 58.
Middle River: Turning the calendar page has turned up the action for bass and stripers, says Bill Horstman of The Fishin' Shop on Pulaski Highway. The bass are starting to take on their summer patterns. Try top-water fishing morning and evening with pigs and jigs, bug baits, spinnerbaits and plastic worms. Anglers are picking up stripers in the creeks, a little ahead of schedule. And catfish are biting on peelers.
Patapsco River: In the lower river, you'll find catfish and perch being caught on peelers and worms. Look for slow, but steadily improving bite for stripers in the chum lines at the river's mouth.
Patuxent River: "We're hotter than a firecracker down here," says Ken at The Tackle Box in Lexington Park. "We're covered up with croaker - some up to 20 inches - from Drum Point to Cove Point. Fish bottom rigs with bloodworms, squid and peelers. The area also has some keeper rockfish, 18-36 inches, and the flounder and trout have moved in. In the upper river, anglers are catching spot, croaker and sea trout on bloodworms and squid. Next week, the fishing should really start to heat up, says Big Al at C&EJ;'s in Lothian.
Chesapeake Bay: If you're out catching rockfish, remember that the rules have changed. You may keep two fish that measure 18-28 inches, or one of that size and one larger than 28 inches. The bottom fishing for spot, croaker and perch is excellent, with croaker as far north as Fort Smallwood. Best baits are bloodworms, shrimp and squid. Angler's Sport Center, 410-974-4013 (ask for Fishin' Charlie).
Eastern Shore: Anglers are catching croakers and white perch from the Choptank Fishing Pier using bloodworms, squid and shrimp. The Choptank River remains a great place to fish for white perch and croakers. The ponds around Salisbury are keeping bass fishermen happy.
Ocean City: Flounder are being caught in the bay behind Ocean City, in the channel near the Route 90 bridge and from the south side of the South Jetty, says Sue Foster of Oyster Bay Tackle. Best bait is a live minnow and squid combination. The blues are biting day and night, taking mullet or shiners at Oceanic Pier. The trout and stripers are active in the evening . Try a red-headed Got-cha Plug with a white body. At Shantytown Pier, break out the double-tied twisters, Fin-S lures or spec rigs to catch blues, trout, shad and small stripers. At Indian River Inlet, stripers are taking bombers, bucktails and Got-cha Plugs; bluefish are going for bucktails and spoons.
Potomac River: The striped bass rules have changed for the Potomac and Maryland tributaries as well. Anglers may keep two fish 18-28 inches, or one that size and one more than 28 inches. Ken Penrod says the upper river "is prime for smallmouth bass fishing," and predicts a very good year. Try Seneca, White's Ferry and Edward's Ferry. Look for places with moderate current and an obscure bottom. Fish tube baits. Catfish are biting on chicken livers or cut bait. In the tidal river, anglers are having success near the Fort McNair wall on spinnerbaits. For smallmouth bass, try submersed foundations near the C&O; Canal, the rocky cover near Three Sisters Island and the Key Bridge foundations. Try casting four-inch tubes.
Slow going: While commercial crabbers in the Upper Bay are beginning to catch crabs in their pots, the area remains slow for recreational crabbers. The Magothy, Severn, Chester and Wye rivers are yielding an average of a half-bushel per day. The South and Choptank rivers are doing well with catches of up to two bushels reported. Although still early for handlining, a family crabbing at Assateague was content with four medium but heavy females in 45 minutes. A half-bushel of medium to large males was netted off a trotline in Shippen Creek last Tuesday. Crabbers at the Kent Narrows caught three-quarters of a bushel of males in four hours using a trotline baited with eel. My family caught 2 1/2 bushels of small to medium males last Sunday in the Eastern Bay. For more information, visit my Web site at ww.members.home.net/thecrabman.
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.