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Fishing report

THE BALTIMORE SUN

The locations

Piney Run: There aren't many citation-sized stripers in the lake, but angler David Neuwiller of Sykesville got one Wednesday. He caught a 43-inch, 29-pound, 6-oz. striper on a large shiner just off the floating dock. Crappies, 11-13 inches, and bluegills in the 10-inch range, are everywhere, says Jim Gronaw in the park office. Try tiny twister tails tipped with maggots. Largemouth bass are taking plastics and live bait. Anglers are catching a lot of small muskies in the 24-30-inch range.

Prettyboy Reservoir: The bass are on the beds now, says guide Duke Nohe. Yesterday, the water temperature went from 64.5 degrees in the morning to 68 by noon. Fish all the coves; best baits are pig and jigs, big shiners and plastic worms, Nohe advises.

Loch Raven Reservoir: The bass and crappies are both spawning now, says Ryan Ward at the Loch Raven Fishing Center. Fish spinners, plastics and worms for bass and wax worms, shad darts and minnows for crappies. The best baits for pickerel are "something shiny," like spinners.

Liberty Reservoir: The Nicodemus Bridge is in great shape. The sidewalk is widened and handicapped ramps are in. Small stripers and walleye action is good. Try Cocky's Mill Road or the Route 140 railroad bridge for white perch. Fish red and white shad darts in four feet of water.

Susquehanna River: Herring are everywhere in the upper bay creeks, says Capt. Mike Benjamin at Herb's Tackle Shop in North East. In the Conowingo area, anglers are getting nice white shad and hickories on shad darts and small spoons. White perch fishing is getting better along the shoreline of Turkey Point, Elk Neck State Pak, Red Point and Perryville. Bloodworms are best bait. If you want catfish, fish the same area with shrimp, clam snouts, nightcrawlers and bloodworms.

Gunpowder River: The Hendricksons are on the wane, says Theaux LeGardeur, owner of Backwater Angler in Monkton. Fish a hare's ear nymph, size 14-16, in the morning, and cream midges, size 18 and 10, or size 16 caddis in the evening. The water temperature has been "fluctuating wildly" from 48 degrees to 52 degrees, says LeGardeur. The fish are concentrated mainly in the riffles.

Middle River: Good channel cat fishing in Seneca Creek, says Bill Horstman at The Fishin' Shop on Pulaski Highway. He checked in an eight-pound cat and a 10-pound cat this week. Squid and bloodworms are best bait, but herring and peelers work, too. The hardheads "are not far away. This time next week, they'll probably be up past the bridge," he says. The Like Father, Like Son," fishing tournament for parents and children will be at Gunpowder Falls State Park on May 19. Call 301-459-0687 for details.

Patapsco River: Trout fishing is terrific in the two-fish limit area at Daniels and downstream, says Hank Holland at Fisherman's Edge in Catonsville. Smallmouth bass and trout are taking black woolly buggers or a "neat combo" of a floating popper with a bead-head pheasant tail tied on as a dropper. Daniels gets its last trout stocking of the spring next week.

Patuxent River: Croaker are thick from Point Lookout to the mouth of the river, say the guys at The Tackle Box in Lexington Park. Farther upstream, it's catfish near Mataponi Creek and Turon Branch. Shrimp, bloodworms and peelers best bait.

Tridelphia and Rocky Gorge reservoirs: If you've got a flower-lover in a family of anglers (or an angler in a family full of flower lovers), go to Tridelphia this weekend. The Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission's five-acre azalea garden at Brighton Dam is near full bloom. While you're there, do a little catch-and-release bass fishing. Or try latching onto a walleye with worms, minnows or crankbaits. Catfish are jumping, as Baltimore's Jerry Sauter would tell you. He caught a 19-pound, 15-ounce catfish last week..

Chesapeake Bay: Croakers are everywhere in the lower bay, but there are really outstanding reports coming out of Tangier Sound, Bentley's Channel and Hooper's Island. The stripers have moved from the shallower water to about 60 feet deep. Capt. Jim Brincefield was still having luck on the western edge of the shipping channel trolling the Deale Fishing Reef and the Old Gas Buoy. He's using white and chartreuse Prime Time Bucktails trimmed with same-colored Sassy Shads.

Eastern Shore: Take plastic worms and minnows and hit Leonard's Mill Pond or Johnson's Pond outside Salisbury. Crappie, bass and pickerel await.

Ocean City: Good-sized tautog are being caught on in-coming or high tide from the bulkhead between Second and Fourth streets, says Sue Foster, owner of Oyster Bay Tackle. Also, try the end of Sixth Street. Green crabs and sand crabs are best bait. Anglers are reporting tautog catches at the Ocean City Inlet and U.S. 50 bridge, too. Oceanic Pier and Shantytown Pier are seeing blues, shad and stripers. Surf fishermen are catching sharks, blowfish, skates and some blues. The annual Bethany-Fenwick Surf Tournament is tomorrow. For information, log on to www.bethany-fenwick. org/fishcontest.asp.

Potomac River: In the tidal river, the water temperature is 60 degrees and largemouth bass are spawning, says guide Ken Penrod. He suggests a visit to Mattawoman Creek, using crankbaits or tubes along the wooded shore and spinner baits or tubes in the spatterdock. Tomorrow, the Wal-Mart Bass Fishing League circuit has a one-day tournament at Virginia's Leesylvania State Park along the Potomac. In the non-tidal river, try tubes and plastic worms near Dam 5. DNR is suggesting Devil's Backbone on Antietam Creek for trout fishing (Powerbait, worms and inline spinners. )

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