Have You Dropped Your Crab Pots Yet? Bunker Are Here!


crabs, inland bays, assawoman bay, delaware, sussex county
Captain Terry Murray’s blue crab haul the other day

Crabs are emerging around the inland bays just in the past week or so.  The water is still really chilly, but some crabs have been seen and caught.  Masseys Landing jumped up six degrees in two days and is now peaking at forty-eight degrees.  Captain Terry Murray dropped his commercial pots a few days ago and had a good haul for the time of year and water temperatures.

Soaking some crab pots would be a good idea if you want to catch some.  You could try sitting on the crabbing piers and run hand lines.  You won’t catch as many as a two-day soaked crab pot this time of year.

Bunker would be a good idea for bait, it will really attract the crabs.  There is a lot of bunker in the waters of the inland bays and Delaware bay.   “Rehoboth bay is loaded with bunker and short striped bass in the bunker schools, I keep seeing them in my nets”  local netter.


usgs survey, masseys landing, water temperature
Masseys Landing temperatures this past week

Richard King of Port Penn bait and tackle has nets full of fresh bunker.  The shops are all loading up with bunker as well.  There isn’t much to catch with bunker right now, but it is available.  If you can get onto a school of bunker around the Delaware bay you have a shot of catching striped bass.  The netters are catching a lot of short bass.  “I saw two thirty-six inch bass on the jersey side, but nothing like that on the Delaware side.  I haven’t seen any large fish yet in the shop.  I have seen some big fish on my electronics, they are out there.  People are calling the shop constantly today for bunker for the weekend.  I will be out by mid day at this rate.” … Richard King, Port Penn Bait and Tackle


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conquest beach, delaware seashore state park, sussex county
Conquest Beach yesterday surf casting for bass.  The beaches have flattened out a good bit and there is a large ledge or drop off at the top end, be careful driving.  These are steep and could easily roll a vehicle. 

Gannets have been working the surf and along the coast line.  I saw a hundred plus birds fly past the beaches yesterday in Delaware Seashore State park in about three hours.  I was casting for bass and she was beach combing for glass.   She had much better luck than I did, but it was good to go through the motions.  Every time a gannet dropped in for a catch I would start casting more or change-up my lures.  Gannets are working their way along with the bunker schools.  They don’t show up looking for food they follow the food.  Dan at Dan’s tackle box “I saw a lot of gannets diving off prime hook yesterday.  We have bunker coming, which I will most likely be bagging for crab bait, but we will have it.  I have seen huge numbers of roe shad out there, more than I have in years gone by”

Mother nature has everything in place for some good spring fishing, now we just need some big bass to show up. Then we want to see the bluefish, if they are coming this year, they should be along soon enough.

jeep onbeach, cape henlopen state park, delaware,sussex county, stormerosion, noreaster damage, beach erosion,
You can see how steep the drop offs in this picture. This is during Sunday’s beach clean up in Cape HEnlopen at Herring Point

Kayak fishermen should try the area rivers and creeks;  Herring Creek, Love Creek, Vines Creek, Canary Creek, Indian River at Cupola Park, Broadkill River at Oyster rocks road or Lewes Boat Ramp.  You could try the old structure at the Cape Henlopen fishing pier, but the water is still colder there thanthe creeks and rivers.   Lewes canal structure is always a favorite.  Look for bass closer to the bottom and just retrieve slower than usual.


Fish On!

RIch King

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