Chincoteague Island Flounder Fishing

Chincoteague Island is well known for it's flounder fishing opportunities. Many vacationers try their hand at the sport, and some anglers come to the island specifically to fish for these fish. Anglers may target flounder only at certain times. or choose to fish the entire season. Fishing varies with the weather, tides, time of year, location and water quality.

Chincoteague flounder fishing is a spring ritual for many anglers. Locals and visitors alike begin the fishing season each year by drifting the bays and creeks around Chincoteague and Assateague in search of a good days catch and an early season tan. The first flounder arrive in late March or April, but the main spring run usually peaks closer to the end of April and continue into May.

Several key factors affect spring flounder fishing. Water temperature seems to play a critical role in the spring. A rule of thumb is to find water temperature above 55 degrees although fish are sometimes caught in cooler water. Tides and currents are also big factors and every serious angler has their preferred state of tide for a given location.

Historically, the early season fish at Chincoteague tend to be some of the larger fish caught along the area, with Chincoteague often seeing a large number of state citations for exceptionally large flounder. Mixed in with flounder can be bluefish, gray trout, kingfish, rockfish and even black and red drum.

Flounder fishing changes as the water warms. The movements of flounder decrease and anglers settle into a summer pattern, enjoying the warm days on the bay. Visiting local tackle shops are an excellent way to get up to date information on local fishing. Tackle shops on the island have the tackle, bait and up to date reports. In addition, some shops can book you on a fishing, site-seeing, nature cruise or pony swim charter boat.

In mid-summer, flounder are sometimes caught on the many wrecks, shoals and artificial reefs along the coast. Fishing is sporadic but catches can be good when flounder are located. The Artificial reefs off the coast of Chincoteague are good areas to try this time of year. In summer, flounder are also caught by anglers fishing the Assateague Island surf. This fishery requires only a rod, rod holder and basic tackle, no boat is needed!

As Autumn approaches, Chincoteague sometimes sees another run of flounder. Surf and ocean anglers enjoy better catches by Labor Day fishing goes on thru Halloween if weather allows. Surf, shoal and channel fishermen can also encounter trout, rockfish and drum in the fall. By November, flounder fishing has ended, just in time for striped bass fishing and waterfowl hunting!

Read more about fishing and other outdoor activities at Maryland-Virginia Saltwater Fishing

Tags: flounder, fishing, fish, flounder fishing, recreation

Submitted by: dwd