The current river temperatures are in the upper 70s with some cooler water to be found in clear water. Plenty of fish are moving up shallow following baitfish and prowling the banks looking for a quick meal. As the month progresses, expect water temperatures to increase causing fish to eventually move back into deeper and cooler water. While the fish are still pushing into the shallows key areas will be vertical structures such as docks, piling cluster, and seawalls.
Fishing in grass flats will also produce good numbers of fish well into the month as the water clarity improves. The best time to fish these shallow areas will be at high tide, the fish will follow the rising water in an attempt at finding a quick meal. Bass fishing should be fair until we experience a sharp rise in water temperature. Once this occurs, fish will be found on offshore structures such as bridge pilings, shipwrecks, and channel ledges adjacent to shallow water. Panfish will not be hurt as much by the rise in temperature. The crappie, perch, and bluegill bite will remain hot in the backs of many creeks and bays throughout the month. Striped bass fisherman in the area looking for some freshwater luck will find good numbers of fish near current above Fletchers Boathouse, the outflows of the tidal basin, and below the Occoquan reservoir dam. Catfish can be caught using cut bait on a slip sinker rig or fished under balloons when fish are suspended. Snakeheads on the river are remaining very active. The fish are very aggressive and a white frog or chatterbait will get the job done for most anglers in search of these tasty invasive fish that have made such a presence in the last few years. Overall, fishing this month on the river will leave many anglers very pleased with their day’s catch. With the inevitably hot weather approaching, bass fishing will begin to get tough but there is still plenty of time left before the big fish abandon their yearly shallow migration. Get out there and catch ‘em!