Ocean City Maryland’s unique location makes it an ideal destination for flounder fishing. The area around Ocean City includes coastal bays, jetties, fishing piers, sand bars, beaches, aquatic grass beds, shellfish beds, and ocean reefs, all of which attract flounder ranging from throwbacks to trophy-class doormats.
Flounder Fishing Locations
The bulk of Ocean City flounder fishing occurs near the inlet, Rt. 50 bridge, main thoroughfare, Rt. 90 bridge, Isle of Wight Bay, and Sinepuxent Bay. Other flounder hotspots near Ocean City include Oceanic Fishing Pier, OC Fishing Pier, Ocean City Jetty, 2nd St. Bulkhead, and Verrazano Bridge (Assateague Island).
During the spring season, many of the flounder catches are associated with water temperature. The most productive areas in springtime usually include the main channels, especially areas that lie in close proximity to shallow flats.
Springtime flounder fishing tends to be most productive when there is a combination of fair weather, clear water water conditions, and high tides that occur during late morning or mid-day. When these conditions occur simultaneously, the result can be a rapid rise in water temperature. As the tide begins to ebb, warm water flows from the shallows into channels. This phenomenon can trigger flounder to congregate in large numbers and feed aggressively.
As water temperatures continue to rise in late spring, flounder disperse throughout the coastal bays.
Summer is season when most flounder fishing occurs in Ocean City. As with the spring season, much of the fishing is focused along the main channels, bridges, and inlet. During mid-summer, flounder usually move farther up into Isle of Wight and Sinepuxent Bays.
During mid-summer, schools of croakers, spot, kingfish, and blowfish often move into the same areas, presenting challenges for anglers that prefer to catch flounder exclusively. Some anglers switch rigs and baits in order to minimize smaller species.
By late summer, flounder usually begin feeding on small spot, menhaden, and mullet which get swept out of nearby creeks, canals, and shallow coves. This event can be important as it often indicates an upcoming run of medium to large flounder.
Flounder are also caught in the ocean during summer. The majority of ocean flounder fishing occurs around shipwrecks, artificial reefs, and offshore coral formations. A number of Ocean City head boats and charter boats specialize in ocean flounder fishing.
Some of the largest flounder of the year are caught during the late season, especially after Labor Day. As the waters begin to cool, flounder usually change their feeding behavior and patterns of movement considerably.
The area near the Rt. 50 bridge and the inlet-jetty is usually the center of action during the fall. During the same time period, flounder catches tend to improve on the fishing piers and in the surf.
During the fall season, flounder also begin appearing on near shore ocean shoals, including Little Gull, Great Gull, the Bass Grounds, and others. On inshore shoals, schools of flounder may be accompanied by seatrout, croakers, kingfish, bluefish, black sea bass, sharks, red hake, and other species. Wreck and reef fishing for flounder usually improves in the fall and continues until one or more noreaster storms disrupt fishing.