Local Fish…

Virginia Beach is Nicely Situated right where the Chesapeake Bay pours into the Atlantic Ocean, providin’ us with a Wide Spectrum of Fish Habitat and a nice Variety of Species…
I’ll feature the Inshore Fishery, since that is the one I primarily explore…

Red Drum, the young ones are called, Puppy Drum…
Showed up first…
They were around all winter…
Feedin’ now and then…
But now they’re pushin’ out of the depths…
And floodin’ the flats…
When they grow past puppyhood…
They leave the Marshes for the Coastal Sea Waters…
Growin’ Big, sixty pounds and more…
Then they’re Bull Reds…
And they’ll be sweepin’ up the Coast next month…
From their Southern winterin’ grounds…

Speckled Trout…
The Beautiful Ones…
The Prettiest Fish on the Flats…
Some winter here, at the North End of their range…
Risking mass annihilation…
During prolonged and severe cold snaps…
But many more of these drum family members…

Come up from the South…
Ridin’ the warmin’ Tides…

Sea Mullet…
The Fish of Many Names…
Roundhead, here in VA/NC…
Sea Mullet or Whiting down towards FL…
And up in Jersey, they’re Kingfish…
Whatever you call ‘em, they’re small, feisty, and tasty…
Some say they are the tastiest of the Drum family…
And now, they’re runnin’ out of the Rivers…
And Ocean offshore depths…
To take up their stations…
In the shallow Surf zones…

The Bluefish have arrived!..

Nothin’ says Spring…
Like the First Waves of Blues…
Huge Schools just off the Surf…

Smaller groups…
Peelin’ off and chargin’ into the Rivers and Bays…
Like Maraudin’ Vikings…
Eatin’ everythin’ in their path…

Includin’ our Baits…

Striped Bass…
Winterin’ off the VA/NC Coasts…
The Big Ones…
Pour into the Chesapeake…
Runnin’ far up it’s Feeder Rivers…
To find the best spots to spawn…
Where their young have the Best Chance…
To get started…
The young Stripers…
Run through the Rivers and Bays…
Feedin’ heavily…
So they, too, can grow large…
And make their Sacred Pilgrimage…

Summer Flounder…
Those wacky one-sided Fish…
That are built to lay on the bottom…
And ambush passin’ Goodies…
Flounder are beloved…
For the strong pulls of Nice Ones…
And for bein’ Exquisite…
On the Dinner Plate…

Blue Claw Crabs…
The Symbol of the Chesapeake Bay…
Crab Feasts are Legend here…
They’ve crawled out of their winter mud…
And are swimmin’ to all corners of the Inshore Marshes…
To be trapped, netted, grabbed, and caught…
By young and old alike…
To be Steamed, Boiled, Fried, and Caked…
In a Favorite Summer Ritual…