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3/22 Roanoke River Fishing Report

Mar 22

Written by:
3/22/2012 8:46 AM  RssIcon

This week’s fishing report from the Roanoke River sounds a lot like last week’s report. Hickory shad are still up at Weldon in fairly big numbers, lots of spawning activity is being observed and boat and bank anglers are catching and releasing plenty of shad. Anglers fishing from the Edward’s Ferry BAA near Scotland Neck are also reporting good shad catches. Striped bass are in the lower river still. Jeremy McCargo, a fisheries biologist with the N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission and creel clerks at Plymouth, Jamesville and Williamston, report catches of striped bass continue to be sporadic but appear to be picking up. 

And finally, water flows at Weldon are still quite low so anglers should be cautious when launching their boats and navigating the river – and always wear their PFDs when on the water.

If you get a chance, check out our updated “Striped Bass Fishing Guide for the Roanoke River” page, where you will find loads of information about boating access areas along the river, bait and tackle recommendations, catch-and-release guidelines, types of fish hooks to use, and much more. You can also download and print a pocket-sized 2012 Striped Bass Regulations for the Roanoke River Striped Bass Management Area card, as well as information on how to measure a fish correctly. Our Frequently Asked Questions page has been updated as well and provides useful information for Roanoke River-bound anglers who want to make the most of their striper-fishing experience.

SAFETY NOTE: High flows following periods of low flow dislodge limbs, logs and in some cases, trees from up river locations.  Boaters should take extreme caution when traveling on the water and be on the lookout for these floating hazards!  Similarly, extreme low flows can expose rock outcroppings and make many areas too shallow to access. 

American Shad Regulation Information

The daily limit for shad is 10 fish per angler. Within this 10-fish daily limit, only one can be American (white) shad for the inland waters of the Roanoke River and its tributaries. These are waters above the US Highway 258 Bridge near Scotland Neck.

For a downloadable, color pamphlet identifying the species of shad and herring found in North Carolina waters, click here.

Striped Bass Season and Regulation Information

The entire Roanoke River Management Area is open to striped bass harvest from March 1 through April 30. 

The Roanoke River Management Area includes the Roanoke River and tributaries from Roanoke Rapids Lake Dam downstream to Albemarle Sound, including the Cashie, Middle and Eastmost rivers.     

The daily creel limit within the Roanoke River Management Area is two striped bass per person. The minimum length limit is 18 inches, and no striped bass between 22 and 27 inches may be possessed at any time. Only one striped bass larger than 27 inches can be included in the daily creel limit.

From April 1 – June 30 in inland waters of the Roanoke River upstream of the U.S. Hwy. 258 Bridge, only a single barbless hook or lure with a single barbless hook (or hook with the barb bent down) may be used. 

The Commission also encourages striped bass anglers to use small, non-offset circle hooks, preferably ones with the least amount of distance between the hook point and shank. Studies show that striped bass caught on small, barbless circle hooks are usually hooked in the jaw, which means they have a much greater chance of survival after being released than fish hooked in the throat or gut.

Click here for a downloadable pocket card on how to release striped bass safely.

4 comment(s) so far...

Re: 3/22 Roanoke River Fishing Report

i do not like this change. the old reporting was much better. why put up the some info over and over. where is data on water flow?

By red fish on   3/22/2012 5:28 PM

Re: 3/22 Roanoke River Fishing Report

I went up to Weldon yesterday. We caught about 15 Hickory Shad. Put some baits on the bottom to see what was there. Caught some really nice cats and 2 keeper stripres. Both were about 19". Water level is lower than I have ever seen. Go slow and be careful. Lots of rocks and logs just under the surface. We hit a log and if we were going fast we would have flipped. I fish a 20 ft cc john boat that dosent take alot of water to float. BE CAREFUL!

By Rob Wilson on   3/23/2012 8:13 AM

Re: 3/22 Roanoke River Fishing Report

Because the American shad are being restored, I think all American (white) shad should be released. There are plenty of hickory shad around to satisfy any appetite, leave the Americans to spawn and increase the run.

By jim brady on   3/24/2012 8:00 PM

Re: 3/22 Roanoke River Fishing Report

Thank you for your feedback. We’ve consolidated all of the information regarding striped bass fishing in North Carolina, including current river conditions at Roanoke Rapids and Williamston, on our Striped Bass Fishing Information page, which can be found here. You can access the Striped Bass Fishing Information page from the weekly Roanoke River Fishing Report or from the Fishing home page, which can be found here.

By NCWRC blogger on   3/29/2012 8:02 AM

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