Pacific blue marlin tops the list of the most common fish being caught in August. Sizes are ranging from just over 100 lbs. to just under 1000 lbs. Just like last month there were a few 900+ fish caught but that magical 1000 lb. mark has escaped many. Spearfish also had a decent showing in August and even some sailfish caught. Sailfish are a rare catch in Hawaii with only about a dozen caught in a year. There were at least half that many caught this month. There’s been some yellowfin tuna coming out of the South porpoise school (if you can find ‘em). Otaru (skipjack tuna over 10 lbs.) have been running in bird piles and up on the grounds. I know in some places of the world people don’t eat their local skipjack tuna but here in Hawaii, the meat (of the big ones) is quite good because of their diet. On the East side of the Big Island, you actually get more $ per pound for otaru than for yellowfin of the same size. The ono run that didn’t happen, well, it’s still not happening. I’m not giving up though. They could show up any time.
The bottom bite has been fairly consistent. The live bait bite has been best but the bait fish have been hard to find and catch. I get asked all the time about buying live bait. There’s no live bait business here so you’ve got to catch your own. Dead bait works sometimes but at other times, if it’s not live, they won’t touch it. That’s where jigging comes in. If you can’t get bait in a reasonable amount of time then the next option is to go jigging. Live bait averages bigger fish than jigs but jigging has it’s own rewards.
Last month I got some remarks about a statement I made in the July wrap-up. I said ”you can expect the sale of Marlin in Hawaii to be totally outlawed soon”. While some organizations and individuals are supporting this, it may not end up being a total ban and “soon” is a relative term. I you’re not familiar with the Magnuson-Stevens Act, I suggest you do a Google search for Magnuson-Stevens summary, click the top link and find out about it. Terms like National Fishery Management Program and Individual Fishing Quota Programs should get the attention of some of you. Back in my March report I told about Hawaii’s first ever seasonal closure for snapper and Hawaiian grouper. The Feds gave us an ultimatum. Either come up with your own regulations or we’ll come in there and make them for you. After Hawaii successfully met the Fed requirements by implementing its first ever bottom fishing closure areas, The Feds pushed for even tighter regs in this fishery. Whether they’ll be satisfied with the outcome of the latest area closure expansion and the current seasonal closure remains to be seen. This is just the tip of a whole bunch of regulations being forced on Hawaii. Next on the list looks like there will be stricter tuna regulations that probably include quotas. With billfish, the big decision for Hawaii seems to be either a slot limit or a total ban on the sale of billfish. Either way, we were told that if Hawaii doesn’t regulate billfish on it’s own by 2011, the Feds will do it for us. Look at the track record of both sides when it comes to fisheries management……
Looks like more bumpy seas.
See ‘ya on the water,
Capt. Jeff Rogers ,
<A href="http://fishinkona.com"> Kona Hawaii Sport Fishing</A>