Venice wintertime tuna report
I am finaly getting warm after getting back from several days down in Venice. The lump has yet to kick off this year. So our fishing is based on wahoo fishing. But with all of the crowds of people doing the same thing it makes for some crowded fishing. And our customers wanting tuna we have been running to the Green Canyon for tuna. Of course it is not an every trip type of thing as the weather has to be perfect to make it that far. But on the trips that you can make it the fishing is still summertime fishing. And on the days when you can’t then the wahoo amberjack and grouper have to fill the void. Now for the recap of last week.
I started off with the Adams group in from Tampa for some tuna fishing. I was having drinks with another captain at the marina and we were trying to figure out what to do the following days we decided to go to Green Canyon. A call was made to Robert to increase the speed my 20 MPH to get here for the 4AM departure. To my relief no fog in the morning and best of all no wind. We quickly loaded up for a four hour run through the dark to the canyon. It felt just like summer with the water being a very nice 77 deg. Flying fish were everywhere along with a few open water schools of tuna. At first the bait was a little slow until we figured out how deep they were then the cudas figured out that we figured out how deep the bait was they were taking more than their fair share. So I made move to another rig a couple miles away and caught all the bait we needed in pretty quick order. The baits didn’t last long once they were in the water and the first fish of the day was on. Robert started it out and Mike B. finished it up. [img]http://www.forumpictureprocessor.com/pictureprocessor/images/100_0237_10.jpg[/img]
The fishing went on like this until we hit our boat limit of two yellowfin per person. [
We ended up the day on a double with Robert and Mike L. getting the fish in with no assistance. The best bite of the day was when a group of tuna came up close to the boat and I threw a Yo-Zuri sashimi slider at them and a 100 plus yellowfin found the lure. Mike B just happened to be the closet to the rod so he got to fight it[img]http://www.forumpictureprocessor.com/pictureprocessor/images/100_0241_15.jpg[/img]
. We hoped to another rig just to check it out on the way home. I wish I would of started there the fish were larger and the dolphin were pretty thick as well. We put one dolphin in the boat since no one on the boat had ever caught one before. It was a great day with six yellows in the boat from 80 to a little over a 100 and a bounus dolphin.[img]http://www.forumpictureprocessor.com/pictureprocessor/images/100_0266_6.jpg[/img]
We went 6 for 9 on tuna not a great average but still pretty good with the better fish at the
last spot and nobody wanting to reel in another tuna we headed for the house.
The next day was with the same group and with the icechests full we decided to do a half day of deep dropping for grouper. We caught a couple of snowy in 30-40lb class along with some of the biggest breaded bratoulas I have caught this year.[img]http://www.forumpictureprocessor.com/pictureprocessor/images/100_0288_4.jpg[/img]
We called it a day and came back to the dock with two grouper and six bratoulas oh and a rosey for a little color.[img]http://www.forumpictureprocessor.com/pictureprocessor/images/100_0298_4.jpg[/img]
The following day Saturday proved to be my toughest day of the year. I had the Justin Smith group in for some wahoo fishing. I just couldn’t find them to save my life. I drug ballyhoo on the downrigger over every knocked down rig that I knew of only to come up empty handed on the wahoo. In the process we managed to find every oversized jack crevelle the gulf has. We switched gears and since the wahoo didn’t want to play at least we had something to pull drag I think we caught a couple dozen of them. We ended the day with some Spanish mackeral and a couple of almaco jacks. Not the kind of catch we were hoping for but we tried hard.
I had the Bright group the following day and the call was for tuna. The conditions didn’t allow us the make the Green Canyon run since the west side of the river was to rough to make the run. We went out east and found only small blackfins and yellowfins at the first spot. We did managed one 30lb yellowfin on a livebait. Then the bite died with that one fish so we were back on the hunt. We covered a lot of ground and at the last spot I live chummed up a nice tuna only to have it’s tail wear through the leader after about thirty minutes into the fight. At least we had our target species in the box. We ended another tough day with one yellowfin and four blackfin. We were using butterfly jigs for a big portion of the trip and that’s what the blackfins wanted.
The final day of my week was with the Roberts group in from all over. We decided to make the canyon run only to hit a brick wall about 65 miles offshore. We made a turn to head back north to another rig to give it a shot as it was pretty much the only option we had. The bait was tough and it was only in one spot. And that was where the rig was spray painting. We managed to get six baits real quick before we got painted. By this time it was getting pretty rough and just to make it a little more fun it started to rain. We quickly doubled up on 35lb yellowfin and the that was it for us on livebait. We broke out the jigs and lost one tuna into the rig and caught one blackfin for the box. We fished the rest of the day without a bite. We ended the day with only two yellowfin and a blackfin. The fishing wasn’t typical Venice this time of the year but you have to take what is dealt to you.