Blackfin Tuna & Free Jumping….Uh…Shrimp?
Dec. 15, 2016 – When you want to catch Sailfish go fishing for blackfin tuna. If you want to catch a blackfin tuna go sailfishing. Well..that’s usually how things work out. Right? Had Ryan Jones from Nautical Ventures on the boat today. Ryan has fished with me several times now. And this guy has a habit of catching personal best fish with me. I put him on his personal best striped bass a couple years ago. And today he caught a personal best blackfin tuna.
A light northwest wind and high fog greeted us this morning as we headed out Port Everglades. I was really hoping the current had picked up from the last two days as we headed for the “balls” to catch live ballyhoo. We came tight to the anchor ball right away. So it looked as if the current had picked up indeed. Within 5 minutes the ballyhoo were trying to chew the varnish off the transom and the chum block was still frozen! Spanish mackeral were everywhere showering ballyhoo.
Caught about 10 ballyhoo on the hook, threw the net twice and we had all the bait we needed (and then some). I put one of the ballyhoo out on a light rod with a treble hook and #2 wire. No sooner had we pulled away from the ball did it get cut in half. Put out another one and that one got molested as well. But spanish mackeral wasn’t our target. So we picked up and headed offshore.
Set up a spread in 150, bumped out to 450 for nada. I wasn’t digging the water color, which was a dirty green color. Although I’ve caught sailfish in that water, I normally like a dark blue color. And I just wasn’t seeing it. A sailfish free-jumped twice in about 405 ft of water. But he never came to the dinner table. Slid back inside to 180′ and decided to make a move up north to find cleaner water.
The move paid off. We set up in 140′ south of Sunrise where we found beautiful blue water. We redeployed the spread and had a nice blackfin blast the ballyhoo on the left long. This one came and got into the boat courtesy of the gaff. Added another smaller model of about 8lbs. Never saw any sailfish. Had to pack it in at 12:30. Nice day to be out there.
Sort of an odd sighting. Right before the second blackfin bite we noticed a shrimp free-jumping with a sea gull hot on his tail. As it would turn out, there must be some kind of a shrimp run happening because both blackfins were stuffed with shrimp.
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