Kona Hawaii fishing report - Nov. wrap-up
Not what you would expect for the winter season in Kona but the striped marlin haven't shown up yet but some BIG blue marlin have. Like I said in last months report, they tend to run in packs of about the same size. The BIG ones are usually expected in the summer time but the fact is, They`re swimming around somewhere so why not cruise by that big pimple in the middle of the Pacific Ocean? I remember around Christmas time some years back that the same thing happened and any marlin caught under 300 lbs. was considered a baby. The biggest marlin of the month (a few more days to go so it's not over yet) weighed in at 975 lbs. My buddy Chuck, Captain of the boat that caught it was a little disappointed in being just 25 lbs. shy of making 'Grander' status but a fish that big is really nothing to be disappointed about. The very next day he had another BIG one on and broke line on it. Tourism is still way down but it appears to be getting better for the holiday season. Not many boats are going out right now so it's hard to put a finger on how good the marlin bite is, only the size of the fish.
The mahi mahi bite continues to be good. The big ones (30 to 50) are still here. Most are being caught 'in the blind' but the FAD`s are a good place to look also. I found a huge 'floater' this week. A huge wad of netting and when I found it, I figured there would be mahi mahi all around it. All I found was small yellowfin, bigeye (shibi) and skipjack tunas. Very disappointing. I guess someone else beat me to it and cleaned it out. The South porpoise school is still producing some nice size ahi and the ledges are also holding shibi. Some ono were caught way down South but up by Kona, not good.
Bottom fishing season opened for the 'forbidden seven' this month. These seven fish are six types of snapper and one type of grouper. The closed season was extended by another 46 days because the DAR (Dept. of Aquatic Resources) said they needed more time to 'access the fishery' as if more than five closed months wasn`t enough time. What a bunch of B.S! They also implemented the first ever recreational fishing license in Hawaii that is required if you intend to deep drop for 'the seven'. It's nothing more than a foot-in-the-door technique to eventually require recreational fishing licenses for all fisheries in Hawaii. Recreational fishermen rarely do the deep bottom drops (I'm out there, I see what`s going on) but DAR states that the recreational catch of these 'seven', according to their statistics, stand at a rate of 3 to 4 times that of the commercial catch over the past several years. I'm still trying to figure out how they came up with that number seeing as how recreational fishermen (up `til now) didn`t report their catch? It`s a fictitious number that they made up. It just shows us how ignorant these desk jockeys really are about what goes on out on the water. If they dropped the amount of recreational catches down to a believable value, they would have the Federal catch reduction they are looking for. Maybe with the new license requirement (though not necessary) they`ll figure that out or, maybe they skewed the statistics on purpose in order to implement that recreational license? Hard to say. Another value they ignore is that people mainly fish the bottom fishing grounds that are near ports and boat ramps. That leaves most Hawaii bottom fish habitats unfished. Hmmmm. Last year they closed the bottom fishery earlier than required because they said the 'total allowable catch' had been reached. They came up with this figure even though 85% of the commercial bottom fishermen had yet to turn in their reports. It must be those recreational guys catching all the fish huh? It's just plain stupid to think that a degree and a desk makes you more knowledgeable about a fishery than people working behind the wheel on the water but the power of a DAR pen has time and time again proven mightier than any number of fishermen speaking out.
See 'ya on the water,
Capt. Jeff Rogers
About The Author: Captain Jeff Rogers
Company: Hawaii Sport Fishing
Area Reporting: Kona Hawaii
Bio: Whether you're looking for that big trophy catch of a lifetime, some delicious fish to take home or just wanting to catch fish after fish after fish until your arms are too weak to haul in another, I'll do my best to give you the best Hawaii fishing trip you've ever had!