Copious amounts of tiny market squid are invading Southern California coastal and island waters. Last week, crewmembers aboard the Native Sun on a twilight trip out of Long Beach Sportfishing netted a scoopful of the tiny mollusks to show passengers on board.
The squid, which were between one and two inches in length, were small enough to convince a crewman to swallow one whole—alive. (See attached video.)
Don Ashley from Pierpoint Landing in Long Beach thinks the abundance of squid means good fishing in the future. “With the cool water, one would expect that we will have another good market squid season,” said Ashley. “There has been no commercial seiner pressure on this fishery as they met their quota early last year. All this means the food chain is working and with a little luck, the big ones will come out to eat the little ones.”
The squid’s arrival may also be good news for yellowtail fishing at Catalina Island, which produced some excellent yellowtail fishing for Captain Jeff Wiley on his private boat last weekend. Wiley was fishing with live squid and caught six of the hard-fighting jacks weighing up to 30 pounds out of nine hook-ups.
Captain Jeff Jones thinks this bodes well for the future. Jones thinks this may well signal the start of some great yellowtail action at Catalina Island.
“The report I got was that the guy left them biting ‘wide open’ only after running out of live squid,” Jones said. “Fishing alone, he had double hook-ups, and nearly ended up with limits. Looking back in my logs, I had a 70 fish day (limits for six passengers and a crewmember) at Catalina in February 1998 while running the RailTime.”
‘Day at the Docks’ heralds start of saltwater fishing season
The Port of San Diego’s Day at the Docks celebration of sportfishing is Sunday. Many see the event as the start of the saltwater fishing season.
Anglers will see the latest fishing tackle presented by the industry's leading manufacturers, and lots of how-to seminars by expert fishermen will reveal secrets on how to catch more and bigger fish. Anglers can test their skills at casting contests held throughout the day. Sportfishing captains will showcase their vessels and be available to answer all of your questions about how you can book the trip of your dreams.
The event also features boat rides on the San Diego Bay, displays by marine artists and fishing tackle experts, great food, entertainment, open house aboard sportfishing boats, kid's fishing, contests, prizes and just plain fun.
- Rockfishing remained excellent as these bottom dwellers flourish in cooler waters. Fishing up and down the Southern California coast has been really good for a variety of the colorful and delicious bottom fish. Boats from Newport Beach, Long Beach, San Pedro, Redondo, Marina del Rey and Ports of Call have been catching near limits (10 rockfish per angler) on a regular basis.
- There has been some good surf fishing up and down the coast. Bob Osborne from Surfside caught a 12-pound halibut during a recent grunion run. Halibut like to come up in the shallows during grunion runs, making them more vulnerable to fishermen.
- Osborne and fellow surf fishing angler Tom Raftican put on a mini tournament last Saturday. Fishing was slower, but Raftican did manage to hook four fat barred perch on a plastic grub. He was outdone, however, by Philip Friedman, 21, with two yellowfin croaker. Friedman took home the Godzilla trophy and bragging rights for a year.
- The Toronado out of Pierpoint Landing in Long Beach is hosting a great Fishing with Phil Trip departing April 28 at 10 p.m. and heading to San Clemente Island. The trip will fish both surface and rockfish and will provide pro-staffers, lots of raffle prizes and a chance to star in the next Patch Fishing Video. Regularly $175, you can save $25 and go for $150 if you call or text 424-237-0250.
- The Native Sun had excellent sand bass fishing last Friday night on its twilight trip, catching more than 100 bass for 28 anglers. That was followed by a very slow Saturday night’s fishing—go figure. The crew will be at it again the weekend with Friday and Saturday night adventures from 6:30 p.m. through midnight. The price is $42, and you can book by calling 562-432-8993.