Z Fish Report (4/29/10)
The 79 degree clean water is holding around 12 miles, with the deep blue water about 30 miles, and along the 1,000 fathom line. Inside 30 miles, the fishing for the offshore species has been slow, and as reported by Mike Bulkly, the owner of the super panga Huntress, many boats are not even getting a strike. However, he did tell me the inshore fishing for jack crevalle, chulas (a small, but excellent eating tuna with teeth), and black skipjack tuna is still good.
Plus, this weekend, starting Friday, is the annual offshore tournament, with a new car or pickup given as the prize for the largest 3 sailfish, largest marlin, and largest dorado. Fortunately, with the tournament starting on the full moon cycle, and slow offshore conditions anyway, the normal 120 to 150 boat tournament should have poor results. I say this because Zihuatanejo has yet to get out of the stone age with this 30 plus year running tournament. It is a kill tournament. In years past, with just slightly more favorable conditions, I have seen as many 750 sailfish hitting the dock over the course of the 3 day tournament.
Tim Gage of Texas fished with Martin on the Gaviota for a day. Tim was very disappointed with Martin, as well as me. They got a sailfish, and released it, but when the 200 pound blue marlin Tim got was at the boat, the crew killed it. Later, talking to Martin, he explained to me the heart was gone and the fish was going to die (which happens all too often with blues). Martin is very experienced, and will continue to be my favorite captain for the cruisers of the fleet. But, like all captains the world over, they can be fairly hard headed. He needs to be taught a lesson for not communicating correctly with the client, and not even making an attempt for the revival of the marlin to prove the fish was not going to make it. Tim started the teaching process by canceling the next day’s charter with Martin, which hits him in the pocketbook. I am the second step, because like all captains, their egos can also be quite big….When he reads this about him, I assure you things will be different in the future.
But, this is what it takes. The need for catch and release of bill fish cannot depend on the annual tournament to change; it has to start with the captains.