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Pelagic trick or treat

Weekly fishing report

Male sheephead
Male sheephead

Inshore: It’s back to basics for the near-shore fishing off San Diego. Calico bass, sand bass, sheephead, rockfish, bonito, and barracuda are biting well off the kelp edges. Expect an occasional white seabass or halibut and a few yellowtail to show for the ½- and ¾-day boats fishing inside. Folks taking some shrimp (ghost or market) for the kelp trips are finding good sheephead action just off the bottom when the current allows and the kelp is standing up. The lobster were a bit stubborn this past week for the hoop-netters.

Outside: A few marlin and wahoo are around within 1- to 2-day range, even so, the tuna and dorado counts continue to drop. Water temps are down a little, but still warmer than normal at near 70 degrees, and tuna are still being caught north of San Diego. Part of the reason for the low counts is that half as many boats and a third as many anglers are fishing offshore as compared to just a few weeks ago. Another contributing factor may be the big full moon. We had the same thing happen in the counts between the 25th and 31st last year when the pelagic numbers dropped as the harvest moon waxed to full around Halloween.

10/25 – 10/31 Dock Totals: 2,090 anglers aboard 98 boats out of San Diego landings this past week caught 3 wahoo, 1839 yellowfin tuna, 1 bluefin tuna, 1342 yellowtail, 112 dorado, 382 skipjack tuna, 425 calico bass, 141 sand bass, 867 barracuda, 2,263 rockfish, 106 sheephead, 31 rubberlip seaperch, 1 halibut, 1,066 bonito, 195 whitefish, 8 lingcod, 3 white seabass, 1 mako shark, 1 blue marlin and 19 spiny lobster.

On the shore: Baitfish have been showing sporadically off the beaches from the border up north to Surfside, California as well as in the bays, livening things up a bit for those with their feet on terra firma. Swimbaits have been producing good calico action off the jetties and rocks with water deep enough to hold some kelp. There are still barred surf perch and corbina sliding up and down the coast in the surf zone, usually where any sand crab colonies can be found. Pier fishing has been relatively average with some shovelnose sand sharks, mackerel and bonito being caught in the mix.

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Male sheephead
Male sheephead

Inshore: It’s back to basics for the near-shore fishing off San Diego. Calico bass, sand bass, sheephead, rockfish, bonito, and barracuda are biting well off the kelp edges. Expect an occasional white seabass or halibut and a few yellowtail to show for the ½- and ¾-day boats fishing inside. Folks taking some shrimp (ghost or market) for the kelp trips are finding good sheephead action just off the bottom when the current allows and the kelp is standing up. The lobster were a bit stubborn this past week for the hoop-netters.

Outside: A few marlin and wahoo are around within 1- to 2-day range, even so, the tuna and dorado counts continue to drop. Water temps are down a little, but still warmer than normal at near 70 degrees, and tuna are still being caught north of San Diego. Part of the reason for the low counts is that half as many boats and a third as many anglers are fishing offshore as compared to just a few weeks ago. Another contributing factor may be the big full moon. We had the same thing happen in the counts between the 25th and 31st last year when the pelagic numbers dropped as the harvest moon waxed to full around Halloween.

10/25 – 10/31 Dock Totals: 2,090 anglers aboard 98 boats out of San Diego landings this past week caught 3 wahoo, 1839 yellowfin tuna, 1 bluefin tuna, 1342 yellowtail, 112 dorado, 382 skipjack tuna, 425 calico bass, 141 sand bass, 867 barracuda, 2,263 rockfish, 106 sheephead, 31 rubberlip seaperch, 1 halibut, 1,066 bonito, 195 whitefish, 8 lingcod, 3 white seabass, 1 mako shark, 1 blue marlin and 19 spiny lobster.

On the shore: Baitfish have been showing sporadically off the beaches from the border up north to Surfside, California as well as in the bays, livening things up a bit for those with their feet on terra firma. Swimbaits have been producing good calico action off the jetties and rocks with water deep enough to hold some kelp. There are still barred surf perch and corbina sliding up and down the coast in the surf zone, usually where any sand crab colonies can be found. Pier fishing has been relatively average with some shovelnose sand sharks, mackerel and bonito being caught in the mix.

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