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Where have the sand crabs gone?

Population drastically declining

Tuna crab at night - Image by JoeBelanger/iStock/Thinkstock
Tuna crab at night

Inshore: With a bump on top and a bit of a breeze most of the week, the ½- and ¾-day boats stayed a bit closer to home. There are good yellowtail marks all over La Jolla near the bottom as the fish hang close to the pelagic crab still carpeting the floor of most inshore fisheries. Every now and again, a flurry of action hits the surface with yellows, bonito, and barracuda slashing at the plethora of mackerel just off the kelp edge and over the canyon. The mackerel have also attracted some toothy ones; a few thresher sharks have been caught or hooked by kayakers this past week and many more sighted within a couple miles of the coast. There were a lot more legal halibut caught this week inshore as they seem to be lurking near the grunion just outside the surf zone.

Outside: Windy conditions and a driving swell offshore kept most overnight and 1.5 day boats closer to the Baja coast looking for breezing yellowtail and rockfish along the cool water zone from Punta Banda south to El Rosario. In spite of the early action on bluefin tuna off Colonet and out to the 60 mile bank over the past month, only one tuna, a yellowfin, was caught this week. The passenger loads were a lot lighter and anglers willing to fish the chop had plenty of elbow room and good counts on yellowtail, lingcod and rockfish.

4/24–4/30 Dock Totals: 1,403 anglers aboard 68 boats out of San Diego landings this past week caught 1 yellowfin tuna, 764 yellowtail, 52 calico bass, 58 sand bass, 2,944 rockfish, 13 lingcod, 461 sculpin, 347 bonito, 63 barracuda, 1 halfmoon, 10 sheephead, 150 whitefish, 196 mackerel, 102 bocaccio, 25 blacksmith, 20 halibut, 3 cabezon and 1 rubberlip seaperch.

From the beach: Over the past couple years we’ve seen a few anomalies hitting the shore: strange little jellyfish, and tuna crabs so thick that the rocks near the water that the birds normally “paint” white have a pink tinge to them. There are even seahorses washing up now. The surf perch, croaker, and corbina fishing is going to be a little tougher for those venturing out planning on using sand crabs; their population has been drastically declining along the coast. This spring and summer, I suggest taking clams, squid or shrimp along just in case the crabs aren’t at your favorite stretch of beach.

Scheduled fish plants (lbs): 5/10 Cuyamaca, trout (1000)

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Tuna crab at night - Image by JoeBelanger/iStock/Thinkstock
Tuna crab at night

Inshore: With a bump on top and a bit of a breeze most of the week, the ½- and ¾-day boats stayed a bit closer to home. There are good yellowtail marks all over La Jolla near the bottom as the fish hang close to the pelagic crab still carpeting the floor of most inshore fisheries. Every now and again, a flurry of action hits the surface with yellows, bonito, and barracuda slashing at the plethora of mackerel just off the kelp edge and over the canyon. The mackerel have also attracted some toothy ones; a few thresher sharks have been caught or hooked by kayakers this past week and many more sighted within a couple miles of the coast. There were a lot more legal halibut caught this week inshore as they seem to be lurking near the grunion just outside the surf zone.

Outside: Windy conditions and a driving swell offshore kept most overnight and 1.5 day boats closer to the Baja coast looking for breezing yellowtail and rockfish along the cool water zone from Punta Banda south to El Rosario. In spite of the early action on bluefin tuna off Colonet and out to the 60 mile bank over the past month, only one tuna, a yellowfin, was caught this week. The passenger loads were a lot lighter and anglers willing to fish the chop had plenty of elbow room and good counts on yellowtail, lingcod and rockfish.

4/24–4/30 Dock Totals: 1,403 anglers aboard 68 boats out of San Diego landings this past week caught 1 yellowfin tuna, 764 yellowtail, 52 calico bass, 58 sand bass, 2,944 rockfish, 13 lingcod, 461 sculpin, 347 bonito, 63 barracuda, 1 halfmoon, 10 sheephead, 150 whitefish, 196 mackerel, 102 bocaccio, 25 blacksmith, 20 halibut, 3 cabezon and 1 rubberlip seaperch.

From the beach: Over the past couple years we’ve seen a few anomalies hitting the shore: strange little jellyfish, and tuna crabs so thick that the rocks near the water that the birds normally “paint” white have a pink tinge to them. There are even seahorses washing up now. The surf perch, croaker, and corbina fishing is going to be a little tougher for those venturing out planning on using sand crabs; their population has been drastically declining along the coast. This spring and summer, I suggest taking clams, squid or shrimp along just in case the crabs aren’t at your favorite stretch of beach.

Scheduled fish plants (lbs): 5/10 Cuyamaca, trout (1000)

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2

Pacific Ocean sea life is under attack from pollution, especially those that are are the bottom of the food chain, like coral, filter feeders and of course all those that live off of them.

May 5, 2016

RE: "Pacific Ocean sea life is under attack, especially to those that are are the bottom of the food chain, like coral, filter feeders and of course all those that live off of them."

Many point to Climate Change/Global Warming (the catch all explanation that implies that we can't solve it any time soon) but I believe another factor is helping to create this massive die off that we can do something about.

I'm referring to all the radioactive pollution that has and continues to come from Fukushima's triple meltdowns. Japan has decided that it is OK for them to use the Pacific Ocean as their radioactive toilet (their low cost solution for getting rid of all their contaminated radioactive water and ash) instead of spending the money to clean up after themselves. It has gotten so bad that they have even restricted free speech in Japan to further limit any discussion that will publicize what is going on and especially how they are dealing with all their radioactive pollution.

This failure to be able to safely deal with nuclear "gone BAD" is an international engineering embarrassment to the Japanese because it is hurting not only their all powerful nuclear industry but also the global nuclear energy marketplace that is now being downsized because of accidents like Fukushima and ever lower renewable energy costs that are making nuclear fiscally uncompetitive.

Until independent experts are allowed access to both Fukushima and the waters off Fukushima we will continue to see the Japanese radioactive pollution affect the Pacific Ocean while the US and other Pacific Rim countries look the other way as the sea life and all the millions of people that depend upon it as a major source of food, are affected.

BTW: Many countries are now inspecting incoming food stuffs for radioactivity and/or (like the US) continue to keep increasing their threshold of what amount of radiation is "SAFE"!

May 5, 2016

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4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
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