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post #21 of 43 Old 03-26-2016
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Re: Fishing while at Sea

Won't pretend to be an angler but we have experimented with trolling at various times, in daylight only, and find that the catch varies enormously from area to area. In the Indian Ocean from Cocos-Keeling to Mauritius we caught a mani-mahi any time we put the line out. We tried, with the same and different lures, from Cape Town to Grenada and caught nothing. Mixed luck in the Pacific and North Atlantic. We use a strong line with a piece of speargun rubber for a shock absorber. We hold a bite of line to the stern rail with a clothespin on a string. When we get a hit the clothespin jumps off the line and line and rubber tighten. Probably 70% of the time we get a hit we land a fish. Landing is another matter. We bought a large net (used to fish on inland lakes as a kid) but it often was not big enough. A gaff would have worked but we found that just lifting the fish out on the handline worked fine. The fish seemed exhausted from being dragged behind the boat at speed. Never a problem with sharks.

After the refit we have decided to sell Ainia. We want something smaller that would be could for the light summer winds of Lake Ontario, although we plan to spend at least a couple of winters in the Caribbean before heading north.
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post #22 of 43 Old 03-26-2016
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Re: Fishing while at Sea

I forgot to mention that for those using a handline, if you make the line loosely fast to a lifeline with a clothes pin, before the shock cord, when a fish strikes the clothes pin will snap off the lifeline and you will hear it or notice it soon enough. Weed won't often trip this alert system. Generally, if you drag a fish long enough some toothy critter will make off with the fish, your lure and even some of the line.
Most of the time dolphin travel in schools or at least pairs, so if you want more than one and you are sure the first is well hooked, leave it in the water and put out a second line and you are almost guarantied a second fish.
Like the man said, it's the best way to make friends with the officials. We gave a nice fish to the Park Rangers at the Tobago Cays last month.

"Any idiot can make a boat go; it takes a sailor to stop one." Spike Africa aboard the schooner Wanderer in Sausalito, Ca. 1964.
“Believe me, my young friend, there is nothing - absolutely nothing - half so much worth doing as simply messing about in boats.” ― Kenneth Grahame, The Wind in the Willows

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post #23 of 43 Old 03-26-2016
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Re: Fishing while at Sea

We "meat" fish. it's for food and we eat what we catch. Our lines is sized so that if the fish is to big, the line breaks! What it in action on our short video on our Youtube page.

https://youtu.be/XM8bPBxTQyQ

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post #24 of 43 Old 03-27-2016
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Re: Fishing while at Sea

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Originally Posted by Delezynski View Post
We "meat" fish. it's for food and we eat what we catch. Our lines is sized so that if the fish is to big, the line breaks! What it in action on our short video on our Youtube page.

https://youtu.be/XM8bPBxTQyQ

Greg
Nice video. I enjoy watching your you-tube channel also and have subscribed. Nicely done!!
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post #25 of 43 Old 03-27-2016
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Re: Fishing while at Sea

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Nice video. I enjoy watching your you-tube channel also and have subscribed. Nicely done!!
THANKS for the kind words!

Greg
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post #26 of 43 Old 03-27-2016
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Re: Fishing while at Sea

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I don't fish, I hunt. Fishing is an art form, carefully matching the strength of your gear and the perfection of your technique to the gamesmanship of man vs. wild and removing all unfair advantages, such as barbs on the hook. Often the prey is released to fight another day.

Rather, I put out the heaviest braided line I can find, with razor sharp barbed hooks and hundreds of spare yards of line on my bullet proof sea rod, with rollers for guides. I'll drag the fish to death, before I fight it for an hour, then eat it.

Ironically, the fish avoid me.
Hey Minne,

Read that article and repent for your transgressions! (This is, after all, Easter Sunday)
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post #27 of 43 Old 03-27-2016
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Re: Fishing while at Sea

The reason that most people fail to catch fish while cruising offshore, is that beyond the continental shelf, there is no structure to hold prey species, thus the predator species will not migrate through those open ocean areas. Because of this, many years ago, most nations enacted a 200-mile fisheries zone, thereby excluding anyone without a special permit from fishing territorial waters. Much of this began with the cod wars, cod being the highest commercially viable species in the North Atlantic and Bearing Sea. In fact, fishing was Iceland's only industry for centuries.

Catching fish isn't rocket science, but it does require some degree of expertise and basic fisheries knowledge in order to be somewhat successful. There are lots of books available that will lead you through the pitfalls of fishing, while at the same time provide you with the basic information as to how to locate various species of fish and proven techniques used to catch them on a regular basis.

Good luck,

Gary
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post #28 of 43 Old 03-27-2016
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Re: Fishing while at Sea

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The reason that most people fail to catch fish while cruising offshore, is that beyond the continental shelf, there is no structure to hold prey species, thus the predator species will not migrate through those open ocean areas.
Gary
Actually, when crossing the Pacific, Indian and Atlantic Oceans back when, it was a very rare day when I couldn't hook up a dolphin, tuna or wahoo deep sea, far from any structure at all. Even marlin and sails would occasionally go for my baits, not that I wanted them! Obviously there was plenty of food out there, for it was also a rare morning when there wasn't at least one flying fish or squid on deck at sunrise.
I spent some of my career operating sport fishing vessels and I sincerely believe the greatest part of fishing at sea is having a boat that 'raises' fish. One is not catching fish because they happen upon a fish or two out there in the big blue. One is getting strikes because the fish come over to the boat and find the lure. This is easily proved by sailing through a school of fish under a group of working birds. The fish will scatter and you will rarely hook up.
When the fish are there, fishing is as easy as presenting them with something that vaguely resembles food. They have no clue what a line is or a hook. It is my understanding they are colorblind, though some colors definitely work better for some fish than others. I've caught fish on commercial lures, plugs (though they are pretty expensive), jigs, flashers and bits of plastic bags of various colors. The fish don't seem to care.
Keeping the line outside of the wake by fishing on the quarter rather than the stern is more productive.
If you hold by the theory that it's the boat that attracts the fish, you will keep your lure in close proximity to the boat, though the Billy Bait Turbo Slammer works way out, even on a sport fisher. I have no idea why. No other lure I've ever used works as well, as far from the boat. Go figure.
The faster you go, the more productive you will be. I've caught fish (well the occasional fish and many lower jaws) at 17 knots. 8 to 12 knots is best for the ocean pelagics, though you can hook up at any speed, you will get more strikes at higher speeds. If you are going slow, bring the line closer to the boat, faster farther away. I always try to have the lure visible in the face of the second wave behind the boat off the quarter, bubbling about 30% of the time.
As I said above, this was a sure fire way to put dinner on the table for many years, but it is much less productive today. It still works, but the fish are fewer and farther between these days.

"Any idiot can make a boat go; it takes a sailor to stop one." Spike Africa aboard the schooner Wanderer in Sausalito, Ca. 1964.
“Believe me, my young friend, there is nothing - absolutely nothing - half so much worth doing as simply messing about in boats.” ― Kenneth Grahame, The Wind in the Willows

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post #29 of 43 Old 03-27-2016
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Re: Fishing while at Sea

Capta, the structure was there, but in many instances, most folks never know what to look for. For example, Mahi, or dolphinfish, are quite frequently found lurking beneath small patches of Sargasso weed, or any other floating debris. Something as simple as a floating sheet of newspaper proves to be a great place to find mahi.

Bluefin and yellowfin tuna both follow specific migratory routes, which do not vary more than a few miles east or west throughout their lives. Yellowfin prefer the canyon edges, which is also the favorite haunt of marlin and wahoo. Bluefin tuna travel close to shore, often spending time foraging for small mackerel species over underwater humps and lumps. You can find some great charts of these migratory routes on various fisheries sites.

As for fish being colorblind, yes, that is true, however, they can readily discern various hues such as florescent reds, yellows, greens, etc..., colors that rarely occur naturally in nature. Thus, lures of those colors tend to be more productive because they contrast sharply with the natural environment. If course, the best lures usually have some contrasting silver on them as well. But there are other factors involved - mainly sound.

Many species, such as tuna, mackerel, bluefish, striped bass and wahoo, forage relatively close to the surface, often driving schools of baitfish to the surface and ripping through them at their leisure. One of the most exciting things anyone will ever witness is the carnage that takes place when a school of big, slammer bluefish herds a school of Atlantic menhaden into a tight ball then begins ripping through them. If the schools are relatively large, the noise is unbelievable, sounding like the roar of the surf along the California coast. When this is taking place, any surface plug, particularly silver, or blue/silver combinations, tossed into the melee is akin to rolling a wine bottle though a jail cell. It draws dozens of instant strikes the resemble a small explosion on the water's surface.

When fish are actively feeding on the surface, this is not a place for trolling. Trolling usually results in causing the fish to sound and if you are lucky you may catch one, but more than likely you will not. Under these conditions, a good spinning or bait casting outfit works best, merely by moving the boat to within about 50 feet of the fish, then casting into the melee. I've encountered large schools of breaking bluefish and striped bass mixed, both foraging on Atlantic menhaden at the time, and I just hove to and began casting, while slowly drifting along side of the schools. It has always been quite productive and you could easily fill the freezer with fresh fillets.

Many pelagic fish utilize sound to find their prey. Because of this, offshore anglers frequently employ the use of a teaser, which is a monster size lure with no hooks, but makes an incredible disturbance as it's dragged through the water in front of the lures. The fish are attracted from great depths to the teaser, then discover easy pickings on the smaller lures behind the teaser. It is very effective for marlin, giant bluefin tuna, wahoo, and big eye tuna.

The zaniest thing I've used to catch fish was small strips of red rag attached to size 1 wide gap hooks and fished on a top and bottom rig in the lower Florida Keys. This produced a solid strike as soon as the sinker hit the bottom, mainly from flannel mouth grunt, small grouper and porgie. After putting a few fish in the cooler chest, the cloth strips were dredged through the fish slime, which made it even more productive. That bright red color was something that was not natural to this environment, which in turn, got the undivided attention of every fish in the immediate vicinity.

The grunts averaged about 10 to 12 inches in length, they were easily filleted, skinned, and the fillets were then rinsed in fresh water, patted dry, dipped in a mixture of egg and milk, then coated with homemade cracker crumbs and pan fried. Oh my!

All the best,

Gary
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post #30 of 43 Old 03-27-2016
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Re: Fishing while at Sea

As my Grandfather said, they call it fishing nit catching for a reason.

I will often throw a line over and see what i get. I've caught a few Stripped Bass aka Rockfish here on the Chesapeake. Last trip up to New England I caught a few fish, most exciting was a small, about 2 or 3 foot shark... although it got away lol. From my description, the fisherman in Cape May said it sounded like a small Great White with its straight white teeth and markings. I really don't know, but I'm glad we didn't actually land it because in all the excitement, I realized I was wearing only flip flops... and the sharks mouth with razor sharp teeth was at least 2 or 3 inches in diameter... I like my toes! On that same trip, fellow SailNet member, chef, and friend met me in Sandy Hook NJ to take me to a sail loft... when he graciously returned my sail from repairs.. he generously left a few steel leaders and lures in the sail bag hearing about our adventures... a kindness I will never forget... thanks again Tempest

At anchor, I'll often cast a line for my kids. We gave caught trout, catfish, spot, and a few others... usually throwing them back.

Its fun and peovides some entertainment.

Shawn


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Last edited by T37Chef; 03-28-2016 at 05:11 PM.
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