Sentinel Fish Report 07-03-2008


by Allen Bushnell
7-3-2008
(831) 426-4690
Website

The ocean is slow in warming this year, and local rockfishing is lagging as a result. Despite the cool water temperatures, fishing for halibut is getting stronger with a good number of flatties pulled in last week.

From the beach you may notice large groups of birds diving offshore. Pelicans, gulls and shearwaters are feeding on abundant anchovy schools, and this is good news for local anglers. Big bait balls are moving into the shallow areas, providing abundant feed for a variety of sportfish. A few lucky anglers also managed to jig up live squid near the Santa Cruz Wharf on Saturday. The past week saw fewer White Sea bass caught with Thursday being the last day of significant catches in the Capitola area. Capitola has also seen a slowdown on the small halibut caught from the beach or the wharf. The halibut bite is picking up in deeper water, however, and the fish caught are big and getting bigger.

Todd Fraser reported numerous halibut weighed in at Bayside Marine over the weekend. Fraser himself caught a 21-pounder on Saturday. He recommends fishing from Lighthouse Point up to Four-mile Beach for flatties. The bite is on in the Capitola area also, and a few big fish were caught in that area last week. Local angler Glen Larsen pulled in a 25-pound flattie in 40 feet of water straight out from the Capitola Wharf on Sunday. A number of reports came in of successful halibut hunting off the kelp beds near pleasure Point. Big fish honors this week go to the kayak fisherman known as "SC X-Factor" who pulled in a 14.5-pound halibut near the kelp line off Pleasure Point. No sooner had he secured that fish, when his second rod was slammed. Fish number two proved to be a 34-pound behemoth. "I could see it 10-plus feet down, a big halibut, like a VW bus," X-Factor exclaimed.

Fishing for rockcod and lings may be slow, but diligent anglers can get their limits if they put in the time. Best spots for rockfish last week were the Mile Buoy area, Soquel Point and South Rock.


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