Kona Hawaii fishing report - Jan. wrap-up .
Great news! Yes, we have striped marlin :) Kona hasn't seen a good striped marlin run in the past 5 seasons so I'm very happy that we're finally getting them. Striped marlin is my 2nd favorite fish to eat after the Hawaiian grouper. Raw with wasabi and soy sauce or seared on the outside, it's fantastic! I salivate just like Pavlov's dog every time I talk about eating striped marlin, it's that good. The meat is usually pink but sometimes its pumpkin orange. The orange meat is the best.
It's the first month of the year and Kona's "Big Fish List" starts new. In the first week of this month a 914 lb. blue marlin was weighed in so that one might stand as the biggest for a while. The yellowfin tuna category on the list has been changing almost daily while we wait for the first 200+ pounder to be caught. This is the time of year for the smaller yellowfin and bigeye tuna that hang around the buoys and ledges. C buoy has been the #1 place to go for them.
Mahi mahi tops this month as the most common fish caught even though it's late in the season for them. It's a bit early in the season for spearfish but they have moved in and are now a pretty common catch also. It's not ono season but a few are coming in here and there.
The bottom bite has been spotty with some good days and some bad. It's a good thing that the trolling bite has been exceptionally good to make up for it. One fish that I have caught more of in the past 6 months than in the past 10 years combined is giant trevally (GT). They are one of the hardest fighting fish pound for pound and are one of the most prized sportfish of the Pacific. Some minor regulations on these fish have been made in recent years but there has been talk of making very severe regulations on targeting these fish because they're "endangered". A tag and release program that started on GT about 10 years ago has indeed helped their numbers grow and now there doesn't seem to be any shortage of them at all. Do you think the DAR will back off on their plans to severely regulate them as a result? One can only hope. We just got a new governor who seems to be more of a friend to the fisherman than to the fish huggers so we will see what the next 4 years bring.
See 'ya on the water,
Capt. Jeff Rogers