October has always been one of my most favorite months to fish. It's not quite winter yet so the blue marlin bite is usually still pretty good and that held true this October also. Just like I said last month, the reason less blue marlin are caught this time of year is that there is less fishing effort. Most charter boats don't go out unless they're getting paid for it. This month was even slower than the past few years for charters. Hawaii depends on tourism for a major part of its economy and this sucky economy we're in is taking its toll on a lot of business here. I've been one of the busiest charters in Kona for a long time so I'm hangin' in there but a lot of others haven't been as fortunate and had to go find real work with a more steady income.
I said last month that the mahi mahi have started moving in and I did pretty good catching them this month also. I'm still seeing a few spearfish flags popping up but again this month, none for me. The bite is good on the small tunas around the buoys so they've been an easy target but the big ahi have been a little more elusive this month. I had a couple bites in a porpoise school but neither one stuck. I haven't tried near shore for ono in a while but I have seen a few ono flags flying so there are a few around.
I got to do some bottom fishing this month but not much because again, the North waters have been pretty rough. The times it got calm and I did get to fish there, it was successful.
I mentioned in last months report about coral bleaching and right after that, it became a big news item. I'm not claiming that it was because of me. It's been happening for a while now because of El Nino and it also took a while for the media to make an issue of it. The anti-aquarium fish collector people are also trying to make an issue of it and use this natural disaster to shut down the aquarium fish collection industry. Any excuse will do, right? The aquarium fish industry had long been considered a sustainable fishery because of the "replenishment zones" that were set up. The best reefs in Kona are restricted from collection and the fish density is so thick in those areas that some of the fish have to move on out of those areas where some (not all) are collected. Years ago I started my own collection business but before that, I was an anti-aquarium fish collector myself. The stuff you read about what they do and how they do it is just appalling! The thing is, it's not true. A couple of collectors asked if I wanted to see what they actually do and I said yes. What a difference there was between reality and the fish hugger BS. I had no moral problem doing that business myself after my job working as an underwater construction diver ended. Coral bleaching has nothing to do with fish collectors. The shallow water corals are the ones getting bleached but most of the deeper corals are doing just fine because the water is cooler down deeper. That's where the collecting is done. If you're one of those people jumping on the "bad fish collectors" band wagon, STOP IT! You're being lied to.
See 'ya on the water,
Capt. Jeff Rogers