Conditions keeping ‘green water’ at bay


The passage of some frontal boundaries this past week made for a bit of a mixing of the deep ocean waters and this, hopefully, will prevent the formation of that so-called “green water” that the offshore angler does his best to avoid.

The fish don’t seem to like those conditions either and that, combined with the heat of the August day, does plenty to discourage action.

Trolling has been pretty quiet with the only real action coming when a boat happens on some floating material that happens to harbour a school of wahoo or dolphin.

One such encounter earlier this week saw one boat catch over a dozen wahoo which were otherwise very welcome since there wasn’t much other action to be had.

Little effort has been put in the deep where there is no doubt that the billfish continue to cruise.

Chumming for small game and/or reef species continues to be productive, but the thought of standing out in the sun all day is enough to deter most anglers.

Some commercial fishermen are starting to put in the evening hours for yellowtail snappers as this species usually peaks in abundance at about this time of the year.

Finding ideal conditions can be tricky and it does not take too much of a departure from the preferred to sufficiently put the snappers off, making for a wasted night.

Many commercial operators are pretty much ignoring the offshore situation in favour of going forward with preparations for the deployment of the lobster traps which is really just a couple of weeks away as yet another lobster season is on the horizon.

This is the time of the year when inshore anglers can enjoy the best action that they are ever likely to see. The flat areas and the inshore bays and grassy areas will be where bonefish are most common, and they will be willing to please on almost any bait and quite a few artificial lures as well.

The South Shore is home to numbers of palometa, usually referred to as pompano. Chumming with bread or sardine oil-laced bread and using the same for bait on a light spinning rod will ensure plenty of action.

These largely ignored fish also make for some very high-quality fillets which are there for the taking right off the beach.

Barracuda also hang around the beaches and bathers would probably be shocked to know how often they are stalked by these curious fish that can blend into the shafts of light over the sandy beach bottom almost perfectly rendering them invisible to the casual observer.

Small boat trolling along the harbours and bays and among the islands in the Sound, using small spoons or Rapala®-type lures will attract strikes from barracuda or sennet (a small barracuda-relative usually seen at night), jacks and mackerel.

Every once in a while, a bonita or amber may oblige and all of these provide good sport and have potential in the galley. While all of this is going on, serious fishermen will be keeping their eyes open for any signs of the frigate mackerel.

Not to be confused with other species of the same or similar name, what is in question here are juvenile little tunny or the fish that are locally referred to as mackerel.

Don’t even get started on fish names, the Food and Agriculture Organisation prefers the moniker Atlantic Black Skipjack, so “frigate mackerel” will suffice for these purposes.

Highly prized as an offshore live bait, this species often shows up inshore or over the reef areas before making their way out toward the edge of the drop-off and Banks where they are often part of the most amazing wahoo fishing imaginable.

Not guaranteed to take place each year, but those who have experienced it can only long for another such coincidental arrival of both the frigates and the major wahoo run that usually occurs around early September, give or take a couple of weeks either way. So now is the time to keep a lookout and to hope.

Now, even the landlubbers can be in for a bit of a treat and see some really interesting fish. Apart from the wahoo, tuna and marlin that dominate the tournament scene here is an opportunity that should not be missed.

With the Bermuda Anglers Club Junior Tournament taking place tomorrow, Sunday, rain or shine, there is sure to be a crowd of youngsters with their catches for the weigh-in at the Flagpole, Front Street commencing at 3pm.

Apart from the pleasure of seeing the children have fun, there are usually some of the strangest sea creatures imaginable weighed in. Far be it from a junior’s mind to concentrate on recognised game fish.

Given their methods and some of the most unlikely places where they fish from, even if a boat is involved, they do come up with some oddities; some so strange that they are not even regular exhibits at the aquarium. Rest assured, prize winner or not, Bermuda’s youth will be pleased as punch to show off the results of their Tight Lines!!!

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Published Aug 17, 2019 at 8:00 am (Updated Aug 17, 2019 at 12:33 am)

Conditions keeping ‘green water’ at bay

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