Sea of Cortez spring dorado migration reaches Mulege fishing waters

Mexico Fishing News, June 1, 2009



MULEGE, MEXICO: As this year's spring dorado migration moved northward in the Sea of Cortez last week, Ron Grant of Crestline, Calif., reported on a fly-down trip to Mulege's Hotel Serenidad, with very good weather in the mid-80s cooling to the 60s at night, some light west chop in the afternoons, and dorado of 12 to 20 pounds being caught in all directions.

"The location of choice is about 60 to 70 degrees out of the lighthouse, off the mine area past Punta Concepcion," Grant said. "No larger bulls yet." Several commercial longline fishing boat were also working the area. "Complaints don't seem to go far," Grant said.

Grant noted very few tourists present at Mulege. "The hotel and restaurants are really hurting," he said. "Only 3 airplanes were coming or going over the Memorial holiday weekend. Normally, the Hotel Serenidad would be packed.

"The problems at the border towns, with the swine flu, and with the new paperwork required when flying a private aircraft across the border are really taking a toll."

MULEGE, MEXICO: Ralph Strahm of Holtville, Calif., reported on a day of fly-down fishing out of Mulege's Hotel Serenidad by his brother Loren and 2 trip partners for a catch of 9 dorado of 10 to over 30 pounds. No other charter boats were seen fishing out of Mulege during the day. "They were satisfied with the $180 panga and the runway was in great shape," Strahm said. "Some guys from the San Francisquito area, probably from El Barril, said things are getting primitive at San Francisquito but they did well on yellowtail."

Strahm also noted swine flu "health precautions" apparently being taken by officials during check-through at the airport in San Felipe. "They had to sign a paper that stated they came into Mexico free of swine flu!" he said.

MULEGE, MEXICO: Diana Johnson of the Hotel Serenidad at Mulege reported very good dorado fishing as boats came in with 5 to 18 fish per outing. "One boat even caught a marlin," Johnson said. The Hotel Serenidad was running a $49 special room rate through June.

MULEGE, MEXICO: Patti Higginbotham of Mulege reported local sport anglers with good counts of 20-pound class dorado being caught in 78-degree water 15 to 20 miles straight out and to the south off "the slide" and "the mine" fishing landmarks. "Although no large bulls have been caught yet, it's good practice for the upcoming Mulege Dorado Tournament." Higginbotham also noted the first wahoo of the season reported by Mulege boats on May 21, 2009.

In other mainland Mexico and Baja fishing action this week:



ENSENADA, MEXICO: Ivan Villarino of Vonny's Fleet reported a brief flurry of surface yellowtail for his charters pangas fishing at the tip of Ensenada's Punta Banda on Friday as Capt. Beto of the Vonny I found 4 yellowtail plus lingcod and red rockcod for anglers Frank Luzzaro and Kirk Braito. "Beto saw the yellows and put Frank and Kirk right into the middle of them," Villarino said. "They had good weather and good tackle. They used the aluminum jigs."

Ensenada fishing area weather was partly cloudy in the high-60s, with winds calm, ocean swells at 2 to 3 feet, and the water temperature at Punta Banda averaging 67 degrees.

ENSENADA, MEXICO: Steve Ross of the Ensenada boat Bad Dog at Marina Coral reported 2 blackgill rockfish caught on a very deep drop to about 1,500 feet before wind pushed him off the spot, and other stops at north Todos Santos Island and the Banda Bank producing a catch of: 1 barracuda, 4 vermilion rockfish, 4 starry rockfish, 1 bocaccio, 2 lingcod, and 1 bonito.

At north Todos Santos Island, Ross reported yellowtail seen but not biting. "We found one group of yellowtail boiling on the surface and Juan Lu, Joseph, and Gail all threw iron jigs at them to no avail," Ross said. "We kept throwing iron until 10 a.m. and we couldn't get one yellowtail to bite our jigs."

ENSENADA, MEXICO: Erasmo Carrizales of Ensenada Sportfishing Works reported on outings at Islas Todos Santos by the charter boat Morgan James and panga Ola for a combined catch of: 4 yellowtail to 41 inches long, 6 barracuda, and 18 mixed bottom fish. Carrizales said other 2 other Ensenada boats reported outings for 14 and 21 yellowtail.



SAN QUINTIN, MEXICO: Pete Hillis of Pedro's Pangas reported 6 boats fishing during the week, mostly at the 240 spot in favorable sea and wind conditions, for good counts of red rockcod, lingcod, whitefish, and 3 yellowtail to 16 pounds.

"The weather has been really good to us," Hillis said. "We're seeing more and more yellowtail."

Anglers fishing with Pedro's Pangas during the week included Sam Montoya of New Mexico and Mike Diamond of San Diego, Calif., who did well of Capt. Miguel on the charter boat Pelicano, and Richard Allen and his group with Capt. Pato on the Calimar.

SAN QUINTIN, MEXICO: Jorge Rosales of the CICESE marine center in Ensenada reported on another sportfishing boat catch survey at San Quintin, with 5 boats holding 12 anglers met at the Old Mill dock on May 24, 2009, and their combined catch counted, 275 total fish including: 161 vermilion rockfish, 26 lingcod to 12.5 pounds, 25 kelp bass, and assorted bocaccio, greenspotted rockfish, starry rockfish, flag rockfish, whitefish, and mackerel. "The fishing at San Quintin was good, with light winds and warm days approaching the Memorial Day weekend," Rosales said.

SAN QUINTIN, MEXICO: Kelly Catian of K&M Offshore Sportfishing at San Quintin reported boats with good counts of calico bass from the kelp beds on the west side of Isla San Martin. Concentrations of spawning sandbass and calico bass were found at Playa San Ramon. "Squid are starting to show in water temperatures in the low-60s south of the bay," Catian said. "Look for the white seabass to go on the chew any day."



BAJA CALIFORNIA, MEXICO: On the Fred Metcalf message board, a Baja traveler on Mex 1 reported the death of the legendary "La Famosa Carmelita," proprietor for many years of her tamale-vending van at the Jesus Maria Pemex station. Said one Baja old-timer, "She was a real lady, always friendly, gracious, and dignified, and she made the best tamales on Mex 1."



MAGDALENA BAY, MEXICO: For the week ending May 22, 2009, Gary Graham of Baja On The Fly reported good numbers of small yellowtail at the San Carlos entrada. Few boats fished outside Magdalena Bay, but reports continued of dorado seen by offshore shark fishermen.

Small halibut continued to be caught on the Punta Belcher sand flats, at mid-bay on the east shore of Isla Magdalena. Some grouper and corvina were reported at the San Carlos bridge. No reports were received from Puerto Lopez Mateos in the north.

Magdalena Bay fishing area weather was sunny in the low-90s, with water temperatures at 69 to 77 degrees.



CABO SAN LUCAS, MEXICO: Larry Edwards of Cortez Yacht Charters reported on 10 outings by Gaviota Fleet and the Cabo charter boats Fish Cabo, Fish Cabo I, and Tuna Time, with a catch including released fish of: 9 striped marlin, and 2 dorado. All the fish were caught on the Sea of Cortez side.

Edwards noted continued very low tourist levels at Cabo San Lucas, saying, "It was another week of very few fishing trips."

Cabo San Lucas fishing area weather was clear in the mid-90s, with very cool water on the Pacific side at 58 to 68 degrees, and water temperatures increasing to 82 degrees at the Gordo Banks on the Cortez side.

CABO SAN LUCAS, MEXICO: For the week ending May 20, 2009, Tracy Ehrenberg of Pisces Fleet Sportfishing at Cabo San Lucas reported slightly better tourist traffic in the Los Cabos area. "We did have a smattering more of anglers," Ehrenberg said, "but Cabo San Lucas continues to reel from the hype around swine flu, the slow economy, and the drug wars. The number of anglers and tourists has dropped dramatically."

During the week, 54 percent of Pisces boats released marlin, for a total of 26 fish, including a 4-release day for the boat Mucho Bueno and a 3-release day for the Ruthless.

Overall, 71 percent of boats caught all species combined.

Ehrenberg also reported an unusual fish captured as it floated alive on the surface by the Cabo charter boat Minerva IV, about 11 miles south of Cabo on May 19, 2009. "It was about 35 inches long and would turn belly up and then try to submerge," Ehrenberg said. "It had large, luminous eyes and looked like a seal crossed with a baby marlin that had swallowed a chicken. Pete Thomas from the L.A. Times, as well as local scientists, identified it as a ratfish."

The exact species of the fish was still unknown and was thought possibly not to have been previously described, as John Snow of San Jose del Cabo and Rogelio Armas of CICIMAR in La Paz were planning to study the frozen specimen.

Cabo San Lucas fishing area water temperatures averaged 71 degrees.

CABO SAN LUCAS, MEXICO: Jim Dillon of Salvador's Sportfishing reported on 5 outings by the Cabo San Lucas charter boats El Budster, El Budster I, and El Budster II, with a catch including released fish of: 3 striped marlin, 2 dorado of 20 to 35 pounds, 1 yellowtail of 20 pounds, and 4 jack crevalle of 25 pounds.

CABO SAN LUCAS, MEXICO: Durance Lowendick of Marlin Masters Sportfishing at Cabo San Lucas reported some striped marlin caught in 70-degree water at the Cortez-side 1150 spot while fishing with cast or very slow-trolled live baits. "Downsize leaders to 80 to 100-pound test line for best action," Lowendick said.

Some dorado and school-sized yellowfin tuna were caught by offshore boats. Inshore fishing produced yellowtail, Humboldt giant squid, sierra, and jack crevalle.

CABO SAN LUCAS, MEXICO: For the week ending May 18, 2009, George Landrum of Fly Hooker Sportfishing reported 1 known case of swine flu in the Los Cabos area. "It was a tourist that brought it with him," Landrum said. "I just knew it was going to happen." Water clarity on both the Pacific and Cortez sides was poor as cold currents as low as the mid-60s pushed down the Baja coast. Water temperatures more than about 10 miles out were much warmer, up to 74 degrees at the Jaime Bank and 78 degrees running northwards on the Cortez side. Striped marlin, school-sized tuna, and dorado were all present but not in concentration. Inshore panga fishing continued decent for pargo, yellowtail, sierra, bonita, and skipjack.



SAN JOSE DEL CABO, MEXICO: Eric Brictson of Gordo Banks Pangas reported on 60 combined La Playita fleet pangas fishing out of San Jose del Cabo's Puerto Los Cabos marina, with a catch including released fish of: 78 various pargo species, 66 roosterfish, 28 dog snapper, 25 sierra, 18 bonito, 15 cabrilla, 14 pompano, 14 jack crevalle, 11 amberjack, 7 yellowtail, 4 striped marlin, 3 dorado, and 2 yellowfin tuna.

Spring transitional weather patterns firmed up at San Jose del Cabo during the week as prevailing winds swung more reliably to the south and cooler green water pushed in towards the tip of Baja. Water temperatures were variable from 77 to 80 degrees.

Tourist traffic was still lower than normal in the Los Cabos vacation area, but some improvement was seen as Mexico's swine flu scare abated.

Sardina bait fish were scarce during the week as La Playita pangas fished mainly with mullet and caballito baits. Some striped marlin were seen 7 to 20 miles out, but dorado and tuna were scarce. Most pangas trolled live baits close to shore for action led by roosterfish into the mid-60 pound class plus dog snapper to 50 pounds that were often lost to rocks in water about 20 to 30 feet deep. "If you land one out of five hookups, you're doing well," Brictson said.

Brictson noted the Los Cabos area preparing for the annual Dia de la Marina holiday, with 3 days of festivities planned for La Playita including all-night dancing, carnival rides, horse races, parades, and the annual panga dorado fishing tournament on May 31, 2009. "It should be a fun time, but sometimes there can be a shortage of sober skippers," Brictson said.

SAN JOSE DEL CABO, MEXICO: Species fishing specialist John Snow of San Jose del Cabo reported on 10 days of catches and collections ending May 15, 2009. A total of 10 new species of fish and other fauna were observed at Los Cabos and during a trip to visit with commercial Mexican fishermen about 50 miles up the Pacific coast of Baja: steeplined croaker, lance lizardfish, lampfish, Diogenes laternfish, Panama lightfish, toothed flounder, Pacific electric ray, swell shark, chocolate chip sea star, and Cortez angelfish.

Seven surf fishing sessions produced 28 fish of 8 species. Five panga outings, with live bait not available, at San Jose del Cabo found very slow action.

Other species collected included:

Amberjack, cominate sea catfish, conch shell, rivulated mutton hamlet, spearfish remora, vermiculated croaker, vacuoqua croaker, parasite sp. or hermit crab, bighead sand perch, California butterfly ray, flag serrano, giant electric ray, goldeneye tilefish, graybar grunt, highfin sand perch, jack crevalle, latin grunt, ocean tilefish, Pacific mutton hamlet, Pacific porgy, Panamic porkfish, sicklefin smoothhound shark, starstudded grouper, threadfin bass, threadfin jack, tinsel squirrelfish, and yellowfin croaker.

Snow noted very few tourists in southern Baja during the period. "The Los Cabos area appeared as if a nuclear bomb had just been dropped," he said. "The enormous Walmart in Cabo San Lucas had only mask-wearing workers in residence. The reported hotel occupancy at present is 12 percent. I saw 4 people on the beach the last morning in 3 hours of surf fishing directly in front of two 1,000-room hotels."



EAST CAPE, MEXICO: For the East Cape fishing week ending May 21, 2009, Chris Moyers of East Cape Smoke House reported on 104 charter boats from combined fleets including Hotels Palmas de Cortez, Playa del Sol, Punta Colorada, Buena Vista Beach Resort, Rancho Leonero, and Martin Verdugo's Beach Resort, with 297 anglers and a catch including released fish of: 34 striped marlin, 186 dorado, 2 yellowfin tuna, and 25 roosterfish. East Cape fishing area weather was at 90 degrees, with water temperatures of 69 to 82 degrees. "The fishing picked up ever so slightly at the end of the week. Otherwise, the fish-per-angler numbers would have been pretty dismal," Moyers said.

EAST CAPE, MEXICO: For the fishing week ending May 21, 2009, Felipe Valdez of Buena Vista Beach Resort reported on 42 boats, with 96 anglers and a catch including released fish of: 12 striped marlin, 141 dorado, 91 roosterfish, 1 shark, 23 snapper, 18 jack crevalle, 1 pompano, 1 triggerfish, and 4 cabrilla. East Cape fishing area weather was in the mid-80s, with water temperatures of 73 to 81 degrees, as cooler water caused fish counts to dip in the early part of the week. Most boats targeted dorado on floating debris about 30 miles out. Roosterfish action along East Cape beaches was particularly good.

EAST CAPE, MEXICO: For the week ending May 24, 2009, John Ireland of Rancho Leonero reported offshore fishing inconsistent but inshore fishing for roosterfish very good. "All anglers were releasing countless gallos in the 5 to 25-pound class mixed with jack crevalle," Ireland said. Top anglers for the week included Doug Dennett and Kathy Clack of Springfield, Ore., who fished 3.5 days on a panga with Capt. Javier for a catch including released fish of: 50 roosterfish to 25 pounds, 2 pompano to 13 pounds, 28 sierra to 12 pounds, 12 pargo to 7 pounds, 5 jack crevalle to 30 pounds, and 1 amberjack of 8 pounds. East Cape fishing area weather was clear and flat in the low-90s, with water temperatures of 79 to 84 degrees.

EAST CAPE, MEXICO: Simon Cazaly of East Cape's Vista Sea Sport diving service reported flat seas during a trip to the Cabo Pulmo coral reef where divers descended through concentrations of Pacific creolefish for sightings of guitarfish, regular and golden phase leopard grouper, yellow snapper, dense schools of bigeye jacks, and crowds of balloonfish. "I was having to shoo the balloonfish away with my hands in order to make headway," Cazaly said. "They were everywhere!"

East Cape water temperatures at depth were at 69 to 72 degrees, with visibility at 20 to 25 feet.



LA PAZ, MEXICO: Gerardo Hernandez of Tortuga Sportfishing on the Las Arenas side of La Paz reported moderate air temperatures in the 80s made comfortable in the city by seasonable Coromuel southwest winds at night and during the early morning hours. "We are enjoying these cool winds," Hernandez said.

Tortuga pangas fishing out of Las Arenas had calming weather after a period of west winds. Good fishing was found at the north point of Isla Cerralvo for amberjack and some dorado.

At the south end of the island, good numbers of pargo perro and pargo lisa were caught, as well as wahoo.

At Punta Perico on the Baja shore, pangas found yellowfin tuna of 20 to 25 pounds plus some dorado.

Good supplies of sardina bait fish were available at Isla Cerralvo.

LA PAZ, MEXICO: Jonathan Roldan of Tailhunter International reported a continued good variety of fish species caught by sport anglers at La Paz, including some very close-to-shore action at Punta Perico for dorado, sailfish, wahoo, and marlin, all caught within 200 yards of the beach.

Roosterfish action was also very good on the Las Arenas side. "The roosterfish are as good and as big as I have ever seen them," Roldan said. "We got quite a few that were in the 40 to 60-pound class. You could also get into school-sized roosters and have fun for hours. Our Las Arenas fleet got 16 different fish species this week."



LORETO, MEXICO: Patty Zapata of the Hotel Oasis in Loreto reported on 4 boats fishing in good weather and sea conditions at Bajo Punta Lobos, 15 miles east of the north end of Isla Carmen, for a catch of 9 dorado of 19 to 45 pounds on mackerel baits.

Anglers Rick Conway, Alan Truitt, and Adam Truitt fished with Hotel Oasis Capt. Martín Perpuli.

LORETO, MEXICO: For the previous week ending May 20, 2009, Zapata reported on 5 outings for a catch of 13 dorado of 16 to 27 pounds, and 5 cabrilla of 4 to 9 pounds. The dorado were caught at Bajo Punta Lobos and the cabrilla between La Choya and Punta Lobos on Isla Carmen. Fishing with Hotel Oasis Capts. Martin Perpuli and Alfonso Susarrey were anglers Karl Koenig, Nathan Koenig, Joe Koenig, and Mary Ann Altaffer.

LORETO, MEXICO: Jerry Rootlieb of Sea Beach, Calif., reported on 2 days of fishing out of Juncalito south of Loreto by his group of 5 anglers with Capts. Manuel and Jose Torres for a catch of 20 dorado of 20 to 40 pounds. "It was the best I've seen in years," Rootlieb said. "There were very few tourists in town."

No other boats were seen fishing in southern Loreto waters. Rootlieb said, "We didn't seen any other pangas either day." Also fishing in Rootlieb's group were Californians Bobby Allen of Huntington Beach, Steve Grimm of Fountain Valley, Jay Rootlieb of Lakewood, and Walt Wood of Santa Barbara.



SANTA ROSALIA, MEXICO: Jim Anderson of San Bruno south of Santa Rosalia reported some yellowtail of 35 to 40 pounds still being targeted at Isla San Marcos, but good action also found at offshore Isla Tortuga for yellowtail, cabrilla, marlin, sailfish, and dorado.

"The biggest challenge is to have enough bait to make it through the day," Anderson said.

"On Wednesday I went to Tortuga Island with my friend and guide Rigo Ojeda from San Bruno, and we managed a sailfish hookup first thing. Then we settled down to some serious yellowtail fishing, with some cabrilla thrown in for interest. When things settled down a bit, we went to find a couple more sails, a striped marlin, and then we ended up the day with a hookup on a 200-pound mako shark. This is mixed bag fishing at its best."



BAHIA DE LOS ANGELES, MEXICO: Jim Heath of Roseville, Calif., reported on Baja run to Bahia de los Angeles with his 18-foot aluminum boat, Gone Pecan, and trip partner Steve Bennett for good action on surface yellowtail in the 10-pound class around the east side of Isla Smith and near Roca Bernabe at Bahia de las Animas. Miscellaneous species also hooked included hogfish, sheephead, bonita and a 24-inch white seabass.

"The fishing had drastically improved since my last trip in early April," Heath said. "We also heard reports that yellowtail were at the northern parts of Punta Remedios opposite the north tip of Isla Angel de la Guarda. Larger home guard yellowtail were caught by pangueros with live bait at Isla Smith."

Bahia de los Angeles fishing area water temperatures were from the mid-60s to the mid-70s, as many barracuda were seen but not biting. Bait was present in all locations. Sierra were not seen, nor were whales or dolphin.

Heath noted continued heavy road construction work on the Bahia Gonzaga road running north to San Felipe.

"We stopped and visited with Coco and had a good time," Heath said. "He said we were the first people by in 3 days. He has a few needs, help on understanding his solar 12-volt system. He has a Sunforce regulator that may be acting up and also needs a device that will tell him what his panels are putting out. He has 2 motorized chairs, one for the city and one with more clearance for his place, but this one has a bad battery so he’s stuck with walking or using a hand-driven wheelchair."

Alphonsina's at Gonzaga Bay had many visitors. Whale sharks were present directly in front of the facility.



SAN FELIPE, MEXICO: Tom Ward of The Longfin Tackle Store reported on a 6-day Midriff Islands fishing trip by the Tony Reyes Fishing Tours panga mothership Jose Andres, returning to San Felipe on May 22, 2009, with a catch of: 109 yellowtail of 18 to 25 pounds, 1 white seabass of 30 pounds, 169 cabrilla of 12 to 16 pounds, 20 Humboldt giant squid of 15 to 20 pounds, 3 red snapper, 16 sheephead, 326 spotted bay bass, 1 shark, and 120 miscellaneous released fish. The trip was chartered by Jerry Zabrizki of Murray, Utah. The Jose Andres fished at Islas San Esteban and Partida.

San Carlos Fishing

SAN CARLOS, MEXICO: Jon Jen Charters of San Carlos reported the results of the lure-only, all-billfish-release Lady's International Fishing Tournament (LIFT), with 2 days of fishing by 28 boats and 48 anglers, and a catch of: 1 marlin, 9 sailfish, 17 dorado of at least 18 pounds, and no tuna or wahoo. Top awards went to: First Place Overall, Carol Bjornberg, GoFish II; Top Boat, GoFish II, Carol Bjornberg, Susan Zahniser; and Dorado, 40.0 pounds, Kelly Rich, Sea Shadow.

SAN CARLOS, MEXICO: Bryan Replogle of San Carlos said his new charter fishing business, Team Margarita Sportfishing, was operational with fresh Mexican paperwork last week and 2 boats available at 25 and 28 feet.

"After two years, Team Margarita has finally obtained their charter license," Replogle said. "Information and reports can be found on our website,"

A trip to Isla Tortuga during the week produced catches including a striped marlin on the way over to the island, 5 small tuna, and a few dorado. "The next day found lots of billfish around the island but they were finicky," Replogle said.

"The dorado were 5 to 10 miles off the north and east sides, lots of 20 to 30-pound fish. We were releasing 15 pounders."



MAZATLAN, MEXICO: Larry Edwards of Cortez Yacht Charters reported on 2 Aries Fleet offshore charter boats out of Mazatlan's Marina El Cid, with a catch including released fish of: 14 dorado, 1 sailfish, and 1 striped marlin. Six inshore super pangas had a catch of: Mexico fishing limits plus many releases of dorado, 1 pargo, and 1 sierra.

"The dorado bite has returned to Mazatlan," Edwards said. "A sustained bite may have developed at the shark buoys. This would be a fly fishing dream."

Mazatlan fishing area weather was partly cloudy in the low-90s, with mostly calm seas and water temperatures averaging 80 degrees inshore and 82 degrees offshore.

MAZATLAN, MEXICO: Tadeo Hernandez of Flota Bibi Fleet reported tourist traffic still slow but improving after Mexico's swine flu outbreak as local boats found very good dorado fishing. "All super pangas are catching limits of dorado," Hernandez said. "They are biting pretty much anything, ballyhoo, shrimp, skipjack, squid, goggle-eye, mullet, and lures!" Other fish caught by pangas around the buoys included tripletail, skipjack tuna, and "medregal."

Offshore cruisers caught good numbers of sailfish and dorado, but pangas at the buoys did better on dorado.

Mazatlan fishing area water temperatures averaged 83 degrees.



PUERTO VALLARTA, MEXICO: Danny Osuna of Marla's Sportfishing reported on a run out of Marina Riviera Nayarit at La Cruz de Huanacaxtle 10 miles north of Puerto Vallarta for fishing at Roca Corbeteña and a catch of 5 good-sized amberjack and 2 quality dog snapper.

"It was just a good fishing day," Osuna said. "The weather, sea, and currents were perfect. There was a good amberjack and pargo bite, and also a lot of jack crevalle."

Puerto Vallarta boats fishing north of Punta Mita did well on sailfish, as Capt. Alonso Osuna worked the area aboard the charter boat Marla II for 10 sailfish releases on 17 hookups.

"They left the fish still biting," Danny said. "Charters are slow but the fishing is great right now!"

PUERTO VALLARTA, MEXICO: Stan Gabruk of Master Baiters Sportfishing & Tackle at Puerto Vallarta reported tourists beginning to return to Mexico as the recent swine flu scare eased. Puerto Vallarta fishing boats found very good sailfish action at Punta Mita. "It's a no brainer," Gabruk said. "Just show up with plenty of live bait."

Dog snapper, amberjack, and rainbow runner were present at Roca Corbeteña, and sailfish and yellowfin tuna to about 40 to 75 pounds were also reported at Roca Corbeteña and El Banco.



IXTAPA ZIHUATANEJO, MEXICO: Larry Edwards of Cortez Yacht Charters reported on a combined 1 offshore day and 3 inshore days by the charter boats Secuestro de Amor, Dos Hermanos, and Dos Hermanos I, with a catch of: 1 yellowfin tuna, 1 marlin lost, 18 dorado, 10 bonito, 4 jack crevalle, 5 roosterfish, 15 needlefish, 41 jack crevalle, and 9 skipjack tuna. A blue marlin of 210 pounds was also reported.

"The roosterfish have finally started to show up," Edwards said.

Ixtapa Zihuatanejo fishing area weather was mostly cloudy in the low-90s, with mostly calm but off-colored water at 84 degrees inshore and 85 degrees offshore. Clear water was found in some near shore patches, but was located mostly 50 miles out or farther.

IXTAPA ZIHUATANEJO, MEXICO: Ed Kunze, reporting for Baja On The Fly, noted the unseasonable lack of blue marlin, black marlin, and large yellowfin tuna in local fish counts. "This has been a strange May," Kunze said. "Historically, May is the absolute best month for blues, blacks, and the larger tuna. But with the water holding at about 30 miles, this action has not yet developed for the sportfishing fleet."

Commercial fishing boats and larger private boats running out to 40 miles reported tuna and a couple of blue marlin caught daily, including one blue marlin at 614 pounds.

Very few tourist anglers were present at Ixtapa Zihuatanejo.



CANCUN, MEXICO: Larry Edwards of Cortez Yacht Charters reported on 1 outing by the El Cid Caribe charter boat Aries VI at Puerto Morelos near Cancun for a catch of: 1 large dorado lost, 1 blackfin tuna of 15 to 20 pounds, and 3 red snapper caught while bottom fishing near shore. Angler Tony DeCicco said, "We couldn't have asked for better weather. Everyone tried real hard. The economy down there is really taking it on the chin. We only saw one or two boats out."

DORADO AT MULEGE--Just in time for the local tournament, dorado were arriving in Mulege waters last week as John Haberman and Randy Gates landed this pair of 20 pounders and released 12 smaller ones. PHOTO COURTESY OF PATTI HIGGINBOTHAM.

Wahoo caught at Mulege

WAHOO ADVANCE GUARD--Jim Strauss scored the season's first wahoo reported by local Mulege boats with this nice skinny hooked in 80-degree water on May 21, 2009. PHOTO COURTESY OF PATTI HIGGINBOTHAM.

Panga fishing at Ensenada

YELLOWTAIL FLURRY--Vonny's Fleet anglers fishing at Ensenada ran into a nice school of surface yellowtail spotted by Capt. Beto "Eagle Eyes" Zamora, right. Frank Luzzaro, left, and Kirk Braito, center, scored 4 nice fish on Vonny's Fleet's locally made aluminum jigs. PHOTO COURTESY OF IVAN VILLARINO.

QUINTIN FORKIES SHOWING--As more spring yellowtail were seen around San Quintin last week, Charlie Burris got an early season forkie during an outing with K&M Offshore Sportfishing. PHOTO COURTESY OF KELLY CATIAN.

Unknown ratfish species 1

Unknown ratfish species 2

Unknown ratfish species 3

WHAT IS IT?--It appears to be a type of ratfish, or chimera, but what species? This large specimen was found floating alive on the surface about 11 miles south of Cabo San Lucas by the charter boat Minerva IV on May 19, 2009. It appeared reddish in the water and tried to go down when approached. The specimen was frozen for analysis by Tracy Ehrenberg of Pisces Fleet Sportfishing. Pending analysis, it appears to be a ratfish species as yet undescribed in the scientific literature. In general, ratfish are deep dwelling fish with heavy, plate-like teeth that are used for feeding on hard-surfaced food. PHOTOS COURTESY OF TRACY EHRENBERG.

Big San Jose del Cabo roosterfish

HEFTY CABOS GALLOS--Capt. Chame of Gordo Banks Pangas at San Jose del Cabo with a 64-pound roosterfish that hit a trolled mullet bait near Punta Gorda. "This fish died during the fight and couldn't be released," said Gordo Banks Pangas' Eric Brictson. "Chame said he saw a school of about 50 similar sized roosterfish, all in a feeding frenzy on mullet." PHOTO COURTESY OF ERIC BRICTSON.

Chocolate chip sea star

Diogenes lanternfish

Electric ray

Swell shark

Unknown species

BAJA SPECIES--New species of fish and other sea life added to the recent collections of San Jose del Cabo species fishing specialist John Snow included, from top: chocolate chip sea star, Diogenes lanternfish, Pacific electric ray, swell shark, and an unusual creature with an asymmetrical body found inside a hermit crab shell. PHOTOS COURTESY OF JOHN SNOW.

Wahoo caught at La Paz

THREE-MINUTE WAHOO--Jude Martinez of Los Angeles, Calif., trolled his purple-black Yo-Zuri lure for "no more than 3 minutes" before he got slammed by this nice wahoo. Martinez, fishing at the south end of Isla Cerralvo with Tailhunter International of La Paz, had his back seize up during the fight and returned to the beach while lying on the floor of the panga, presumably next to his fish. "It was worth it!" he said. PHOTO COURTESY OF JONATHAN ROLDAN.

Fishing at La Paz

LA PAZ MIXED SPECIES--Tim and Lyle Davis of Nevada fished the Las Arenas side of La Paz with Tortuga Sportfishing for good panga action on a variety of fish species including these 2 pez fuertes, or amberjack, on the left, this pargo lisa, and wahoo. They went out with Tortuga's Capt. Nufo Green. PHOTO COURTESY OF GERARDO HERNANDEZ.

Dorado caught at Loreto

LORETO DORADO SEASON--Spring fishing at Loreto has been promising for dorado as the size of the fish increases and they get closer to town. Anglers, from left, Karl, Nathan, and Joe Koenig scored dorado to 25 pounds plus a nice dog snapper at Bajo Punta Lobos, outside the north end of Isla Carmen. They fished out of Loreto's Hotel Oasis with panga Capt. Martin Perpuli. PHOTO COURTESY OF PATTI ZAPATA.

Dorado caught with Torres Sportfishing

SOUTH OF LORETO--Jay Rootlieb and his group fished 2 days at Juncalito south of Loreto for a catch of 20 dorado including this 35 pounder with local Capts. Manuel and Jose Torres. PHOTO COURTESY OF JAY ROOTLIEB.

New charter boats at San Carlos

NEW SAN CARLOS CHARTERS--The San Carlos, Sonora, boats Margarita IV and Margarita V have just opened business as Team Margarita Sportfishing. Information, PHOTO COURTESY OF BRYAN REPLOGLE.

Chino mero caught at Mazatlan

MAZATLAN CHINO MERO--Enrique Izquierdo of Neto's Fleet at Mazatlan shows off a very good-sized chino mero, or clown hawkfish, caught by casting from a kayak at the local "Bird Island" fishing spot. PHOTO COURTESY OF ENRIQUE IZQUIERDO.

Amberjack and dog snapper at Puerto Vallarta

DAY AT THE ROCK--A run to Roca Corbeteña by the Puerto Vallarta charter boat Marla found good action on 5 amberjack and 2 dog snapper for anglers Troy Keunne of Lakeside, Calif., and trip partners "Mike" and "Clint." The Marla fished out of Marina Riviera Nayarit in the town of La Cruz de Huanacaxtle about 10 miles north of Puerto Vallarta. PHOTO COURTESY OF DANNY OSUNA.

Fishing at Puerto Vallarta

VALLARTA SPRING FISHING--Inshore and offshore action was improving during May as Puerto Vallarta fishing waters warmed up for the summer season, and the Master Baiters Sportfishing & Tackle boat Mamba Negra returned from Roca Corbeteña with a nice mixed catch. Fishing aboard the Mamba Negra were, from left, first mate Ivan and angler Javier Hernandez with tuna, Capt. Carlos, Elizabeth Hernandez with a jack crevalle, and Terry Kitaguchi with a jack crevalle and a rainbow runner. PHOTO COURTESY OF STAN GABRUK.

Baja dirt road driving

Baja scorpion in UV light

BAJA FISHING ADVENTURES--Jim Heath, with Steve Bennett, on a Baja run to Bahia de los Angeles and trailering Heath's 18-foot boat, found the old road near Gonzaga Bay "as bad as I remembered." Fishing during the trip included a Rebel Fastrac trolling session for 3 grouper plus a white seabass in about 30 minutes for Baja newbie Bennett. "That dude's in serious negotiation with his wife on when he can get down there again," Heath said. Below, a night visitor, normally straw colored, lit up in an attractive fluorescent blue by Heath's UV flashlight. PHOTOS COURTESY OF JIM HEATH.

Baja coastal fishing reports and articles.

Ensenada fishing reports and articles.

Puerto Santo Tomas fishing reports and articles.

Erendira fishing reports and articles.

San Quintin fishing reports and articles.

Magdalena Bay fishing reports and articles.

Cabo San Lucas fishing reports and articles.

San Jose del Cabo (Los Cabos) fishing reports and articles.

East Cape fishing reports and articles.

La Paz fishing reports and articles.

Loreto fishing reports and articles.

Mulege fishing reports and articles.

Santa Rosalia fishing reports and articles.

Bahia de los Angeles (L.A. Bay) fishing reports and articles.

San Felipe fishing reports and articles.

Rocky Point (Puerto Penasco) fishing reports and articles.

San Carlos (Sonora) fishing reports and articles .

Mazatlan fishing reports and articles .

Puerto Vallarta fishing reports and articles.

Ixtapa Zihuatanejo fishing reports and articles.

Huatulco fishing reports and articles.

Cancun fishing reports and articles.

Mexico coastal fishing reports and articles.

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