YELLOWFIN TUNA BITE SLOWS FOR LA PLAYITA SPORTFISHING PANGAS
Oct. 29, 2006, Eric Brictson, Gordo Banks Pangas, La Playita, Los Cabos, San Jose del Cabo, Baja California Sur, Mexico:
The combined La Playita panga sportfishing fleet sent out approximately 154 charters for the week, for a fish count of: 860 yellowfin tuna, 54 dorado, 14 rainbow runners, 3 wahoo, 1 roosterfish, 2 striped marlin, 11 sailfish, 225 skipjack, 24 pargo, 8 cabrilla, 4 grouper, 16 sierra, 7 pompano, 8 amberjack, and 15 triggerfish.
San Jose del Cabo sportfishing operations, including both cruisers and pangas, have been operating at capacity levels. A late season hurricane named Paul developed southwest of Cabo San Lucas, gradually loosing strength and within 50 miles of Cabo as a mere tropical depression. From 1 to 4 inches of rain fell in various areas, ocean conditions were stormy and the Cabo marina was shut down Tuesday and Wednesday and there was also no launching of pangas out of San Jose del Cabo. This meant a lot of lost business since fleets had full schedules for those days.
By Thursday the sportfishing fleets were back in action. On Friday we experienced wind up to 18 miles an hour from the north, the first significant blow from that direction of the season. This made for rough seas, but over the weekend conditions settled back down and were ideal once again.
Fishing water temperatures off San Jose del Cabo were still a bit above average for late October, ranging from 84 to 86 degrees.
Tournament time also means heavy pressure on bait supplies and the fishing grounds. Despite the storm, the commercial pangueros were able to find sufficient supplies of bait.
San Jose del Cabo pangueros reported yellowfin tuna coming up and biting early, but once the cruisers and yachts from Cabo San Lucas arrived, the fishing action quickly vanished. Apparently these Cabo operators have a different set of rules of courtesy while fishing.
It is pretty much common sense that if you see other boats with fish feeding in a chum line and hooking fish that you do not motor right through the boiling fish, but that is not how many of these cruiser skippers operate. They go right into the boiling fish and scatter the bite for everybody.
Yellowfin tuna remained the dominant catch for the San Jose del Cabo charter fleets. Most of the yellowfin tuna action continued to be off San Jose within one mile of shore of the estuary to La Laguna.
On Monday the bite was wide open for yellowfin tuna in the 20 to 25 pound class, but since the storm the fishing action has dropped off considerably, with the size of the tuna was down to about the 10 to 15 pound average.
The water color is a little murky, but not bad. The main factor in the bite slowing down seems to be the build up of fishing boats, since this apparently has been the only area that is producing any consistent action. Charter boats over the weekend reports average catches of tuna down to 2 to 5 per boat.
Only a handful of dorado were mixed in with the tuna, and most of these were smaller fish.
The wahoo season continues to show no signs of coming to life. Everyone is crossing their fingers that there will be a late season bite for these elusive game fish.
(See "Mexico Fishing News" online for current fishing reports, photos, weather, and water temperatures from San Jose del Cabo and other major Mexican sportfishing areas. Vacation travel articles, fishing maps and seasonal calendars, and fishing related information for San Jose del Cabo may be found at Mexfish.com's main San Jose del Cabo page.