Early promise continues to materialise into fact, delivering superb game fishing with the Blue Marlin action, in particular, hitting the headlines.
The La Nina weather pattern has brought warm water and plenty of these Blue “Ferraris” with several exceeding 650lbs and the best, so far, at over 866lbs.
Even, yours truly, managed a specimen over 600lbs. With at least a month to go before their numbers thin out, we are hoping for a “horse” to be captured as the hard luck stories continue to be reported. One monster being lost after 6 ˝ hrs and tales of spooled reels are not uncommon.
Striped Marlin will remain on the coast much longer and there have been very good numbers caught so far, some very close inshore, but also a disproportionately high number of fish have been dropped. Best of the species so far registered 365lbs but, as they continue to pack on weight, this specimen is sure to be surpassed at some point.
One surprising aspect has been the virtual disappearance of Mahimahi, after such good indications at the start of the season.
Yellowfin Tuna made the usual early showing, of good size up to 176lbs, but in sparse numbers.
The sense of adventure, held by so many Kiwis, has resulted in some extraordinary captures, including Striped Marlin from a small inflatable and another from a jetski.
A small Black Marlin, of around 270lbs, was caught from a 14ft tinny, very close to shore and a monster Black was lost from a top game boat recently, where the highly experienced skipper called it as easily a grander.
Other exciting news includes a world record claim Big Eye Tuna of 300lbs on 30lb line, a near world record Mako of 713lbs on 20lb line and the first recreationally caught Broadbill from the South Island of 455lbs.
Shark numbers are definitely on the rise and a very big Tiger shark was recently spotted which, at first, was mistaken for a small Whale Shark.
The current weather could be a bit kinder, as time marches on, but there are sure to be plenty more exciting times ahead!