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Bluefin Tuna .... missed !
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Author:  kingfish [ Fri Apr 12, 2019 12:39 pm ]
Post subject:  Bluefin Tuna .... missed !

I had decided to take a quick autumn break ( April marks the onset of the cold season here in Australia) at a coastal town which is some 3 hours from Sydney.
There is a beautiful hotel on the shore there and the ocean provides superb viewing of migratory whales as well as very good fishing for marlin.

However, I was after the more accessible species closer to shore. My guide had phoned me to advise that Bluefin Tuna (also called longtail tuna) had arrived along the coastal waters and they were catching these weighing upto 20 kilos.

The Tuna were being caught on stickbaits primarily but I was more confident on catching these on metal lures, as I had experienced this mode of fishing on earlier trips to Northern Australia. So I packed a fair number of lures covering both stickbaits and metals, along with my dedicated 7ft.3in travel rod and the
trusty Shimano Stella 5000 SW reel.

Contd.....

Author:  kingfish [ Fri Apr 12, 2019 12:47 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Bluefin Tuna .... missed !

View from the resort at sunrise, overlooking the Marina and looking out on the bay where we were to chase the Tuna.

Author:  kingfish [ Fri Apr 12, 2019 12:59 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Bluefin Tuna .... missed !

Rod and reel, collapsed into convenient travel size.

Author:  kingfish [ Fri Apr 12, 2019 1:03 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Bluefin Tuna .... missed !

A collection of stickbaits, bibbed lures for Tuna action and other pelagic species.

Author:  kingfish [ Fri Apr 12, 2019 1:25 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Bluefin Tuna .... missed !

We left early in the morning at 7am, a delay of one hour from the original scheduled departure, so as to benefit from the incoming tide. This tide would bring in the Tuna closer inshore for feeding.

There was already a lot of activity on the water from birds diving onto the water to collect pieces of bait being attacked from underneath by fish in a feeding frenzy.

The guide was very experienced and only wanted to see a specific flock of birds (terns) rather than the ubiquitous sea gulls, as terns primarily fed on bait schools being slashed at by Tuna . We were also keeping a sharp lookout for water splashes indicating attacking Tuna.

We were lucky and located a group of Tuna actively attacking bait on the surface. A quick dash in the boat brought us to within 50 meters of the feeding Tuna and I laid out a long cast with a Twisty 40gm metal and retrieved the lure as fast as I could turn the reel handle .

You need to trigger the reflex action in these predators by mimicking bait trying to flee the area.
However, the Tuna ignored the lure and disappeared.

Time and time again, we would locate them either by finding flocks of tern diving onto the water or by
water slashes but no matter what we tried, the Tuna would either disappear by the time we reached the area or they would not hit the lures. Very frustrating but that is the way this game is played!

We tried to stay in one area and wait for the Tuna schools to approach us and it almost worked..... the
Tuna came within meters of the boat and were jumping out of the water chasing the bait. They were
all large, easily in the 20 kilo range and we led them by casting ahead of their direction of travel.
No luck.

We spent several hours chasing them until time ran out. Disappointing but that is fishing for you. I will try again next year and hope that Lady Luck smiles upon us.

Contd....

Author:  kingfish [ Fri Apr 12, 2019 1:31 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Bluefin Tuna .... missed !

However, all was not lost. We found other bait schools that were being attacked by Tailor (bluefish) and
we caught several of these species.

They give a very good fight on light tackle... we used a 1-4 kilo rod with a 2500 Stradic CI4+ reel
and I know Binu and Ulygun will be surprised at this! However, the tailor in Australia run to much smaller
sizes than the bluefish in the USA!

Kingfish

Author:  kingfish [ Fri Apr 12, 2019 1:53 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Bluefin Tuna .... missed !

Tailor fishing ....

Author:  kingfish [ Fri Apr 12, 2019 1:56 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Bluefin Tuna .... missed !

A report on some soft plastics action will follow shortly.

Kingfish

Author:  Bobby [ Sat Apr 13, 2019 9:39 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Bluefin Tuna .... missed !

Nice report kingfish, I had a similar experience once, the tuna just would not take any stickbaits or bibbed lures, try spinning with spoons and jet heads with skirts or feathers in trail.

Author:  kingfish [ Sat Apr 13, 2019 10:33 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Bluefin Tuna .... missed !

Thanks, Bobby.

I will certainly try spoons ..... have a good variety of them in different weights and sizes. Jet heads, I have yet to try these (have used them once for trolling).

Regards,
Kingfish

Author:  kingfish [ Sat Apr 13, 2019 12:35 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Bluefin Tuna .... missed !

Could the Moderators kindly move this report to the " Boat Fishing" section?

Thanks,
Kingfish

Author:  Bobby [ Sun Apr 14, 2019 3:29 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Bluefin Tuna .... missed !

Done

Author:  kingfish [ Sun Apr 14, 2019 10:05 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Bluefin Tuna .... missed !

Thank you, Bobby.

Kingfish

Author:  Ulygun [ Mon Apr 15, 2019 11:04 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Bluefin Tuna .... missed !

Nice report there Kingfish! Sorry that lady luck want on your side this time. I'm sure you'll make it work someday.

Cheers!

Author:  kingfish [ Mon Apr 15, 2019 2:18 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Bluefin Tuna .... missed !

Thanks, Ulygun.

Yes, I plan to return to this place again in April next year (tuna migration starts early April to mid May
usually).

Waiting for some fishing reports from your end. Any action over the winter?

Kingfish

Author:  lure_fisherman [ Mon Apr 15, 2019 4:53 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Bluefin Tuna .... missed !

Kingfish, sorry to hear about the tuna, but let's hope that it works the next time.

I understand how it feels as I had a similar experience about a week ago, when I saw what felt like a hundred threadfin salmon feeding right next to my feet last week without one fish being hooked. They barely touched the lure, I had one solid strike and may be a couple more nibble, but nothing other than that. The bait I think looked like anchovies. Will try again, but I'm pretty sure that the fish already moved from there.

Cheers!
Maruthu

Author:  kingfish [ Mon Apr 15, 2019 5:59 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Bluefin Tuna .... missed !

Maruthu,

Fish can be funny that way ..... that is what brings us back again and again until we achieve success.

That is a massive school of threadfin salmon, hope you get one next time.

Kingfish

Author:  h_venkatesan [ Thu May 02, 2019 3:26 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Bluefin Tuna .... missed !

Sorry to hear that the tuna did not take the lure. Better luck next time.

Author:  kingfish [ Fri May 03, 2019 1:18 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Bluefin Tuna .... missed !

Hello Venkat,

Nice to hear from you ...... it just makes one more determined to catch them next time!

Regards,
Kingfish

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