The giant bluefin tuna fishing heated up for the fleet of Tony’s Tuna Fishing in September of 2012, as we anticipated it would. We knew the tuna were in our waters in large numbers, but without the herring concentrated in small areas thoughout the first three weeks of August, they were a little tougher to track.
However, as August came to an end and we got into September fishing, the herring appeared and showed up consistently in the same area they have appeared for the last number of years, just four miles northeast of North Lake Harbour, our home port.
All five of our boats ran every day with the exception of the windy days, and all had great success on most days. We did have to make a couple of long trips back to Fishermen’s Bank on the odd occassion, when the tuna were biting better there. Although these trips are longer and we burn more fuel, they usually resulted in better results with more giant bluefin being hooked by the fleet.
September 12 to 14 was the Canada Tuna Cup Challenge, hosted by the Friends of Elmira, and 21 boats participated in this three day event. All five of our boats had great success in this tournament, with all of us hooking bluefin tuna every day of the tourney. One of our boats, the Shelling it out Again, captained by Wayne Campbell, took home top prize with his crew from Denmark for the three day competition.
The herring stayed around until the last week of September, and the bluefin tuna stayed with them. When the herring did start to disperse, the tuna, due to force of habit after being in one area for a five week period, stayed around for a week or so in this area.
After this, we did a little looking to find the giant bluefin, and had a period of fishing where we would find the seagull and gannet flocks, and the bluefin tuna would be in the waters under them pushing bait fish to the surface. This type of fishing is a little more work as we follow the birds but quite exciting when you can get a live surface kite bait up in the middle of a school of thrashing tuna.
We are now done fishing for the year 2012, and preparing for another great year of lobster and bluefin tuna fishing with the Tony’s Tuna Fishing fleet in 2013! We are hoping to have the herring back in early July and bring on the giant bluefins!!!
Capt. Tony and Bradley MacDonald
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