Red Crabs Appear, Red Snapper Bite ~ April 2, 2016


Anglers –
April 2, 2016

We are now seeing the final wave of Spring Break vacationers arriving in good numbers and enjoying the warm sunshine and scores of activities available. Transition period now, weather is variable, from slightly chilly early in the day, to highs in the upper 80s. Some marine layer cloud cover early, even a little fog, quickly burning off as the sun rises.

Ocean swells have been moderate, winds variable, at times from the north, then from the south, but not enough to keep charters from venturing to the normal fishing grounds. Currents were strong at times, water temperature ranged from 70 degrees on the Pacific, to 73 degrees off of San Jose del Cabo and towards the north. These patterns are normal for this time of year, usually lasting though the later part of this month, then we see warmer currents move in, continuing warming trends helping to stabilize conditions.

Not much has changed for bait availability, caballito, ballyhoo and squid strips still be used. No one reported finding any sardina schools, except for some 50 miles north in Cabo Pulmo National Park, not an option from this heavily protected zone. The big news this week was that the pelagic red crabs once again became abundant on the surface of the Gordo Banks. This always sets off a flurry of commercial activity, as it means that the prized pargo, snapper catch will be following these red crabs.

In the cooler waters we are not finding any dorado or wahoo to speak of, there have been decent numbers of striped marlin encountered as close as two to five miles from shore, striking on various baitfish best, but also hitting on trolling lures, sizes ranged to 140 lb. Many charters are doing a combination of bottom action, inshore and offshore, everything is close enough now that this can be a decent option.

Not much going on close to shore except for sporadic action on roosterfish, jack crevalle and sierra. Though hit or miss and no big numbers reported. The striped marlin was definitely the main offshore bite, easily available now for even the smallest of charters, since stripers are being found close to shore. No huge numbers, but a very good chance of hooking into a billfish if wishing to target these fish.

Many family groups vacationing now and the majority of these groups have been opting to target smaller species, better number of a variety and excellent eating. The red snapper, pargo action was good for anglers that got into the red crab action, because this is what these fish are now feeding on, not much interested in anything else at the present time. The snapper and pargo species being landed are averaging in the 2 to 14 lb. range. An occasional amberjack cabrilla, grouper or yellowtail were hooked into, some on yo-yo jigs, others on baitfish. Mid-week there was one impressive 75 lb. broomtail grouper landed by veteran Baja angler Joey Hanen of So. Cal., fishing on the super Panga “Periquita”.

Only a handful of yellowfin tuna were found this week, most from the Iman Bank area, cooler water and choppy seas made this bite tough, the ever present sea lions were in wait as well. The yellowfin that we did see were ranging in the 15 to 30 lb. class.

The combined panga fleets launching out of La Playita, Puerto Los Cabos Marina sent out approximately 98 charters for the week, with anglers reporting a fish count of: 21 striped marlin, 9 yellowfin tuna, 12 pompano, 2 yellowtail, 12 amberjack, 2 broomtail grouper, 5 pinto cabrilla, 18 cabrilla (leopard grouper), 480 huachinango (red snapper), 78 yellow snapper, 320 other pargo species,4 island jack, 5 sierra, 13 jack crevalle, 15 roosterfish, 6 bonito and 230 triggerfish.

Good fishing, Eric

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