RI Tuna Report [Archive] - Fly Fishing Forum

: RI Tuna Report


Smcdermott
08-22-2006, 08:39 PM
Since we have been talking bluefin mortaility in the offshore forum I figured I would recap the past few weeks off the RI coast. The tuna did make an appearance this year although not in the same numbers as last year. The kicker this year was the additional presence of good numbers of Skipjack tuna. There were also Bonito around based on reports and friends holding them up from there coolers. I didn't personally see any and I have yet to get one on fly so lets not talk about that. ;)

I personally think the fishing was much tougher this year in general. We did have a few weekdays early on with little pressure and stellar results. Small 3" Mushies in chartreuse and yellow on overcast days and pink on bright days seemed to have the best results. Only other fly I had sucess with was a white bunny but to be honest I didn't see the need to change much. Sinking lines also seemed to fair better with the bait holding a few feet down in the water column. This was my first experience with the skippies and they seem to be tougher to hook overall as they tended to be more sensitive to boat pressure. However, they showed later (or at least we found them later) in the game and were therfore subjected to more pressure right off the bat. They do provide an awesome display sometimes charging across the surface at breakneck speeds with the accompanying visual and audible stimuli. I liken it to unleashing a hundred Ak-47s in full auto onto the water. And while they were generally smaller at about 8-12lbs I found them to fight significantly harder than albies or even SBFT of similar size. All in all this will clearly be one of the best parts of the year for me. Although I am starting to look forward to the variety that fall brings. Montauk here we come....

http://members.cox.net/seanmcdermott/Sakonet%20003%20(Medium).jpg


http://members.cox.net/seanmcdermott/Sakonet%20Day%202%20001%20(Medium).jpg

http://members.cox.net/seanmcdermott/Sakonet%20Day%202%20005%20(Medium).jpg

http://members.cox.net/seanmcdermott/Zsolti%20Tuna%20Day%20010%20(Medium).jpg

FishHawk
08-23-2006, 04:27 AM
What reel did you use your Able or Tibor? Nice report. FishHawk

jimS
08-23-2006, 06:34 AM
Sean, the last photo of you holding a fish was a SBFT, not a skippy? Great year for you, and thanks for the post.

juro
08-23-2006, 07:01 AM
Sean

With all the joking around in other threads, you made me drool all over the keyboard with this post.

That skippy sure gets the imagination into 6th gear. A fish with speed streaks!

Smcdermott
08-23-2006, 08:09 AM
Fishawk,

I landed fish on the Super 11, Super 8 with BG 3 spool, and the Tibor Riptide. All handled the battles fine. I have to say there is no sweeter sound than line coming off the tibor at 60ft/second though.

Jim,

All the fish except pic #2 were baby bluefin. I got 4 skippies and 8 bluefin this year on fly. I also got a few on spin trying to figure out what would work for a buddy as well.

Juro,

Those skippies are really cool looking in person and very hard to do justice to in the photos. The irridesence just doesn't come out. Hopefully they will make a return next year and you can see for yourself.

Sean

Jim Miller
08-23-2006, 10:22 AM
Sean
nice work w/ the tunoids! We were down in the Westport/Pt. Judith area last Thursday. Had some magnificent blitzes of BF, Skippies and Blues. Managed to land one skippy and hook 6 total for the boat. They were very finicky. Lots of good sized blues. Used 20# floro and small tan epoxies.

Great place to fish .... hope to get back there for the fall run!

Please PM me if you keep finding the tunoids ..... maybe I'll make a quick trip! :D

BigDave
08-23-2006, 10:29 AM
Sean nice pics! That skippy is a big boy. Did it take a little line on you? :lildevl:

One of the fish from Friday dumped over 1/2 the backing on my Riptide which is holding over 300 yards. We had to chase it down becuase there were a bazillion bluefish breaking between the fish and the boat :Eyecrazy:

Good times over the last few weeks. Just one SBFT can really make your season.

Smcdermott
08-23-2006, 10:51 AM
Dave,

That skippy did take some line. In fact it burned a hole through the stripping glove! Lucily I felt it happening before it broke skin. I love gelspun backing for its strength and ability to add a little insurance to reels I pull double duty with but man it can be deadly if you are not careful. I actually think I got a few bigger than that one on Saturday.

Sean

Smcdermott
08-23-2006, 11:23 AM
Please PM me if you keep finding the tunoids ..... maybe I'll make a quick trip! :D

Jim,

My calendar from last year says we are done for the year and that theory seemed to be backed up by the thinning schools this weekend. I have never fished it myself but my understanding is some of these fish just move out a little and stick around through September. I may take a trip or two to investigate that theory. My guess is we will see the albies move in and take there place around Labor Day if the bait stays put. Lets hope the anchovy make a solid showing this year.

Sean

juro
08-23-2006, 11:37 AM
Sean -

Not sure about the SBFT patterns but the hardtails push onward then push back later as you know.

I hear there is an increasing presence of hardtails on Nantucket Sound from numerous sources including captains who are out every day several times a day.

I've enjoyed years where large numbers turn the corner and go up into Pleasant Bay for weeks, wreaking havoc on the bait which is easy for them to trap in the bay. I don't think they go too much further than that although I've hooked them off Nauset and they make regular appearances off certain spots accessible by 4x4 starting about now.

Also hooked and/or landed them from shore at Chatham, Harwich, Dennis, Yarmouth, Craigville / Centerville, Cotuit, Wianno, Mashpee, Falmouth, the Knob and Woods Hole off the docks, and Westport. I know the west end guys do real well too.

So here's my question - do you see a period of lull before the October return? We always seem to have plenty of hardtail action on our Rhody claves on what appears to be the pull back.

Smcdermott
08-23-2006, 12:05 PM
So here's my question - do you see a period of lull before the October return? We always seem to have plenty of hardtail action on our Rhody claves on what appears to be the pull back.

Juro,

I have some loose theories on that and I think you will find they are very closely related to the discussion we had on Stripers earlier in the year. The basic premise is that I don't believe we neccessarily see the same fish. Yes I think there is overlap but from a general point of view I think the fish move in around the Block, Vineyard, Nantucket etc... and fill in going NE or SW from there. The major difference with the tunoids is that more of their general North/South movements happen way offshore in the warm water eddies of the gulf stream. One example would be bonito. It is my understanding that they almost always show first around Nantucket. I don't think it is unrelated that it is the eastern most shoreline that will hold the small bait the tunoids love. The fish then continue to push in both toward the cape and RI searching out more food. These fish seem to end up in Western LI sound as well as portions of the cape so that tells me water temp must be a factor and they probably stop migrating when they hit that coldwater that sits off Chatham most years. I would guess you probably see the push into Pleasant Bay in those years when that body of water warmed. I haven't been at this game long enough to know with any certainty so it is strictly guesswork. In any case I think the bigger concentrations of tunoids you see in the fall is not neccessarily a grouping due to fish reappearing but more of the bait and gamefish starting to form their respective migrations. The tuna go east to get back to the gulfstream and the bait moves south along the shore. Where do they meet in the CT/RI area....Montauk!

Sean

Slinger
08-23-2006, 12:11 PM
Just in from the Point. Not at all like Sat. nothing but bluefish, millions of bluefish! I did see a couple of Bonito mixed in but they were definitly scarce. They may very well be history. Still no Alberts! So flat I could have taken the boat to England.
Slinger

Striper
08-26-2006, 04:56 PM
Well you know it is getting late in the season when we are talking ALBIES! Still waiting to hear the word from my eastern sources. I think that year to year it is more a matter of the year class of Albies just like the bass. If they had a banner spawning year than we will see the results in the amount of fish that invade the inshore grounds. I don't really see a huge fluctuation in the amounts of bait year in and year out. Last year we had oodles of small bait and the Albies didn't show until very late in Sept.. They truly are a hard species to figure out???? The bluefin are even harder but I only have two seasons fishing for them and only got 2 this year. Never even got a skippie but I have had the pleasure of landing them in the past. I would agree with Sean that they give the SBFT a run for their money when hooked, maybe even harder fighters than the SBFT. Time will tell whether this season will bring good Albie catching or not.