Halfmoon bonanza

Weekly fishing report

Halfmoon perch (Medialuna californiensis)
  • Halfmoon perch (Medialuna californiensis)
  • Image by David Starr Jordan, via Wikimedia Commons

Inshore: The half-day boats have been reporting a mix of rockfish, sculpin, sheephead and tons of halfmoon perch. Calico bass are eating plastics in the kelp when the current sets up right, while sand bass are feeding off the flats, especially towards Imperial Beach in 60 to 80 feet of water. Most ¾ day boats are concentrating on the yellowtail bite off the Coronado Islands with success. Lingcod, vermillion rockfish and a few log barracuda are rounding out the catch on those trips. Yellowtail have been spotted feeding on the surface in La Jolla, signaling the change from their deeper haunts in the winter to their summertime feeding at the top of the water column.

Outside: Down the Baja coast from the Finger Bank to San Quintin, the yellowtail are still holding on the high spots in 150 to 200 feet of water. There are lots of schools of smaller white seabass from juveniles to 20 pounds in and around the kelps along shore and off San Martin Island. The long range boats are still smacking large yellowfin tuna and wahoo south of Cedros down to the banks south of Cabo San Lucas.

3/13 - 3/19 Dock Totals: 1,441 anglers aboard 63 boats out of San Diego landings this past week caught 254 yellowtail, 139 calico bass, 33 sand bass, 1,623 rockfish, 16 lingcod, 382 sculpin, 1 bonito, 121 sanddab, 15 barracuda, 1,024 halfmoon, 1 rubberlip seaperch, 31 blacksmith, 40 sheephead, 70 whitefish, 17 mackerel, 2 bocaccio, 4 halibut and 3 cabezon.

Whale Watch: The Annual migration of the Eastern Pacific gray whales is in its final weeks. The leviathans are heading back north to their summer feeding grounds in the Bering Sea after calving in the Pacific lagoons of Baja Sur. Unlike early in the season, when many grays are spotted inshore along the kelp edge while heading south, most of the northbound whales are being spotted a few miles outside and along the outer banks where there is a lot of krill and pelagic crab to feed on.

Scheduled trout plants (lbs): 3/23 Wohlford (1500), Dixon (3000), 3/28 Jennings (1000), 3/30 Poway (1500)

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