Team Bloodstream trip to Venice March 2012 yields a 238 lb YFT
This is not a local report but the anglers are. The crew of the F/V Bloodstream loaded up and dragged a new 2011 35 ST Contender on a long haul to Venice LA. The crew making the long haul by vehicle consisted of boat owner and Captain Brian Rimer with Scott Lerhman, Chris Hudson, Billy Fazio and myself.
Every roadtrip has its challenges
During the 8 day excursion two additional crew members flew out that consisted of Thad Tripoli and Greg “Fred” Sharp.
After weeks of discussions with local Capts Eddie Burger and Michael Pittman, Venice Marina was selected as our home base for the week. Here is the Battle Ship Bloodstream in front of the Houseboat row at Venice Marina.
We rented as house boat that resembled a big city penthouse with real wood accents, leather high back recliners, flat screen TVs, large kitchen for cooking and socializing, granite counter tops and sleeps 10 comfortably.
Houseboat Row on the docks
Houseboat approach by water
The back side of the house boat provided dockage for the 35ST Contender and also included a 500 lb ice maker, freezer, cleaning table and gas grill. Exceptional accommodations and the people at the Venice Marina are a good bunch of people.
Venice Marina is one of the southernmost access points where the Mississippi River flows into the Gulf. From there you have several rivers or pass that flow from the Mississippi into the Gulf. Local knowledge is key to selecting the safest pass during early morning fog or low light conditions. From an outsider what caught my attention was the presence of radar on almost every boat, regardless of size.
Our Fishing focused on the many oil rigs including the Medusa and areas of structure like the Midnight Lumps.
Venice calls itself the Fishing Capital of the World; I even bought a T-Shirt at the marina gift shop with that bold claim silkscreened on the back. After one day of fishing I was convinced that they were right. After a week of fishing I was convinced this place was Jurassic Park. Each day yielded milestone catches of various species. We counted 12 species in all that included Yellowfin Tuna, Black Fin Tuna, Bonita, Bar Jack, AmberJack, Kingfish, Red Snapper, Bee Liners, dolphin,Reef Shark, Mako Shark and Wahoo. Almost all BFT and YFT 40lbs and under where released as we became selective on what to harvest. When fishing in Jurassic Park harvesting fish limits is not the goal. With a 238 lb YFT on day 1 and averaging 4-6 fish in the 75-100lb class daily, we released many fish to keep that fishery one of the best in the world.
Capt Eddie pulling up beside us with his 207 lb YFT
Snapper where plentiful
Mako hooked up with no intention of being landed
Daily limit of Amberjacks started around 50 lbs and just kept getting bigger
A single token Dolphin was added to the mix
Kingfish where plentiful and at times we had to pillage their stomachs to retrieve lost hooks.
Back at the Venice Marina docks, we met Marine Biologist Eric Newman and many staff members of the Louisiana Dept of Wildlife and Fisheries (LWDF). These are great people doing an important job collecting and quantifying data from long term impact from the BP oil spill. They collected head and guts of various fish species for research. I found it interesting that they target the ear bone from the Amberjacks and our 238lb YFT to determine the age. They also weighed and certified our catch as the 2nd largest YFT recorded in the Gulf of Mexico.
Picture below of the Marine Biologist Eric Newman with the head of the 238YFT that we donated for research.
Below is a smaller YFT with a tag that we kept to give to Eric for research.