Dolphin 30 lbs plus. Are those days over?

2

Replies

  • FogFog Posts: 64 Greenhorn
    I am curious why such a large difference in the fishing in Costa Rica as compared to here. Surely there is commercial pressure there as well. I can't fathom that the weekend warriors kill enough fish  to impact fishing so drastically.
     There must be many other factors involved.
    Opinions?
  • sk018sk018 Posts: 2,844 Captain
    pje said:
    As of June 11th, 2018, 656 dolphinfish have been tagged and released throughout our tagging zones by 66 captains in 170 outings.  Of those releases, 8 are recaptures recorded along the U.S. East Coast, 2 are return migrants from fish released last August, and 4 are satellite tags movements.  In the first week of June alone, the Killin' Time IIFishing Team, led by Captain Don Gates, tagged and released 207 dolphin, 5 of which have been recaptured (as of 6/11).  This effort alone represents a 2.4% recapture rate.  To read more about movements of dolphin along the U.S. East Coast over the past few months, click here.


    https://beyondourshores.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/06/June-2018-Dolphinfish-Research-Program-Newsletter.pdf?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_content= click here&utm_campaign=Dolphinfish Research Program June 2018 eNewsletter

    We tagged 15 fish 6/1-6/9 you should be receiving the info in the mail any day now.  They were between 17 and 21 inches.  One day we limited out and could have tagged all we wanted but ran out of tags unfortunately, were covered in 24-30 inch fish when we ran out of tags.
  • sk018sk018 Posts: 2,844 Captain

    I wonder if the increase in boats dolphin fishing makes a difference.  Every day we see posts of people getting into offshore fishing asking advice and tactics etc.   I have to disagree again with the rec guys down for a week being the main culprit here.  Look at the charter boats with 60 fish every single day.  I certainly miss catching more big fish.  But, I don't think catching 150 fish in a week between 5 guys feeding 5 families for a year is much of  an issue.

    If it was I would have no problem cutting back.  I would much prefer 4 20-25 pound fish than a limit of 24-30 inch fish

  • rivamunstasteverivamunstasteve Posts: 611 Officer
    edited June 26 #35
    The fish that migrate through here don’t make it back the next year. They commercial fish in the gulf and off Jacksonville. Mexico also commercial fishes them outside of their sanctuary zone. It’s a combination of everyone catching them. 


  • xeniaxenia Posts: 303 Deckhand
    The real question is whether you want to see bigger dolphin in our waters, and I believe the only way to achieve that is to increase the size limit.  Now we should also ask why we see so many small fish in this area, with many schools consisting of fish smaller than 20", but parts of the world with intense commercial fishing pressure have plenty of large fish.  Just take a look at Ecuador where tuna seiners will sometimes set their nets on dolphin (mahi not mammals) when they can't find tuna.  Every fish in the school is large by our standards, and the commercial fishing pressure doesn't appear to be affecting the size.  There may be other dynamics affecting the size of our fish other than just fishing pressure.
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  • sk018sk018 Posts: 2,844 Captain
    xenia said:
    The real question is whether you want to see bigger dolphin in our waters, and I believe the only way to achieve that is to increase the size limit.  Now we should also ask why we see so many small fish in this area, with many schools consisting of fish smaller than 20", but parts of the world with intense commercial fishing pressure have plenty of large fish.  Just take a look at Ecuador where tuna seiners will sometimes set their nets on dolphin (mahi not mammals) when they can't find tuna.  Every fish in the school is large by our standards, and the commercial fishing pressure doesn't appear to be affecting the size.  There may be other dynamics affecting the size of our fish other than just fishing pressure.

    With the growth rate of dolphin I am wondering if "our fish" are making their track North and maybe back South but not making it to year two, the small fish were seeing are first year fish and possibly on their first migration (I am no expert or scientist), but why aren't we seeing them on their second year?  Predators, overfishing, who knows..
  • pjepje Orlando , FlPosts: 644 Officer
    Fog said:
    I am curious why such a large difference in the fishing in Costa Rica as compared to here. Surely there is commercial pressure there as well. I can't fathom that the weekend warriors kill enough fish  to impact fishing so drastically.
     There must be many other factors involved.
    Opinions?
     There are artisanal commercial fishermen in CR , but they ran all of the big commercial boats out a few years ago . The same in Panama , and the fishery has come back in a big way because of it . The YFT were close to being wiped out , now they are abundant . 

     There are lots of factors , there are long lines from Ft Pierce north . And some south of Ft Pierce , but I don't know much about those . There are probably 10k+  hooks in the water as we speak from Ft Pierce to Jax . And there is a lot of commercial pressure in the Carribean as well . 

     Let's say there is a large bull and cow off of PR working their way here , they spawn once before getting caught in a long line . The results of their spawn are the peanut dolphin we are getting . 

     Since this is the way it has been the last few years , it is not going to get any better . It's just going to get worse . If the size is raised to 25 or 27 , and the limits decreased . We might have a chance to have a strong fishery once again . It wasn't that long ago that you could catch dolphin all year long . 

     
  • pjepje Orlando , FlPosts: 644 Officer
    sk018 said:
    pje said:
    As of June 11th, 2018, 656 dolphinfish have been tagged and released throughout our tagging zones by 66 captains in 170 outings.  Of those releases, 8 are recaptures recorded along the U.S. East Coast, 2 are return migrants from fish released last August, and 4 are satellite tags movements.  In the first week of June alone, the Killin' Time IIFishing Team, led by Captain Don Gates, tagged and released 207 dolphin, 5 of which have been recaptured (as of 6/11).  This effort alone represents a 2.4% recapture rate.  To read more about movements of dolphin along the U.S. East Coast over the past few months, click here.


    https://beyondourshores.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/06/June-2018-Dolphinfish-Research-Program-Newsletter.pdf?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_content= click here&utm_campaign=Dolphinfish Research Program June 2018 eNewsletter

    We tagged 15 fish 6/1-6/9 you should be receiving the info in the mail any day now.  They were between 17 and 21 inches.  One day we limited out and could have tagged all we wanted but ran out of tags unfortunately, were covered in 24-30 inch fish when we ran out of tags.
    I joined the tagging program a few months ago , I'm not affiliated otherwise . I just copied and pasted from the email newsletter . 
  • pjepje Orlando , FlPosts: 644 Officer
    sk018 said:
    xenia said:
    The real question is whether you want to see bigger dolphin in our waters, and I believe the only way to achieve that is to increase the size limit.  Now we should also ask why we see so many small fish in this area, with many schools consisting of fish smaller than 20", but parts of the world with intense commercial fishing pressure have plenty of large fish.  Just take a look at Ecuador where tuna seiners will sometimes set their nets on dolphin (mahi not mammals) when they can't find tuna.  Every fish in the school is large by our standards, and the commercial fishing pressure doesn't appear to be affecting the size.  There may be other dynamics affecting the size of our fish other than just fishing pressure.

    With the growth rate of dolphin I am wondering if "our fish" are making their track North and maybe back South but not making it to year two, the small fish were seeing are first year fish and possibly on their first migration (I am no expert or scientist), but why aren't we seeing them on their second year?  Predators, overfishing, who knows..
    The small fish we are seeing are only a few months old , and most of them end up in a bucket . They don't always migrate north either . 

    Dolphinfish Research Program
  • sk018sk018 Posts: 2,844 Captain
    pje said:
    sk018 said:
    xenia said:
    The real question is whether you want to see bigger dolphin in our waters, and I believe the only way to achieve that is to increase the size limit.  Now we should also ask why we see so many small fish in this area, with many schools consisting of fish smaller than 20", but parts of the world with intense commercial fishing pressure have plenty of large fish.  Just take a look at Ecuador where tuna seiners will sometimes set their nets on dolphin (mahi not mammals) when they can't find tuna.  Every fish in the school is large by our standards, and the commercial fishing pressure doesn't appear to be affecting the size.  There may be other dynamics affecting the size of our fish other than just fishing pressure.

    With the growth rate of dolphin I am wondering if "our fish" are making their track North and maybe back South but not making it to year two, the small fish were seeing are first year fish and possibly on their first migration (I am no expert or scientist), but why aren't we seeing them on their second year?  Predators, overfishing, who knows..
    The small fish we are seeing are only a few months old , and most of them end up in a bucket . They don't always migrate north either . 

    Dolphinfish Research Program


    That is interesting.  But, I always thought in general smaller fish move North with the current.

    Also, what is raising the size a few inches going to do?  I would be in favor of it, maybe 24 inches would make sense...But, I am not sure how much that actually helps. 

  • pjepje Orlando , FlPosts: 644 Officer
    sk018 said:
    pje said:
    sk018 said:
    xenia said:
    The real question is whether you want to see bigger dolphin in our waters, and I believe the only way to achieve that is to increase the size limit.  Now we should also ask why we see so many small fish in this area, with many schools consisting of fish smaller than 20", but parts of the world with intense commercial fishing pressure have plenty of large fish.  Just take a look at Ecuador where tuna seiners will sometimes set their nets on dolphin (mahi not mammals) when they can't find tuna.  Every fish in the school is large by our standards, and the commercial fishing pressure doesn't appear to be affecting the size.  There may be other dynamics affecting the size of our fish other than just fishing pressure.

    With the growth rate of dolphin I am wondering if "our fish" are making their track North and maybe back South but not making it to year two, the small fish were seeing are first year fish and possibly on their first migration (I am no expert or scientist), but why aren't we seeing them on their second year?  Predators, overfishing, who knows..
    The small fish we are seeing are only a few months old , and most of them end up in a bucket . They don't always migrate north either . 

    Dolphinfish Research Program


    That is interesting.  But, I always thought in general smaller fish move North with the current.

    Also, what is raising the size a few inches going to do?  I would be in favor of it, maybe 24 inches would make sense...But, I am not sure how much that actually helps. 

    Raising the size limit would give them time to spawn a couple times .
  • rivamunstasteverivamunstasteve Posts: 611 Officer
    At 20 inches 50% of the fish are sexually mature. Btw that fish likely was caught in August, traveled north above the Bahamas and said “man it’s getting cold” (eventually) and then turned southeast. 
  • sk018sk018 Posts: 2,844 Captain
    pje said:
    sk018 said:
    pje said:
    sk018 said:
    xenia said:
    The real question is whether you want to see bigger dolphin in our waters, and I believe the only way to achieve that is to increase the size limit.  Now we should also ask why we see so many small fish in this area, with many schools consisting of fish smaller than 20", but parts of the world with intense commercial fishing pressure have plenty of large fish.  Just take a look at Ecuador where tuna seiners will sometimes set their nets on dolphin (mahi not mammals) when they can't find tuna.  Every fish in the school is large by our standards, and the commercial fishing pressure doesn't appear to be affecting the size.  There may be other dynamics affecting the size of our fish other than just fishing pressure.

    With the growth rate of dolphin I am wondering if "our fish" are making their track North and maybe back South but not making it to year two, the small fish were seeing are first year fish and possibly on their first migration (I am no expert or scientist), but why aren't we seeing them on their second year?  Predators, overfishing, who knows..
    The small fish we are seeing are only a few months old , and most of them end up in a bucket . They don't always migrate north either . 

    Dolphinfish Research Program


    That is interesting.  But, I always thought in general smaller fish move North with the current.

    Also, what is raising the size a few inches going to do?  I would be in favor of it, maybe 24 inches would make sense...But, I am not sure how much that actually helps. 

    Raising the size limit would give them time to spawn a couple times .

    I realize that, but the doesn't seem to be a shortage of small fish im thinking how to produce more large fish like there used to be.
  • pjepje Orlando , FlPosts: 644 Officer
    edited June 26 #46
     We are getting less fish each year , and they are getting smaller . Think about this , if there was a 27 size and a lesser limit . Those fish would go up the east coast and back spawning , growing the population . Yes some may migrate away , but a lot would move back and forth spawning even more . Then you would have dolphin of various sizes up and down the coast . And it would be year round , instead of a couple of months of peanuts then nothing . It would take a couple years , but would be worth it .

     

     I'm not an expert or scientist , but have been looking into this the last year or so . I have fished here my entire life , and have seen the decline first hand . 




  • Reel TealReel Teal Posts: 3,204 Captain
    You cant just pick a number. It has to have a goal in mind. Such as letting the fish spawn 2 times or something.

    Dolphin live less than 5 or 6 years. They are very, very fast growing.If the goal is to let the fish spawn another time, then raise the size limit. 

    If it's just a feel good to get "bigger" fish, it will be fruitless. We can't make them bigger. We can leave more in the ocean giving us greater chance of landing a big one. It's hard to fathom, but with increased size limits on other fish, we haven't seen sizes increase. The only way we see sizes increase are when we cant keep fish altogether.

    https://ioutdoor.com/how-fast-do-dolphin-grow/
  • Reel TealReel Teal Posts: 3,204 Captain
    Concentration on keeping big fish who breed the most, will eventually lead to questions like "where are the dolphin?"

    It's hard for some to grasp but actually targeting the larger ones will decimate the population and quantity of large fish.

    Fish aren't like deer, the philosophy of letting it grow doesn't work. They reproduce completely differently 
  • rivamunstasteverivamunstasteve Posts: 611 Officer
    Reel Teal, I kindly disagree with some of what you say. The larger fish are being targeted as is. If there are more fish that reach sexual maturity, then there will be More fish. I do agree with your cycle thought . 
  • sk018sk018 Posts: 2,844 Captain
    pje said:
     We are getting less fish each year , and they are getting smaller . Think about this , if there was a 27 size and a lesser limit . Those fish would go up the east coast and back spawning , growing the population . Yes some may migrate away , but a lot would move back and forth spawning even more . Then you would have dolphin of various sizes up and down the coast . And it would be year round , instead of a couple of months of peanuts then nothing . It would take a couple years , but would be worth it .

     

     I'm not an expert or scientist , but have been looking into this the last year or so . I have fished here my entire life , and have seen the decline first hand . 




    I don't think there are less fish overall.  Last year were more fish than I can remember, but just a lack of big fish.  I don't agree with your thought process here at all.  As I mentioned, big fish are in their second, at least track up the coast.  But, a 27inch size limit would certainly protect a lot of small fish from rec anglers...I would rather see it at 24 inches than 27 personally.  But, again you are concerned with weekend warriors and out of town renters for a week.  You should be worried about the hundreds of charter boats doubling up their spikes daily for 3-4months..
  • canyonrunnercanyonrunner Posts: 54 Greenhorn
    edited June 27 #51
    The NOAA commercial quota on Dolphin in S Atlantic is N of 1.5 million pounds.

    I believe the carribean has it's own quota of about the same


  • INTREPID377INTREPID377 Posts: 3,728 Captain
    edited June 27 #52
    It may not be as good as it once was but there are still good one around.  These are all the first week of May.







  • marcel909marcel909 Posts: 11 Greenhorn
    It may not be as good as it once was but there are still good one around.  These are all the first week of May.







    wow, great fish
  • marcel909marcel909 Posts: 11 Greenhorn


  • anglerfananglerfan Space CoastPosts: 16 Greenhorn
    This is a ~5 month old fish caught off Big Pine 2 weeks ago. These fish leave a lasting memory on kids when they land one and get to see their beauty first hand. For us anglers, we really need to make sure those p-nuts go back in the water in good shape since they grow extremely fast and we certainly miss those used-to-be-common 30lb plus fish. If it is too close, throw it back ASAP. Also, a good set of eyes can help to tell if we really need to pitch more baits to schoolies or not. We will have to take a serious and responsible look at this one so that we protect our fisheries. The good thing is that these guys grow FAST and will bounce back much quicker than other species have. Tight lines!
  • sk018sk018 Posts: 2,844 Captain
    anglerfan said:
    This is a ~5 month old fish caught off Big Pine 2 weeks ago. These fish leave a lasting memory on kids when they land one and get to see their beauty first hand. For us anglers, we really need to make sure those p-nuts go back in the water in good shape since they grow extremely fast and we certainly miss those used-to-be-common 30lb plus fish. If it is too close, throw it back ASAP. Also, a good set of eyes can help to tell if we really need to pitch more baits to schoolies or not. We will have to take a serious and responsible look at this one so that we protect our fisheries. The good thing is that these guys grow FAST and will bounce back much quicker than other species have. Tight lines!
    I agree, if it needs to be measured throw it back.  Also, maybe just as important- take a look at the school if they are all small fish move on, it isnt worth gut hooking or mishandling a handful to look for one keeper
  • killintimekillintime Posts: 235 Deckhand
    capt.coho said:
    my neighbor went out everyday the first week of June. When everyone was complaining off slow fishing he managed two fish over 60, on over 50 and a few in the 40s with limits everyday, and he genuinely sucks at fishing. He found most of his fish in less than 400 feet on a naked pre rigged hoo
    If this report is accurate, your neighbor no-longer sucks at fishing.  FS is awarding him an honorary degree of fisherman.
  • dglowedglowe Posts: 28 Greenhorn


    Got this one yesterday out of cudjoe key. After a bumpy ride out we stopped 3 miles short of the wall and fished a weedline loaded with birds. Caught about 35 fish and kept 20. All on ballyhoo trolling rigs. Still looking to find some tuna...
  • Bigfish5Bigfish5 Posts: 248 Deckhand
    I go to the keys for a week every year.  Biggest dolphin ever was caught in june of 16 in the keys "53 pounds"   2017 we barely fished due to 6 foot seas the entire week.   This year we only found one big fish but he was nice at about 40 pounds.     What i dont see much of anymore is groups of 12 to 20 pound fish like i used to find in the 90s.   We would have days were we only kept 6 fish but they were 20 pounds each.   
  • Soda PopinskiSoda Popinski GrovelandPosts: 9,217 Admiral
    Bigfish5 said:
    I go to the keys for a week every year.  Biggest dolphin ever was caught in june of 16 in the keys "53 pounds"   2017 we barely fished due to 6 foot seas the entire week.   This year we only found one big fish but he was nice at about 40 pounds.     What i dont see much of anymore is groups of 12 to 20 pound fish like i used to find in the 90s.   We would have days were we only kept 6 fish but they were 20 pounds each.   
    I don't think you'll ever see those days again.  The fishery is managed to the point where fish get to spawn once and then are pretty much caught.   10k long lines like stated from FP to Jacksonville catches a bunch.   Then in Caribbean same deal.    what we get are the ones in between that aren't big enough to keep when we catch them but by the time they reach the long lines are ready for harvest. 
    People use statistics the way a drunk uses a street light, for support rather than illumination.
  • sk018sk018 Posts: 2,844 Captain
    Lots of gaffers and slammers being caught right now off keys
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