Rare catches from the deep

Pilbara News - - Pilbara Fishing - Tack­le­world Ex­mouth

The coastal waters can def­i­nitely bring up some weird crea­tures, and with peo­ple tar­get­ing fish in deeper waters these days, we are see­ing some in­ter­est­ing catches.

The croc­o­dile shark is one that is show­ing up reg­u­larly in depths of more than 500m. Sev­eral have been caught by peo­ple tar­get­ing sword­fish at night, with baits at depths of about 100m. It is be­lieved these fish come up from the deep at night to feed.

An­other rare cap­ture was that of a big­eye thresher shark. This species is be­lieved to be rare in these waters. It is an awe­some-look­ing shark with in­cred­i­ble fea­tures such as the elon­gated up­per lobe of the tail fin, large grooves on the top of its head and the large jet-black eyes.

The thresher shark is known to use its tail to jump clear out of the wa­ter and is an awe­some sight to see.

We all know Ex­mouth is well known for its mar­lin fish­ery, but wow what a bumper run of black mar­lin we have ex­pe­ri­enced over the past month.

Crews have been re­port­ing up to 10 hook-ups a day for those in the right area at the right time, with the odd sail­fish thrown in just to mix things up. It seems the fish are wide spread with crews do­ing well both south and north of Tantabiddi any­where be­tween 50-200m of wa­ter.

Al­though black mar­lin don’t mind a bit of green wa­ter, find­ing the warmer blue wa­ter should in­crease your chances of tan­gling with one of these ac­ro­batic species.

These fish have been rang­ing any­where be­tween 20kg and 100kg also with the odd larger fish be­ing hooked.

Smaller 8-10 inch skirts have been working well and those who also put the time into rig­ging skip­ping baits such as garfish will al­most al­ways have a bet­ter hookup rate.

The NSW Game Fish Tag­ging Pro­gram shows some in­ter­est­ing re­ports on bill­fish that are tagged.

One black mar­lin tagged in Fe­bru­ary was re­cap­tured in May with a dis­tance from its orig­i­nal lo­ca­tion of 1530nm. In the past year there were 130 fish re­ported as be­ing re­cap­tured from the tag­ging pro­gram.

Vis­i­bil­ity around the Nin­ga­loo reef re­mains out­stand­ing with up to 30m of vis­i­bil­ity be­ing re­ported.

Whale sharks have been in huge num­bers out­side the reef with many fish­ing boats re­port­ing sight­ings and hav­ing a friendly swim along with them.

Manta rays have also been mak­ing a reg­u­lar ap­pear­ance as well as early sight­ings of hump­back whales be­ing re­ported. Some of us have even been lucky enough to spot a rare blue whale that has been hang­ing around the area over the past week.

Pic­ture: Tack­le­world Ex­mouth

Matt Gates with a big­eye thresher shark.

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