Crocodile Bay Fishing Report
Fishing has been full of surprises lately. Some good, some not so good. I always prefer to get the not so good news out of the way first. Sailfish numbers are down. El Niña has peaked and we are on the downside of it, but the result is cooler water temperatures and sails prefer a little warmer waters. It is predicted that El Niña will be completely finished by late May or mid-June and things will get back to normal.
The good news is other species like marlin and dorado (mahi mahi) thrive in the cooler water. We have been seeing dorado in numbers not normal for this time of year.
Currents have brought in trash lines of all the organic debris flushed out of rivers and the baitfish use it for shelter. The tuna and dorado move in to feed and the marlin are munching them up like popcorn.
Usually, it is July before we see the monster roosterfish move into the rocky haunts like Matapalo Rock and the volcanic reefs on the Pavones side of the gulf. We already caught and released 3 this past month in the 80 lb range and several more that tipped the scale around 50 lbs. We have become accustomed to releasing the big female cubera snapper, most big fish are females, and we released several that were over 30 lbs. A plate size while snapper deep-fried is a treat to anyone who has never tried it, but the big ones are better off in the water making babies.
Crocodile Bay and Conservation
Crocodile Bay has long been a supporter of science and conservation. I would like to remind you of a free App available that keeps you informed of near real-time ocean conditions as well as tides, moon phases, species information, maps of the ocean floor and more. It highlights Costa Rica but covers all of Central America. You can download PezCA for free at the Apple Store, Google Play or www.pezca.org .
PezCa App Images.
Crocodile Bay to Satellite-Tag Marlin
Stanford University has been working on a tagging program to put Satellite tags in Costa Rican marlin and sailfish to learn more about the habits of these magnificent fish. The program started in 2019 and got off to a really good start until COVID threw a wrench in travel logistics for the study.
Crocodile Bay Captains will be working directly with PhD. Marine Scientist Danielle Haulsee via Zoom as to the proper placement of the tags. The Captains are already trained in releasing fish in the best manner possible but at $5000 per tag, proper placement is super important. The fish carries the tag for a pre-programmed period of time until it pops to the surface and transmits important data to a satellite that transmits it to the Haulsee office at Stanford.
Hopefully, the school travel ban will end soon and she can visit us personally.
By Todd Staley
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