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May 3

Pilchard workups are here

After waiting and waiting and waiting, finally the pilchard workups have started in the gulf. There has been a huge drop in temperature which I am sure you have noticed over the last few days. This has dropped the water temp as well and it is around 16-17 degrees now (was 20 last week). This drop in temperature means more food comes in and all the predators follow.

Yesterday we found a lot of birds working the smelt and big sea Kahawai smashing them in the Motuihe channel on the way out wide. This always bodes for a good day. We filled the bin pretty quickly with Kahawai as we needed them to feed the guests at the Legasea FishCare launch. We then headed wide and were on our way to the top of Coromandel when we found a lot of gannets far away and up high in the distance (this is normal behavior when there are lots of dolphins and bait around). We headed towards them and sure enough there were hundreds of dolphins rounding up pilchards. Next minute it was all on!

We dropped down Jitterbugs and Sliders and everything we dropped was smashed by the hungry snapper and Kahawai.

Then the wind dropped right off and we traveled around 7nm following the birds and dolphins as they systematically located and feed on the pilchards they had balled up. This sort of fishing is simply the best and makes you really appreciate the amazing sea-life we have right here on Auckland’s doorstep! A whale decided to make its presence known and came up about 30mtrs from the boat while we were drifting along slowly catching fish down current from the workups (in the exhaust)! The air smelt like fish and there were scales and feathers everywhere around us.

Looks like we may get some great winter workup fishing that is usually in May extending right out into June this year.

You can not beat these calm sunny winter days when the fishing hots up like this!

See ya out there.

Nik Key is a tutor, guide, lure tester and charter skipper

Cheers Capt. Snap (Nik)
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