Reeling in a big yellowfin is rewarding in itself, but if you’re lucky enough to catch a fish involved in a Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries research project, you’ll get more than just a nice tuna steak.
More questions than answers remain in the wake of the Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council’s vote last month to approve Reef Fish Amendment 40, which basically divides the recreational red snapper quota between private fishermen and for-hire charter and head boat captains.
Construction is set to begin this week on three artificial reefs designed to protect scour holes created at Ship Shoal 26 out of Dularge and Cocodrie, known to many Louisiana speckled trout anglers as the Pickets.
When Kim and Blake Fouquier leave the dock, they carry a small arsenal of rods and reels. Their basic tuna rigs include Tiagra 50W Shimano Two-Speed Lever Drag reels mounted on J & M Tackle custom rods.
Tuna fishing as described here is not a year-round sport. While yellowfin can be caught off of the Louisiana coast all year, October is special. After a couple of cold fronts, the hot-blooded fish come nearer to shore from their usual deep-water haunts.
Kim Fouquier had the nose of our 29-foot Twin Vee Catamaran in the armpit of the huge 90-foot steel shrimp trawler, putting our bow tightly into the spot on the metal beast where its big outriggers sprang from its hull.†
Bluefish are truly the cannibals of the sea. They eat anything and seem to take special delight in eating each other. It makes you wonder why they are still around — how they get close enough to spawn with each other before biting their paramour in half.†