Ocean Fishing Report, Dec. 22

THE SWAN SONG REPORT: While there still may be bluefin tuna and yellowtail on the Tanner Bank, no one has made the run this past week. Commercial fishermen wrapped the squid holding the tuna there, and most have probably cleared out. The boats at Clemente and Catalina have found a very few yellowtail, but excellent rockfish action.

There have been some pockets of yellowtail from the San Diego coast to spots off Orange and Los Angeles counties, and even at Catalina and Clemente, but they are very inconsistent.

El Dorado out of Long Beach Sportfishing ran overnight trips last week. The 18 anglers on board a Dec. 15 fishing trip caught 12 yellowtail, 132 rockfish, 108 whitefish, 54 sheephead and 54 lingcod.

Patriot out of Newport Landing was out with 47 anglers on a Dec. 21 morning half-day and landed 17 whitefish, 15 red snapper, eight rockfish, five yellowtail and one sheephead.

Of note in San Diego, Mission Belle out of Point Loma Sportfishing had a three-quarter-day trip on Dec. 18 with 16 anglers they landed one yellowtail, 41 rockfish, 36 red snapper, five lingcod and one sheephead. But Malihini, also on a three-quarter day trip but out of H&M Landing, had 11 anglers the same day and landed 55 red snapper, 49 rockfish, four lingcod and two bonito.

IT’S ALL ROCKFISH NOW: While most of the landings are running a limited schedule for the holidays, there are still half, three-quarter, and overnight boats running all along the coast for anglers who want to get in on the excellent rockfish action before the season closes the end of the month.

The San Diego, Oceanside, and Dana Point region boats are all averaging of three to five bottom fish per rod on the half-day boats, with a nice mix of rockfish, red snapper, whitefish, lingcod and sheephead. Some boats are also adding sand dabs. The counts are a little better on the three-quarter-day boats (see numbers above).

For the Orange and Los Angeles county boats, rockfish have also taken over the game. Most half- and three-quarter-day boats are reporting from four to seven bottom fish per trip with a lot of mixed rockfish, red snapper, whitefish and a smattering of sheephead.

Sport King out of L.A. Waterfront Sportfishing had just six anglers on its Dec. 20 three-quarter-day trip and landed 35 rockfish, 24 sargo, seven bocaccio, four lingcod, two sand bass and two calico bass.

Freelance out of Davey’s Locker had 67 anglers on its Dec. 19 three-quarter-day trip and landed 323 mixed rockfish, 38 whitefish, 30 red snapper, 12 sheephead, seven perch and one cabazon.

LOBSTER NEWS: The action has been a pick along the coast with most boats averaging one to two legal lobsters per trip, with better scores out at the islands. Lots of underside bugs right now. Jig Strike out of H&M Landing was on a twilight trip Dec. 20. The seven anglers on board had 12 legal lobsters, but released 313 shorts.

INSTRUCTIONAL CHARTERS: The last of the 976-TUNA instructional charters for 2016 has been completed. These trips are held from early spring through fall, offering advice to beginning or veteran anglers and on-the-water teaching of techniques for different saltwater species. These trips will resume next spring. Check on 976-TUNA.com or call 562-352-0012 for details.


Southern California: Virg’s Sportfishing, Morro Bay, 805-772-1222; Patriot Sportfishing, Avila Beach, 805-595-7200; Sea Landing, Santa Barbara, 805-963-3564; Harbor Village Sportfishing, Ventura, 805-658-1060; Channel Islands Sportfishing Center, Oxnard, 805-985-8511; Hook’s Landing, Oxnard, 805-382-6233 (Port Hueneme Sportfishing has merged with Channel Islands Sportfishing); Malibu Pier Sportfishing, 310-328-8426; Marina Del Rey Sportfishing, Marina del Rey, 310-822-3625; Redondo Sportfishing, Redondo Beach, 310-372-2111; Rocky Point Fuel Dock (skiff rentals for King Harbor), Redondo Beach, 310-374-9858; 22nd Street Landing, San Pedro, 310-832-8304; L.A. Waterfront Sportfishing, San Pedro, 310-547-9916; Long Beach Sportfishing, Long Beach, 562-432-8993; Pierpoint Landing, Long Beach, 562-983-9300; Marina Sportfishing, Long Beach, 562-598-6649; Newport Landing, Newport Beach, 949-675-0550; Davey’s Locker, Newport Beach, 949-673-1434; Dana Wharf Sportfishing, Dana Point, 949-496-5794; Helgren’s Sportfishing, Oceanside, 760-722-2133; Fisherman’s Landing, San Diego, 619-221-8500; H&M Landing, San Diego, 619-222-1144; Seaforth Landing, San Diego, 619-224-3383; Point Loma Sportfishing, San Diego, 619-223-1627; Islandia Sportfishing, San Diego, 619-222-1164.

Mexico Landings: Sergio’s Sportfishing, Ensenada, 011-526-178-2185; San Quintin Sportfishing, San Quintin, 011-526-162-1455.


Please feel free to send your freshwater or saltwater fishing reports and fishing photos to Jim Matthews of Outdoor News Service at odwriter@verizon.net and the information will be included in the weekly report. If you have questions or comments, please call Matthews at 909-887-3444.

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