An observation about the San Quintin vs Long Range dispute

Discussion in 'Fishing Chit Chat' started by get some, Aug 11, 2016.

  1. get some

    get some So Cal Editor BD Writer

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    I was going to post this on one of the existing threads, but I was afraid that a reasonable comment would be lost among all of the anger and finger pointing.

    Anyway, those of you who are getting mad at the San Quintin captains or saying it serves them right because of what Mexico's seiners did to the minimal amount of yellowfin that was coming up the coast this year need to think about what you're saying.

    On a side note, the seiners wiping out "all" of the "massive amount" of yellowfin that were coming up the line is nonsense. The flow of yellowfin up the coast this year is anemic at best, especially compared to the last couple years. If you're blaming the overall lack of tuna being caught this year on commercial fishing you're barking up the wrong tree. It's more likely due to an el nino hangover that has fish migration patterns a little screwed up. Unless you think that its normal to have 200 pound bluefin biting in Dana Point?

    Here's a fun fact. Did you know that the San Diego 3/4 day fleet has an agreement with the 1/2 day fleet that they will not fish near coastal waters so that they don't compete for space with the 1/2 day boats that are limited on range? Same holds true for the long range boats not competing with the 3/4 day and overnight boats fishing the Coronado islands. Seems to work pretty well and no one complains about the system.

    Now, let's take a look at how this compares to what's happening in San Quintin where all of the local sport fishing boats have limited range and time to fish so they are basically the same as the half day boats out of San Diego. Imagine how the crew of the New Seaforth would feel if the yellowtail were biting locally and they were headed out with an excited load of anglers in the morning only to find long range boats not only fishing for them but blocking every spot that was biting. I guarantee you that there would be some angry boat crews and calls to owners of vessels demanding that long range boats stay off local boats fishing grounds.

    After having spoken with people directly involved after last year's incident, the biggest complaint the San Quintin based boats have is that the Long Range boats are anchoring on the high spots and are effectively blocking them off from the locals. The custom when fishing down there is to drift across the high spot and then go around and reset once your past it. This allows multiple boats to share the spot and gives everyone a chance to catch fish. Due to the small size of these spots, it's not effective for a Long Range boat to drift them as they'd have to reset the boat every few minutes. So the big boats can't effectively share the spots with the local fleet.

    Since the Mexican captains don't have Frank LoPreste's phone number and feel that their complaints to the boat's ownership would fall on deaf ears, they take matters into their own hands and tell the Long Range boats to leave. While this isn't fair to the passengers aboard the boats, the captains anchoring on the high spots isn't fair to the passengers aboard the local boats.

    Since US sportfishing boats are not allowed to fish within a certain distance of a Mexican commercial fishing boat it will be easy enough for the captains in San Quintin to stop them from fishing there. All it would take is for one of the local commercial guys to pull up to a long range boat, commence fishing (even with rod and reel) and tell the boat they are required to get a certain distance away from his boat. Once this happens a few times the long range boats will stop coming to San Quintin and will start looking for other places to catch yellowtail along the coast. While I support long range fishing I also support the captains in San Quintin and I don't think that it's outrageous for them to request that Long Range boats avoid a 20 mile radius of the mouth of San Quintin Bay so that the local sportfishing captains can continue to eek out a living. It's really no different than the agreement that the sportboats out of San Diego have with one another.
     
  2. Marcus

    Marcus "Oddjob"

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    Great post. Common sense should prevail.
     
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  3. Black-is-Back

    Black-is-Back Wishin i was Fishin

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    From the available information I have read it's quite obvious the San Diego Fleet fucked up by not trying to at least work with the locals. They broke the rules and I'm going to bet it's going to bite them in the ass for being pigheaded about it.

    I don't blame the locals one bit for being pissed about large sport boats parking their ass on a high spot and cleaning out the fish in that area.

    You state that the amount of tuna coming north is anemic at best. Where do you get this information? 50 + seiners parked on the border wrapping constantly for quite some time now tells me there were/was lots of fish.
     
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  4. SouthBayKiller

    SouthBayKiller I've posted enough I should edit this section

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    It seems like a pretty logical solution, but could also been seen as the beginning of a very slippery slope.
     
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  5. get some

    get some So Cal Editor BD Writer

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    It's actually pretty simple, if there was a normal flow of fish coming up, the sportboats could simply go below where the seiners were working and catch fish. It's not like the seiners set an impenetrable wall at the border and caught every fish that swam north. They simply grouped up around the only area of fish they could find. Trust me, the seiners do not want to fish on top of each other any more than sportfishing boats do. They'd much rather go out and find schools to catch on their own with no competition. The fact that they needed to group up to catch fish attests to the lack of fish coming up the line as the Mexican seiners don't launch out of San Diego and you know that they've already covered a lot of dead water before they'd fish themselves into the corner that is the border.

    Several months ago captains were talking about a band of dirty, cold and barren water below the bluefin that were then biting on outside the Coronados and accurately predicted that unless something changed dramatically it was going to be a tough summer for sportboats. That prediction was made months before the first net went around a school of yellowfin, so take that for what it's worth.
     
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  6. Azarkon

    Azarkon I've posted enough I should edit this section

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    I don't think we can prove one way or another that commercial fishing is/was at fault since in the last few years the Mexican commercial fleet has been taking a massive amount of yellowfin, leading to calls of overfishing from the usual watch groups. Their share of the global catch has been increasing and this could easily lead to a collapse. That said, we also can't expect El Niño fishing like the last two years; that was not normal.
     
  7. get some

    get some So Cal Editor BD Writer

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    I agree with you but will take it a step further. The Mexican seiner fleet has been taking a massive amount of yellowfin tuna since the creation of the Mexican seiner fleet. It's not just the last couple years. The difference is that on a normal year that fleet is spread out, not just across Baja but across Mainland Mexico as well so we don't see them. It's not like Mexico tripled the amount of seiners fishing in the last couple years, it's more of a case of out of sight, out of mind until you see a bunch of them grouped up and fishing side by side.
    This is what leads to the idea that they are wiping out all of the fish. It's not really true, but it sure looks that way. Imagine what it would look like if all of the sportboats that fish in southern california on any given day piled up in front of La Jolla? People would take one look at that armada of boats and say that sportfishing must be stopped because the boats are wiping out all the fish.
    In a perfect world there would be no commercial boats targeting fish that I target for sport, but it could also be a lot worse. Mexico's sport and commercial fleet could get tired of the irritation caused by US boaters and petition the government to block access to American anglers.
     
  8. Tar Pit

    Tar Pit I've posted enough I should edit this section

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    Question. If the SD boats work together so well why are the Frank LoPreste boats the only boats with Guadalupe island permits?
     
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  9. get some

    get some So Cal Editor BD Writer

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    I don't know. It's one thing to stay off one another's turf, but that doesn't mean there isn't competition for customers.
     
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  10. KID CREOLE

    KID CREOLE I've posted enough I should edit this section

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    Good post Erik.

    You guys keep shitting on Mexico and see where it goes.

    I sure hope the albies come back so there's some dumb easy fish for some of you to catch
     
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  11. makairaa

    makairaa I've posted enough I should edit this section

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    If you look at the temp charts from cedros to colnett out to guadalupe there still is a body of cooler water.
     
    get some likes this.
  12. s//m_cinco

    s//m_cinco Member

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    ...
     
    Last edited: Feb 5, 2017
  13. Black-is-Back

    Black-is-Back Wishin i was Fishin

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    While I can appreciate your stance and your opinion and actually agree with most of what you are saying.

    There seems to be a certain level of denial from some here regarding just how much of an impact the commercial seiners are having on the tuna fisherie this year both Mexican and US.

    Here's what I find very very simple.

    An ANEMIC amount of fish will NOT support 50+ seiners for weeks on end.
     
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  14. Baja Belk

    Baja Belk Long, grandiloquent fish stories. Sorry.

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    I agree that the US captains need to respect the local authority, especially in a country whose government is so notorious for sudden and severe rule-changes. Remember when they decided to ban bluefin take basically overnight? Or the 2003 Baja 1000 when police decided to pull over and ticket Trophy Trucks racing down the highway during a sanctioned event? Mexico does whatever the F it wants whenever the F it wants, and if you're not prepared to let them do so without a fight, you probably should stay north of the border. They could revoke the sportfleet's permits just because and there would be nothing they could do about it.

    However, I do think the seiner's put at least a dent in the available tuna in San Diego range. There was confirmed to be a fair amount of tuna coming up the line, confirmed reports of massive seiner activity coinciding with the estimated arrival of this particular influx of tuna, and then all of a sudden crickets. Did the seiners wrap "all" the fish? No of course not. Was there actually a huge amount of fish on their way to willfully leap into my boat like the last 2 years? Maybe not, but it was something. Are the seiners solely to blame for the serious lack of tuna blood on my boat lately? Nah, I blame my job and my wife and my 8 month old whom I adore and the wind and my house projects for that. Or maybe I just suck at fishing.

    But I don't think it is a stretch to say that the localized and large commercial fleet effort at the very least had some impact on us. At the very least they broke up and scattered the schools which may have otherwise come into our waters in greater numbers and density. I don't think these seiners single-handedly hurt the entire Pacific stock of yellowfin tuna, but I do think the specific timing and location did not help this season's fishery for Socal boats. Maybe next year these seiner's might even wrap more fish, but if it's 200 miles away, we won't feel it as bad.
     
    Last edited: Aug 11, 2016
  15. Baja Belk

    Baja Belk Long, grandiloquent fish stories. Sorry.

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    How much can an average seiner wrap in one set? I think I've heard 40 tons? Let's call it 10 tons on the low side. If there were 50 seiners making one set a day for a week, that's 7,000,000 pounds of fish. At an average of 20 lbs, that's 350,000 fish.

    Maybe my numbers are way off.

    But if not, that's a lot of fish.
     
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  16. bparker1225

    bparker1225 Ocean Addiction

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    The one thing not mentioned how the Ensenada Bay / Todo Santos Island by agreement (exclusive economic zone) is not fished by our Sportsfisng Fleet and left to the local fishermen. Unless the long range fleet takes appropriate steps, I can also see US boats being not only banned from there but also banned from other areas fished by the Mexicans such as the growing recreational charter fleet at Cedros Island.
    The local pangeros at SQ are not to blame for the Seiners regardless of whether the Seiners have impacted the tuna or not and they still need to be respected.
     
    Last edited: Aug 11, 2016
  17. get some

    get some So Cal Editor BD Writer

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    Mathematically that is correct, but I doubt that's really the case. If the seiners were able to net that much fish out of the area I think that most of them would have gone home full already. It would be interesting to find out the actual number of seiners working that zone (I doubt that it's actually 50) vs. how many of the boats are there are transporting or tending the tuna pens that were in that area earlier this year.
     
  18. BluefinCurly

    BluefinCurly Skipper

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    That's a bit of a stretch. I have worked on purse seiners. You make a lot of sets to connect on a few. Especially considering how squirley most of the spots have been in that area the last several weeks.
    Not to mention that the canneries could not possibly absorb that much fish in a weeks time. Not even Fish Harbor in its Hay Day could handle that volume.

    When I saw the first barage of bashing in the initial post on the topic, I reflected on my years of limited travel in Baja. I think instead of throwing lead, I would have invited the panqueros over for a 30 pack of bud lite and a fist full of Pesos.
    Good will travels fast in the small communities. You never know the outcome...

    Great post Erik. Keep em coming.
     
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  19. get some

    get some So Cal Editor BD Writer

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    I'd prefer it if we could keep this post a place where people can have a civil discussion. There are already a couple other "jump on the Mexican hating band wagon" posts that you join in on. Illegal immigration has nothing to do with what we are talking about.
    Thanks!
     
  20. makairaa

    makairaa I've posted enough I should edit this section

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    People really should check the actual immigration statistics before opening their mouths. More mexicans have gone back to mexico than have come here in the last 8 years. The majority of illegals coming across the border are actually from central america. Here is another fact, mexico deported more illegals in 2014 and 2015 than we did. They stopped a huge number of illegals before they got to us. On 5% of our budget no less. I love how all these people are blaming the mexicans that are ACTUALLY staying in mexico and doing what you want them to (working) for those that do not. You want someone to blame look at our own country. It is the US politicians that are giving the illegals benefits.
     

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