Page 75 - Tuna Fishing in St. Ann's Bay
ISSUE : Issue 56
Published by Ronald Caplan on 1991/1/1
gust. Percy says the water has been too warm • ...Did not catch or strike a fish this 1958 but ended the year ingloriously with a Dogfish (in Big Boy Bay) which took the Tuna hook into his mouth. 1959 On Sept. 3rd I had a strike (a light jig-jig-jig-jig) off the big red face just at the E. end of Big Boy Bay short of S. Gut where we had seen a fish surface the night before. I did not strike back as I have found that in so doing one pulls the bait out of their mouth (contrary to J.K.L. Ross' idea that one should strike at every touch!). Sept. 4th. The anniversary of my Big One in 1950.1 trolled atong Big Boy Bay from W. to E. and as I got to the same red rock face I had a real lake...." As I was using Hardy's light brakied wire leader for the first time in a fight, I used a very light drag. The fish did not break and mn on striking and just circled stowly and refused to fight. I tried slacking off and backing away but he just came in on pumping. So I spent a gentle hour and twenty-five minutes bringing him to the beach. A lucky thing because he was only hooked by 1/2 of the lip 3 inches out from the hinge of the jaw • weight 193 lbs. Hooked and killed (20 mins.) a 446 lb. blue shari< 9'-6" long at ex? treme West end of Rocky Side, just W. of red rock corner where we got the 193 lb. Tuna. 1961 Arrived June 28th. Heavy, hard winter • everything backward. Tuna reported at the Ferry July 15th. Mackerel more plentiful in the nets than for many years. All types of fish are late this year. No big Mackerel by Sept. 5th. Dollar fish only came in Sept. No white jelly? fish & no Sunfish. One shark, only glimpsed, off our point. One good sized Tuna in inner Bay for last 3 weeks of Aug. • named "Charley" by J. Hale • who had two faint passes from him. Until Sept. we only saw 12 Tuna in all • only one at nets in outer Bay. On Sept. 3rd & 4th saw small (90 lbs.) & slightly larger Tuna & the ripple from larger ones & on the evening of the 4th (11th Anniversary of World's Record) we saw two large fish who made a fine pass at a small Mackerel, but turned off at last minute • because there was 3 inches of eeigrass on nose of bait!... On the 18th drew the bait through a school of two large (700 lb.+) fish and some smaller ones • no interest!... This has been the worst year in my time in St. Ann's Bay, we having only made four "passes" with refusals each time and only a couple of tentative strikes. 1962 This has been a record year for bait. Herring every day in the nets.... This week, ending Aug. 25th, has given us some fine quiet days with afternoon high tides. There are 3 lots of Tuna in and around "the beat." We have made perfect passes, which seemed to merely scare the fish • they would "start" for the bait and, as soon as they got a look at it, they would "go down." Two good-sized fish were "finning" beautifully. To avoid the many "short strikes" of the past, with the bait merely bit? ten in half, I have been placing the hook aft in the bait • around the area of the anus. I note that this has two bad effects: first, with the guts out, the fish swims on its back & second the hook & chain so far aft seems to make the bait too stiff (in spite of the backbone being out) • So now I am trying a verskjn of an old system. With the back- t)one removed by the "tube" method and the guts left in, I am doing the old • in the mouth, out the gills and back in through the gills, but only putting just the point of the hook through, between the two little fins on the belly in front. Thus the bait swims very well with a little wriggle. This year I have thought up a new and very good way of get? ting my bait down under the surface • where the Tuna now seem to spend 99% of their time. A smooth, brass harness ring is the secret mounted so: • '/W' c -<-'i-i.._j' a.., cAsJiuXxJi "I.:'- '"d 'f'' ~"% When a strike occurs the sail twine will break. I will retrieve the cod- weight and the brass ring will be left free to travel up and down the line. This overcomes the tendency to "unwrap" the twist in the tuna line which I experienced formerly by attaching the sail twine to the swivel at the leader-end and it also separates the "frightening" cod weight from the bait, by as much line as one wants to let out. The best procedure seems to be to keep the cod weight in the stern of the rowboat while paying out trolling line, thus the brass ring will be up near the tip of the rod • when the desired length of troll is achieved, one can then lower the cod weight & the brass ring will slide down the tuna line, taking it down to the desired depth. Looks good to me. But I'm not a Tuna! If we get a fish, it will be with sunken bait, 1 feel sure • as they have consistently refused the conventional surface bait, no matter how quietly presented. Sept. 11th. Left today after a most unusual summer. Had at least a dozen & generally several dozen Mackerel in the nets every day. Nq dollar fish, no Sunfish, one shart<, seen near nets, only 6 Dogfish in nets all season. The odd Herring in nets up to 9th Sept. Very few Gaspereau. Only saw about a dozen Tuna, at most, all in inner Bay. Was told we missed seeing Tuna "finning" close to shore, just E. of I.G.Tax Services Quality Tax Preparation • Fast and courteous service • Special rates for seniors • Year round tax service 350 Charlotte Street Sydney, Nova Scotia 564-8800 Stores To Serve You CAPE BRETON SHOPPING PLAZA SYDNEY RIVER mm' Featuring'Hwte Open 'TII10 OCrARTMENTtTORfC The Crossroads of Cape Breton' Sobeys & Shopper's Drug Mart ''''''''" *"" = Parking
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