With reports of big yellowfin tuna being seen and caught from different areas, at Shimoni, the North Kenya Banks and the Watamu banks, it looks as if a good run of these exciting fish is about to materialize. Several years ago, with huge shoals of mantis shrimps around, these big tuna virtually took over the fishing scene, with monsters of over 100 kgs being caught and boats catching up to a thousand kgs a trip, but when the shrimps disappeared after a few years, so did the big tuna.
Neptune from Malindi Kingfisher boats has had several days out on the North Kenya Banks, and together with Eclare had trips with both a good black marlin each and several tuna up to 30 kgs, while the former boat has now just returned from a trip with a huge black marlin of 331 kgs as well as twelve big tuna and a silvertip shark, weighing the marlin as it died on the line during the fight. A fantastic catch early in the season!
From Shimoni, Simon Hemphill reports that the boats have seen big shoals of large yellowfin, with both Kamara II and Broadbill boating a fish nearly 30kgs –these fish are hard to catch, but on the right day with rain showers they turn on and take the baits, and this fishing should improve in September, peaking normally in October in former years, although they have been absent in recent years. Excitingly, these tuna are usually accompanied by some big marlin, particularly blues, so we look forward to news in the next few weeks of some of these explosive battlers.
The biggest tuna so far was a monster of 66 kgs caught on Alleycat on the Watamu Mountains, with one almost as big at 64.5 kgs on Ol Jogi in the same area, and the former boat has also had two good days on the Banks with a black marlin each day, one of about 80kgs and one of 140 kgs, with a sailfish on the first day and two sail, eight yellowfin, a kingfish and a wahoo as well as the bigger marlin for an amazing day, and only a few miles out from harbour! The same area yielded two small black marlin one day for Unreel, while 11 year old Josh Cornelius released a sailfish and Tarka had a black marlin and a bull shark of 140kgs so plenty of action here.
White Mischief and Ol Jogi also are trying the fishing on the North Kenya Banks, and first day the former boat found four tuna of 30 kgs, in rather rough conditions, but after a day’s rest the anglers are determined to better that score, probably hoping for one of those rainy days when the tuna really come on the bite.
So there should be some interesting news in coming weeks, let’s hope plenty of anglers hear about it and come to try their luck.