Keep longline fishing out of closed zones in the Gulf
The closed areas within the DeSoto Canyons in the Gulf of Mexico were established to reduce the bycatch and discards of juvenile billfish, swordfish, and other marine life. The benefits of these longline closed zones have been important for the recreational fishing community.
Greater numbers of billfish and swordfish were caught recreationally in recent years. NMFS is now proposing to permit access to longline vessels in these closed zones. This action must be stopped! If NMFS allows longline fishing in these areas, it could not only have large ecological impacts but tremendous socio-economic impacts on the sportfishing community.
The current system works, and it’s beneficial for our Gulf ecosystem. In fact, between 2001 and 2003, the years immediately after the longline closures were established, a 49.7% reduction in blue marlin bycatch, a 47.0% reduction in white marlin bycatch, and a 74.6% reduction in bycatch of sailfish resulted compared to the years preceding the longline closures.
Between 2005 and 2011, blue marlin, white marlin, and sailfish bycatch reduced by 61.6%, 59.8%, and 66.9%, respectively compared to when longlining was permitted. To learn more, please visit The Billfish Foundation, make your sport fishing voice heard.
You saw it on the drawing board, and you saw it at the Miami Boat Show. It caught your eye riding on the Interstate from Florida to Louisiana, and this week ahead, … it makes its debut as the newest Freeman in our fleet of Freeman’s at The Mexican Gulf Fishing Company — a 42 foot Freeman Boatworks masterpiece.
That’s right — the f/v Wild Bill is ready for charters from Venice, Louisiana.
Offshore Venice — is off to a good start in 2017. We’re seeing monster yellowfin tuna, plenty of blackfin tuna, wahoo of great size, and temps (water and air) that you just won’t believe.
“It’s been wild,” says Captain Wade Wells. “We’re seeing really nice temps making for some nice warm days. It’s bringing in the fish, too,” said Wade.
Captain Jordan Ellis agrees. “I’ve put customers on yellowfin and wahoo and we’re surprised at the size of both species. The ambient temps are great, and the water temps running a bit higher than normal too. It’s been a fun start to the new year. Looks to me like Spring is gonna be awesome.”
Justin Rackley, known as Lakeforkguy, creates fishing videos on youtube and other social platforms. Lakeforkguy travels to freshwater and saltwater fishing spots to explore new fish species and fishing techniques to show as many fishing places as possible and help viewers catch more fish, and recently he wanted to make a yellowfin tuna video.
In this video, he fished with MGFC out of Venice Marina. They targeted yellowfin tuna and swordfish, and got what they came for. View this yellowfin tuna video, and see what a day of offshore fishing is like when you fish with MGFC.