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Old 05-05-2019, 10:31 PM   #1
Bob Ballew
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The Ocean's Critters are All on Vacation Here

...There is the sudden increase of GW sightings and encounters at Catalina (five in 4 weeks)...then, acres of ocean surface covered by jellyfish-like critters with blue sails ('by-the-wind sailers') which are starting to wash ashore on beaches up and down the coast; followed up to the surface by numerous mola-molas, to 600 lbs, who are munching the sailers for lunch; then, rarely seen basking sharks coming north with 10 to 20 sighted along the channel islands... The dorsal of a basking shark (to 45') can be mistaken for a great white (to 25'). However, gw fins are vertical and rigid, while most basking sharks have floppy dorsals that droop over somewhat...
...There are blue whales along the coast inhaling krill, Russos dolphins making a ghostly appearance and large pods of bottle-nose dolphins...Even some sweet potato sea cucumbers washing ashore recently and rare fin back whales appearing off Newport Beach. Lots of Bluefin tuna (a few 200 lb'ers caught and even going airborne up thru the bait!) have already crossed the border up as far as the 181-182-43 banks, yellowtail off Long Beach and tanker sea bass spread out along the coast...Guadalupe (island) fur seals have migrated here, with 10 month old pups arriving in a starved and dying condition...from a distance, fur seals often look like sea otters, lying on their backs with flippers across their chest...More whales are being found dead, also showing signs of malnutrition.....Warning signs that the ocean is changing and more species may become extinct.
...All have followed the currents or drifted our direction on the ever present winds blowing in every day. 2019 may turn out to be one for the record books with a 400 pound tuna landed by a lucky diver!
...Heck, this might be the year I set a new oarfish record of 55' long, beating my old record of a 3'er I caught off Long Point years ago.... tho' hanging a fifty-five foot mount on the wall might create some issues with my wife...

Last edited by Bob Ballew; 05-13-2019 at 12:28 PM.
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Old 05-06-2019, 09:56 AM   #2
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Re: The Ocean's Critters are All on Vacation Here

Thank you Bob, always informative. Looking forward to getting that 400lb Bluefin!
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Old 05-06-2019, 12:04 PM   #3
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Re: The Ocean's Critters are All on Vacation Here

Saw a ton of those sailor jellies washed up the other day
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Old 05-06-2019, 12:34 PM   #4
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Re: The Ocean's Critters are All on Vacation Here

By the wind sailors are THICK up here in the SB Channel as of Friday
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Old 05-06-2019, 12:38 PM   #5
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Re: The Ocean's Critters are All on Vacation Here

...Velella velellas (sailers) are an interesting species...the clear sail is a structure the organism secretes and the blue sticky base is the flesh and tissue. They do contain venom but, it is harmless to humans. At most, you may develop a mild skin rash from swimming thru them. Still, it is best to avoid contact if possible. They are very small and often, hard to spot....Now, where can I find a tuna?....I want to catch a tuna
...All this action is why I instinctively hitch-hiked from Ohio to California at age 15, to be like Mike Nelson in the t.v. series "Sea Hunt", starring Lloyd Bridges.....He always had a cute blonde on one arm and a diving adventure awaiting on the other...Now, that is the good life! For me, California is still the center of the Universe....Yes, the young Ohio hick finally caught some beach blondes but, married a redhead, who is far smarter than he..

....Postscript: Years later, I had actor Jeff Bridges on board my hi-speed Radon dive boat, which a movie studio had chartered while filming "King Kong" (1976) starring Jeff and Jessica Lange. I blurted out my diving story about how his dad had inspired me to hitch-hike from Ohio to be just like his character in "Sea Hunt"..He smiled and said, "My dad never really liked that image; he wanted to be known as an actor, not a diver".………………….….

Last edited by Bob Ballew; 05-06-2019 at 05:43 PM.
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Old 05-06-2019, 02:10 PM   #6
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Re: The Ocean's Critters are All on Vacation Here

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Ballew View Post

....Postscript: Years later, I had actor Jeff Bridges on board my hi-speed Radon dive boat, which a movie studio had chartered while filming "King Kong" (1976) starring Jeff and Jessica Lange. I blurted out my diving story about his dad inspiring me to hitch-hike from Ohio to be just like his character in "Sea Hunt"..He smiled and said, "My dad never really liked that image; he wanted to be known as an actor, not a diver".………………….….
To which you should have responded, "I picked the wrong week to stop sniffing glue."
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Old 05-06-2019, 02:23 PM   #7
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Re: The Ocean's Critters are All on Vacation Here

I will leave the glue sniffing to younger guys who post what appears to be stupid comments....?
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Old 05-06-2019, 03:21 PM   #8
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Re: The Ocean's Critters are All on Vacation Here

Bluefin have disappeared in the fish counts out of San Diego. Could be due to weather or they moved Northwest so fast the fleet can't find them. No WSB in La Jolla yet. Little kelp between San Clemente and La Jolla.
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Old 05-06-2019, 04:52 PM   #9
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Re: The Ocean's Critters are All on Vacation Here

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=22Gu76hPORg

This is several days ago. He said it was a mako.
I saw a guy came down. Doesn't Mako attack human?
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Old 05-06-2019, 06:02 PM   #10
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Re: The Ocean's Critters are All on Vacation Here

...These Bluefin are moving fast...the trick is to see where they were yesterday or today (where everyone heads the next day) and project ahead to where they are likely to be 24 hours later...They can easily move 20 miles a day looking for good food sources...then, avoid the crowds and head there....
...A good move is to look at sites like "Tempbreak" and scan backwards from the 8 day to the one day reports for temp and chloro patterns...Follow the solid 62 to 64 degree temp line (preferably, unbroken by cold temps), usually north or northwest and that area is often your best shot at a big bluefin...
... If we are lacking current info, one of our tricks is to locate the fleet, then, move down current to fish or dive a half mile away from the crowd...Their chum floats down current and into our zone, pulling the bluefin away from the noise and into our "quiet" zone....We don't play music, don't make loud noises and always, put the anchor down very quietly when on a shallow spot...working below the fleet a couple of years ago ended with 4 hookups and 4 tuna landed for the 4 of us on board...all 65 to 85 lbs....and, yes, makos find humans somewhat tasty....they are a pain for divers to face off with, because they move so damn quick...

Last edited by Bob Ballew; 05-07-2019 at 12:38 AM.
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Old 05-06-2019, 10:52 PM   #11
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Re: The Ocean's Critters are All on Vacation Here

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hd1ciPnTGKg
Or have a better understanding of one of the best movie quotes from Jeff's father.
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Old 05-07-2019, 12:07 AM   #12
Bob Ballew
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Re: The Ocean's Critters are All on Vacation Here

Hmmm, I didn't see that movie....pretty funny!..Thanks for posting it.......seems I owe the Tustin man an apology for over reacting to what I perceived to be an insult....I was always a rum and pineapple juice guy, myself...but, I am starting to think about whether Medicare would cover some medical marijuana for old age infirmaties....

Last edited by Bob Ballew; 05-07-2019 at 12:24 AM.
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Old 05-07-2019, 10:35 AM   #13
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Re: The Ocean's Critters are All on Vacation Here

Quote:
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I will leave the glue sniffing to younger guys who post what appears to be stupid comments....?
It's a fcking quote from the movie Airplane dude get a clue...
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Old 05-07-2019, 01:57 PM   #14
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Re: The Ocean's Critters are All on Vacation Here

Hey, my excuse is I am just a sad little man;, old and feeble....have pity..
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Old 05-08-2019, 11:05 AM   #15
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Re: The Ocean's Critters are All on Vacation Here

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Hey, my excuse is I am just a sad little man;, old and feeble....have pity..
Bob, you're the best thing on this board never change! Love your stories and insight!
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