3 Feb 2008

Saltwater Fishing Report – December / January 2008

  • For the waters around Kadavu Island- Fiji Islands – South Pacific.
  • Charter Operator – Matava Resort Gamefishing
  • Boat Names – Bite Me (Offshore) and Offensive Tackle (Inshore)
  • Average Water Temp – 28.0
  • Average Sea State – 50% Wind chop to 4ft, groundswell to 4ft / 50% calm
  • Average Winds – 50% 10-15kts / 50% light airs
  • Water Clarity – Good inshore, good offshore

Fiji waters have been thick since Christmas with big schools of Yellowfin tuna. Ranging from marlin bait size to 100lbs plus, most good fish are coming in around the 80lbs mark with huge shoals of juveniles providing plenty of live bait for billfish enthusiasts.

All charter boats are reporting bumper catches of tuna with excellent action close in to the Great Astrolabe barrier reef around Kadavu island. The big yellowfin are schooling at 120ft in 300ft of water on the steep reef drop-offs. We are using the old trick of running a deep squid on a trip-planer to draw up the first fish then the whole spread gets smashed.

The Kadavu trench and seamount are still consistently producing several shots at blue marlin every visit. We are also still seeing the occasional wahoo, sail and short-billed spearfish when working out wide but the best time for these species is winter (May - October) when they turn up in huge packs.

Plenty of mahi mahi along current lines and the occasional raft of pummice from the underwater Tongan volcano that erupted last year.

The predicted La Nina event is in full swing but the blues will keep biting until the water temperature hits 30 then the bite will cool a little. We expect March to be a relatively quiet few weeks for billfish as the hot calm sunny days bake the surface waters but the yellowfin and mahi mahi will keep anglers busy over bent rods. By April the water temperature will ease off its peak and the billfish action will fire up again.

The weather has mostly been excellent for popper casting anglers and should just keep getting better and better through February / March with calm seas allowing big game boats unlimited access to miles and miles of barrier reef breakers where the big GTs hang out.

  • Blue marlin – Lots of mid sized fish with the occasional 500+ pounder
  • Yellowfin - Here in big numbers, a virtually guaranteed catch
  • Sailfish – Just the occasional
  • Wahoo – Just the occasional
  • Mahi Mahi – lots to 30lbs and some bigger bulls to 50lbs around
  • Mackerel – Just the occasional
  • GTs – Good bite at the moment with excellend weather conditions for popper casting

Cpt Adrian Watt
Director, Matava Resort Gamefishing,
Tel: + (679) 3337 222 or 3336 098