Tropical species targeted by recreational fishermen continue to ply the unusually warm waters of the Southern California Bight, the most notable of which was the 50-pound wahoo landed by Eric Kim late last month near Santa Barbara Island.

Eric Kim stands with a 50-pound wahoo he caught near Santa Barbara Island.

Wahoo are thought to rarely stray north of Alijos Rocks, an open-ocean outcropping 500 miles south of Tijuana, said Merit McCrea, a longtime boat captain and UCSB research scientist. But with water temperatures well into the 70s, such pelagics (along with dorado, marlin, and tuna) are filling up fish reports throughout Southern California.

Merit added he’s also getting reports of yellowtail frequenting the kelp paddies off Gaviota and, further north, Point Sal.


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