Tuna Fishing Tips in Venice Louisiana

Posted on December 30th, 2017 by Captain Chandler

Biggest yellowfin in Venice

Fish Like a Campion – Captain Chandler’s Secret Sauce

If you’ve been receiving our Champion Charters Newsletter, you’ve seen that the BIG YELLOWFIN TUNA BITE is in full swing out of Venice, Louisiana! The Champion Charters Team can barely get to the offshore tuna grounds without double and triple headers!

The trick to finding the monster Yellowfin Tunas and Blackfin Tunas is to locate and shadow the offshore shrimp boat fleet. This is one of the most exciting Fall/Winter fisheries in the Continental United States as our anglers get to pick and choose which tuna they want to hook.

The offshore shrimp boats are typically 50 to 65 feet long and they “trawl” their nets, bringing the nets up on deck every few hours to sort their catch. Shrimp get to stay on board as “passengers” who get to stay in an icy cooler for the remainder of the cruise. The rest of the haul is considered “by-catch” and is returned over the side into the water. Many saltwater species, especially tuna, have adapted to follow the shrimp boats and feast upon the by-catch bounty.

When we locate the shrimping fleet, we’ll often hail a nearby boat to purchase several buckets of by-catch to use as bait and chum. By this point, we’ve already loaded the livewells with live mullet that the Champion Charters Team netted earlier in the day.

Fishing near the shrimp boats is an experience unto itself as our anglers get to watch them work to harvest their bumper crop of shrimp. As the shrimp boats “do their thing,” various tuna species and other predators stage behind the boats as scrumptious by-catch morsels known drift slowly in the boats’ wake.

The Champion Charters Team knows just how to take advantage of this situation. Using our world-class Yellowfin Center Console to maneuver our anglers with surgical precision to within 60 yards or so behind the shrimpers. We begin chumming with our recently acquired by-catch. In no time, tunas and other apex predators can be seen under and around the boat. Now the fun begins.

Then, we place our live baits between the tunas and the all-you-can-eat buffet streaming off the stern of the shrimp boats. This is where the magic happens. The huge tunas cannot resist our baits that are the size of hog legs.

Let’s take a moment to discuss terminal tackle: We’re fishing Shimano TLD50 2-Speed reels on standup rods, spooled with 80 lb Suffix braid, terminating to a Bimini twist. We connect a 10-foot length of 40 lb Suffix fluorocarbon as the leader and finish the rig with a 6/0 Owner circle hook. This is a very simple yet stealthy rig for tunas. Remember: Tunas have big eyes on their heads. We need to drop down on our leader and hook sizes to fool them.

When the bite is on, our anglers can literally pick-and-choose the tuna that they want to hook! We pitch a 2 lb mullet a few feet away and the water erupts! This is one of the most weak-kneed moments in all of angling when a 200 lb Yellowfin explodes on your bait as it hits the water 6 feet from the covering board!

There will be times when we see wolves among the sheep: Sharks. Not to worry. The Champion Charters Team knows how to avoid the sharks as well as keeping sharks away from your trophy tunas. (In case you didn’t’ know, sharks love sushi too.)

Our anglers return to the dock with tired arms and huge, toothy smiles. Then it’s our turn to have tired arms as we clean hundreds of pounds of the choicest, sushi-grade tuna you’ve ever seen.

Come join us for an angling experience for the entire family and for memories that will last a lifetime. Call us now to book your trip!

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