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Author Topic: Redtail Surfperch, WCVI  (Read 1515 times)

clarki

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Redtail Surfperch, WCVI
« on: June 30, 2020, 11:20:13 AM »



Although I've fished with the kids for perch off inshore docks, my buddy recently turned me onto fishing for redtail surfperch on the WCVI. It's a fishery I had never tried before. Very cool to be beach fish in the surf of the North Pacific.

From California north, traditional tactics for surf perch are 1+ oz of weight with hooks and bait, but I found them fairly close to shore and had great fun tossing a 1/8 oz jig tipped with a chunk of Berkley Gulp sandworm.

Biggest fish was 15" and the strength of their fight surprised me! Based on their shape, size and fight I felt like was catching cold water piranha.

Seeing how tight to shore they are, and how I can get by with 1/8 oz, going back with my ultralight noodle rod. That should be some sport.  :)

« Last Edit: June 30, 2020, 11:28:02 AM by clarki »
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Rodney

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Re: Redtail Surfperch, WCVI
« Reply #1 on: June 30, 2020, 12:02:26 PM »

Sweet.... :o I'm going back in September so will have to try it out... How close are we talking about? 50ft?

clarki

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Re: Redtail Surfperch, WCVI
« Reply #2 on: June 30, 2020, 12:44:57 PM »

Sweet.... :o I'm going back in September so will have to try it out... How close are we talking about? 50ft?

In my case last night, around 30 ft. But it really depends on the bottom structure.

For my first hour I was chucking a 1 oz weight as far as I could to the last set of breakers nearest shore and trying to drift in. It was my first time fishing the surf and I was trying to read the water and understand what was going on out there.

I moved down the shore and start fishing in fairly tight, noticing that there was some calm water between the last breaker and the shore break, and a bit of sideways rip current. That was the ticket and I landed my limit in under a half an hour.

Suggest fishing a couple hours either side of high tide. The jig head worked well (shout out to Gooey). I got hits fishing it dead, slowly retrieving or twitching it .

Interestingly, all the fish were female, and I learned last night that redtails are viviparous, meaning they give birth live young. Weird to see amniotic sacks/wombs of the females full of developed, but not yet viable babies.
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Blood_Orange

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Re: Redtail Surfperch, WCVI
« Reply #3 on: June 30, 2020, 01:54:05 PM »

Very cool! Never heard of these fish before.
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Rodney

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Re: Redtail Surfperch, WCVI
« Reply #4 on: June 30, 2020, 09:29:40 PM »

In my case last night, around 30 ft. But it really depends on the bottom structure.

For my first hour I was chucking a 1 oz weight as far as I could to the last set of breakers nearest shore and trying to drift in. It was my first time fishing the surf and I was trying to read the water and understand what was going on out there.

I moved down the shore and start fishing in fairly tight, noticing that there was some calm water between the last breaker and the shore break, and a bit of sideways rip current. That was the ticket and I landed my limit in under a half an hour.

Suggest fishing a couple hours either side of high tide. The jig head worked well (shout out to Gooey). I got hits fishing it dead, slowly retrieving or twitching it .

Interestingly, all the fish were female, and I learned last night that redtails are viviparous, meaning they give birth live young. Weird to see amniotic sacks/wombs of the females full of developed, but not yet viable babies.

I think I'm actually more excited about this than coho. :o

Roderick

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Re: Redtail Surfperch, WCVI
« Reply #5 on: July 02, 2020, 03:45:05 PM »

I have got them literally in the breaking waves while fishing for coho with spinners, maybe 10 feet from shore.
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clarki

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Re: Redtail Surfperch, WCVI
« Reply #6 on: July 02, 2020, 08:44:29 PM »

I have got them literally in the breaking waves while fishing for coho with spinners, maybe 10 feet from shore.
Yeah, I went back the next night with my noodle rod and caught many just 10-15 ft from where I was standing in ankle/shin deep water. I would toss my bait into the wake of a breaking wave and they would be on it. I even saw one swimming inside the curl of wave, chasing my bait. 
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RalphH

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Re: Redtail Surfperch, WCVI
« Reply #7 on: July 02, 2020, 09:32:45 PM »

John Shewey, a well known fly angler and writer living in Oregon has written quite a number of articles etc on fly fishing for redtail perch - some of which is included in his book  Northwest Fly Fishing; Trout and Beyond.

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/2646635-flyfishing-pacific-northwest-waters

clarki

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Re: Redtail Surfperch, WCVI
« Reply #8 on: July 03, 2020, 03:28:53 PM »

I brought along my flyrod on the trip for cutthroat, but this morning I turned it into redtail surf fishing rod. I didn't come with redtails on the fly in mind, but I re-purposed my  5 weight and intermediate sink and figured that a pumpkin head leech stripped along near the bottom might look like something they would feed on. Turns out, I figured right. Landed several.



With no stripping basket, line management in the breaking surf was a challenge but even with my hack surf casting style I could get it far enough out into their feeding zone.

It was a pretty cool experience to flyfish the surf on a rainy morning on a near deserted beach and catch enough fish to know that your approach was more than a fluke.
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RalphH

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Re: Redtail Surfperch, WCVI
« Reply #9 on: July 06, 2020, 09:28:08 AM »

Sweet! Never a need to over think things. I've been to Pacific Rim/Tofino once. If I get back I will have to give this a try.

myflyisdown

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Re: Redtail Surfperch, WCVI
« Reply #10 on: August 07, 2020, 09:46:27 AM »

Have fished those in Oregon but not VCI yet
Used a pvc shrimp pump to collect sand shrimp to use as bait, match the hatch
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clarki

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Re: Redtail Surfperch, WCVI
« Reply #11 on: August 14, 2020, 10:56:54 AM »

Surf perch meat can turn mushy after cooking. So much so that some recipes suggest you brine the meat to firm it up before cooking.

I brought home several large perch from the coast, and last night turned them into fish cakes with this recipe. Delish!     

https://www.canadianliving.com/food/recipe/fish-cakes-8
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