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Blue marlin swims from Sydney to Vanuatu

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FOLLOWING on from last month’s report of a blue marlin that had been tagged at the Gold Coast and recaptured off Sydney, there have been two more recaptures reported, bringing the total number of recaptured blues to 38 since the program began in 1973.

One of these recent recaptures was very special as the fish was recaptured off Port Vila, Vanuatu, having been tagged by Sydney GFC boat Smartbill fishing off Botany Bay. Aaron Ayad caught the estimated 60 kg blue marlin on March 26, 2018, during a consistent blue marlin bite off Sydney. Crusoe Fishing Adventures boat Reel Capture II went on to recapture Smartbill’s blue while fishing off Pango Point, Port Villa, only three nautical miles from shore in 200 m of water on May 22, 2018. David Gilmore caught the fish, estimated at 75 kg, which had spent a mere 57 days at liberty and travelled an impressive 1318 nautical miles during this time.

This recapture marks the fifth furthest distance travelled for a blue marlin released under the program, it having swum an average of 23 nautical miles per day to get recaptured in the tropical waters of Vanuatu.

The other recent recapture was a blue marlin tagged during the 2018 Newcastle & Port Stephens GFC Garmin Billfish Shootout tournament in February and recaptured off the Gold Coast Kink in May.

Trevor Wells aboard NPSGFC boat Crackatinnie tagged the estimated 115 kg blue marlin on the last day of the tournament and released the fish in excellent condition after catching it on a lure on 37 kg gear. Some 74 days and 278 nautical miles north east of its release location, Seamus Linch aboard Gone Fishing recaptured the blue marlin at the Gold Coast Kink.

These three latest recaptures have resulted in a significant increase in total recaptures for the tagging program and are associated with the great blue marlin fishing that has been experienced off the east coast this year.

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