Fishing derbies are popular events where serious anglers test their mettle against various species of fish. Oceana recently received some news and pictures from a recreational fisherman who participated in the annual Marina Del Rey Halibut Derby in Southern California, a charity fundraiser held at the beginning of April. Organized by the Marina Del Rey Anglers, the derby is the oldest and largest Halibut Derby in Southern California. About 835 anglers participated at the event, and the heaviest halibut caught weighed in at 41.8 pounds.
Halibut are not only popular in recreational fishing, but are also an important commercial fish species. Found in the North Pacific and North Atlantic, Halibut are the largest of all flatfish and can weigh up to 500 pounds. They have also been known to reach a length of about eight feet. Like flounder, another species of flatfish, halibut typically have both eyes on the right side of the body. And like other flatfish, halibut mostly live closer to the bottom of the ocean floor, though they sometimes travel up the water column to feed. The commercial halibut fishery in the North Pacific has been in effect since the 19th century and has proven to be a lucrative industry. Pacific halibut are mostly captured through bottom longline fishing, where morsels of bait are attached to hooks dispersed along a long fishing line closer to the ocean floor. Because of their long lifespans (about 40 years for a female and about 25 for a male), they are slow to reproduce and require proper international management if the fishery is to continue thriving.
- Ocean News: June 2014 Marked the Hottest on Record, Microplastics Worse for Crabs than Thought, and More Posted Tue, July 22, 2014
- Tackling Illegal Fishing in Italy: Behind the Scenes Posted Tue, July 22, 2014
- Chilean Salmon Industry Found to Use Highest Amount of Antibiotics Worldwide Posted Tue, July 22, 2014
- Ocean News: Great Barrier Reef Will be “Pretty Ugly” by 2050, Sea Turtle Nests Down in South Carolina, and More Posted Wed, July 23, 2014
- Eleven Florida Lawmakers Urge President Obama to Reconsider Approval for Seismic Airgun Testing Posted Wed, July 23, 2014