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Capt. Brant's Fishing Report

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"Early results" | OIFC World Cat / Carolina Cat | 12/23/09
 

Word on the street is that there were several short Bluefins caught today.  One boat still hooked up fighting a fish but not sure if its a Big Bluefin or a Big Shark.  Stay tuned for the late afternoon wrap-up...
- Capt. Steele
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e 12/30/2013





"Merry Christmas to All. " | OIFC World Cat / Carolina Cat | 12/23/09
 

Well, the fleet is out there, no word on catches as they are just on the edge of VHF range.  We are anxiously awaiting word from them and should hear something soon as to whether or not the Bluefin bite was going on.  In the meantime, thought a little holiday reading was in order. 

THE NIGHT BEFORE CHRISTMAS
by Clement Clarke Moore
or Henry Livingston
Modified by Steele Park

'Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the boat;
Not a creature was stirring, except for Mother Nature;
The Shimano 50W Combos were hung by the console with care,
In hopes that Mr/Mrs Bluefin soon would be there;
The Ballyhoo were nestled all snug on their rigs,
While visions of multiple hookups danced in their heads;
And mamma in her 'Pelagics, and I in my Grundens;
Had just settled down for a long winter's nap,
When out at the Knuckle there arose such a clatter,
I sprang from the leaning post to see what was the matter.
Away to the gunnels I flew like a flash,
Tore open the curtains and threw up the drag.
The moon on the breast of the new NE Swell
Gave the lustre of mid-day to pogeys below,
When, what to my wondering eyes should appear,
But a miniature sleigh, and eight tiny reindeer,
With a little old driver, so lively and quick,
I knew in a moment it must be St. Nick.
More rapid than Gannets his coursers they came,
And he whistled, and shouted, and called them by name;
"Now, Doppler! now, Mak! now, Tugboat and Cinco!
On, Comet! on Cupid! on, Donder and Blitzen!
To the top of the Frying Pan Tower! to the top of Old Baldy!
Now dash away! dash away! dash away all!"
As red flags that before the wild hurricane fly,
When they meet with an obstacle, mount to the sky,
So up to the T-top the coursers they flew,
With the sleigh full of OIFC Custom Combos, and St. Nicholas too.
And then, in a twinkling, I heard on the top
The prancing and pawing of each little hoof.
As I drew in my head, and was turning around,
Down the VHF Antenna St. Nicholas came with a bound.
He was dressed all in Orange Foul Weather Gear, from his head to his foot,
And his clothes were all tarnished with Scales and blood;
A bundle of Flouro and Black Barts he had flung on his back,
And he looked like a vendor just opening his pack.
His eyes -- how they twinkled! his dimples how merry!
His cheeks were like roses, his nose like a cherry!
His droll little mouth was drawn up like a bow,
And the beard of his chin was as white as sea foam;
The stump of a pipe he held tight in his teeth,
And the smoke it encircled his head like morning fog;
He had a broad face and a little round belly,
That shook, when he laughed like a bowlful of jelly.
He was chubby and plump, a right jolly old elf,
And I laughed when I saw him, in spite of myself;
A wink of his eye and a twist of his head,
Soon gave me to know I had nothing to dread;
He spoke not a word, but went straight to his work,
And filled all the tarps with Bluefin; then turned with a jerk,
And laying his finger aside of his nose,
And giving a nod, up the antenna he rose;
He sprang to his sleigh, to his team gave a whistle,
And away they all flew like the down of a thistle.
But I heard him exclaim, ere he drove out of sight,
"Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good, Safe, Bluefin Season."

Happy Holidays from all of us here at the Ocean Isle Fishing Center. See you out there!!!


- Capt. Steele
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e 12/30/2013





"Zip, Nada, None" | OIFC World Cat / Carolina Cat | 12/22/09
 

Video Clip 1

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| Video Clip 2
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The title explains the bite at Morehead City.  I fished with Captain Zach (OIFC) aboard his 36 ft. twin Yamaha 350's, the Get Floored.  There were 70+ boats fishing with us.  No one got a bite.  All boats did what should be done, but with negative results.

All that changed when we learned of the bluefin bite off the shores of Brunswick County.  Many loaded their boats on their trailers and headed to Ocean Isle Beach.

Captain Jeff Beck (OIFC) and I will give it a shot aboard his boat the "Do Work".  Included are some pictures for those are land locked.Give the video clips a little time as they down.


- Capt. Rickey Beck
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e 12/30/2013





"Eureka!" | OIFC World Cat / Carolina Cat | 12/22/09
 

The first Bluefin is coming to a Brunswick County dock!  Capt. Walley Traya aboard the Fish Whistle has just called and reported he has landed an 83 inch Bluefin.  Walley fishes out of Southport, so the fish will be off loaded there.  He reported hooking a double header and releasing one short fish and landing this one.  He reported a handful of other hookups, but he wasn't sure if any had been landed.  Way to go Walley-- hopefully this will open the gates for more fish to be landed from our area.  Good luck and happy holidays.
- Capt. Brant McMullan
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e 12/30/2013





"today's report" | OIFC World Cat / Carolina Cat | 12/21/09
 

I was planning on bringing you news of a hot bite and pictures of me standing beside a pair of 100 inchers -- not to be -- Unfortunately, today was very slow.  The water was dirty and there was not much bait around.  I believe there were a couple of hookups that were lost, but I can't say for sure.  On the positive side, as the day progressed, the water was clearing and more life (Whales, Dolphins and Birds) moved off the Knuckle buoy area.  Historically, if there are any bites the first day after a bad blow, the next day will be good.  Hopefully this will be true tomorrow.  I think I'm going to finish up some Christmas shopping and mentally recoup after my devistating defeat today.  I will look to go back at them on Wednesday.  Good luck to all- I'll be at the OIFC ready to help you tag and ice your Bluefin- see you there!
- Capt. Brant McMullan
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e 12/30/2013





"Ready Set GO!" | OIFC World Cat / Carolina Cat | 12/20/09
 

Everyone is locked and loaded as the Fishing Center was abuzz with a steady stream of fishermen getting ready to go tomorrow.  Looks like a decent temperature edge from the Shark Hole all the way to the Raritan and then East of the knuckle.  Somewhere along this line there should be Bluefin.  Stay tuned for a report and good luck to all fishing tomorrow.  I'll be standing by on VHF 11 if you need assistance.
- Capt. Brant McMullan
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e 12/30/2013





"A Couple of Things" | OIFC World Cat / Carolina Cat | 12/20/09
 

It looks like the weather is going to cooperate for the next few days.  Captain Brant as well as several more fishermen are heading out tomorrow to bluefin fish.  Judging by the ballyhoo the OIFC has sold today there are going to be quite a few boats out.  Speaking of ballyhoo, what we have in stock now is some of the best quality I've seen.

The OIFC Rodeo is winding down.  It officially ends at closing time December 31st.  As of today the total prize money is $1,680.  That's by my math and is subject change.  The standings as of today are:

Flounder:  1) Jeff Wallen, 2) Brian Aycock 3) Tommy Helms

Trout:  1) Brandon Sauls 2) Brian Aycock 3) Kyle Hughes

Spanish:  1) Amy McMullan 2) William Parker 3) Tripp Hooks

King Mackerel:  1) Cane Faircloth 2) Neal Loman 3) Randy Lingerfelt

Cobia:  1) 2) 3)

Dolphin:  1) John Bird 2) Rickey Beck 3)

Tuna: 1) 2) 3)

Wahoo:  1) Amy McMullan 2) 3)

Gag Grouper:  1) Brant McMullan 2) John MacLarein

Sea Bass:  1) Brian Aycock 2) Jimmy Lee Williams 3) Rube McMullan

A final total and distribution of the prize money will be done shortly after January 1st.

 


- Capt. Rickey Beck
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e 12/30/2013





"King Macs" | OIFC World Cat / Carolina Cat | 12/18/09
 

I did forget to mention that we ran across a good many King Mackerel yesterday.  The Raritan was 64 degrees and the Kings were there- we caught one around 30 pounds on our Bluefin gear.  I'm sure its warmer at the Horseshoe and I bet they are chewing it up there.  Just in case Bluefin isn't your bag.  Happy holidays.

TOP 10 GIFT IDEAS FROM THE OIFC:

1- OIFC gift card

2- Capt. Brant's Fishing School gift certificate

3- Capt. Brant's Fishing Charter gift certificate

4- Jet Ski Rental gift certificate

5- Entry into 2010 Jolly Mon King Classic gift certificate

6- Entry into 2010 Fall Brawl King Classic gift certificate

7- Entry into 2010 Far Out Shoot Out gift certificate

8- OIFC custom Giant Bluefin Tuna rod/reel combo

9- OIFC gift card

10- OIFC gift card

Purchase last minute gifts by visiting the OIFC, calling (910) 575-3474 or shop on-line at www.OIFC.com

Happy holidays to all -- Brant

 

 


- Capt. Brant McMullan
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e 12/30/2013





"Todays Report" | OIFC World Cat / Carolina Cat | 12/17/09
 

Capt. Steele and I took the World Cat out to try to find a Bluefin today.  I felt like the cold might trigger them to turn on.  I counted 6 boats on the water braving the 3-6' foot seas and COLD- at about 9am 2 boats hooked up- one fish was pulled off fairly quickly, the other fought to boatside before it broke off at the gaff.  The same boat that hooked up and pulled their fish off, hooked up again 30 minutes later and fought a fish for an hour or so before having it pull the hook next to the boat.  Good news is there were a few bite, bad news is Brunswick County is batting a .000 -- There was not much bait at all, which is not good.  The bites were about 2 miles southeast of the Knuckle in 59 degree water -- Looks like we'll be on the hill to first of next week.  Maybe some of the bait will move into the area and help to congregate the fish.  It is still early yet- get ready.
- Capt. Brant McMullan
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e 12/30/2013





"Early Morning Hunt" | OIFC World Cat / Carolina Cat | 12/17/09
 

I arrived at the OIFC at 6:45 am only to find Capt. Brant's and Captain Steele's trucks in the parking lot and a Cat Boat missing.  I assume they have gone bluefin hunting.  More later in the day!!  Hope it will be positive!!!

 


- Capt. Rickey Beck
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e 12/30/2013





"Bluefin" | OIFC 1- 36' | 12/16/09
 

Everyone has been jacked up ever since Joe Segeers hooked up!  Several anglers were planning to go Friday, the weather looked good.  The key being looked.  All that went down the tubes with today's forecast.

We know the bluefin are here, we pretty much know where here is and it isn't a secret.  We need to know when...when is the wind going to cooperate? When are we going to be able to put stock in the weather forecast?  Who knows....as some would say, "whatever".

What we can do is keep checking out our gear, practice putting on our harnesses, working the drag  and testing it for proper strike drag, making game plans with your partners, and so on.  Bluefin are nothing to play with.  Plus, this keeps the juices flowing and keeps us from going crazy until we can get on the water.  Whatever...


- Capt. Rickey Beck
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e 12/30/2013





"First Bluefin of the Season a Heartbreaker" | OIFC World Cat / Carolina Cat | 12/15/09
 

The anticipation has been building over the past weeks as fishermen await the arrival of the Giant Bluefin Tuna to our waters. Since 2005, these powerful and highly valuable fish have provided sport and much needed supplemental income to local fishermen. As this is still a very new fishery to our area, every year the big question is, “I wonder if they’ll show.” Up until Monday, that question was still up in the air. However, Mother Nature finally provided favorable fishing conditions and a fleet of a dozen or so boats from Little River to Southport set out to find the Bluefin. Most boats, including myself, fished the area near the Knuckle buoy and Raritan wreck off the end of the Frying Pan Shoals. The water temperature was still a bit warm in the mid 60’s, but there was plenty of bird and bait activity in the area. At about 9am the call finally came, “Hooked up!” Joe Seegers aboard his boat “Hooked Up”, moored out of Southport, had tied into something big and in his words, “… with a lot of horsepower.” I was less than a mile from Joe and began trolling his way to investigate. He had hooked up near a school of Porpoise, which is common as the Tuna will often shadow and feed alongside the Porpoise. I could see the bent rod off the back of the boat, but it is always important to steer well clear of a boat that is hooked up as a hooked fish can surge and take several hundred yards of line at any time. The fleet continued to fish the general area, and I was hoping to hear word of another hookup, but that did not come. We worked the area hard and at 11am, my crew and I decided to head offshore and do a little scuba diving. I had lost track of Joe Seegers and crew as they were likely still doing battle and too busy to communicate via radio. My hopes were that I’d hear about their catch when we returned in the evening. My crew consisting of wife Amy, co-captain Chris Dew and friends Cameron Sebastion and Jeff Martini headed 15 miles further out in search of warmer water and good bottom structure. We set up anchor in 95 feet of water and headed overboard to check out what was going on below. The visibility was decent at 20 feet or so and the bottom was very lively; Grouper, Snapper, Lobster, SHARKS…. Yes, sharks: they are common to see during the Winter months. They are typically Sand Tigers which are the ones you see in all the aquariums; big with gnarly teeth hanging out of their mouth, but fortunately very slow and docile. As you dive, they typically ease around you, seemingly more curious than anything. That is until you shoot a fish with your spear gun; that’s when you begin to ask for a close encounter. The injured and bleeding fish will get the Tigers going and “peak” their interest. They aren’t like Jaws coming in to eat you, but they will come right up to you and if they get fired up enough, they’ll go for your speared fish. That is quite interesting, trust me. Anyway, we all lived to tell about it and after a quick change into some warm clothes, we headed home; all the time I’m hoping to get the good news on Joe’s fish. Well, I finally caught his story via VHF radio and it’s a heart breaker. Joe Seegers fished for years as a mate out of Hatteras, much of that during the big Winter Bluefin Tuna runs in the late 80s and early 90’s when catches of 10+ Bluefin a day were common, so he has plenty of experience. He and crewmate fought the Giant Bluefin for 2 ½ hours before bringing it to the surface. The fish was planed out nicely beside the boat and just feet away from the gaff and its final resting place when the hook simply pulled from the fish’s mouth, allowing it to swim freely to safety. Joe said he estimated the fish between 600 and 700 pounds, a true monster and even worse, a true heartbreaker. I hate to hear stories like that. I’ve been there myself and there is no sicker feeling, it’s the equivalent to losing a tournament winning King Mackerel; just sickening. However, thanks to Joe and crew for hooking up and providing evidence that yes, the Giant Bluefin Tuna will be coming back to Brunswick County this year. And although it was only a single hookup, it is very early in the season for this area. Last year it was December 29th before the first Bluefin were caught. Reports from Morehead City show the fish are steadily moving into the area and the 30 or so Bluefin that have been brought to port this year have been averaging much larger than typical, mostly in the 85-95 inch range with some over 100 inches and 600 pounds. This week the weather is forecast to turn cold and the winds and seas look like they may settle toward the end of the week. The cold weather is exactly what will drive more fish to our area. So on you marks, get set, GO! Visit the Ocean Isle Fishing Center website at www.OIFC.com for daily reports on what the Bluefin are doing. Hopefully next week I’ll have a picture of someone posing with one at the dock. See you on the water.
- Capt. Brant McMullan
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e 12/30/2013





"Hook Up?" | OIFC 1- 36' | 12/14/09
 

Captain Jeff B. and I have just returned to the OIFC docks from bluefin tuna fishing.   Regarding out trip,we cleared the foggy Shallotte Inlet just prior to sun rise.  There were about 5 ft., but very far apart.  We were able to average 28-30 knots.  That should give an idea of the sea conditions.  The water temperature near shore was 56 degrees while in the Knuckle, Raritan and Horseshoe it was the mid 60's.

The signs were very promising...plenty of gannetts,and porpoise.  There were 11 boats fishing the area when a boat radioed the he had a fish on.  Everyone gave him plenty of room.  The fishermen fought the fish for about an hour while we were there and was still in battle when we had to return to the dock.

These are great signs that the bluefin are here.  The OIFC will keep you updated on the fish.

Note: the combos in the picture are OIFC Customs and the lures areBlue Water Candy.


- Capt. Rickey Beck
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"Bluefin alert!!!" | OIFC 1- 36' | 12/13/09
 

What we beleive to be true out of Morehead yesterday is that there were 15-20 fish caught, similar number hooked and lost, out of fleet of approx 80-100 boats. Not bad. Plan is for the fish to show up tomorrow along Frying Pan shoals as bunch of boats planning on getting after them down here. Good luck to everyone and let us hear from you. Brant and his winder[Amy] will be on the water.
- Rube McMullan
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"Final Bluefin Seminar for '09" | OIFC 1- 36' | 12/13/09
 

The 7-10 day forecast says Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday are going to be very fishable. Then, of course, the weekend is predicted to go straight ....well downhill.  Captain Zach and some others are planning to go to Morehead today and we'll get reports from them.

The last of four OIFC Bluefin Seminars was held today by Captain Brant.  These seminars have been chock full of information which should make everyone a better bluefin angler.  Today's Seminar was attended by around twenty people  Thanks to everyone who attended the Seminars. 

 For those who missed the USCG Vessel Safety Inspection, you may contact Larry Coble at 910-619-1274 and arrange an inspection.  Larry is authorized to inspect recreational, charter and commercial vessels.  I cannot stress the importance and benefits of this program.  Also a big OIFC thanks to Larry and his assistants for their inspections and the program they presented.

As an aside, we've had several people ask for horse ballyhoo. Our large ballyhoo is the same as horse.  We sell the two pack of large which is less expensive than the single pack of horse.  This is the same ballyhoo Capt. Brant used last year and will use this year.

The reports have been covering bluefin exclusively lately.  However this time of year is a great time to king mackerel fish around the Tower, and  inshore, the trout bite is on.  You don't have to be a bluefin fisherman to enjoy the fishery in our area.  However, if you want to try your hand at bluefin and don't have the equipment, or just aren't comfortable with your skill level, you make want to try one of Captain Brant's bluefin fishing charter specials.  Take a little time during the holidays to come and join us.


- Capt. Rickey Beck
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"Just Married" | OIFC 1- 36' | 12/13/09
 

Congratulations to Mr. and Mrs. Barrett McMullan.  The couple said their vows at the Frank H. Kenan Chapel in Landfall Saturday evening!!  The wedding ceremony was beautiful.  All in the OIFC family wish them well and send our love.
- Capt. Rickey Beck
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"6.90 Trout" | OIFC 1- 36' | 12/12/09
 

Brandon Sauls braved the low 40 degree temperature in order to trout fish aboard the "Bone Crusher" today.  His reward was a 6.90 lb. citation trout and a 4.5 lb trout.  The 6.9 lb'r bested his 6.0 lb'r he caught in April, on the OIFC Rodeo Leader Board.  Brandon was fishing with live shrimp behind Ocean Isle Beach.
- Capt. Rickey Beck
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"More Bluefin" | OIFC World Cat / Carolina Cat | 12/12/09
 

As Steele reported, Captain Brant has been pleasantly surprised at the turnout for the OIFC Bluefin Seminars.  There were around 30 people at the Seminar today and the Coast Guard inspected 4 or 5 boats.  The inspection is a great thing to have in the event you're stopped.  It's our understanding that if you have the sticker the Coast Guard will not re-inspect the boat.  You may call the USCG and arrange for an appointment to have your boat checked if you didn't bring it today. 

Below are a couple of pictures I took today.  The 1st is of an inspection.


- Capt. Rickey Beck
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"" | OIFC World Cat / Carolina Cat | 12/12/09
 

We enjoyed having everyone out this morning for the Bluefin Seminar and Coast Guard inspection/safety course this morning. Hope everyone was able to learn everything they needed to have a successful season. For those of you who were unable to attend, we will be holding another seminar tomorrow morning December 13th at 9:00 until… Hope to see you there. Monday looks like the day to go try based on the weather so come on out and get the latest info. 

- Capt. Steele
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"Bluefin/Vessel Compliance Seminar" | OIFC World Cat / Carolina Cat | 12/11/09
 

Just a quick reminder to let all you Bluefin Crazy fishermen know that there will be a Bluefin/Vessel Compliance Seminar here at the Fishing Center from 9am till whenever tomorrow, December 12th.  The USCG will be on hand to inspect your vessel either on the trailer or in the water.  Time will be a bit limited in the afternoon as Capt. Barrett is taking the "vows" tomorrow afternoon... He will be on hand in the morning to offer Bluefin tips/advice and to throw the garter at a time to be determined.  The OIFC staff will be on hand to assist with you tackle needs to include reel spooling and combo building.  Take advantage of the excellent Bluefin Blitz Sale and grab some combos.  Look forward to seeing everyone here tomorrow.
- Capt. Steele
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