Huntington Beach Pier Macks, Jacks, and a Thresher Hooked

evanluck

Well-Known Member
#1
Went to Huntington Beach Pier on Monday morning and fished from 7AM-11AM. When I arrived the end of the pier was just tailing off of a solid mackerel bit. As I was rigging up people were pulling up sabikis full of mackerel both trolling and fishing with a float. Unforunately the mackerel bite slowed significantly after I rigged up and was replaced with big jack smelt. Had fun catching larger jack smelt and a few mackerel mixed in.

Bit was very slow on the bottom so most of the action was experienced by people using floats or my choice retrieving rigs just below the surface of the water. Best bite on these types of fish was on the south side of the end of the pier.

At around 9AM, an angler at the end hooked a small thresher shark and got it all the way to the pier but lost it as he was trying to gaff it to bring it up.
thresher.jpg

Moved to mid pier for the last hour of fishing just behind the bathrooms on the South side. Fished a live smelt with not detectable bites although upon retrieving my bait, it had been bit by something (possibly a crab). Only bites we could get in this part of the pier were small smelt right near the base of the pier.

Glad to go back to this pier. I had forgotten on spacious, clean and nice it is!
 

EgoNonBaptizo

Well-Known Member
#2
Good to see some reports in my area (well at least when I'm not in school). The shark may be a (heavily protected) great white, as although its somewhat difficult to tell from this angle, it has a pronounced keel on its caudal peduncle, which threshers lack, and doesn't appear to have the highly elongated upper caudal lobe. Given the angler is using a specialized sliding bait rig with a float and has what looks like a pretty beefy pier gaff, they likely know what they're doing, and intended to illegally land the fish.
 

evanluck

Well-Known Member
#3
Yeah I think you're right about it not being a thresher. I do recall not seeing that distinctive tail fin that thresher's have. Well good think that fate conspired to cause the fish to be released.

Good to see some reports in my area (well at least when I'm not in school). The shark may be a (heavily protected) great white, as although its somewhat difficult to tell from this angle, it has a pronounced keel on its caudal peduncle, which threshers lack, and doesn't appear to have the highly elongated upper caudal lobe. Given the angler is using a specialized sliding bait rig with a float and has what looks like a pretty beefy pier gaff, they likely know what they're doing, and intended to illegally land the fish.
 

Ken Jones

Administrator
Staff member
#4
It's hard to say on the shark, especially since you can't really see what should be a very long tail. At the same time, I cannot see the caudal peduncle or the upper caudal lobe. To me it actually looks more like a shortfin mako but the picture just isn't good enough to give a definitive identification.
 

Rusty

Well-Known Member
#6
Definitely a white. Head shape and eye placement are wrong for a thresher. Completely the wrong color for a small mako. Too heavy bodied to be a soupfin. Glad it got away.
im leaning towards the white shark side. Its the eyes. Also notice how wide his mid section is.
Baby guys looking for scraps in the Huntington area is very common
 

Makairaa

Well-Known Member
#7
im leaning towards the white shark side. Its the eyes. Also notice how wide his mid section is.
Baby guys looking for scraps in the Huntington area is very common
Threshers have a very short nose and almost blocky head. Makos at that size would be jet black on the back and blue on the sides. The dorsal fin would be black with a distinct blue patch. Which leaves a white or soupfin. If you zoom in you can see the caudal peduncle on the tail which soupfins do not have.
 

Mahigeer

Well-Known Member
#8
Please excuse the diversion:
I was told a 5 feet soupfin was recently caught at the Mole.

Perhaps by "Spencer". The black seabass hunter.

I actually saw a black seabass at the Mole. One of the three local "pet" ones.
 

Makairaa

Well-Known Member
#9
Please excuse the diversion:
I was told a 5 feet soupfin was recently caught at the Mole.

Perhaps by "Spencer". The black seabass hunter.

I actually saw a black seabass at the Mole. One of the three local "pet" ones.
There are a lot of soupies at the island, so its definitely possible. If its the “Spencer” I bet it is he targets a lot more than that. Of course he always claims to be fishing for something else.