2016: An Excellent Season for Fishing Action
December 05, 2016
As you are counting down the days remaining in 2016 and are thinking about the coming new year, we are recounting all of the good fishing action that occurred this year. While the wind was not particularly favorable through most of the fall, the wahoo and sailfish action has been quite good recently from North Carolina to the Florida Keys and there still are plenty of tuna in the northern canyons and Gulf of Mexico. We wonder who will be eating fresh caught tuna or wahoo over the holidays.
Our clients (you) had a banner year as you won awards in 512 categories in 112 major tournaments. This is our 2nd best score over the last 10 year. We never list Calcutta winners or daily winners, although there are many. These 512 (and still counting) winners increases the 26 year (1991-2016) tally to 7905 winners!
ROFFS™ clients also won top awards in multiple tournament and seasonal club venues such as the South Carolina Governor’s Cup, North Carolina Governor’s Cup, Ocean City, MD Marlin Club Seasonal Awards, Beach Haven Marlin & Tuna Club Season Standings (NJ), Cape May Marlin & Tuna Club Season Standings (NJ), Mobile Big Game Fishing Club Annual Awards (AL).
The pending Men’s All Tackle IGFA World Record wahoo (182 lbs.) and Massachusetts State Wahoo record was set by one of our clients. Note that we provided analyses in the Dominican Republic this year and our clients won the Dominican Billfish Triple Header Series (Dominican Republic). We also continued to provide analyses for Cuba and had clients win the Gamefish Grande. Keep this in mind if you are traveling. These clients have realized that there is more to finding feeding fish than simply working the fish aggregating devices (FAD’s), oil platforms, and river edges.
We know there are more winners out there so please review the ROFFS™ Winners list on our website (http://www.roffs.com/fishing/recreational/winners/) and send additions and other corrections. Some seasonal tournaments continue until the end of the month so please check the winners list in January as we are sure it will get longer. We received many calls and emails of great fishing days independent of state records and tournaments. Thank you for those notes, photos, and videos. Please send more so we can post them on our website and share these with the world!
We were able to fulfill 98% of all requests for analyses this year which is an amazing achievement by our team of expert satellite fisheries oceanographers considering how challenging clouds, fog, smoke, and other atmospheric effects are when trying to study the ocean. This was accomplished due to the experience and skill of our analysts who manipulate (re-calibrate, re-navigate, and study), as well as, interpret and integrate the satellite with other oceanographic data. ROFFS™ is now using all the functioning NOAA and European infrared satellite data (NOAA_15, 18, 19, Metop-A, Metop-B), along with the NASA Terra and Aqua satellites and the Suomi Joint US Polar Satellite System (JPSS) with their infrared and visible ocean color (chlorophyll + dissolved colored organic matter) sensors. We are working with many other scientists and mariners on receiving additional data products to improve our analyses. In 2017, we plan on using two new satellites and will provide more details at a future date. We also hope to have all the NOAA buoys working too as we rely on them for calibration and offshore winds and waves also critical for our safety and health.
With the abundance of satellite data, as well as, other hydrographic and meteorological data we are better able to visualize and understand the ocean circulation and water mass boundary features related to fish distribution and catch success. This allows ROFFS™ to continue providing our unique, superior and comprehensive fishing oceanographic analysis, even though it is a time intensive and often a customized process. We continue developing state-of-the-science customized tools and techniques in our never tiring attempt to provide more accurate, precise, and reliable analyses.
The ROFFS™ Fishy Times newsletter continues to be a critical success after three years. This is where “all the news that smells like fish” is sent via email and focuses on subjects related to water and healthy ecosystems with an emphasis on marine fisheries, oceanography, satellite remote sensing, marine industries, policy and fun videos. The Fishy Times are archived on our website, available 24/7. We welcome your contributions and are amazed at the number of people who thank us for this fun and informative newsletter. We thank you for your feedback and letters to the Editor.
This has proven to be a great place for marketing products and services too as our advertisers continue to report. We have room from more advertisements and welcome your company’s advertisements. The subscriber audience continues to grow from this free newsletter. We often surprise our subscribers with bonus satellite and fishing analyses, so there is an advantage to subscribing.
Our web site (www.roffs.com) was improved in 2016 and we already have plans to enhance its organization, look, and ease of finding the information, as well as, ordering analyses in early 2017. In our ongoing efforts to hold our prices level, we instituted banner advertisements on our website and analyses for the last two years. Based on your feedback this was well received and many liked the opportunity to reach our very exclusive audience. Again we welcome more advertisers who want to reach our exclusive and exceptional audience.
While we enjoy talking with you very much, many people purchase and download our analyses directly on our website. This helps our late night clients who decide to fish after we close the ROFFS™ office. Analysis of our client’s purchasing patterns indicate that 69% of our clients are using GPS (Latitude – Longitude). It seems that there still are plenty of LORAN holdouts out there as we continue to service this group unlike other “services”.
We have added the Dominican Republic to our analyses portfolio (for tournaments only) and are considering changes to the geographic coverage of other areas like we did for Cuba. Please provide additional comments on charts, areas covered, and products which you would like to see us provide special attention. Our team is already working on improving the background topography for our analysis oceanographic charts for the 2017 season. We are developing new products that integrate other oceanographic data derived from public and private sources into our fishing forecasting analyses. Please send updated information on new wrecks, oil rigs, and changes in the bottom structure.
SCIENTIFIC RESEARCH, BOAT SHOWS, AND SEMINARS
ROFFS™ remains active in the international scientific community. We finished one major project with NASA, but we continue to make advances with our NASA and NOAA colleagues that are from National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), Atlantic Meteorological and Atmospheric Laboratories (AOML), and also the International Commission on the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas (ICCAT), as well as, the South Atlantic Fisheries Management Council. We are working with others as well and will remain active with NASA’s Biodiversity and Ecological Modeling Science Team, Ocean Color Science Team, Sea Surface Temperature Team, and the European Space Agency Colour Project.
Our goal is to advance the science of satellite remote sensing and fisheries oceanography to benefit society. We continued to work with our NASA-NOAA marine biodiversity observation network research partners and we started a new project with Atlantic mackerel and environmental variability with researchers from the University of Delaware, Rutgers University, and the Garden State Seafood Association. We continued our research efforts related to tarpon migration and bonefish spawning with the Bonefish & Tarpon Trust (BTT), Florida Institute of Technology, and the North Carolina State University. We remain engaged with the Integrated Ocean Observing System (IOOS) and remain productive members of the coastal ocean observing regional associations (e.g. SECOORA, GCOOS, CARICOOS).
In 2017, we hope to see you at boat shows and seminars. We will be exhibiting at the Miami (FL) International Boat Show’s February 16-20 (new booth #D306 in the Sport fishing tent) and the Atlantic City (NJ) International Powerboat Show March 01-05 (booth #319). Note that the AC show moved to March in 2017.
We would like your advice on other boat shows that you think we should consider. Again this coming year I will be part of the Saltwater Sportsman Magazine National Seminar Series team as a National Instructor and participate at the Wilmington, NC seminar January 14th and Melbourne, FL February 02. Unfortunately, I have too many conflicts in my schedule to do more of these fun and educational seminars, but we are preparing slides and other materials (including free gift certificates) for every show. I am also presenting a seminar at the Radio Island Marina seminar Thursday January 12. Again I will be lecturer at the fantastic Castafari Offshore Fishing Seminar weekend, March 31 – April 02 in Newton MA.
I would like to visit your fishing club or organization to make an entertaining presentation on the effects of the ocean conditions on the distribution and catchability of marlin, tuna, sharks, mahi, wahoo and kingfish or other research subjects. Please call if you are interested in hosting a seminar.
We are grateful for the opportunity that you give us to demonstrate that ROFFS™ will put you on the fish based on good science and experience. We know that every fishing trip is important. We plan on satisfying your fishing needs again in 2017.
Have and happy holiday season and a healthy, happy, successful New Year!
Mitchell A. Roffer, Ph.D.