If you’ve been involved in angling for some time now, chances are you’ve heard about the moon phases and how they can affect your fishing success. But does it, really? This article is dedicated to investigating how the moon impacts fishing. Has the moon got anything to do with how successful you will be when fishing? Will the moon affect fish behaviour? Is there a pattern to follow for optimal results? Let’s find out how the moon affects fishing success.
Before knowing how the moon affects fishing success, let us be clear that the impact of the moon phase on fishing is not new. Ever since time began, fishermen and hunters have noticed that the position and brightness of the moon seems to influence fishing success. Fast forward to early 20th century, and John Alden Knight created the first solunar tables that are still being used today. And there are quite a number of ways that the moon can influence fishing. Below are some of the most popular moon phase patterns that most anglers believe to be effective.
Moon Phase Pattern #1: Big Fish Like to Bite In The Days Before A Full Moon
Some expert anglers tend to believe that big fish are more likely to bite for a few days before the full moon. In addition, it is believed that the best time to catch a big black marlin in some parts of the South Pacific is from seven to two days before a full moon. Some of them would even say that the success rate is usually at its lowest point on the actual day of the full moon.
Moon Phase Pattern #2: Billfish and Mahi Mahi Feed When the Moon Shines Bright
Those who are avid billfish experts may say that they avoid fishing during the full moon period because marlin tend to be more active at night feeding during full moon. This belief also rings true with mahi mahi as they also feed at night during a full moon, and both species can be less aggressive or hungry during the day.
But It’s All About the Tides
Some would argue, however, that the light of the moon does not really affect fish behavior but it is more about the tide. And it does make a lot of sense because tidal flow is influenced by the moon phase. And with that context, pro anglers could agree that moon phase can be a critical time to land. Stronger currents mean that big fish are in a feeding frenzy. Fishes like Giant Trevally can be spotted in areas with a strong current.
“In Vanuatu we find the GT’s are more active on and around the full moon where dogtooth tuna fishing hots up around the new. With Blue marlin, while we frequently raise good numbers of fish through all phases, the lead up to the full moon regularly produces the best results.”
– Anthony Pisano, Ocean Blue
And these are a few examples of how the moon affects fishing success. Although a good number of anglers believe that the moon phase creates a deep impact to fishing, it is never a guarantee – but it is all up to you. At the end of the day, we can all agree that fishing is a very enjoyable activity – whether there’s a full moon or no moon at all. But if you’re inclined to think the moon and fishing success are related, make sure to check the lunar calendar before you schedule your next fishing trip in Vanuatu.