uefin tuna boats off of West Cork are still bringing ‘home’ the bluefin bacon with a constant stream of smashing fish in the last couple of weeks, weather allowing. The West Cork bluefin fleet have had a difficult time with the poor weather conditions recently; now increased travel restrictions will further hamper their efforts. Boats will still operate with Covid 19 mitigation measures in place so if you live in Cork and want to fight with the fish of a lifetime get in touch with one of our Tuna CHART licenced skippers before the season is out.

Kieran Collins fishing out of Baltimore Angling has made the most of every weather window to sneak out and tag a few – even if it means dawn runs and hasty mid-morning retreats, as happened ahead of the forecast gale force winds earlier this week. Kieran has had a cracking bluefin season so far in 2020 and has played a big part in the success of the West Cork fleet this year. This is what it looked like as another bluefin – tag number  080267 – was released a brief visit alongside Radiance.

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Dave Edwards on the Silver Dawn didn’t have to steam very far from port this week to find the fish; an 82 inch bluefin hooked up inside Courtmacsherry Bay on Wednesday making for a great start to another super days’ fishing. Three fish up to an estimated 500lbs paid Dave a visit for the day and all within 3 miles of home!


Happy days – bluefin in the bays

What does it look like when a shoal of large bluefin hit the baitfish fifty yards off the bow just outside Courtmac Bay? Well, it looks something like this (but has to be seen in real life to be believed!) Cracking piece of video #WestCorkCharters.


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Sea Angling Charters have also been among the fish this week. Again, the weather has been against skipper Tom Collins but, when conditions have allowed, they’ve managed to hook up with the bluefin every time of asking. Tom has some super crew members to dig him out when the going gets tough.

Evan Collins – always on hand to give his dad a dig out

An unfortunate fact for this kind of fishing is that the weather dictates the fishing opportunities, this has really been a big factor in the lack of activity this week. Adrian Nowotynski of Irish Deep Sea Charters only made it out on a couple of occasions, including a evening trip where Adrian got straight out into tuna busting on the surface but no sooner had he arrived when everything seemed to settle down for the night. Hopefully there’ll be some opportunities this coming week for him to tag a few more fish.


Tuna CHART (CatcH and Release Tagging) will see authorised vessels catch, tag and release Atlantic Bluefin Tuna for data collection purposes off the Irish coast.  The programme, which is being developed by Inland Fisheries Ireland and the Marine Institute in partnership with the Sea Fisheries Protection Authority, the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine and the Department for Communications, Climate Action and Environment, operated on a pilot basis in 2019.

The 2020 season will open on the 13th July and close on the 12th November 2020.

Authorised Vessels

Anglers wishing to engage in this fishery must only do so on a sea angling vessel specifically authorised to participate in the pilot programme.  Any person engaging in this fishery on any vessel which is not appropriately authorised will be in breach of the Sea-Fisheries and Maritime Jurisdiction (Bluefin Tuna) Regulations.

A full list of authorised skippers can be found below:


Vessel name

Current Port

Adrian Molloy
Killybegs, Co. Donegal
Brian McGilloway
Killybegs Co. Donegal
Donal McMenamin
Killybegs, Co. Donegal
Michael Callaghan
Killybegs, Teelin, Co. Donegal
Michael McGettigan
Killybegs, Co. Donegal
Patrick O’Doherty
Bundoran Pier Co. Donegal
Daryl Ewing
Rosses Point, Co. Sligo
Declan Kilgannon
Mullaghmore Co. Sligo
John Brittain
Cleggan, Co. Galway
John Fleming
Luke Aston
Carrigaholt, Co. Clare
Noel Kelleher
Kilrush, Co. Clare
Peter Power
Mullaghmore Co. Sligo
Thomas McCallion
Rosses Point, Co. Sligo
Carroll O’Donoghue
Kinsale, Co. Cork
David Edwards
Courtmacsherry, Co. Cork
Derek Schwartau
Ballycotton, Co. Cork
Séan Maxwell
Courtmacsherry, Co. Cork
Tony Santry
Marlogue, Cobh Island, Cork Harbor
 Adrian Nowotynski
 Union Hall Co. Cork
Kieran Collins
Baltimore, Co. Cork
Tom Collins
Reen, Union Hall, Co. Cork