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Catching up with fish

Olive Flounder

What can we learn from this fish finder screen?

By keeping a look out for areas where the bottom composition changes from muddy to rocky, you can increase your chances of getting a catch.

As the boat was moving forward at a slow pace of 0.2 knots, the screenshot below was captured. The left side shows echoes in 50 kHz, and the right side 200 kHz.

Fish finder screen explained

  • Water depth: 12.4m
  • Bottom structure: Uneven, with protrusions and flat areas
  • Bottom composition: Sand and gravel intermittently
  • A school of fish can be seen in the middle of the water column (5-10m depth)

After dropping a sabiki lure and reeling in a catch, I could confirm that this school of fish consisted of horse mackerel. Its size was about 10-15cm, roughly the same as indicated by the ACCU-FISH function. This school of horse mackerel swam rather slowly, it took almost a full minute for it to pass below the boat.

With a depth of 12.4m and a slow moving school of fish, it seemed very likely that olive flounders might be in the same area. With a horse mackerel I caught I made a live bait that was dropped into the water, the result was almost instant. I caught three olive flounders, considering the short time spent, I was very happy with such a large catch.

The olive flounder lives and feeds on the seabed, and the waters immediately above it, making them extremely hard to detect with fish finders. They can be detected when feeding, leaving the seabed to catch prey, however it’s very difficult to correctly identify such echoes as olive flounders. In order to catch olive flounders, the recommended method is to search for schools of fish that the olive flounder preys on, and use them as live bait.

To find suitable schools of fish, using a low frequency of 50kHz is recommended, due to the wide beam width making it easier to search larger areas. Another tip for finding suitable spots to fish olive flounder is to use the a-scope on your fish finder, since it provides you with real-time data. You can use the real-time data to confirm that you are in a good position.

  • Olive Flounder A 3,5 kg olive flounder caught, large with lots of tasty meat.
  • Olive Flounder Olive floudners usually stay flat on the seabed, waiting for potential prey. They leap up from the seabed when in pursuit.

Writer introduction

Nobuaki Ono, FURUNO field tester.

DAIWA field tester, Writer at Boat Club, a monthly Japanese boating publication

Nobuaki is a hobby angler who travels around Japan together with his beloved car-top boat Tomoe-maru. With a keen interest in fishing as well as scuba diving, he has gained a substantial amount of knowledge in how to utilize fish finders to the fullest. Nobuaki regularly holds well-attended training courses in the use of fish finders, as well as being a proponent for proper sea manners and safety at sea. Sharing his knowledge is a passion for Nobuaki, and he manages his own homepage as well as being a sought after writer in Japanese boating publications.