I will remember 2015 as a year characterized by unusual ocean conditions, uncommon events and some very rare circumstances. What started off as a relatively “normal” year quickly changed in mid-April with the closing of the West Coast sardine fishery. Just over a month later the Refugio oil spill occurred, resulting in widespread ecological damage and a six week fishing closure along the Gaviota coast in the Santa Barbara Channel.
As abnormally warm ocean waters blanketed the coast throughout summer and fall, semi-tropical and tropical species were observed off our shores. The warm water brought not only red crabs and sea snakes to Southern California beaches, but some great fishing. Continue reading