Catch-and-release tuna season underway in P.E.I.

P.E.I.’s catch-and-release tuna fishing season is underway.

Anglers from Florida hook 750-pound tuna for first catch

P.E.I.’s catch-and-release tuna fishing season is underway.

A group from Florida that chartered a boat from Scott Bruce of North Lake caught the first fish, then let it go.

Bruce said the tuna weighed about 750 pounds.

He said he's been getting a lot more business since the fishery switched three years ago from a short competitive season where the boats stopped going out once the catch limit was reached, to the current catch-and-release.

“If the season only lasted two days, like in 2010 it only lasted 36 hours for instance, that means you could only take charters out for those two days,” said Bruce.

“So now with the catch-and-release it opens up a lot more of a time frame for us. For instance we started last year in mid-July and ended in mid-October,” he said.

Bruce said his busiest time for bookings will likely be in September, when traditionally the most landings have been made.

But he says fishermen are trying to get the word out that there are plenty of tuna in the water right now, and anglers who book a charter in July or August stand a good chance of hooking a big one.