Knowing where the best fishing zones are located is an art form. Part of the picture is made up of oceanographic forecasts. Inside TZ Professional v3, there are numerous forecasts such as Altimetry, Geographic currents, SST and Plankton/Chlorophyll.
Phytoplankton are the base of the ocean food. They are single cell organisms that use chlorophyll within their cells to carry out photosynthesis, the process of generating energy from light. Phytoplankton are dependent not only on sunlight but nutrients and temperature. As colder waters tend to have more nutrients such as nitrates, phosphates and sulfur that can be converted into proteins, fats, and carbohydrates, phytoplankton tend to be found in larger numbers around the polar regions and in areas where the ocean currents bring cold water towards the surface.
Why are phytoplankton important?
Phytoplankton are at the base of the food cycle. Wherever they exist, larger marine life can prosper such as whales, shrimp, snails and jellyfish.
Oceanographic data identifies chlorophyll hotspots
Once you have downloaded the oceanographic forecast within TZ Professional v3, you can then select Chlorophyll within the Layers menu.
Chlorophyll forecast around the coast of United State of America
Total coverage and even more reliable data:
The coverage within TIMEZERO has been extended to 65°N (previously 52°). Where certain zones in the Mediterranean where not covered, there is now full coverage.
Chlorophyll forecast coverage
How do oceanographic forecasts help for Sport fishing?
In sports fishing, chlorophyll along with sea surface temperature can be used to identify areas where two water columns of different temperatures meet. These areas often have debris and chlorophyll that get pulled into them, which in turn brings the bait fish, which attracts the game fish. All sport fishing professionals do meticulous research to find out just where these areas are. Once located, taking a route along this break is likely to be fruitful.
Sport fishing professional and TIMEZERO ambassador Christophe Botherel explaining the use of chlorophyll and plankton:
Christophe Botherelle, sport fishing guide and TIMEZERO ambassador said, “For catching tuna, It is important to find the borderline of changing water temperatures. As some fish are more active in warmer waters (as they can’t regulate their own body temperature), they will follow the warmer water. With TZ Professional v3 and TZTouch by Furuno, we can select these parameters (Sea Surface Temperature, plankton, etc.). This helps up identify zones. Another important point to mention is that a strong change in water temperature for game fish acts as a barrier.. The chlorophyll found inside the plankton are the base of the alimentary chain and with 90% of marine life living within 0 to 100m depth where light can penetrate, the plankton will be present and thus the rest of the chain, from small to larger predator.
During a migration of a species like the tuna, there is a correlation between SST and plankton which can be used to find and monitor their movement.
During the migration of albacore tuna from the south of Portugal during April and May, up into the basque region during May and June until Brittany, I was able to follow this migration and the correlation of info SST, altimetry, oceanic currents, to see the path these fish took, where they fed, etc.”
Find out more about oceanographic forecasts for TZ Professional v3.