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Thread: Nocturnal Halibut Behavior- Anyone know?

  1. #1

    Default Nocturnal Halibut Behavior- Anyone know?

    Out of curiosity, I read somewhere that halibut are nocturnal.

    I was wondering if anyone be it commercial or sport fishing can tell me if halibut are more or less active during the dark hours. Do they move shallower? Any experience would be helpful.

    I have never had any luck catching salmon at night in freshwater even though first and last light seem to be the best time. Do they bite in the dark in saltwater.

    The point of these questions is I am trying to max out fishing time over the next few weeks and was looking into the late night possibilities as I have a few weekends where I have work related activities during the day.

    I also have a set of underwater lights (3) that should produce roughly the equivalent of 250 watt halogen. Does anyone have experience anchoring in the bays with a powerful set of lights and noticed any additional activity in the water?

    So anyone with experience at night think the lights will work to actually attract something in Whittier, Seward, or Homer??? If so for what? I am almost 100% sure they are gong to work amazing well in some of the lakes for rainbaows, chars, and lakers.

    I have one of these:

    And I have two of these...

    Mounted like this for my mini-x. Haven't changed over to the outback yet.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2007


    I've heard halibut are more likely to be off bottom in the dark. More than one fisherman has talked about seeing halibut near the surface when fishing at night.

    2 weeks ago on a gillnet trip we caught a flounder in the net. Water was 150+ fathoms and the net only goes down 30'. Didn't catch any flounder during the day.

    You might try mooching on bait balls if you've got a sounder on the kayak. The bait will be closer to the surface at night, which I think draws halibut and other fish towards the surface.
    I'd agree with you, but then we'd both be wrong.

  3. #3
    Member ak_powder_monkey's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Eagle River/ Juneau


    I'm with AKboater, baitfish move to the surface at night to feed on plnakton (that move to the surface at night to feed on smaller plankton) so it would follow predators do the same
    I choose to fly fish, not because its easy, but because its hard.

  4. #4
    Sponsor potbuilder's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006


    I used to catch all kinds of flatfish along with lingcod cod & pollock on my night gillnet sets off the copper river flats(deep water) but never had any halibut at night but did get a 80lber once during the day, quite the surprise when he came up on the bowroller.
    I think a lot of bottom fish raise at night to some degree but getting them to bite ?? Now sunrise and sunset are different stories we used to call that the "bewitching hours" fish always seem to come up and zoom around before setting down for the night !!

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