Area 10 was dead today. Fished the oil docks all morning and marked a few schools but they couldn't be less interested in my gear. I think it had to do with the 200 odd boats that were also there. The 10+ pound jumpers I'd been the past week were no where to be seen. Trolled up to the yellow buoy but marked nothing. Decided to run up to area 9. Found tons of schools super quickly. Got fishing and the bite turned on instantly. Hooked a gorgeous gleeming silver hen between 6-8lbs, misidentified it as a hatchery and netted it. Taking the hook out took longer than I liked and while I took the hook out she thrashed and drove the hook into myself, delaying release. The fish bled a little and shed a few scales, but I am hoping it makes it as it was a mouth hook and it didn't bleed profusely. Second fish was another wild hen, a little smaller. Hook wasn't too badly in, but it got caught in the net as we tried to release her. She spent a little too much time in the net for my liking, and I had to drop her back in the water, also not to my liking. Swam off with less vigor than the first fish, but this fish did not bleed at all. We decided to move on from that school as we were low on fuel, and not too confident in our ability to release mostly wild fish, especially with our net setup. Fairly close to home we had a rod go off, pulled it out of the holder only for the fish to not take the hook. My other rod went off right after, and we landed a 6 lb Hatchery buck. The fish had turned pretty dark as well, so I assume it was getting close to its hatchery stream. I am curious as to whether it is a resident or a smaller ocean fish. The folks at the marina seemed surprised at the size of the ocean fish this year,so I wonder what the usual size is. I haven't seen many fish landed that compare to the 10lb we pulled the other day.
Additionally, I am curious if anyone has tips for determining wild or hatchery while trolling. It is next to impossible to see through the water if it has a fin or not. I only neted the first two fish as I thought I saw no fin, the third fish I almost thought I did see a fin.