Normally this time of year, we’re seeing a mix of wahoo, mahi, and billfish, with an occasional yellowfin tuna thrown in. All of these fish are migratory, and apparently they didn’t all get the memo that it’s time to be here. The wahoo, however, have shown up in good numbers and they’re biting.
We have had very good success catching big, fat mackerel scad (locally called “bolo”) each morning for bait. Wahoo, being short strikers, necessitated double hooked baits. The few baits we rigged with single hooks for tuna or marlin just got cut in half with no hookup, so we soon decided to rig every bait with a stinger. That ended all of the short strikes, and made them all hookups.
This week every wahoo was a solitary fish for us. No pack attacks to make it extra fun. Most of the fish were 25-30# and good fighters. We did catch one small one (the one on the gaff in the photo) that was only probably 15#. He came in pretty green, so he still had full colors as you can see in the photo. We did manage to catch a couple on straight lures—no bait, but the majority of the fish caught ate baits.
On Monday we raised a small marlin as well. I didn’t see him come up behind the lure, just heard the right rigger start singing. And after 2 seconds the reel stopped singing. A few seconds later the right corner went off for a split second, and then stopped. We dropped the bait back, but he wasn’t coming back for seconds. The rigger bait had been pulled free, and the corner bait came up crushed with no tooth marks. Seems like we had a white or small blue. I never got a look at him to see. So there’s hope that the billfish will start to show up in better numbers like usual and give us some fun. Maybe they’re just taking their time getting here.
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