This week, numerous big Mahi are being reported with some schoolies popping up. Whether you prefer to vacation in St. Augustine, Orlando, Miami, or the all the way down in the Florida Keys, there is a program designed to make your dream of swimming with the dolphins in Florida come true. Fish whatever it is you find, then do it all again. Check out the Bay. We recommend the following line for Mahi-mahi. Often, for dolphin-bailing, the leader is between 15 and 20 feet long. Recommendation – The best hooks for Mahi-mahi are Gamakatsu and this size. Where To Catch Dolphin. When using cut bait, ballyhoo or sardines, any baitfish with some thickness to it is devoured by Mahi-mahi. 2021 season Celebrating. How-To Catch Articles and Videos, Where's the Bite, Regulations, and more! Range/Distribution: Distribution of Mahi-mahi ranges across the entire globe in the warm saltwater oceans north and south of the equator. There are limits for consumption due to mercury levels, but it is lower than for some other fish. Keep bailing and trolling rods ready for any opportunity. Adults are voracious eaters, eating mostly during the day. In July 2015, Brian Lindsey was in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico on a guided fishing trip and caught a huge Mahi-mahi. Nobody fishes for Mahi-Mahi with live or dead bait, we all use lures. A 7-foot long medium-heavy or heavy action rod like an Ugly Stik is good for all your mahi fishing. I have caught so many different kinds of fish such as: catfish. It is one of Florida’s most exciting fish to catch! In that video, they get a couple of Mahi, tuna, and a wahoo, one after another. Maximum length is over 40-inches, even up to 60-inches but very rare. Species: Coryphaena hippurus. braided, or even something heavier. “If the wind is blowing, we use frigate birds and terns to find them. Their Dorsals and both pectoral fins have a serrated barb that is hollow and injects poison or venom when they stick you, it’s very painful. This is how much of the mahi-mahi fishing is done in other countries. Take a second to observe the birds. CCA FLORIDA. It’s outrageous, and one of the best fish to target. Females are smaller than males. Gaffer Dolphin - Florida Sport Fishing TV - Jump Aboard As We Head Offshore In Search Of Big Dolphin. View all posts by John D'Orazio → 1 Reply. It was a wideopen run to 100 feet of water where deployed our live baits and started the slow-troll crawl to deeper water. I can’t say that for Shimano or Daiwa. Avoid the middle of the day fish trips after bright moon nights. Dolphin anglers have to act quick when fish show up behind the boat. On the Pacific side, you’re spoiled for choice with an opportunity to catch Mahi Mahi and more. YEARS OF NATIONAL TELEVISION FISHING EXCELLENCE Turn Ballyhoo Into Flying Fish For Dolphin Improve your mahi chances by turning ballyhoo into flying fish. Predators: The lifespan for Mahi-mahi is about 7 years. It is caused by the buildup of ciguatoxins in the flesh of tropical marine fishes which are then eaten by Mahi-mahi. 4 hours over the course of a 3 1/2 mile paddle fishing over mud, grass and oysters I caught fish ranging in species and size from 14in. I’m ready to try to catch a dolphin. Unfortunately northerly winds that blow directly into the current also stack the seas and make for rough fishing conditions, which is why a lot of big dolphin are caught on the snottiest days. They lay tens of thousands to a million eggs at a time with more eggs being noted by scientists in spring/summer. There really wasn’t any reason to bark directions. FS, First Published Florida Sportsman Magazine April 2014, © 2021 Outdoor Sportsman Group. You’re going to need some good line. Would love your thoughts, please comment. Be careful with the live baits, as dolphin may chase a small school of live baits away from the boat and pursue them out of sight and casting range. Ciguatera toxins have been detected in some mahi-mahi. Information on our site is up-to-date the day we publish it, but that can change tomorrow. Some boats even come standard with “pitch wells” for just such an occasion. E-MAIL GEORGE. Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. This dolphin standard, usually reserved for when the magic runs out of the jigs, is still a favorite for catching school fish. There are Flasher models with mylar strips added to the skirt. That deep bait caught everything from sailfish and smoker kings to dolphin over 60 pounds and monster wahoo on some of the hottest days of the summer at a time when other boats were begging for a bite. If you’re choosing between day and night, choose day. Tarpon move North through to our Naples waters starting in March and head toward Boca Grande by May then June to spawn. Florida Sportsman's 50 Favorite Sportfish of Florida: Dolphin. So hook up, hang on and hold tight. Full Length Episodes. braided we usually recommend, let’s go wtih 30 lb. Keep in mind that if you’re using live baits as your pitch baits you want to drop back to the fish because they don’t swallow the livies as easily as a chunk of bonito or ballyhoo. Florida Saltwater Fishing Guides and Tips | Salty101, 13 Sure-Fire Ways to Ruin Your Florida Fishing Trip. RECOMMENDATION – This tough UglyStik Rod is what we’ve used for over a decade! Purchase a Fish Florida license plate for your vehicle to support kids’ fishing education and show your passion for fishing in Florida. In most cases, dolphin fish, dorado, and mahi-mahi are the same type of fish species. The dolphin fish is just that, a fish, and for those fishing in the Florida Keys who’ve hunted these line rippers each spring and summer, the fun is fast and furious. These colours darken when the fish dies (see illustrations) The current IGFA all tackle record is 39.91 kilograms (88lb), caught in 1998 in Exuma, Bahamas by Chris Johnson of Lake Mary, Florida. Join Capt Mike and the crew as they have fun with a bunch of schoolies on light tackle along with trolling some nice gaffers in the Gulf Stream. Tarpon are the king of all fish, also known as Megalops Alanticus….they get over 300 lbs. Highly prized as a recreational gamefish, mahi-mahi grow fast and have saved the day on more than a few bluewater trips. Most restaurants in Hawaii serve Mahi-mahi sandwiches – phenomenal and a must-try if you visit the islands! Redfish. Any time dolphin find an abundance of food, they’re more likely to stick around and “chow down” than eat and run. To view details about a dolphin fishing charter or other offshore & deep sea fishing charters in Marathon, FL, click here. Mahi Mahi can travel 125 miles or more in one day. Ballyhoo rig. The bigger fish typically come from the Keys, but there are some monsters caught off the mainland as well. Purchase a Fish Florida Sailfish Plate. One of my favorite ways to target dolphin in the summer months is to locate a weedline, rip or area with a lot of bait, shut down and live chum with pilchards or glass minnows. When the schools of Dolphin are found they aggressively attack the baits. The Mahi Mahi (Dolphin fish) is known for its vivid blue, green, and yellow glow. There’s no rhyme or reason to when dolphin find the flotsam, so any time after you shut off the engine and put out baits you have just as much chance of finding fish as when you pulled up. Trolling covers considerably more water, but when you encounter those weedlines, rips or color changes that have a large concentration of weeds in one area and then become sparse, it’s not a bad idea to sit on the best spot in town, knowing that your floating food chain is always in motion. Great episode with lots of tips, tricks, tactics and techniques. Mahi can often be found by looking for frigate birds on the edge of a coral reef. Come get in on the action. USA Record Mahi-mahi: Jeff Wright, 34, of Cambridge, Maryland caught a large 72.8 lb. On calm summer days you should get in the habit of running two or three miles and then stopping and scanning the horizon in all directions for any indication of something that looks good, whether that’s a weedline, rip, edge or anything floating, including turtles. Finding the Best Fishing Spots. That is still very high, and it isn’t recommended that you eat mahi-mahi more than a couple of servings per month to be safe. I watched a Hawaiian guy take his kayak out on the water off Beach Park on the west side of southern Oahu. Never. per month, and sometimes 2 lbs. How-To’s. If you drive the fish down, you’ll likely lose them. So whenever you find good concentrations of bait, you want to stick in that area and then try to add more positive factors to your fishing. If you stumble upon a piece of floating structure and you see the blue glow of Mahi Mahi (Dolphin fish) underneath get your jigs ready! They are found throughout the tropic regions of the world. Symptoms may persist for weeks. A rigged ballyhoo, mullet or flying fish will give you almost the same odds with these opportunity feeders. Grill the Mahi – especially blackened, and serve it up on a sandwich with fresh baked bun or Ciabatta bread roll, light mayo, fried onions, tomatoes, lettuce, and some garlic hot sauce (Tobasco works well). HOOO WEEY! Dolphin (Coryphaena hippurus), or Mahi-Mahi as they are sometimes called, are one of the great gamefish of the oceans. Large planer rigged on heavy mono (400-pound or so) may be cleated off and deployed astern. You are now viewing video Fishing in West Palm Beach, FL | Giant Sailfish | Jacks | Kingfish | Dolphin | Shark | that we added on November 18, 2015 in category Florida Sailfishing. This entry was posted in Fishing and tagged Dolphin Fish, Filet Fish, Filet Mahi Mahi, How to Filet, Mahi Mahi on June 26, 2014 by John D'Orazio. Mahi-mahi are long in appearance, with a single very long dorsal fin from the head nearly to the tail. Once we were up-tide of the fish and had it to one side of the boat you could have blind cast the bait over your shoulder and the fish would have rushed up and pounded it, it was so lit up. We all know dolphin like to feed around the weedlines, rips and color edges that tend to hold a lot a lot of small fish, turtles, shrimp and crabs, so there’s two strategies to fishing weedlines: troll down it or become one with the current and flotsam. When one Dolphin is hooked, the rest of the school often follows the hooked fish to the boat, allowing all the anglers on board to get in on the action. It is your responsibility to check the latest laws on the Official Florida Game and Fish Commission here before you fish. You’ll be using that reel more than any of the others and it has to be strong enough to withstand some abuse. Shannon Attales is passionate about his dolphin fishing. Either use mono, or #7-8 wire leaders. PRO TIP – As usual with ocean-going fish, the smaller, the better. Dolphin, also known as Mahi Mahi can be caught year round as well with the best fishing taking place in spring and early summer. Let the fish come to you. How to catch Dolphin Fish Sydney - Duration: 9:11. Penn baitcasting reels are my favorites. Birds are another good indicator of dolphin, and not just diving frigate birds, but also the small gulls. Males eat more than females, and are considerably bigger. Mahi-mahi are very fast and agile, able to make meals of any fish they target. with the Florida record being 243 lbs. Same with squid. Keep your eyes out for this: a free-jumping dolphin along a weedline. 9:11. Diet: Young Mahi-mahi eat crustaceans primarily. Key Largo, Islamorada and Tavernier fishing for Dolphin in the Spring and Summer months in the Florida Keys can be awesome! They seem to prefer to eat at night. In any of those situations, I would like 40-50 lb. Bait Fish Of Florida "Baitfish” is the common term given to a multitude of small, schooling fish whose main claim to fame is that they are an important food source for other fish. Appearance: As you can see above, Mahi-mahi are brightly colored – greens and yellows the predominant coloration. Mahi can be targeted by boaters by fishing any structure or floating object or flora – sargassum seaweed, plastic bottles, garbage, literally anything floating – they take shelter under and anglers can target them by throwing an artificial lure close by. Pursuant to section 120.74, Florida Statutes, the Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission has published its 2019 Agency Regulatory Plan.2019 Agency Regulatory Plan. Six or eight small baits cruising in a boat wake are tough enough to distinguish, but a flashing string of baits or splashing chain of squids stick out like a hammered thumb. When you hook one dolphin, let the fish take line and keep trolling, other fish are likely in the area. Hello, I have recently moved to Florida and have become quite the fishing enthusiast. Big lures. If you’re in Florida, bottom fishing for … Dolphinfish (Coryphaena hippurus), also known as mahi-mahi, mahi, dorado, dolphinfish, dolphin, common dolphin fish and green dolphin are sometimes confused with the marine mammal bearing the same name; that confusion is in the name only. It is so bright, the colors are almost fluorescent. Northeasterly winds tend to push a lot of debris (and fish) from the western side of the Gulf Stream towards the Florida side, often steering a lot of the largest dolphin away from open water and toward our coast. At 140 feet we pushed up to an underwhelming color change, no grass, current or upwelling, so I wasn’t expecting much, until a wall of juvenile flyingfish went airborne. They change color when excited and fighting against an angler. For shark fishing, check out Florida Bay. We have daily dolphin watching nature cruise & Eco tours, and a daily sunset cruise with free beer and wine. The chum-and-gun method will get a lot of response from schoolie dolphin, particularly around the weedlines, but it will also bring in the raging bulls that like to raid the chumline and chase the live baits down. At night it gets EVEN BETTER as there may be phosphorescent plankton in the water, so when the mahi starts screaming out line, it’s making a wavy path through the water that lights up with luminescence! When I saw the skipping fliers I pointed the boat north, directly up the color change, and every few minutes we kicked up another school. Mahi-mahi Laws in Florida. It should be standard practice when offshore fishing to hook a bait on a spinning rod and put it in a livewell or 5-gallon bucket filled with seawater in the corner of the cockpit ready to throw to any fish that comes within casting distance. Dolphin fishing is super exciting and this latest episode of Florida Sport Fishing TV is no different! braided is perfect if you want to be prepared for the big ones. fish off the coast of Ocean City, Maryland. That being said, when you find the food, you usually find the fish, so just about any time you’re marking bait or seeing it in the area, you’re in a plus zone. The migration patterns are changing every year. Sportfishing charters on Reel Candy catch 50-70 pound dolphin year-round. There was no official weighing, and the happy customer ate the fish with friends! Resist the urge to eat your gigantic mahi you just caught on a guided fishing tour, and instead let it go free. Gulf of Mexico or the Atlantic side – both have plenty mahi-mahi. We have been FISHING and CRUISING local waters since 1928, and 4 generations later we are still Family Owned and Operated.. We offer 5, 10, 12, 39, 44, hour party boat fishing trips.We also offer private charters for corporate events, bachelor parties, family trips, cruises and more. Florida Keys Fishing Tips. You can either troll lures behind your boat, or target specific areas of seaweed and other floating flotsam, or structure. Stunning to catch, delicious to eat: Easy to see why dolphin are a fan favorite. Part of his everyday arsenal when slow-trolling with live bait was to deploy a set of downriggers to get some baits down deep, and those deep baits produced a lot of the giant dolphin he caught over the years. In the Florida Keys, innovative fishermen have developed refined techniques to catch everything from ballyhoo to mutton snapper. Mahi-mahi has a tested mercury parts per million of about 1/5th that of the highest tested fish (Tilefish in Gulf of Mexico) on the chart1. From rivers and inlets to lakes and coastline, the opportunities for Florida fishing … I just hate to lose the big ones. Mahi-mahi laws can change at any time so it’s a good idea to be ready for anything. Symptoms of ciguatera poisoning include stomach issues and weakness of arms and legs. Have your man in the tower call out targets and cast off accordingly. They don’t really have a long life, but they are exceptionally fast growers. They will find and lock onto a big bull or cow dolphin and follow them high overhead for miles, waiting for them to feed. There’s sure to be a lot of different species that respond to the chum, including bonito (little tunny), which are usually the first fish to show, but it’s their slashing and splashing around the boat that often draws the dolphin in. I don’t know if it’s the shade, safety of structure or proximity to the reef that dolphin like, but a lot of big dolphin are caught off of turtles, particularly during the summer doldrums. For ballyhoo, a frozen block of baitfish chum in a saltwater fishing chum bag often does the trick, bringing the halfbeaks within range of a cast net , or you can use a tiny gold hook tipped with a piece of shrimp. There are lights at the pier, and as I recall, I tended to catch more of them on full-moon nights or nights when the moon was bright. It is also important to note that a dolphin fish is different than a porpoise dolphin. Leader – 80 lb. 27:20. Up to you! Some years back, Sandy Smith of Fort Pierce spent a lot of time chasing kingfish during tournaments, and the way to get good at that is to fish your home waters hard and learn everything you can about the species. Larger dolphin will follow schools of other fish – like false albacore or bonito – and feed along with them. Because of its diet, there is a chance the dolphin fish you catch will have been exposed to some pollution. If the moon is full or close to full at night, you can be sure the mahi-mahi will be eating all night and will probably NOT BITE during daylight hours much. Mahi at 4-5 months old are sexually active and capable of reproduction from the time they are about 8-inches long. Whether the baits are flying fish, ballyhoo, threadfins, sardines or another bait food species, look for nearby structure that the fish might hold around when not feeding like floating sargassum, reefs or wrecks. They are like a … Use them to constantly scan the horizon looking for floating objects, edges or birds. of mahi for $5 per pound. Florida Keys Dolphin Fishing Migration. Even in the off-season, dolphin fish are an excellent offshore fishing target. Mahi Mahi have compressed bodies and long dorsal fins that are adorned with brilliant shades of blue, yellow, green and silver. A breezy spring day makes for ideal trolling. They can only eat when the moon is bright at night. Sure it may happen someday, but I’m sticking with my PENNS! The rules also specify fishing gear guidelines regarding things like devices, hooks, and nets so be sure to read them in their entirety to make sure you’re compliant when learning how to fish in Florida. And you should be too. Another thing that makes targeting mahi-mahi as a gamefish is that they are not that difficult to find. Length: Mahi-mahi are typically landed in the 39″ range and between 15 to 29 lbs and are rarely found at more than 33 lbs. We cruised the color change for almost a mile without a single knockdown, and I was starting to think about a move, when a school of flyingfish several hundred yards ahead of the boat got up. Trolling the color change with a top water bait, coupled with a deep running bait on a planer is a great way to find where the dolphin are. Catching even one fish is usually enough fish for a family. That bull was traveling at a good clip and we may or may not have been able to speed up and get our live baits in front of it without spooking the fish, but with a pitch bait ready, we were locked, cocked and ready to rock when a moving dolphin came along. Weight: Average weight is 15-29 lbs. 00:27. He added that he never saw a “big run of really big dolphin” that used to be a hallmark of fishing in the Florida Keys. You want to always be watching for birds diving on the water and the second you see them you want to react and get baits near them, but that doesn’t mean charging right to them and throwing out baits. One of the TOP 3 best eating fish in the ocean, in our opinion. Hot Kite Fishing Action - Florida Sport Fishing TV - Super Dolphin Bite With Live Bait Off The Kites. They don’t dive, so they are easy targets for fast-moving boats that harpoon them with small spears. BaldMan Fishing 620 views. The sailfish design looks great with any vehicle and boat trailer! Dolphin Fishing on Florida’s East Coast. For the rest of us fishing with rod and reel, just roll up next to any floating seaweed and toss out an artificial that looks like a small fish. April to August is the best time in Florida to catch Mahi-mahi, but really, anytime is a good time because they’re here, they just aren’t quite as active outside of these months. Mahi-mahi has a unique morphology (body shape) that makes it appear eel-like or similar to an oarfish. Don’t be afraid to move, it’s how you cover water and put your baits around the areas with the highest potential to hold fish. Some of the Tarpon will stay in our area until we get the first cold front coming around October to December. caught in Key West FL. Mahi-mahi are swift and acrobatic game fish with striking colours. A hungry dolphin was caught on camera chasing down a fish in the shallow waters of Tampa Bay, Florida.Drone footage captured on February 25 shows a bottlenose dolphin speeding with remarkable agility as it pursues a jack crevasse.The jack crevasse manages to dodge the predator with some sharp hairpin turns.However, after a few minutes of erratic chasing, the dolphin manages to … Popular Dolphin (Mahi Mahi) Fishing Charters in South Florida. Where Is the Best Spot to Catch Speckled Trout in Florida? PRO TIP – Mahi-mahi (Hawaiian for ‘very strong’) are also called dolphin, dolphin fish, dorado (strong) near Spanish speaking countries, and lampuka in Malta. Florida Mahi Mahi Fishing. If you’ve got it, spoon a lump of mashed avocado on there. If fishing from 3 to 200 nautical miles off the coast of Florida, Georgia, South or North Carolina, you can use this mobile application to stay up to date on the fishing rules on the Atlantic Coast. DINNER TIME! 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