RANGE: Offshore of all Florida coasts,
especially the Keys, but for more plentiful in the Bahamas and many
HABITAT: Roams the deep
blue water, but anglers can find them by working drop-offs, seamounts,
weed lines and other favorable feeding locations.
DESCRIPTION: Long, slender
body marked with zebra-like stripes of white and deep blue or black.
Mouth is elongated and narrow, and equipped with razor-sharp teeth -
SIZE: Common at 10-50
pounds; often grows to 80 or 90 pounds; maximum potential about 150
pounds. World record 158 pounds, 8 ounces.
FOOD VALUE: White meat is
tasty but rather dry. A good smoking fish.
GAME QUALITIES: May strike
a surface bait in spectacular, gray hounding fashion, but seldom jumps
after being hooked. Wild fight is characterized by several sizzling
runs, usually at or near the surface. One of the fastest of all game
TACKLE AND BAITS: Many
Wahoo are hooked on heavy tackle, incidentally to Bill fishing. Best
choices, however, are light to medium ocean trolling outfits with lines
up to 30-pound test; 50-pound isn't too heavy for good sport with big
specimens. A few have been caught by deep jigging or ocean casting with
spinning and bait casting tackle - even fly tackle on rare occasion.
Most productive bait is a weighted feather or similar trolling lure,
rigged in combination with a whole small baitfish or large strip.
Surface trolling is sometimes effective, but deep trolling is much more
likely to produce a Wahoo.