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Tuna, Tuna, TUNA-A-A !!!

Capt. Bob Baker
April 21, 2010
Boca Chica - Saltwater Fishing Report

It's been a banner season for big yellow fin tuna here, with no signs of a letup.

As if THAT'S not enough, now we have to look forward to increasing numbers of WAHOO in the near future!

It's getting very difficult to find the right color and size surface poppers in local stores here. I urge anglers to ask questions about what colors and brands are working the best, and bring a few along , just so you're not cut short. Lots of things can, and do, happen that contibute to the loss of a fish-killer lure.

I once bought a selection of offshore lures from a very good company in Mexico. One of the lures they sent was called " El Petrolero". Which means " Oil Tanker". That should give you all an idea of the SIZE of this marlin lure. Anyway, I carefully, lovingly rigged that lure and stowed it in my lure bag.

We had a client arrive for a 3 day charter. Italian angler, fishing alone. Acaptain who worked for me then asked(read BEGGED) me over morning coffee, toast , and papaya slices, if he could take that lure out. I really wanted to be the first to get it wet, but the client always comes first here, so I gave it up.

Returning that afternoon, the angler was very happy. They'd had 4 sails released, two fine dorado for the grill, 3 rainbow runner, and 5 chunky yellowfin tuna in the 30-40 lb. class.

After all the pats-on-the-back, the captain reluctantly announced that there was also some 'bad news". HMMMMM?

Seems he had set out his rigger baits first( that's a rule, by the way, riggers always first) and then his long "shotgun" line was let far back behind the riggers in the center position. Then the flat lines. "El Petrolero was last in. Adjusted on the second wave . First thought as it popped and trailed "smoke", as in bubble trail, was that this was going to be SOME kind of lure. As it popped the third time, it was hit from the side, a drive-by, by a huge marlin, and line started peeling off against the drag. All lines cleared, angler seated in the "chair", harness on, then the O.K to start putting pressure on . Pump and reel. After about 4 minutes , with the rod bending nicely, the tip came back up straight. Thinking the great fish had swung quickly around and was heading towards the boat ( they like to attack boats), additional power was added , the angler instructed to " reel like hell" to get the line back tight. But, the rod tip remained limply bent, with only the weight of the line and the speed of the boat causing resistance. Our Italian friend , through hand signals, was instructed to reel up.

Fnally, the teaser "bird" came to the surface, flopping along, doing it's thing. When plucked from the blue water the problem became evident. The 350 lb. barrel swivel had come apartin the middle ! That fish was long enough, heavy enough, powerful enough to swat that swivel with its tail and break it.

One trip, one bite, one great lure gone. The angler never SAW the fish, but he FELT it. And that, besides all the other action he had that day, had him sceduling his NEXT trip with 3 friends for the same time in the following season ( they came, and took TWO nice blue marlin).

I went completley the "other" way, vowing never to use a bird again, and didn't for quite awhile. At least until I had a client mule me down a few packages of 600 lb. , ball bearing swivels !!

Back to NOW. Tuna , black marlin, and an ever growing presence of wahoo will continue for the next few months. Wahoo until December. Sails are present, but will fade a little.

August will be the best for that BIG marlin of your dreams. If you want to fish Costa Rica, August, September are ALSO the best months for marlin and big tuna.

Inshore will be at its peak in June, and into the whole month of July. Corvina will spawn then, and the males are hitting anything that gets close to their big girlfriends. The girls also have to eat, to keep up their strength, nourishing the thousands of eggs carried in their bodies. Snapper, snook, African pompano, roosterfish, will all be there to break up your trip, so you can rest those spagetti arms that have been stretched and yanked on by the big marlin and yellowfin.

Make a plan, send it to me at fishpanama@hotmail.com and/or zancudobob@gmail if you want to fish from our lodge in Costa Rica.

Better yet, take enough time to fish BOTH countries. 4 days each side, with a travel day in the middle. Great trip !!

Meanwhile, Good Fishing, Wherever You Are !!

Capn' Bob

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Experienced saltwater Capt. with 12 years in this fishing area. All-inclusive packages starting in Panama City. Based out of David/Boca Chica area, offering short runs to world-class angling. Marlin, sailfish, BIG tuna, wahoo, dorado. Inshore roosterfish and huge cubera snapper, to name a few. Beautiful oceanside lodge(Boca Chica) or hotel/casino atmosphere in David.Fishing many different island groups, including Isla Coiba and the Hannibal Bank.

Contact Info:

Panama Sportfishing SA
Panama Sportfishing SA
Apdo 456
Phone: 506-776-0007
Alt. Phone: 507-6595-1640
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