Tag: Catching Yellowfin Tuna

How to Catch Yellowfin Tuna

How to Catch Yellowfin Tuna

Catching Yellowfin Tuna

Yellowfin tuna have the potential of reaching up to a weight of 400lbs or 180kg. This makes them super strong fighters, and they pull extremely hard. Yellowfin are a great gamefish and a pleasure to catch. As a bonus, they are also great to eat! They are mainly found in the warmer offshore waters.

Read more about the Yellowfin Tuna species.

Yellowfin Tuna Tackle

Do some research into the area you are fishing in. Match your tackle to the size of tuna expected. Some schools have yellowfin tuna in the 5kg or 10lb size, others areas contain much larger tuna.

Calstar rods are a good product for all tuna. Shimano Trinidad 16 reel will work for a variety of fish sizes. A recommendation for the big yellowfin tuna is an Accurate Platinum ATD 50

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Yellowfin Tuna Catching Techniques

Yellowfin Tuna can be caught with bait and lures.  There are many techniques and it’s good to be familiar with them, fish can be tricky to catch some days.

The easiest way to catch yellowfin tuna is when they are breaking the surface feeding. They usually in a feeding frenzy and throwing your lure amongst the bait fish is sure to produce results. Spot the tuna schools by looking into the sky and seeing where birds are flocking, they are usually above the schools picking off baitfish also. When the water’s surface is breaking with activity, tuna are feeding. Get your boat as close to the school and throw your lures into the feed zone.

Trolling is a tried and traditional technique for tuna. Visit this post for detailed Tuna Trolling Info

Another techniques is to lure the yellowfin to you. Whether you are fishing with lures or bait, chum is effective on tuna of all sorts, and Yellowfin are no exception.  You can either chum with live bait or chunks of cut bait.  That helps keep the fish around the boat.

Check out chumming techniques.

Lures for Catching Yellowfin Tuna

Regardless of the technique you employ, try using tuna specific lures. Feather lures, cedar plugs, poppers and plastic skirted lures have the best results. If the fish are deep and under the bait schools, metal jigs will work. In general the quick retrieving lures work best with tuna since they have good eyesight.

It is recommended to buy a reputable lure brand. These lure will swim faster and more accurately mimicking bait fish. It Is really important to have a good variety of lure sizes and types, they need to match the baitfish in the water. Natural colours work best, blue, silver, green, etc.

Top lure brands include Rapala, Halco Max, Yo-Zuri Sashimi Bull, Shimano Orca.

Click on the links below to purchase some great Yellowfin Tuna lures:

How to Catch Yellowfin Tuna with Bait

As with lures, you need to select the bait that the tuna are feeding on in your area. For smaller tuna sizes Anchovies, sardines and squid work well. Pacific Mackerel and even small skipjack tuna work for catching larger yellowfin.

If you do not have live bait chunking is an option.  This entails cutting chunks of a large bait fish (perhaps a Skipjack) and then tossing them over the side.  In one of the chunks hide a circle hook and let it drift down naturally with the rest of the chunks.  Make sure you let out a lot of line so that the chunk can drift without any drag.  If something picks it up it will take off and you will know right away.  Tuna don’t nibble.

Check out other species of tuna.

How to Catch Yellowfin Tuna Trolling

How to Catch Yellowfin Tuna Trolling

Catching Yellowfin Tuna Trolling

Yellowfin Tuna, also known as Thunnus albacares, is a species of tuna that is deep blue on top, has a shallow yellow line all the way to the tail in the middle and their fins are yellowish color. Yellowfin is one of the larger tuna species with the potential of reaching up to a weight of 180 kg. They are mainly found in the offshore waters such as Gulf of Meixco, Hawaii, Caribbean, Eastern and Western Pacific.

Trolling for Yellowfin Tuna

Yellowfin Tuna usually travel in large schools to the surface during feeding time. They are boat shy and will quickly dive deep into the water when they see a boat approaching. Therefore, upon spotting the school of tuna from afar, you must not steer your boat fast toward them otherwise they will swim away. The strategy to catching tuna is to stop your boat a distance away from the fish for example, 3 knots away.  Then, you can put out your fishing line and let the bait float itself to where the school of tuna is.

When you stop your boat, the engine stops producing noises and the fish will be more bold to swim near your boat. Parking your boat a distance away prevents the tuna from associating the bait comes from your boat. Hiring a big fishing charter will give you a better fishing experience. When you reel in the fish, the fish will jump and flip and you will have fight the fish until it is dead. If your fishing charter is small and there is not enough room, you may accidentally step on your expensive fishing rig or even fall out of the boat.

Learn more about the Yellowfin Tuna Species

Ideally, your fishing charter should be large enough to set up 6 – 7 flush mount or vertical fishing rods. The more fishing rods you set up, the higher the chance of catching the tuna. After you stop the boat afar, you just wait patiently. You may have to wait up to 7- 8 hours for the first bite but it is worth the wait. While waiting, you must stay alert and quickly pull in the rod when you sense something bites. It is important to always wear thick buckskin glove when pulling in the rod. It will protect the skin on your palm and finger from callouses as you need a lot of strength to pull in the rod.

Cedar Plugs Tuna Lures

Cedar Plugs Tuna Lures

It is best to go fishing for yellowfin tuna with 1 or 2 partners as they can give you additional hands in catching the fish. For example, your partner can help with storing the rod in a cabin space or help you in getting the fish into the boat. Lures like tuna feathers, cedar plugs, chain, joeschutes and sterling bars can be used. For catching yellowfin tuna, the boat should be trolling at the speed of 5 – 8 knots. You can adjust your boat speed according to the behavior of the lure. Rougher seas mean you have to troll at a slower speed to enable the lure to work the most efficiently.

Stay tuned for more tips and tricks on How To Catch Tuna.