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How to Catch Mahi Mahi in Florida

If you’ve ever heard of people eating dolpin, then they’re probably talking about Mahi-Mahi. This offshore fish is a prized possession sought after by anglers and pescatarians all over. Thankfully there’s no season for Mahi Mahi but they do prefer warmer temperatures.

Where to catch Mahi Mahi

You’ll know it’s Mahi Mahi when you spot the iridescent yellow-green fish. As they swim you’ll notice hints of blue, green and purple. The stunning fish has a blunt head and forked tail making it impossible to mistake. Mahi Mahi is undoubtedly one of Florida’s most beautiful marine species and a favorite on every menu.

The subtropical waters of South Florida make it the perfect place to catch Mahi Mahi – lucky us! Even better, there’s no official season for this fish. The best times to catch Mahi Mahi in Florida are during the spring and summer months. From April to October you can find this migratory fish hanging out in the Atlantic Ocean just less than 10 miles offshore.

Mahi mahi can range anywhere up to 63 inches, and they usually weigh around 30 pounds. The state record is 81 pound fish caught off the Boynton Beach Inlet. That means Gulfstream Boat Club Members have a pretty good chance at rivaling the giant fish.

Reeling it in

Mahi Mahi are attracted to floating objects, and are commonly found in association with floating mats of seaweed. The carnivorous fish feast on bait fish, flying fish, squid and crabs. Their big appetites account for how fast they grow.  Mahi Mahi reach adulthood in less than a year!

Gulfstream Boat Club captains find that trolling natural baits such as rigged ballyhoo or cigar minnows do the trick.  You can catch Mahi Mahi with live bait, cut bait, artificial lures, jigs, or spoons. The tackle used to catch mahi mahi in Florida ranges from light spinning tackle for smaller schooling dolphin, to heavy trolling equipment. Chumming with cut bait or leaving a hooked fish in the water can keep schooling fish near the boat for multiple hookups.

In Florida, the legal gear allowed is hook and line, or spearing. The minimum size limit for mahi is 20” fork length. Fish are measured from the tip of the jaw to the center of the fork in the tail. The daily bag limit is 10 fish per person, or 60 per vessel, whichever is less.

Do you require hands-on training on how to catch Mahi Mahi? The captains at GBC are fully licensed fishermen. They’ll help you learn more about how to catch and clean all the Mahi Mahi you can eat. Discover more about fishing offshore with Gulfstream Boat Club.

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