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Do you want to learn how to catch blackfin tuna? Are you looking for a new fishing adventure? Do you want to catch monster fish? Blackfin tuna is one of the most exciting sporting fishes that anglers like to target; they fight very hard, take explosive bites, and are delicious. They are also challenging to catch of their wide range and migratory habits.
Blackfin tuna can be found in the western Atlantic Ocean from North Caroline, the Gulf of Mexico to Brazil. In this article, we will share information about fishing methods, baits and lures, fishing tackle, and tips and tricks to make your dream of catching this monster a reality.
Table of Contents
- 1 How To Catch Blackfin Tuna
- 2 Blackfin Tuna Tackle
- 3 Best Bait For Blackfin Tuna
- 4 Best Lures For Blackfin Tuna
- 5 How To Catch Blackfin Tuna From Pier
- 6 How To Catch Blackfin Tuna In the Gulf of Mexico
- 7 How To Catch Blackfin Tuna In Florida
- 8 How To Catch Blackfin Tuna In North Carolina
- 9 Blackfin Tuna Fishing Tips
- 10 The Bottom Line
How To Catch Blackfin Tuna
Blackfin tuna can be caught year-round and are known to take an explosive bite. They are hard fighters and for their size and weight, you must be ready for the battle that ensues. These are just some of the reasons anglers like to catch this sporting monster of a fish. There are many fishing methods and techniques that can be used when you are learning how to catch blackfin tuna.
Trolling is one of the fishing methods used by anglers when fishing for blackfin tuna. It allows you to cover a lot of water and using trolling plugs and skirts, anglers target blackfin tuna. When trolling, the boat is moved slowly over water with the bait attached at the back of the boat. Small feathers, cedar plugs, and ballyhoo rigs are some of the trolling lures that can be used when fishing for blackfin tuna.
2. Vertical Jigging
Vertical jigging is also used to catch blackfin tuna, especially those that are in water deeper than 200 feet. When vertical jigging, you drop the jig down until you reach the bottom or the depth you want to target blackfin tuna.
Then give the line an abrupt vertical jerk to move the jig in a vertical motion. Doing this repeatedly will get the attention of blackfin tuna as they will see the vertical movement of the jig as prey that is moving upward.
3. Chumming (chunking)
Chumming is the fishing technique when anglers use tiny pieces of bait and drop them into the water to attract the target fish. When the scent of the bait permeates the water, the fish will come to eat the bait. This can easily result in a frenzy for the bait.
The goal is to drop tiny bits of bait, not to fill them, but to get them closer to you and in a feeding frenzy. With the target fish in your range and expecting more baitfish, you then hook them and bring them in. Pilchard is one of the widely used fish that anglers use for chumming.
4. Kite Fishing
Kite fishing is another fishing method used by anglers when fishing for blackfin tuna and other species of fish. When kite fishing, the bait is suspended and is just underneath the surface of the water. Kite fishing allows the bait to move through the water just below the water’s surface. Most anglers implement kite fishing for blackfin tuna during spring.
5. Drift Fishing
Drift fishing is another fishing method anglers use when fishing for blackfin tuna. When drift fishing, the boat moves at the speed of the current while the baits drift along. Drift fishing allows you to cover a lot of water and presents the chance of catching a variety of fish.
Blackfin Tuna Tackle
You can use either spinning or conventional tackle. Braided or monofilament lines can be used when fishing for blackfin tuna. A medium-heavy rod spooled with 350 yds of 30lb test. The tackle can be about 6-12 ft of 50lb fluorocarbon leader with a 4/0 live bait hook.
Blackfin tuna can refuse to bite if they spot the leader with their good eyesight. The remedy is to use fluorocarbon leaders. Smaller hooks are also the way to go when fishing for blackfin tuna. A 4/0 – 6/0 size circle hook will work well when learning how to catch blackfin tuna.
Best Bait For Blackfin Tuna
Squid is the main prey that blackfin tuna feeds on. Hence, it works very well as bait when learning how to catch blackfin tuna.
Pilchards are another good bait that is very effective when fishing for blackfin tuna.
Pinfish is effective as bait for blackfin tuna and is claimed as the “secret” bait that blackfin tuna can’t resist.
4. Cigar Minnows
Cigar minnows also work well as bait when fishing for blackfin tuna.
Herring, as well as threadfin herring, is also a good bait for blackfin tuna fishing.
6. Live Bait
Live bait is the best bait when you are learning how to catch blackfin tuna.
Best Lures For Blackfin Tuna
- Cedar Plugs
Cedar plugs work well to catch a wide range of tunas.
2. Small Feathers
Trolling lures like small feathers rigged with a flashy skirt can be very effective for small blackfin tunas.
3. Ballyhoo Rigs
Trolling lures like ballyhoo rigs work well when fishing for blackfin tuna.
4. Vertical Jigs
Vertical jigs are used to target blackfin tuna that are in deeper water, at 200 feet or more. They work well to attract blackfin tuna.
Spoons are also used to astonishingly affect when targeting blackfin tuna.
How To Catch Blackfin Tuna From Pier
Many anglers go fishing for blackfin tuna from the pier. Most of the time, they will use plugs to cast into the pier and when a fish is hooked, the line is retrieved. It is a repetitive process of casting and retrieving untie you get a bite.
There are other fishing methods like chumming and vertical jigging that you can use when fishing from a pier, but casting and retrieving are one of the most widely used methods when fishing from a pier.
How To Catch Blackfin Tuna In the Gulf of Mexico
When fishing for blackfin tuna in the Gulf of Mexico, anglers use a variety of fishing methods such as trolling, live baiting, chunking, and vertical jigging. Trolling is one of the popular fishing methods for blackfin tuna fishing. Anglers often use cedar plugs and skirts when trolling for blackfin tuna.
How To Catch Blackfin Tuna In Florida
Blackfin tuna fishing in Florida is implemented by trolling or live chumming. Anglers use cedar plugs and skirts when trolling for blackfin tuna. Other lures are also used when trolling; however, these have proven to be very effective.
Live chumming is another effective fishing technique used when fishing for blackfin tuna. Pilchards, squid, pinfish, cedar minnows, and herring are some of the baits that can be used when targeting blackfin tuna.
How To Catch Blackfin Tuna In North Carolina
Fishing for blackfin tuna in North Carolina is similar to how anglers target it all along the Atlantic coast and the Gulf of Mexico. Trolling, chumming, drift fishing, and vertical jigging, are the best fishing methods used.
Blackfin Tuna Fishing Tips
- Blackfin tuna are low-light feeders. They are found in deep waters preying on squid.
2. Blackfin tuna can be found in wrecks, current rips, underwater mounds, or humps.
3. Blackfin tuna migrate vertically through the water column during the day to feed.
4. When you are looking for schools of blackfin tuna, if there are large flocks of birds circling above the water, there is a good chance that they are following schools of blackfin tuna trying to intercept flying fish and other forage that the blackfin tuna are feeding on.
5. Blackfin tuna has very good eyesight. Therefore, it is a smart idea to scale down your leaders and hooks to improve the chances of being unnoticed by blackfin tuna.
6. A 4/0 – 6/0 size circle hook is a good size when learning how to catch blackfin tuna.
7. Using live chum, you can attract and raise blackfin tunas closer to the water surface and lure them closer to your boat.
8. Trolling, vertical jigging, live baiting, chunking, and kite fishing are some of the fishing methods used to catch blackfin tuna.
9. Live baits, such as herring, goggle-eye, sardine, or pilchards, are the best bait when fishing for blackfin tuna.
10. Blackfin tuna can grow up to 40 pounds or more and their average weight is about 25 pounds.
11. The best time for blackfin tuna fishing is spring and fall.
12. Blackfin tuna can be caught all year round.
13. Spend some time planning your blackfin tuna fishing trip by reviewing tide charts and weather forecasts.
14. Fresh live bait is the best bait when learning how to catch blackfin tuna.
15. The best time of the day to go fishing for blackfin tuna is early morning and sunset.
16. When there is a full moon, blackfin tuna will bite during the middle of the day when the moon is on the opposite side of the earth.
17. Blackfin tuna are leader and hook shy. A fluorocarbon leader is the best option.
The Bottom Line
Blackfin tuna is an exciting sport fish that anglers target year-round. It is hard fighting, take explosive bites delicious, and makes great runs. In this article, we discussed how to catch blackfin tuna, the baits and lures anglers use, as well as shared fishing tips to help you catch this monster of a fish. You can also read how to catch yellowfin tuna, how to catch bigeye tuna, how to catch blackfin tuna, and how to catch bonito.