Mahi Mahi Fishing Key West
Dolphin, Mahi-Mahi, is one of the most sought-after offshore fish during summer, and they can be found throughout the Florida Keys. They are a fast-growing species so it would be hard to deplete the fisheries. Fresh Mahi-Mahi is served in many restaurants in the Florida Keys and Key West.
Fishing charters most likely go out to the edge of the reef in about 120 feet of water and begin looking for floating debris and frigate birds. Dolphin tend to hang out around debris such as floating boards, palm trees and fronds, or Sargasso weed lines.
Sargasso is floating grass that sometimes holds a complete eco-system from microscopic creatures to seahorses and baitfish. The frigate birds dive for food accompanying the debris or Sargasso. Other fish may be present in the area. Experienced fishing guides can tell what species are likely
around the debris by the birds’ behavior.
Thirty to 50-pound gear is more than adequate for trolling for dolphin. Fly-casters may especially seek frigate birds to find big dolphin and then use a bait-and-switch technique. Ballyhoo or a net full of live pilchards tossed into the water can excite the dolphin into a feeding frenzy. Hookless teaser lures can also be employed in the same manner. After tossing the teasers or live chum, throw the fly to the feeding dolphin. Once on a line, dolphin are fast, flashy and acrobatic, with beautiful blue, yellow, green and even red dots of color.
Dolphin Fish (Dorado)
Also known as Dorado and Mahi Mahi, Dolphin are strong, speedy fighters and can be acrobatic at times. While in the water, their colors are bright and vibrant; when taken onto the boat, they rapidly change to gray. These fish usually school in similar sizes, anywhere from 1 to 20 lbs on average, but an adult bull can reach up to 80 lbs. The Florida record is 77.75 lbs.
When fishing for Dolphin, we usually use live bait and casting or chumming. Once a school is located and the first fish caught, we will leave that hooked fish in the water in order to keep the remainder of the school around.
Dolphin is probably one of the most delicious fish we catch, no matter what you do to it, but the simpler the better… broil or barbeque with a little butter! Best times to catch Dolphin: May through August.