DESCRIPTION: Green or steel blue above, silver on sides and belly. Deep, thick body; forked tail. Long trailer at end of dorsal fin.
SIZE: From 12 inches or less to about 75 pounds, typically, although big fish of 100 to 150 pounds many in lots of areas. World record 286 pounds, 9 ounces; Florida record 243 pounds.
FOOD VALUE: None.
GAME QUALITIES: Famous for the phenomenon and frequency of its jumps. Giant Tarpon do not rather match the acrobatics of the smaller ones, but they jump regularly enough in shallow water, and with a lot more fury.
TACKLE AND BAITS: Anglers seeking big wheel in passes, channels, deep bays and surf areas like stout tackle with lines checking a minimum of 30 pounds. All sizes of spinning, baitcasting and fly deal with get great deals of play for smaller sized fish.The exact same types of gear, although of heavier percentages, are also used for big wheel on shallow flats. Use at least 15-pound line on spinning and casting equipment, and at least a 10-weight fly clothing with minimum 16-pound tippet. Heavy monofilament leaders or tippets are required since of the Tarpon’s really rough mouth. Drift-fishermen in the passes and inlets choose live baits– mainly little crabs and little fish. All Tarpon will take dead baits, such as a Mullet head or half Mullet, fished patiently on bottom. For trolling or surfcasting with heavier equipment, big jigs, spoons and lipped plugs get the call. Generally, casters delight in the most success with swimming plugs, jerk plugs and surface plugs. Fly anglers rely greatly on scissor-action feather banners and bulky bucktail banners.
FISHING SYSTEMS: Casting; Wandering; Still Fishing; Trolling.
VARIETY: All Florida coasts plus the Greater Antilles and some other Caribbean islands, including the Virgin and Cayman Islands. Spread in the Bahamas, where it is most plentiful around Andros however likewise present in other places, including Bimini, the Berry Islands, and the Exumas.
ENVIRONMENT: Fishable throughout Florida in warm months, including the Panhandle, however adults are mainly confined to South Florida in the winter season. Major fishing efforts for big Tarpon are directed at live-baiting in big passes, inlets, channels and river mouths throughout the state, and at sight-fishing with fly and casting deal with on shallow flats in the Keys and on the lower Gulf Coast from Homosassa southward. Big and medium Tarpon likewise are discovered off the beaches and in the surf of both coasts sometimes, and numerous are hooked from bridges and piers, especially in the evening. Medium-size fish prevail in a range of settings in South and Central Florida, including freshwater rivers and landlocked canals.Tiny juveniles populate landlocked canals and ditches.