For it´s disconcerting lightning fast surface runs, power and ferocious pack attacks wahoo are one of the most exciting fish to catch on light tackle and we are lucky that they can be caught almost year round out of Vilankulos & the Bazaruto Archipelago. However, traditionally (but not always) the best time for numbers and big fish would be the end of August to early October and then May to June. Although during the Marlin season they are an exciting by catch, some years and especially at the beginning of the season when they are tick and of XXL size, they can actually become a unwelcome pest when they cut off the leaders or tear down the skirts of one´s newly rigged Marlin lures! But outside the Marlin season they are always a prize catch and from late May to July of last year we had one of the best wahoo bites we can remember off Bazaruto.
Although they were around in fairly good numbers from May this year it was nowhere as consistent and when we did pick them up it seemed to be solitary fish and not the always-exciting and productive pack attacks. Well, rather late than never and they have finally arrived in full force and it´s all changed drastically in the last two weeks. They have been thick and hungry providing a phenomenal bite with good size missiles jumping on baits and lures on a daily basis, tremendous fun on light tackle gear.
Everyone has been enjoying a steady wahoo and other game fish bite since late July now, especially in the pinnacles down south by the San Sebastian peninsula, where beautiful blue water has now warmed to a nice 24.5c+! Along with the wahoo there as been a good number of yellowfin Tuna, skipjack, bonitos, king mackerel (cuda) and some other game fish species along with a few sailfish and the odd Black.
Last week we had Scott Lupien bring some of his Chinese hunting clients aboard the 38ft Game Changer fishing out of Vilankulos for a few, very successful days. However our last day was absolutely EPIC and the action never slowed from lines in until we left at 15h00pm. We did have our quiet moments but that was on purpose!
After two hours of absolute non-stop mayhem, just before 10am I could see the guys were completely broken. To give us a chance to rig some lures on wire exclusively, but mostly to give the guys a well deserved break, we decided to live bait a frisky YFT for an hour and a half. And, of course, also to check if there was any cheeky Black Marlin in the vicinity :-)! We got back into it for another crazy hour and a half and then went out wide to have another break and a delicious seafood barbecue of fresh wahoo, YFT and calamari. Then in the early afternoon we found them even thicker in both size and numbers and after every single multiple attack I would go and troll deep, outside the pinnacle for about 20 minutes to give the guys and the fish a break. That´s of course where we found the billfish! We first raised a Black on the long that would not eat and then had two sailfish bites, hooking into the last one that regrettably come undone during the fight
All in all we got 29 game fish, most of which where nice size wahoo (14-28 kg) and tuna. But those numbers do not show the intensity of the bite as we easily lost in excess of 25 or more wahoo. Has we started in the morning (and taken by surprise) we had a number of (obvious) cut offs on our mono rigged lures. We also had a number of fish come undone and sharked. But most of all, and although being first time anglers the guys did an absolute magnificent job, they just lacked the experienced to continuously deal with the triple, quadruple and even quintuple strikes of these torpedo speedster´s on the light sticks. That the guys did not speak a word of English did not help either has I tried to conduct things from the bridge telling them to go under or over each other as they frenetically danced the wahoo Waltz on the cockpit! These things where taking off at warp speed in all direction and we just had to many line burns! But, what a thrill of a day!
Straight after and the last four days we had a group from SA fishing with the boys aboard Vamizi on the Island. But, with green and colder water on the northern grounds conditions where significantly distinctive. The first day started slow until after midday when they finally zoned in the fish around the Bazaruto Lighthouse area. That afternoon produced some tuna and a good plugging / spinning session and the guys enjoyed superb light tackle action for the remaining days with loads of cuda including some nice fish up to an estimated 20 kg, bludger kingfish, bonito and heaps of school Yellowfin tuna.
Looks really good and alive and it should only get better and better and we come full swing into the season…
A few days ago angler Heiko Steinmetz in Cape Verde caught the 4th Grander Marlin of the year. The Blue took 2 ½ hours to subdue and at 1 234 lbs it´s the 13rd biggest Blue ever caught in the Atlantic. Interestingly, this is the second grander fish from Cape Verde this year and the previous one was an even bigger, which at 1 290 lbs was the 3rd biggest ever weighted in the Atlantic.