Wahoo, scientifically known as Acanthocybium solandri, is a remarkable fish species inhabiting the warm waters of the world’s oceans. Known for its incredible speed, sleek appearance, and delicious taste, wahoo is a fascinating creature that has earned its place among the ocean’s top predators.
Wahoo is instantly recognizable by its long, slender body, pointed snout, and iridescent blue-green coloration. They are built for speed, featuring a streamlined shape that allows them to cut through the water with remarkable agility. Their name “wahoo” is derived from the exclamation often heard when anglers encounter these fish, as they are known for their explosive strikes and rapid runs.
Wahoo can grow to impressive sizes, with some individuals reaching lengths of over 8 feet (2.5 meters) and weighing more than 180 pounds (82 kilograms). Their formidable size and speed make them a popular target for sports fishermen worldwide. These predators are typically found in tropical and subtropical waters, preferring temperatures between 70°F to 84°F (21°C to 29°C). They are known to roam both nearshore and offshore waters, often lurking near reefs, drop-offs, and other underwater structures where smaller fish gather.
Wahoo populations are generally considered healthy and abundant. However, like many marine species, they face threats from overfishing and habitat degradation. Sustainable fishing practices and responsible management are essential to ensure the long-term viability of wahoo populations.
How to catch Wahoo
Equipment and Gear:
Choose a heavy-duty trolling rod and reel combo. The reel should have a high line capacity and a strong drag system to handle the speed and power of wahoo. Use a heavy monofilament or braided line (50-80 lb test) to handle the strain of a wahoo’s fast runs. And make sure to use strong and sharp hooks, preferably with single hooks rather than treble hooks. A hook size in the range of 8/0 to 10/0 should work well.
Lures and Bait:
Wahoo are known for their aggressive nature, so fast-moving lures and baits are essential. Common choices include high-speed trolling lures like jet heads, diving plugs, and skirts in bright colors. Attach a steel or heavy fluorocarbon leader (80-150 lb test) to prevent wahoo from biting through your line.
Wahoo are often found in warm waters, typically in tropical and subtropical regions, near underwater structures like reefs, ledges, and drop-offs. They are also known to hang around floating debris or patches of sargassum seaweed, which attract smaller fish, their primary prey.
Wahoo are more active during low light periods such as early morning and late afternoon. However, they can be caught throughout the day.
Trolling is one of the most effective methods for catching wahoo. Use high-speed trolling lures or rigged baits that imitate flying fish, squid, or smaller fish. Wahoo are known for their fast strikes, so maintain a trolling speed of 6 to 12 knots. Chumming with chunks of baitfish can attract wahoo to your area. This can be particularly effective when fishing from a stationary position, like a boat anchored over a structure.
When you get a strike, let the wahoo take some line initially to avoid pulling the hook out of its mouth. Once the fish settles into its run, engage the reel and start reeling. Be prepared for fast and powerful runs, as wahoo are known for their speed and agility. Wahoo have sharp teeth and strong jaws. Use caution when handling them, and consider using a de-hooking tool or gloves to protect yourself.