Costa Rica Fishing Species

Top Costa Rica Fish Species

Costa Rica Fishing Calendar

FishJan-Feb-Mar Off ShoreApr-May-Jun Off ShoreJul-Aug-Sep Off ShoreOct-Nov -Dec Off Shore
Black MarlinFairGoodGoodExcellent
Blue MarlinFairGoodFairGood
Black MarlinFairGoodGoodExcellent
SailfishExcellentGood +GoodExcellent
DoradoExcellentGood +GoodExcellent
Yellow Fin TunaExcellentExcellentExcellentExcellent
FishJan-Feb-Mar In ShoreApr-May-Jun In ShoreJul-Aug-Sep In ShoreOct-Nov -Dec In Shore

Yellowfin tuna
Tuna sport fishing catch common in Costa Rica
Light tuna that are not easily confused with other species. However, it is similar in appearance to the Albacore (which has unusually long pectoral fins and fins dark gray), bigeye tuna (which has a very deep body, large eyes, yellowfin edged in black, and an iridescent blue band on the other hand), and bluefin tuna north (which has short pectoral fins, a second dorsal fin is reddish brown and dark yellow wings with black borders).

Yellowfin tuna, perhaps the king of tuna, is characterized by its “related” body dark metallic blue back, sides yellow, silver and a white belly with 20 oblique vertical broken lines. It also has very large dorsal and anal fins second that are fairly close together, and has bright yellow dorsal and anal fins and black narrow borders.

Typical Location: Open Ocean along the current lines and temperature changes.
Fishing methods: Trolling plastic lures, squid, live bait or bait strips often in combination with plastic skirts, or drifting at anchor with hook and bait.

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Great to eat, they can be caught in the waters offshore in Costa Rica

El Dorado, Dolphin Fish, gold or “gold” in Spanish can be easily recognized by its unique shape and bright color. When connected, it lights up with fish almost neon colors and put up and out, jumps, fight tail walking.

Has a compressed body with a long concave anal fin, a single dorsal fin along the length of the body extends, very long pectoral fins that are greater than half the length of the head, pelvic fins originating on the fins pectoral and caudal fin deeply forked. The fins are typically yellow.

The male has a female head erect and has a rounded head. The male is larger and heavier than the female.

Typical Location: In the open ocean around logs, flotsam, weed lines, in the warm currents and around the buoys.
Fishing methods: Trolling smooth dead, mackerel or squid baits drag strip (often in combination with squid plastic), trolling smaller lures, or drifting with a small live bait (an often with chum). Better it is known as dolphin, which is most abundant from late May to October.

Skipjack tuna
Good sport on light tackle, and a large live bait
Skipjack tuna could be confused with the Black kite (having 5 to 6 horizontal stripes along their upper sides, but has to distinguish black dots or fails between their pelvic and pectoral fins), the skipjack tuna (8 to 11 broken horizontal stripes along its sides and no points), or the Pacific Bonito Oriental (5-6 oblique dark stripes on the upper back and no points).

This fish is characterized by its appearance “related” is dark blue on the back and silver in his flank and belly. It has a series of four to six horizontally-diagonal stripes along their top sides, and there are no points between the pelvic and pectoral fins; the upper body is dark blue to black and the lower body is silver with four to six dark stripes long and short pectoral fins.

Typical Location: Along current lines, drop continental shelf and deep reefs. In open ocean around baitfish small.
Fishing methods: Most fish are caught by trolling or casting small lures from a boat. Catches are also made with small flies or baits integral strips, fish or meat.

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Rooster Fish

Rooster, the common goal of sport fishing in Costa Rica
One of the most sought after and exciting inshore fish that roam throughout the west coast of Costa Rica.

They usually are silver and exhibit a wide range of size. With an average of 15 to 20 pounds, 40 pounds is common, and more than 80 pounds of fish were taken in the waters of Costa Rica. It is distinguished by its “cockscomb” seven very long spines of the dorsal finfish that made him makes it truly unique.

They are voracious predators feed mainly on small fish like sardines and other small fish silver; They are traveling in food packages chasing the shore.

A family member Jack, which is edible, but not considered a fish for human consumption primary.

Locations: They frequently travel in large schools and considerable distances, usually after the shoals of smaller bait; located in the hot water temperature in excess of 80 degrees and depths of 100 feet. outcroppings of volcanic rock are one of his favorite places, but also roam behind the lines of surf and near the mouths of rivers flowing into the Pacific.

Fishing methods: Rapala Trolling lures or similar will Roosterfish and fishing lures slow crawl belly skirts. Usually, he was surprised with the smooth controlled slowly, live bait like sardines just outside the surf line, outward from the coast to about a quarter mile. Roosters can be taken throughout the year, but are most commonly caught from November to March.

Breastplates, Costa Rica Sport Fishing
Wahoo is a dark blue-green fish found worldwide in tropical and subtropical seas. Samples have been recorded at speeds of up to 2.5 meters (8 feet) in length and weighing up to 83 kilograms (180 pounds). Growth can be rapid. Wahoo can swim up to 75 kilometers (47 miles) per hour.

Wahoo meat is delicate and white, considered very good in quality. This has made Wahoo one of the best-eating fish in the sea.

Wahoo is characterized by its very long, the cognate body, blue-green on top and silver on the sides, with a short snout, a huge set of teeth and a very long continuous dorsal fin. 24-30 also has distinctive blue bars, some of which are double Y-shaped, on their sides. There is eight to nine fin between the dorsal fin and the tail fin and 9 fins between the anal fin and the tail fin.

Typical Location: Coral reefs where the warm current is running near the coast in the open ocean around bait fish, records and current lines, and deep reefs and holes in the seabed.

Fishing methods: trolling lures, minnows or feather lures near the reef, trolling strip bait often in combination with plastic squid and smooth drifting live bait or mackerel.

The first sign usually begins with the onset of the rainy season (May) and the peak time is usually July and August.


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Marlin is one of the most popular and sought after game fish in the world. Costa Rica is lucky to have three different types of Marlin roaming cobalt seas:

Blue Marlin: back blue stripes of blue light, silvery white belly, electric blue fins and tail. Flat folding pectoral fins have two keels on the union of body and caudal fin, dorsal fin of lavender, a curved downward short lower jaw and a short round heavy peak; the beginning of the second dorsal starts forward the start of the second anal fin.
Black Marlin, the prize in sport fishing, Costa Rica

– Striped marlin: is characterized by its long compressed body is dark blue above, below and has silver and blue series light vertical stripes on its sides. The upper jaw forms a long spear rounded with small teeth. The first dorsal fin striped marlin is dark blue, forming a triangular beak longer than the height of the body; this first dorsal fin ends near the origin of the second dorsal fin.
Striped marlin, common goal of sport fishing, Costa Rica

– Black Marlin: characterized by a long sturdy body that is dark to black blue above, below silvery white, has a limited number of -if any- vertical stripes on the sides and pectoral fins that are not They fold flat against the body as a feature key identification. His upper jaw forms a long spear rounded and has small long thin beak and teeth
Marlin, Sportsfishing, Costa Rica
The blue marlin is the most common billfish caught in Costa Rica. These range in size up to five hundred pounds with occasional larger fish shipped. Costa Rica has yet to see a larger, although they have taken several fish over 900 pounds of fish and more than 1000 pounds have been hooked and lost. black marlins are also taken in the same waters. Several fish over 700 pounds have been recorded and reported that the much larger fish have been connected. These average 150 to 200 pounds brilliant fighters.

Typical Location: Along current lines, leaving the continental shelf, reefs, and shore where the warm current is running or in open bait fish around the sea. Juveniles move in schools of the same age along the coast and islands.
Fishing methods: trolling mullet or mackerel, trolling live skipjack and other small tuna or squid lures and plastic. Marlin can be caught throughout the year, but better between April and August, with a peak in May.



The most common fish sailfish in Costa Rica, sportfishing
Sailfish live in all oceans of the world. All species of sailfish are fast growing, reaching 1.2 to 1.5 meters in length in a single year, feeding on the surface or in midwater pelagic fish and small squid. Overall, sailfish do not grow more than 10 feet long and rarely weigh more than 200 pounds, although larger specimens have been seen off the coast of Costa Rica.

People who have registered speeds up to 68 mph making them the fastest fish in the ocean.

They are blue to gray. Sailfish is characterized by its large first dorsal fin sail-shaped, which is much higher than the width of your body, which runs almost the entire length of her body and has many small common black spots on the front end. The coloration of the Sailfish background is dark blue and white underneath.

Typical Location: Sailfish is a species of tropical and temperate waters, usually located above the thermal gradient in the first 100 feet of the water column. Prefer water at sea from 21 to 28 Celsius temperatures.
Fishing method: Use teasers to bring the fish sailing ship and target them individually lures or live bait. Caught every month of the year, from May to August, usually the high season. September to November are the slowest months.

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Swordfish, fishing, Costa Rica

Swordfish are large, highly migratory, predatory fish characterized by a long, flat bill in contrast to the smooth, round bill Marlins. This is one, though elusive popular sport fishing. Swordfish are elongated, round body, and lose all teeth and scales in adulthood. Reaching a maximum size of 14 feet (4.3 m) and 1,190 pounds (540 kg).

Swordfish are nocturnal, it is why night fishing is becoming more popular among anglers.

Its background color is variable: black, grayish blue, brown, purple or bronze metal; its sides are dark; under dirty white belly; The Long and flat as upper jaw sword; lack scales, teeth, and pelvic fins. He has one keel on each side of the body at the front of the queue; the first dorsal fin is high, rigid and short; and swordfish has big eyes.

Typical Location: Swordfish are distributed throughout the world’s marine ecosystems: tropical, subtropical and temperate waters. They tend to focus on the major ocean currents meet, and along temperature fronts. They inhabit the mixed surface waters where temperatures are above 15 ° C.
Fishing method: Good bait is key to any type of fishing dead bait such as mackerel or squid on a good large pin a work platform. I live bait work well, too. You should trim the tails down on the live bait to make them easier for the swords to catch, this will help your hookups.


Bonito, good fish bait for Marlin, Sportsfishing Costa Rica

Nice could be confused with the Black kite (having 5 to 6 horizontal stripes along its upper side and distinctive black spots) or skipjack tuna (series of 4 to 6 stripes horizontal diagonals along their upper sides and no points).

This is a rather simplified tuna. It is the only tuna with longitudinal stripes on its back. Come to live at least nine years, usually reach sexual maturity at age 2 can weigh 10 kg and reach a length of one meter.

Bonito has a “similar” appearance, blue-gray flanks silver (darker on the head), dark and belly, and a series of five to six oblique along his upper back stripes. The dorsal fin Bonito is dark, although the second dorsal fin has a white tip. No points between the pelvic and pectoral fins.

Typical Location: Binito can be found throughout the Gulf of Nicoya, often seen on the surface chasing small bait.
Fishing method: Live bait, lures feathers or controlled quickly. For the size gets a great fight.