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Top 10 Yellowfin Tuna Spots
Check out some of the best spots in the world to fish for yellowfin tuna.
Yellowfin tuna provide top-tier sport for anglers. Few have second thoughts about making multi-day, 100-mile runs just to get a chance to tangle with these highly migratory tackle-busters. Yellowfin are prolific throughout the world's oceans, and here are 10 of the top tuna spots to get you started. <i>Photo courtesy Red Rooster III.</i>
Many crews from Florida make the run over to the <a href="http://www.fishtrack.com/fishing-charts/bahamas_58671" target="_blank"> Bahamas</a> during the summer and fall to cash in on a solid yellowfin tuna bite. Find feeding birds (sooty terns) and you will likely find tuna. This run-and-gun fishery requires a good supply of bait for <a href="http://www.fishtrack.com/features/live-chumming-for-yellowfin-tuna_96428" target="_blank"> live-chumming</a>. Get the tuna to the boat using handfuls of bait and be prepared to put some fish in the box! <i>Photo by Steve Dougherty.</i>
Southeast Australia</a> is home to one of the top tuna bites in the Eastern Hemisphere, especially over the past few seasons as ideal water pushed closer to shore. Yellowfin run the gamut from 50-pound footballs to 200-pound tanks. Trolling and chunking are popular methods from June through September. <a href="http://www.fishtrack.com/features/top-tips-for-big-aussie-bluefin-tuna_107548" target="_blank"> Bluefin tuna</a> prowl these temp breaks as well. <i>Photo by Al McGlashan.</i>
Come October, the yellowfin tuna begin to show up off <a href="http://www.fishtrack.com/fishing-charts/south-africa-east_62420" target="_blank"> South Africa</a> and it's not uncommon to hear reports of yellowfin over 200 pounds. There are two runs of fish, and this article shares all of the local <a href="http://www.fishtrack.com/features/top-fishing-tips-for-cape-town-yellowfin-tuna_109117" target="_blank"> Top Tips</a> to get you tight.
Crews call <a href="http://www.fishtrack.com/fishing-charts/puerto-vallarta_69296" target="_blank"> Puerto Vallarta</a> "Cow Town" for good reason. Few spots can hold a candle to PV when it comes to searching for a yellowfin over the 300-pound mark. Locals target Corbatena Rock with live baits or head to far-out islands on <a href="http://www.fishtrack.com/features/mexicos-long-range-tuna_106030" target="_blank"> Long Range</a> trips to tangle with some beastly yellowfin. <i>Photo by Brandon Hayward.</i>
San Diego</a> is home to one of the largest recreational tuna fleets in the world. Knowing how to interpret <a href="http://www.fishtrack.com/features/finding-the-strike-zone---west-coast-offshore-fishing_96161" target="_blank"> So Cal Conditions</a> is key to this fishery, and 2014 was one of the most epic years on record. Warm-water years bring in the fish. The multi-day long range boats head south into Mexican waters to find the triple-digit yellowfin tuna. <i>Photo courtesy <a href="http://www.redrooster3.com/" target="_blank">Red Rooster III</a>.</i>
With a vast network of oil rigs and deepwater canyons in the <a href="http://www.fishtrack.com/fishing-charts/central-gulf_69207" target="_blank"> Central Gulf of Mexico</a>, you can find prime yellowfin habitat year round. Chunking at the Midnight Lump produces in the winter, while trolling and live-baiting works well during the spring, summer and fall. Late summer is probably best, though. When the bite goes off, you'll see plenty of 150-plus-pound yellowfin hit the docks in <a href="http://www.fishtrack.com/features/destination-venice-louisiana_100261" target="_blank"> Venice, Louisiana,</a> aka "Tuna Town." <i>Photo courtesy Venice Marina.</i>
The <a href="http://www.fishtrack.com/fishing-charts/mid-atlantic_61131" target="_blank"> Mid-Atlantic Canyons</a> that stretch from New Jersey to North Carolina can produce all summer long when warm water pushes over these deepwater edges. With long runs, weather is always a factor, but the payoff comes in the form of a red-hot bite. Crews troll a spread of up to 10 lines with spreader bars, daisy chains, jets, cedar plugs and rigged baits but in the past few seasons more guys are getting the ultimate thrill as they tangle with yellowfin on <a href="http://www.fishtrack.com/features/fishing-for-tuna-on-topwater-lures_107305" target="_blank"> Topwater Jigs</a>. <i>Photo courtesy <a href="http://www.restlesslady.com/" target="_blank">Restless Lady</a>.</i>
Crews score plenty of action with 200-pound-plus yellowfin during <a href="http://www.fishtrack.com/fishing-charts/west-panamapac_100076" target="_blank"> Panama's</a> dry season from December to June. Boats are outfitted with tuna tubes to keep the live baits frisky as they head to the banks, but you can even catch Panama's biggest bruisers on <a href="http://www.fishtrack.com/features/catching-panama-yellowfin-tuna-on-light-tackle_109351" target="_blank"> Light Tackle</a>.
<a href="http://www.fishtrack.com/fishing-charts/hawaii_58643" target="_blank"> Kona</a> skippers use a range of techniques to catch big ahi, including live bait, lure fishing, nighttime chunking and even fishing the <a href="http://www.fishtrack.com/features/hawaiian-style-greenstick-fishing_89208" target="_blank"> Green Stick</a>. Targeting FADs and porpoise schools are almost a sure thing with tuna up to 200-plus pounds. <i>Photo courtesy <a href="http://www.charterdesk.com/" target="_blank">The Charter Desk / Jim Rizzuto</a>.</i>
Some of the biggest yellowfin in the world haunt the remote islands and mounts hundreds of miles off the <a href="http://www.fishtrack.com/fishing-charts/south-baja_69206" target="_blank">southern Baja Peninsula</a>. The<a href="http://www.fishtrack.com/features/mustad-pays-angler-1-million_93713" target="_blank"> 427-pound world record</a> yellowfin tuna that won $1 million from Mustad Hooks was caught 200 miles off Cabo San Lucas. <i>Photo courtesy <a href="http://piscesfleet.blogspot.mx/" target="_blank">Mario Banaga/Pisces Sportfishing</a>.</i>
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