Learn About Bonito Fishing in Sarasota
Do you know about the bonito fish? Let’s learn about this feisty game fish that you may encounter this winter.
The bonito fish is a game fish that is known to frequent the Sarasota area. You may hear these fish referred to as ‘bonita’ or even ‘bonehead.’ Bonito fish, named for their aesthetically pleasing exterior, are speedy and powerful game fish. Their speed and power often causes spools to empty very quickly since they put up quite a fight when you’ve hooked them.
Bonito often travel in schools and will remain in our waters much longer after most pelagics have migrated. You’ll find that seabirds easily spot them when an underwater commotion arises while they’re feeding on small baitfish.
Wondering how to catch them? You’ll be successful with small jigs, spoons and flies, which are often used by sportsmen. Try going to nearshore reefs and catching them by way of bottom fishing; you’ll be surprised when they’re suddenly hooked with a light tackle. The force of the bonito will quickly clue you in that you’ve caught this spirited species.
Though the bonito fish are cousins of the tuna, you’ll want to save these as bait for shark instead of for the dinner table.
Where to Fish Now
The Tampa Bay and Bradenton Area is currently brimming with flounder, large mackerels, black sea bass, grouper, pompano and bluefish.
Sarasota is where you’ll find trout, snook, ladyfish, sea trout and redfish, and bluefish are present as well.
When you’re in the Venice and Nokomis Beach area, expect grouper, snapper, speckled trout and more snook.
The Lemon Bay and Englewood area is bountiful with sea trout, snook, redfish, barracuda and cobia.
There’s much to catch this winter. Happy Fishing!