Tamarindo Fishing Charter, Tamarindo Bay Fishing

rhino-chargerThe waters off Tamarindo offer some of the best inshore and offshore fishing in the world.  Blessed with an unusual proximity to the continental shelf, anglers aboard the Rhino Charger can reach deep sea fishing channels in less than thirty minutes.  This allows you to spend more time fishing and less time commuting to the fishing grounds.  While most anglers are hoping to land a blue marlin or other bill fish, Tamarindo offshore fishing offer a large selection of other great fighting fish as well, including mahi-mahi, red snapper, yellow fin tuna, jack carvelle and rooster fish, among others. 

While clients often ask, “when is the season in Tamarindo” the truth is that we lay in the middle of migration routes of many species of fish.  We do have a windy season January to March that may induce us to head south and farther off shore (about a 45 minute ride) to reach calmer waters.  Other than the windy season, Tamarindo boasts a year round season with different types of fish being more prominent at different times do to migration patterns.  However even during peak times for certain species, there can be dry periods due to a myriad of factors, including changing ocean currents, unusual weather condition and lunar variations, etc.  We don’t try to predict what will be running months in advance as we do not believe we can accurately predict such things.  However, we will know what is biting in the weeks leading up to your fishing adventure, and we will put you in the best position to catch it.  If you would like to know what is running now, give us a call or send us and email and we will be happy to give you an update. 

Costa Rican Sport Fishing Species

blue-marlin

Pacific Blue Marlin

Other Names: Aguja Azul
Physical Description:

The Atlantic and Pacific specimens are nearly identical in appearance. The back and upper portions of the body are dark, cobalt blue in color, including the first dorsal fin. The lower portion has a silver-white color. In many cases, there are up to 15 vertical stripes, consisting of small dots and narrow bars, with a light cobalt blue color. These stripes become quite bright when the fish is ready to strike or when hooked, but they rapidly disappear when the fish is removed from the water. The remaining blue marlin fins are generally black-brown in color and the anal fins have a bit of silver-white tinge. The principal way to distinguish blue marlin from their relatives is to examine the shape of the dorsal fin tip, which is more pointed on the blue marlin. In addition, the spots found on the fins of most marlin are absent on the blue marlin.

Range:

Blue marlin can be found in tropical and warm temperate waters around the globe, mostly in the Atlantic, Pacific and Indian Oceans. It is the most tropical of the billfish and is often found in waters near the equator. In eastern Pacific waters, they can be found in an area ranging from southern California to Peru.

Feeding Habits:

Blue marlin feed primarily near the surface, though they occasionally dive to deeper water to feed. Their diet consists mostly of fish and other sea life found near the surface and is highly dependent upon location. This diet can include tuna, mackerel, squid, octopus and any number of fish species indigenous to the environment.

Sporting Qualities:

Most anglers consider the blue marlin the greatest of all the ocean sport fish. A powerful billfish, the blue marlin will fight hard and run fast for many hours. They have been known to suddenly dive deep or make wild jumps – it is not uncommon to see a hooked fish make forty or more spectacular jumps. The blue marlin can be a tough test of any angler’s deep-sea fishing skills.

Habitat: Very little is known about the biology of the blue marlin, including their migrations and spawning habits. They are known to be a highly mobile species that travels the warm ocean currents with the seasons in search of comfortable water temperatures. This species inhabits depths up to 600 feet and water temperatures between 70 and 86 F. They are primarily an offshore species found along the edges of continental shelves, near oceanic mountains, underwater canyons, and especially like warm ocean currents. Within these environments, they are most likely to be found near their preferred food – large sources of tuna, mackerel and squid. Although they may occasionally form schools of up to 10 members, as they age, they become more solitary in their habits.

pacific-sailfish

Pacific Sailfish

Other Names: Spindlebeak, Pez Vela
Physical Description:

Pacific sailfish (“sailfish”) are dark blue to dark blue-green on top, though when excited they become brighter, attaining a color some call “electric blue.” The sides are brown-blue fading to silver-white on the belly. The primary color of the sail dorsal is steel blue. The upper body and the main dorsal fin are sprinkled with light and dark blue spots. The sides often have powder blue or blue-gray vertical stripes. Many Pacific sailfish have a gold or copper tint to the gill covers, especially when fatigued. They averages thirty to sixty pounds, but many are less than thirty pounds and sailfish as heavy as one hundred pounds have also been taken. The world record is two hundred twenty one pounds.

Range:

Sailfish can be found in tropical and warm temperate waters throughout the world, mostly in the Atlantic, Pacific and Indian Oceans. They are plentiful off the Costa Rica and Panamanian coasts. In eastern Pacific waters, they can be found in an area generally running from southern California to Peru.

Feeding Habits:

SSailfish feed primarily near the surface, though they occasionally dive deeper to feed if food is scare at the surface. Their diet consists mostly of fish and other sea life found near the surface and is highly dependent upon location.

Sporting Qualities:

Unsurpassed in its size range for combined strength and spectacle – sailfish are a prized trophy species for sport fisherman. Their popularity is a result of the challenge of catching one using light tackle, their penchant for dramatic leaps out of the water, and their stunning beauty. Due to declining numbers resulting from overfishing, most sailfish are now caught and released.

Habitat: Like the other billfish, the sailfish is considered an ocean species, but generally can be found closer to land than the rest, seeming to prefer areas where coral reefs and/or freshwater runoffs mingle with ocean water. At times sailfish come right into the surf and quite a few have been caught over the years from beaches and piers.

yellowfin-tuna

Yellowfin Tuna

Other Names: Thunnus Albacares – (Scientific Name)
Physical Description:

Yellowfin tuna have a muscular streamlined body – like a swimming torpedo. Like all tuna, they are some of the best swimmers in the ocean. Yellowfin tuna are dark blue to black in color on the back and tail fin, yellow and silver on the side and belly. The second dorsal and anal fins are yellow and very long in older fish. Finlets run down the back and belly from these two fins to the tail fin and are a bright, canary yellow with black edges.

Range:

Yellowfin tuna are found worldwide in tropical and some subtropical waters. These bodies of water include all three warm oceans Pacific, Atlantic, and Indian oceans and all warm seas, except the Mediterranean.

Feeding Habits:

Various baitfish, crustaceans and squid make up the bulk of their diet. They will hit chunks of cut up fish, (called chunking). Drift near a school, cut up your baitfish into halves and use for chumming while you place a fish head or half a fish on your hook. Toss out your line, no lead, and work it back into the chum pieces you throw over the side. They feed most often at or near the surface and are often active at night.

Sporting Qualities:

Yellowfin tuna are considered an excellent food and sport fish and are highly sought after by anglers and commercial fishermen alike. After hitting a lure or bait, they often go deep and will fight with great power and tenacity.

Habitat: Though they can withstand cooler water, yellowfin tuna prefer warm water and are found mainly in waters between 62 and 80 F. Yellowfin tuna, particularly young fish, usually school below the surface but over deep water. They avoid depths because of their intolerance for low concentrations of oxygen

Wahoo

Other Names: Peto, Ono
Physical Description:

Long, slender body marked with zebra-like stripes of white and deep blue or black. Mouth is elongated and narrow, and equipped with razor-sharp teeth.

Range:

Wahoo are present in the Atlantic, Pacific and Indian Oceans in clear, tropical and subtropical waters. Heavy seasonal concentrations occur off the Pacific coasts of Panama, Costa Rica and Baja California in the summer. They are also found offshore of all Florida coasts, especially the Keys, but are far more plentiful in the Bahamas and many other Caribbean Islands.

Feeding Habits:

While the wahoo is perfectly capable of biting chunks out of large fish, it primarily feeds on whole small fish, such as sardines, scads, mackerel and squid. They are frequently solitary feeders, but they may sometimes be found in small, loose groups. Wahoo are sub-surface hunters that hang several feet below the surface and shoot up to attack prey with tremendous speed. Although they feed at all times, they tend to be more active in the morning and evening hours.

Sporting Qualities:

May strike surface bait in spectacular greyhounding fashion, but seldom jump after being hooked. The greatest Wahoo fights are characterized by several high-speed runs, usually at or near the surface. Wahoo are one of the fastest of all game fish.

Habitat: Roams deep waters, but anglers can find them by working drop offs, seamounts, weedlines and other favorable feeding locations

dolphin

Dolphin

Other Names:

Mahi Mahi, Dolphinfish, Dorado

Physical Description:

The body of the dolphin is quite slender but fairly deep, with a noticeable tapering from head to tail. The male of the species is distinguished from the female by its high, vertical head. The anal fin has approximately 30 soft rays and stretches over half of the length of the body. The distinctive dorsal fin is long, covering almost three-fourths of the body, and has around 60 soft rays. The caudal fin is deeply forked and contains no spines. Dolphins can be a blaze of blue and yellow or deep green and yellow when in the water, and sometimes shows dark vertical stripes when excited, and they often have small dark spots on sides.

Range:

While the greatest concentrations of dolphin are believed to be in the Indian Ocean and the western Pacific, they are found worldwide in tropical and subtropical waters and warm-water currents.

Feeding Habits:

Dolphin are known as voracious predators. While their favorite prey is the flying fish, they also consume squid, shrimp, crustaceans and even smaller dolphin. Using a keen sense of eyesight, the dolphin locates most food near clumps of floating vegetation.

Sporting Qualities:

The dolphin is considered one of the top offshore game fish and is highly targeted by anglers around the world. It is famous for its leaps and flips over the surface when hooked. Because of their speed and agility, dolphin provide for an exciting catch as they run long and jump often.

Habitat: Dolphin are a warm-water fish usually found in deep waters, close to the surface. While sometimes found in coastal waters, they often concentrate in the open ocean around floating objects such as buoys, driftwood and seaweed clusters. They are considered to be the most surface-oriented of all big-game fish.

rooster

Roosterfish

Other Names: Pez Gallo, Papagallo
Physical Description:

Gray back, silver body with two pronounced diagonal stripes. The Pectoral fin is long and sickle shaped, the dorsal fin is very elongated and is said to resemble a rooster’s comb – hence the common name. The tail fin is deeply forked as is typical of all members of the jack family.

Range:

Pacific Ocean, Sea of Cortez.

Feeding Habits:

Live bait – mullet and sardines are their favorite. Rarely taken on lures, but when feeding will hit surface jigs.

Sporting Qualities:

An angler will see the roosterfish come up on and boil on trolled bait. They will typically circle and whack at the offering before actually crashing on it. A furious fighter with unequaled stamina, the roosterfish will make unpredictable slashing moves, jumps and long screaming runs when hooked.

Habitat: Surf and Rocky areas offshore. Can also be found near islands and reefs.