There are two types of Bonito caught here
in Florida, the Atlantic Bonito & the Blue Bonito also called Little Tunny. Although not common to all parts of Florida
both species are found along both the upper Atlantic coast and the Gulf coasts.
Atlantic Bonito averages 4 to 10lbs.
The World record is 18lbs 4ozs.
The Blue Bonito (Little Tunny) averages 15lbs.
World Record is 35lbs 2oz and the Florida Record is 27lbs.
spots on the lower body
Blue Bonito (Little Tunny) which is easily distinguished by the spots on the
lower part of the body
A member of the Tuna
family and as you would expect a ferocious little fighter on light tackle. Good as a live
or dead baitfish for Marlin and many other species.
Tackle & Bait
Usually caught on heavy tackle when fishing
for other species. Great fighter on light tackle. Will take spoons, jigs,
feathers streamed and virtually anything that glitters. Will also take live fish and strip baits.
Most fish seem to average about 5lbs in weight. They certainly make great runs
when they hit Ballyhoo trolled on the surface which are attached to the
outriggers. Often you think you have a massive fish on........it then turns out
to be a Bonito. Great fun for youngsters to catch as their first fish. However,
they are great prey for barracuda when captured and it is not unusual to land
only a head.
Both species are good to eat, but not favored by the
locals who turn their noses up at the thought. I for one enjoy it, but you need
to bleed the fish after being captured otherwise the steaks can be very bloody.
Our picture above shows an Atlantic Bonito.........no spots on the lower body.
Our picture shows a Blue Bonito (Little
Tunny) which is easily distinguished by the spots on the lower part of the body.
Unfortunately many people fail to distinguish the two species of Bonito.