Fishing in Costa Rica

Fish Description: The Snook has a distinct black lateral line that as you can see is very high on the main body. A divided dorsal fin and a sloping forehead. It has a large mouth, protruding lower jaw and grows much larger than other snook. The pelvic fin is yellow.

Size: Most catches are from 5 to 8 pounds.

Remarks: This snook cannot tolerate water temperatures below 60o F, but it can tolerate fresh or saltwater. Typically in schools along shore and in passes during spawning season. The snook feeds on fish and larger crustaceans.

Fish Description: Bright greenish blue color above the yellow on the sides. They have the capability of flashing purple, chartreuse, and a wide range of other colors. Their body tapers sharply from head to the tail. They have irregular blue or golden blotches scattered on their sides. The anterior profile of head on adult males is almost completely vertical. The head of the females are more sloping. The single dark dorsal fin extends from just behind the head sloping down to the
tail and the anal fin margin is concave and extending from anus until the tail.

Size: Common to 30 pounds. Often reaching well over 80 pounds.

Remarks: These Dolphin fish (called Dorado much of the time) are one of the fastest growing fish and thought to live no more than 5 years. With swimming speeds estimated at 50 knots fishermen just love catching them. They feed on flying fish and squid.

Fish Description: The Yellowfin Tuna is typically dark blue on its back and turns into a gray on the bottom. It's fins and finlets on its back are a tinge yellow. The snout is moderately sharp with a horizontal mouth. The Tunas pectoral fin tip does not extend beyond second dorsal fin's origin.

Size: Yellowfin Tuna caught in Costa Rica can be monsters. They can reach 6 feet in length and weigh over 400 lbs.

Remarks: Truly a great tasting fish and it is the one most valued in the Tuna family. Often pursued by fleets of purse-seine boats from around the world. Costa Rican anglers just love to catch these true fighters though it can get taxing on the muscles.

Fish Description: Sailfish are typically dark blue on top with a brown-blue mid section. Their belly area is a silvery white. The upper jaw elongated in the form of a spear. The first dorsal fin is greatly enlarged in the shape of a sail with many black spots. The front of it is squared off and it's highest at its midpoint. The pelvic fins are very narrow, reaching almost to the anus. The body is covered with imbedded scales. The lateral line is curved over pectoral then straight to the base of the tail.

Size: Common up to 7 feet.

Remarks: Fast growing species, reaching 4 to5 feet in one year. Sailfish swim at speeds up to 50 knots and feed on the surface or at mid-depths on smaller pelagic fish and squid.

Fish Description: The Tarpon has one unusual characteristic in that its last ray of its dorsal fin extends into one long filament. It has one dorsal fin and the fish itself is dark blue to green or greenish black which fades into a shading bright silver on the sides. I may be brownish gold when it is in estuarine waters. They are known for huge scales and mouth that is large and pointed upward.

Size: The average of angler catches are range from 40 to 50 pounds. Costa Rica Tarpon can reach over 200 lbs. though.

Remarks: Slow grower; matures at 7 to 13 years of age; During the spawning season the female may lay more than 12 million eggs. A Tarpon can handle salt and freshwater and they can actually breath air above the water surface making them not like the typical fish.

Tarpon feed on fish and large crustaceans.
Fish Description: The Roosterfish is easy to identify because there are no other fish in the world that are similar to them. It is one of the more popular fish that sportfishing enthusiasts love. The Roosterfish is typically caught more during inshore fishing charters and even from shore if you cast out past past the surf.

Size: Typically these fish range from a few pounds up to the trophies which can exceed 100lbs.

Remarks: Roosterfish are usually not considered a good eating fish and so catch and release is normal. Feeding while in packs on sardines and other small school fish.

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