14 Mar 2007

Wahoo – Lures that work here in Fiji

From May to October, packs of wahoo congregate along the Great Astrolabe Barrier Reef. The average size of wahoo is about 50lbs with a good fish weighing in at 75lbs. Each wahoo pack usually has a fish of close to 100lbs. We almost always use lures when targeting wahoo however we often get jumped by fish when bait & switch fishing for sailfish. If your teaser is rigged with mono…wave bye bye to the end of your daisy chain….

The biggest problem we encounter is a mass attack, wahoo porpoising in at break-neck speed, every rod in the spread going off and then multiple bite-offs as other wahoo attack lines or swivels cutting through the water. We combat this by trolling a full spread until we find a pack and then switch to towing just two lures. Often, just a garfish (ballyhoo) on a two hook rig with a small pink skirt on the nose. Trolling speed is usually around 6-7kts. Most wahoo skippers around the world troll faster. Here, higher speeds do not increase strike rates. Last week on the Kadavu Seamount, we were feeding a skip bait back to a small blue marlin and a 60lb wahoo hit a Lumo green Pakula Sprocket that was only doing about 2kts.

All lures are rigged on at least 4 feet of 124lb 49 strand wire. (Longer if we think sails are in the area) At this time of year, if it isn’t on wire, it isn’t coming back….


1. Wellsys Talai – Purple or lumo green

2. Halco Laser Pro 190 minnow - Redhead


1. McWhog – Blue/Chartruese – Rigged in front of a garfish (Ballyhoo)

2. Lurestreet Raptor minnow – Green/gold or Red/white


1. Wellsys Medium Turbojet – Blue Silver / Green Gold (Evil)

(This is our absolute ‘must have’ in the spread)


1. Lurestreet Yahoowahoo – Black/green/red (I have seen wahoo charge this lure from 100 yards away)

2. Pakula Phantom - Blue Silver / Green Gold (Evil)

3. Pakula Sprocket - Lumo


1. Hollowpoint Mahi Sniper – Black/green or Black/red or White/pink

Where we get our lures :

Lure Manufacturer Links :


Anonymous said...

Those fish are amazing guys!
I've never salt water fished before could I just go out and purchase the necessary gear? or would I need to hire a guide to really catch something? any input would be greatly appreciated.

Daniel Peterson

Adrian at Matava said...

Hi Daniel,

It is possible to catch wahoo on most types of fishing tackle from 8 weight fly rods to heavy duty offshore saltwater tackle. For general purpose fishing we use 30lb class outfist consisting of Penn International 30T overhead multiplier reels on Penn stand-up rods.

You will need a butt pad for stand up & fight fishing.

Wahoo are generally an oceanic fish and are usually caught well ofshore however here in Kadavu, packs of them gather along the reef during our winter. Its difficult to say if you can catch them without knowing where and how you fish.

Wherever you are fishing- if the water temperature is over about 22 degrees and you are trolling bluewater, you should find wahoo. They are often caught by anglers out trolling lures for marlin.
You will need to increase your trolling speeds and rig your lures with wire trace as they have razor sharp teeth !

Hiring a guide or going out on a charterboat is probably your best option to start with. Charterboats know the waters and where the wahoo are likely to be, as well as having all the gear you need. Once you have seen how the pros do it, you should be able to get your own tackle and fish for wahoo.

Any good charterboat crew should be happy to answer all your questions and show you how its done.

Happy hunting !

Adrian Watt,
IGFA Captain