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Mahi-mahi

Species Information

Scientific Name:Coryphaena hippurus
Environment:Nearshore, Offshore
Ideal Temp:70-80°F (21-26°C)
Technique:Casting, Fly, Trolling
Lure Type:Flies, Plugs, Trolling
World Record:39.46 kg (87 lb 0 oz) Papagallo Gulf , Costa Rica
Other Names:mahi, dolphin, dolphinfish, mahi mahi, dorado, goldmakrele, shiira, lampuga, lampuka, lampuki, rakingo, calitos, maverikos
The mahi-mahi or common dolphinfish is a surface-dwelling ray-finned fish found in off-shore temperate, tropical and subtropical waters worldwide. Also known widely as dorado, it is one of only two members of the Coryphaenidae family, the other being the pompano dolphinfish.

Mahi-mahi live 4 to 5 years. Catches average 7 to 13 kilograms (15 to 29 lb). They seldom exceed 15 kilograms (33 lb), and mahi-mahi over 18 kilograms (40 lb) are exceptional.

Mahi-mahi have compressed bodies and long dorsal fins extending nearly the entire length of their bodies. Their caudal fins and anal fins are sharply concave. They are distinguished by dazzling colors: golden on the sides, and bright blues and greens on the sides and back. Large males have high, vertical foreheads, while the female's forehead is rounded. Males grow larger than females. 

The name mahi-mahi means very strong in Hawaiian. They are extremely fast swimmers and feed extensively on flying fish and squid as well as on other small fish. Mahi-mahi are highly sought for sport fishing and commercial purposes. Sport fishermen seek them due to their beauty, size, food quality, and healthy population. Mahi-mahi is popular in many restaurants.

Mahi-mahi can be found in the Caribbean Sea, on the west coast of North and South America, the Pacific coast of Costa Rica, the Gulf of Mexico, the Atlantic coast of Florida, Southeast Asia, Hawaii and many other places worldwide.

Fishing charters most often look for floating debris and frigatebirds near the edge of the reef in about 120 feet (37 m) of water. Mahi-mahi (and many other fish) often swim near debris such as floating wood, palm trees and fronds, or sargasso weed lines and around fish buoys. Sargasso is floating seaweed that sometimes holds a complete ecosystem from microscopic creatures to seahorses and baitfish. Frigatebirds dive for food accompanying the debris or sargasso. Experienced fishing guides can tell what species are likely around the debris by the birds' behavior.

Thirty- to fifty-pound gear is more than adequate when trolling for mahi-mahi. Fly-casters may especially seek frigatebirds to find big mahi-mahis, and then use a bait-and-switch technique. Ballyhoo or a net full of live sardines tossed into the water can excite the mahi-mahis into a feeding frenzy. Hookless teaser lures can have the same effect. After tossing the teasers or live chum, fishermen throw the fly to the feeding mahi-mahi. Successful fishing methods include trolling surface baits (flying fish, mullet, balao, squid, strip baits) or artificial lures; also live bait fishing or casting.
Once on a line, mahi-mahi are fast, flashy and acrobatic, with beautiful blue, yellow, green and even red dots of color.

Hooked dolphin may leap or tailwalk, darting first in one direction, then another. It is believed that they can reach speeds up to 50 mph (80.5 kph) in short bursts.  If the first dolphin caught is kept in the water, it will usually hold the school, and often others will come near enough to be caught by casting.

Latest Mahi-mahi Fishing Reports and Spots

Angler’s first Mahi-mahi caught on video - 10/24/2015 4:51:19 PM

Check this guy out catching his first Mahi ever with his custom Abu Garcia setup on the "DIRTY BOAT" Posted by "DIRTY BOAT" on Saturday October (View)

What’s in Season October 2022 - 4/16/2017 6:39:59 PM

BlackFin Tuna Greater Amberjack Triggerfish Scamp Gag Grouper Red Grouper Vermilion Snapper King Mackerel Amberines Wahoo Spanish Mackerel Alma (View)

Thai Curry Mahi Mahi - 10/3/2022 3:39:58 PM

By  Chef Jeff Davidson LTH Freezer to Plate #2 Thai curry Mahi Mahi This is a great one pan dish (2 if you count the rice) I used Mahi because I (View)

September 2022 - 10/1/2022 9:35:14 AM

September’s summary from our captain team?  “GREAT!” Black sea bass are still the highlight of our trips with some sizable ones being brought in (View)

Tues Sept 27 to Thurs Sept 29- 60 Hour Tuna/Mahi LTD - 9/29/2022 3:50:19 PM

Capt Jr reports a SLAMMER trip onboard the Viking Star! The day time chunk bite was on once again with rods doubled over from the moment we arri (View)

Kona Fishing Report - 9/17/2022 11:45:42 PM

Mahi Mahi  Good Fun   Much aloha and God Bless The post Kona Fishing Report appeared first on Camelot Sport Fishing. (View)

Tackle Tip Thursday Vol. 198 (Dorado Fishing 101) - 9/29/2022 9:02:54 AM

Welcome back to another episode of Tackle Tip Thursday! We love dorado fishing! It's an exciting target fish and tastes delicious. Experienced (View)

Don Beshada Tuna Mahi - 9/21/2022 9:11:00 PM

Had Don Beshada out with the boys today Tony Frankie and Jesse. Frankie got us going early with a nice bluefin then we jigged over 50 albies and (View)

Variety is the word of the week - 9/19/2022 3:23:23 PM

Fired Up Fishing Charters Variety is the word of the week Capt Joey did a fine job once again catching a variety of species. Cobia Kings Mahi B (View)

Pete Letushko Tuna Mahi - 9/17/2022 9:44:00 PM

Had first timer Pete Letushko on the Toy with his crew. Made a decision to get to canyon at first light for an early troll had great conditions (View)