The Best Blackfin Tuna Charters

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Everything to Know About Booking a blackfin tuna fishing charter

What are the best blackfin tuna fishing charters?

Our Damn Good Guides currently offer 209 blackfin tuna trips, and the most popular trips are South Padre Island Deep Sea Fishing guided by Emilio, Going Deep - 35' Sea Hunter guided by Michael, and 6 Hour Offshore - 40' Key West guided by Paul.

Our guides are rated a 5 out of 5 based on 5081 verified reviews on Captain Experiences.

All guides on Captain Experiences are licensed, insured, and vetted by our team. You can access their reviews, click through trip photos, read bios to get to know them, and preview trip details like species, techniques, group sizes, boat specs and more.

What types of blackfin tuna fishing charters are common?

Deep Sea fishing is the most popular for blackfin tuna as well as nearshore fishing, inshore fishing, and flats fishing.

The most common fishing techniques are trolling, heavy tackle fishing, and bottom fishing but jigging and live bait fishing are popular as well.

How much do blackfin tuna fishing charters cost?

for blackfin tuna prices can range anywhere from $520 to $3,000 and up, but the average price for a half day for blackfin tuna is $1,137. The average price for a full day for blackfin tuna is $2,373.

When is the best month to go blackfin tuna fishing?

The most popular season for blackfin tuna fishing is summer, and most anglers book their trips 69 days in advance.

Do I need a fishing license for blackfin tuna and what are the bag limits for blackfin tuna?

See here for more information on blackfin tuna fishing licenses, blackfin tuna bag limits, and fishing season regulations for blackfin tuna. When in doubt, your fishing guide will always know the right blackfin tuna rules and regulations.

What is a Blackfin Tuna?

Blackfin tuna - the youngest brother of yellowfin and bluefin tuna - is the smallest member of the tuna family but this doesn’t mean you should count them out as a fun gamefish and a tasty meal. They can be found throughout the western Atlantic and the Gulf of Mexico in deep water, often staying in schools closer to the surface.

They are similar in appearance to a mini bluefin, with oval shaped bodies, black backs, and silver sides and underbelly. They generally swim together, and when you’re on a group of blackfin you can get a number in the boat - they have a strong bite and run in packs. They prefer warmer waters (over 68 degrees) although they are known to swim north or south somewhat with the seasons.

How big do Blackfin Tuna get?

Blackfin tuna are a fast-growing, short-lived species. They reach sexual maturity at around 2 years and will spawn for another 2-3 years before dying.

They are the smallest tuna of their genus Thunnus, and will grow to a max size of about 40 inches and just over 40 pounds (compared this to a bluefin, which can grow to 1500 pounds). A good day is a haul of blackfin from 15 to 25 pounds. An average fish caught might be somewhere in the 7-10 pound range. 

What's the biggest Blackfin Tuna ever caught?

The all-tackle world record blackfin tuna is 45 pounds 8 ounces caught off the coast of Florida.

Where is the best place to catch Blackfin Tuna?

While most tuna species have a broad range, that of the blackfin tuna is a bit more limited. They only inhabit tropical and sometimes temperate waters in the western Atlantic Ocean, mostly remaining south of Virginia and north of Brazil, inhabiting everything in between including the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean Sea.

Within this range, blackfin can be somewhat migratory depending on the water temperature and season, but htey always prefer deeper water with plenty of nutrients. They can often be found on offshore structure like oil rigs or current rips, or in areas where underwater structure like reefs or humps can push nutrients up to them. 

When should I catch Blackfin Tuna?

Blackfin are migratory depending on the season and try to stick with waters close to 70 degrees, so in the summer they can move to more temperate waters. The season is always open in the US with no bag limit or size limit, and anglers can catch blackfin year-round if they can find them.

### How do you catch Blackfin Tuna?

Tuna are generally low-light feeders who spend the majority of their time below the surface hunting squid (their large eyes help here). While blackfin are not terribly different, they can often spend more time near the surface than some other tunas. They are known to migrate vertically throughout the water column in order to feed, so a good angler will try a few different depths to get on them. Early morning and late afternoon are when they are most likely to be close to the surface, although the bigger blackfin will usually stay deeper.

The best way to catch smaller blackfin can be just trolling the surface, but if you want bigger fish you can chunk bait, and it can be good to try to bring the bigger fish up towards the surface with a free snack in the form of free swimming bait. Otherwise vertical jigging at different depths can be helpful until you can mark the fish and find them.

Blackfin are predators and will each fish, squid, shrimp, crabs, and all manner of amphipods and other smaller sea critters. This means they eat a wide variety of food, but because their eyesight is so good your presentation also needs to be, and it can be good to scale down your leader and hooks for blackfin. Great choices for bait are ballyhoo or mullet, but you can also use jigs and other lures.

Are Blackfin Tuna good to eat? What are the best Blackfin recipes?

Blackfin tuna are great to eat, second only to their larger tuna cousins the yellowfin and bluefin. Many anglers talk in relative terms and will catch a yellowfin and blackfin and discard the blackfin in favor of the yellowfin. While yellowfin is probably the better of the two, blackfin is certainly something to write home about in its own right. It is great to eat raw, seared, or baked. And an insiders secret: while not the sexiest, boiled fresh tuna will make the best tuna salad you will ever have - you’ll never go back to store-bought stuff.

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