For all you anglers that enjoy soaking up all the information you can about your favorite pastime (Fishing in Costa Rica!! Right?), here are a handful of scientific facts and hypotheses about some of our popular local fish species:
Pacific Sailfish: Raise their large dorsal fin to herd bait fish and when threatened. Speculation is Sailfish also use the dorsal fin as a heating/cooling device as well. They have been observed displaying symbiotic pack behavior when feeding, following orderly feeding and corralling behaviors with other fish. Pacific Sailfish are larger than Atlantic Sailfish, and marine scientists hypothesize the larger size of the Pacific Sailfish is partly due to the larger hypoxic water column in the Pacific versus the Atlantic, compressing the livable area of the water column, resulting in more bait and forage for Pacific Sailfish in the pelagic water column and more opportunity to grow.
Marlin: Can travel up to 3000 miles. Yep, 3000 miles! A thousand pound Marlin is usually between 25 and 30 years old. Males are smaller than females at maturity, and a fish over 300 pounds is very likely to be a female. While care must be taken with release of all billfish to not injure them, be especially careful with a Marlin over 300 pounds. Such a fish is likely to be a female providing us with Marlin for our children and grandchildren to fish for and fight in the future…strongly consider keeping all 300+ pound fish in the water for photographs to assure minimal or no damage occurs.
Dorado: One of the fastest growing fish species in the ocean, and as a result, they have a voracious appetite to feed their growth. Dorado seldom live past 5 years, most living 4 years maximum. At least 80% of all Dorado harvested are less than 2-3 years old. So, if you catch a big 4-5 foot bull when fishing for Dorado, it is likely in that 20th percentile over 3 years old and you are a lucky angler, indeed!