How Do You Fly Fish for Bonito?


Quick Answer

To attract bonito, also known as false albacore, to a boat, deploy a commercial chum block or frozen glass minnows. Set up a drift to get into casting range. Although bonito eat a range of flies, they are occasionally selective, so observe what they are eating before selecting suitable bait. Mike Conner of Florida Sportsman recommends a medium-rate full sinking line to fish below the surface and deeper.

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How Do You Fly Fish for Bonito?
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Full Answer

Found all over the coast, bonito grow quickly with adults averaging between 5 to 10 pounds. However, Conner points out that it is common to find adults averaging 18 to 20 pounds in deeper water. Although they are caught year-round, Chris Windram of Saltwater Flies recommends fishing during the later summer months because bonito appear in waters closer to the shore.

Windram also advises fishing for them in the early morning hours and learning their feeding patterns to predict and intercept their movements. Larger bonito, in the 12 to 15 pound range, require a stronger rod, but the 8 to 10 pound adults can be managed with a lightweight one. Bonito swim quickly, so cast bait in their path and refrain from chasing after them because they are likely to return later.

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