|Sailfish are Acapulco’s trademark. They
are numerous throughout the year, but November through March is best for
multiple hookups. They grow rapidly, reaching 5-6 feet in one year.
The Pacific sailfish is twice the size of its Atlantic counterpart, reaching
10 feet and 200 pounds.
Sailfish are a deep-water species, and feed on or near the surface on smaller fish or squid. They favor warm water, in the range of 70 to 88 degrees Fahrenheit, which is why they are so abundant here.
They congregate around bait schools and temperature changes along current lines and frequently feed together, especially during the winter. They often jump or swim slowly with part of their dorsal fins above the surface so you often catch what you are alert enough to see.
Sailfish will take live or dead baits, but rarely lures. They often attack from behind, striking with their bills to stun their prey, then returning to eat it. They will frequently follow a bait for some time and “play” with it, or hit more than one bait in quick succession, making hookups difficult.
When a sailfish is hooked it will usually perform spectacular leaps or “tail-walks” in an effort to spit the hook. Due to their size they can be dangerous to boat, and have been known to leap into the boat itself!
Sailfish meat is of indifferent quality. However, it is extremely popular locally and everything brought into the boat will eventually find its way to the Central Market.
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