Where to Go Fishing in February

First choice: Panama Second choice: Australia The color change outside the Gulf of Panama and various underwater peaks just off the Pacific coast are primary hunting areas for black marlin, which remain a consistent target for offshore battles. First choice: Brazil Second choice: Mexico Despite the influx of big blues, white marlin remain a big draw in Vitoria, Brazil, where the latter are known to consistently exceed 150 pounds. First choice: Florida Second choice: Mexico Atlantic sails don’t mind rough water, so anglers fishing Florida should get a well-deserved payoff in any conditions. First choice: Guatemala Second choice: Costa Rica Peak sailfish season continues in Guatemala, where game boats still tally high release numbers. Target cruisers and tailers in protected coves and bays; otherwise, look for mudding fish in 4 to 8 feet of water, adjacent to shallow flats. First choice: Florida Second choice: Costa Rica Florida snook hunker down deep at night but warm up on nearby mud flats and sandbars during sunny days. In California, February is a top month to drop jigs for stripers over reefs and ledges in San Francisco Bay. First choice: Florida Second choice: North Carolina Kings abound off both Florida coasts; however, anglers looking for smokers in early February do best in the Keys, and the fish head north in spring, so the hot bite could take place off Palm Beach or Stuart by month’s end. First choice: Louisiana Second choice: Florida Oil and gas platforms in 10 to 20 feet of water off Louisiana remain reliable trout producers, but trophy fish often sneak onto nearby shallow mud flats to warm up and forage during sunny periods. First choice: Mexico Second choice: Panama The Pacific coast of Mexico sees an influx of dolphin interrupting anglers trolling for marlin.

The Salt Water Sportsman editors list the top two locations to fish in February for some of the most popular species, plus notes about each fish-location pairing.

Pacific blue marlin

First choice: Panama
Second choice: New Zealand

Lots of 300- to 500-pound blues hunt along the color change off Panama’s Pacific coast, where floating debris gathers, attracting the bonito, small tuna and dolphin that marlin seek. In New Zealand, warm summer currents bring in a steady flow of blues averaging 400 pounds. Most patrol the stretch between the Bay of Islands and North Cape.

Atlantic blue marlin

First choice: Brazil
Second choice: Grenada

A major spike in the number of big females makes the waters off Vitoria and Canavieiras, Brazil, tops for Atlantic blues this month. In the Caribbean, blue marlin prowl a couple of major drops in the continental shelf along the Grenadines, just a short run from both Grenada and St. Vincent.

First choice: Panama
Second choice: Australia

The color change outside the Gulf of Panama and various underwater peaks just off the Pacific coast are primary hunting areas for black marlin, which remain a consistent target for offshore battles. The abundance of mackerel over shallow reefs off Australia’s Gulf Coast keeps numerous juvenile blues in the area.

First choice: Brazil
Second choice: Mexico

Despite the influx of big blues, white marlin remain a big draw in Vitoria, Brazil, where the latter are known to consistently exceed 150 pounds. Along Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula, whites build steadily in number and continue to stage off Isla Mujeres, Cancun and Cozumel before it’s time for them to move on in late spring.

Atlantic sailfish

First choice: Florida
Second choice: Mexico

Atlantic sails don’t mind rough water, so anglers fishing Florida should get a well-deserved payoff in any conditions. The stretch from the Keys north to Stuart offers sails aplenty, but sight-fishing around ballyhoo schools over Islamorada reefs is not to be missed. Sailfish numbers are still on the upswing off Isla Mujeres and Cancun.

Pacific sailfish

First choice: Guatemala
Second choice: Costa Rica

Peak sailfish season continues in Guatemala, where game boats still tally high release numbers. With most crews raising over 20 sails a day, there’s no better place to perfect hooking and fighting billfish or try your hand at fly-fishing for big game. In Costa Rica, the solid sailfish bite has spread from Golfito and Quepos northward to Los Sueños and Puerto Carrillo.

striped marlin

First choice: Mexico
Second choice: New Zealand

Now is when the fleet out of Cabo San Lucas pitches or drops back baits to an increasing number of striped marlin spotted surfing the waves. Meanwhile, in New Zealand, the warm…

Written By
More from Staff Writer
Henry’s Fork
Henry's Fork Days. The Henry’s Fork Foundation was formed in 1983 by...
Read More
Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *