Wahoo Fish - The valued Game Fish and Best sports Fish

November 19, 2021
2 Votes

Wahoo, also known as Pacific kingfish, is a popular offshore fish with a dark blue green back, large mouth, and razor-sharp teeth. It weighs 79-84 kg and can swim at 60 mph. Wahoo fish have unique features like shorter teeth and skin covering the mandible. High-power reels, speedos, and Goggle-eyes are essential for wahoo fishing.

Wahoo, Acanthocybium solandri, the best-known sports fish, belongs to the family Scombridae and from the species of Spanish mackerel. Wahoo is also known as Pacific kingfish. It is one of those fishes that offshore anglers love to hook.

Wahoo is not only a fish but a fish exclamation due to their extraordinary fast speed. Wahoo is the fastest fish in the sea. It is also one of the best-valued game fish due to its high-quality flesh.

slow trolling with live bait produces a nice wahoo in Kona Hawaii

Specific Characteristics

Body Color:

The wahoo fish has a dark blue green back with small visible silver scales on the upper side and light blue stripes on the flanks and sides.

Body Weight and Size:

The growth of wahoo is rapid, and they weigh about 79 to 84 kg. The adult wahoo is about 6ft in length. However, some of them are about 8ft.

Mouth and Jaws:

Wahoo has a large mouth with razor-sharp teeth.


Wahoo has bristling speed and can swim at a rate of 60 mph.


The tail of the wahoo is forked blade-like which is the main characteristic feature of the family Scombridae.

Distinguishing Features of Wahoo From Other Fishes

  • Wahoo fish can be distinguished from King mackerel as wahoo teeth are shorter and more closely packed.
  • Another prominent feature distinguishing wahoo from king mackerel is that skin covers the mandible when the mouth is closed.
  • Sometimes people confuse wahoo with barracuda, but both fishes can be distinguished as mackerel scales are small while barracuda have large prominent scales.
  • The barracuda has dagger-like teeth, which also differentiate them from wahoo.
  • Barracuda also lack the fork-like tail and keels which are present in wahoo.

Habitat of Wahoo

Epipelagic ecosystems are the best places to live in wahoo; this is the sea zone close to the surface and from where light continues to penetrate.

Wahoos are commonly found in the open sea and close to the shore. They inhabit the 1,000 feet beneath the surface. Wahoo is also present in temperate regions.

Wahoo Distribution

Wahoo is distributed in tropical and subtropical seas around the world. Wahoo is spread across the Pacific, Atlantic, and Indian oceans. On the western coast of America, they range from southern California, through Mexico, to Central and northern South America.

In the United States, the wahoo is called “hoo,” In Hawaii, wahoo fish is known as “ono.” They are also present in the regions of the African coast. You can also find wahoo in the Ionian sea and Mediterranean sea.

Wahoo Diet

Wahoo has carnivorous feeding habits. Their diet varies on their size and their location. They actively swim in pursuit of feeding. Wahoos are formidable predators. Their diet mainly contains,

  • Squid
  • Halfbeak
  • Gurnard
  • Flying Fish
  • Cephalopods
  • Crustaceans

When and Where to Fish Wahoo

Underwater wahoo fishing is a new experience, and you will enjoy it if you know when and where to fish. September through April is the best time to fish wahoo.

  • The most favored times to target wahoo fish are in the days of full-moon and new-moon phases when wahoo is actively feeding.
  • In the winters, go and find the water where the color is changing as Van Fleet says,
  • Cooler water and green water push the fish out as far as 600-foot depths,
  • Wahoo mostly tends to be in calm places as they seek solitude. Fish at the times when there is less boat traffic and not many anglers as boat traffic puts wahoo down.
  • Search the structures like reefs, ledges, and drop-offs.


Speed and Patience are the main keys to wahoo fishing. Sometimes even 4 or 6 wahoo lures can do the job as speed matters.

Seth Horne, Creator at In The Spread

Bonus Video: Rigging Bullet Lures for Wahoo Fish

Discover the exhilarating world of wahoo fishing with the intimate tips from Arthur Bjontegard. Develop your bullet lure rigging skills and maximize your high-speed trolling for potentially game-changing catches. Regardless of your level of experience, this video reveals the secrets of catching the elusive wahoo... View Short Trailer Below or Learn More Here

Effective Wahoo Fishing Tips

Wahoo Fishing Gear

Rods and Reels:

High-power reels are essential for wahoo fishing.

The reels with two-speed lines are the best. Wire leaders are also needed. Monofilament reels are a failure as wahoo teeth are sharp, and you will end up losing your lure.


The best baits for wahoo fishing are speedos and Goggle-eyes.


The best wahoo lures are which can produce live swimming actions. Vibrant color lures are a game-changer.

Ways to Catch Wahoo

  • Trolling, especially high-speed trolling, is one of the effective ways to catch the wahoo, whether it is high speed trolling, low speed trolling, trolling beneath floating debris, kite fishing, or chunking.
  • Casting is also an option to catch wahoo fish, and it's a fun experience. Look for the feeding frenzy and diving birds and boiling surface for casting. You will get mixed fishes in a feeding frenzy. Casting needs fast gear and an active angler.

Get ready and go for a wahoo fishing adventure and share your experience with us.

Special Thanks to Fishing Nice for providing this article.

Watch Wahoo Fishing Videos

Seth Horne In The Spread,
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