Dorado (Coryphaena hippurus)

The Dorado is a strikingly coloured fish with electric blue and green colour combination on their backs, bright metallic gold flanks with flashes of green and black spots on their sides. They have an elongated compressed body with forked tails and a long-based dorsal fin starts above or slightly behind the eyes and runs almost the full length of the body.The male has an upright head and is larger and heavier than the female. The female has a more rounded head. Being prolific feeders they are known as one of the fastest growing fish in the sea with specimens recorder to grow up to 2 meters in length and over 20 kgs in weight. They school up and are found worldwide in tropical and subtropical seas with temperatures between 21 – 28 Celsius. They are nomads and populate open oceans around logs, debris, weed lines and on warm currents. Their diet consists essentially of other fish and squid. The Dorado is one of the prettiest game fish and their ability to jump makes them a magnificent fish to catch.

Techniques

Dorado are a strong pelagic fish and require good quality tackle. Most of the Dorado you catch are cruising close to the surface with their dorsal fins cutting the surface making the event very visual. The intermediate lines allowed us to target fish close to the surface and also fish that swam a little deeper. The floating debris attract small baitfish, which in turn attracts Dorado. Dorado attack their prey aggressively and therefore attacked flies when they are retrieved fast. The best way to target Dorado is by following floating debris and sight fishing to them.

Teasing 

When teasing for Dorado the FlyCastaway guides have found that 2 methods work well. Firstly, trolling drop-offs and structure with bullet-head or soft-head skirts in red and black, green and chartreuse or blue and white works well. As in the case of all teasing having a belly shine or halfbeak adds to the attraction, the fishy taste often brings a hotter shoal of fish to the boat, giving you extra time to make your cast. (If you have live bait its the best way to hold the fish at the boat). Also remember that the engines should be in neutral before the cast is made, other wise its not considered as fly fishing. The optimum speed to troll teasers solely for Dorado is between 6 and 7 knots, depending on sea conditions. Another extremely successful method is by casting hookless plugs at floating structure that is fore mentioned. As the fish shows interest the plug is quickly reeled in and pulled out the water as the angler places their fly in the path of the fish. Bear in mind the secret to switch-ups with Yellowfin is timing, it has to be very quick as they often loose their attraction to the teaser. As the teaser is removed it should be immediately replaced by your fly.

Tackle 

  • Fly Rod: Quick action 10 to 12 weight fly rod.
  • Reel & Backing: Saltwater series reel that can hold 500 or more meters of 50 – 60lbs braid. A Bimini Twist to Double Surgions should be tied into the braid, following which the fly line and backing should be joined using the loop to loop method.
  • Fly Lines: Clear Intermediate with 50lbs braided loops nail knotted on both ends.
  • Leaders: 30 – 40lbs Fluorocarbon or Monofilament.
  • Knots: Fly to leader – Improved Homer Rhode or Perfection Loop; Leader to braided – Perfection Loop. NB mono has a stretch factor and a tendency to slip before seating, when tying your knots make sure you leave a tag and seat them property with the use of pliers. But in saying this be extremely careful not to stress the knot.
  • Flies: Polar Fiber Minnows, SF Minnows and clousers in Mackerel, natural baitfish colours, grey, green and white, chartreuse and white or blue and white tied on 2/0 Gamakatsu SL12S (Link to fly patterns)
  • Sunglasses: Dark amber or blue mirror grey lenses.

Before leaving on your trip you will be briefed in detail by the FlyCastaway guides as to exactly what fly patterns you are going to need and how you should prepare your tackle. For all our destinations we have compiled a comprehensive tackle list.

Destinations 

Angola- Luanda
CosmoledoProvidence, Astove and Farquhar Atolls – Seychelles
St Brandons Mauritius
Manda Bay and Kingfisher – Kenya
Principe – Sao Tome