"Triple Tail" fishing.......Submitted by adc from tx Many years ago I frequented a Matagorda bait camp whose owner often told me of one particular fisherman/customer who regularly caught a fish called a "triple tail" in West Matagorda Bay....Does anyone know the technique needed to catch this fish...??Thanks, ADC
Mike from Ga says Triple Tails
We catch a lot of triple tails in Ga. find them on the surface in relatively shallow water, and cast to them, good eating.
If we are talking about the same fish,"triple-tail", I don't think you will find that they will 'bite' anything. The experience that I have had with a triple-tail,sorta like a small sunfish, has been to free gaff the unwitting sloth. They are very tasty! I have been told by charter captains and other old salts that they won't take a bait. I have only seen three in the water. 'Caught' two with the long gaff, and one 'got away'. This sounds like a fish story (i.e. lie), but that is all the truth I know about this species. Hope to hear more from the others here, myself. Ric W. "Y-KNOT"
We used to get them offshore in the Key's looking for Dolphin. You find them in the weed lines. They always look like the rolling over and over in a ball, like them were wresling with something round. Some of the Islamorada Capts used to call the turd wrasslers. We used to get them to bite on little yellow 1/8th oz jigs, sometimes. Their not easy to catch. Most of the time they looked much more interested in their own act than what you were trying to feed them. Didn't someone just catch(2 years or so now) a world record(or close to it, I forget) Triple Tail in the Fort Pierce basin/inlet?? I used to see them in the St Lucy all the time snook fishing. Dunk
The fish the post refer's to is likely indead a triple-tail. Not the large sunfish. They can be found reliably around the bouys, debre and channel makers around Florida and Georgia. Usually hanging close to the top motionless.Flies, small jigs and shrimp will get them. The average size is around 5 to 10 lbs. They somewhat resemble a large brownish crappie. Most fall to a live shrimp drifted by there ambush point. Good luck.
Triple tail can be found in SW Florida in Dec. and Jan. feeding on the small bait fish that feed on the slime that accumulates on the float lines of the stone crab pots. It is strickly sight fishing and polaroids are a must. The pots run in a line about 200 feet apart and you just run these lines until you spot one near the surface. You can use a shrimp on light spinning tackle and throw just beyond the fish and be careful not to spook it. Short jerks and they will jump on it. My biggest 23 lbs. Record is 32 lbs. The anal fin and dorsal fin is nearly as long as their tail-- thus the name triple tail. Good to eat and the toughest skin you'll ever see.
The bait camp guy is absolutely correct. I don't think everybody above is talking about the same Tripletail. Tripletails in Texas waters inhabit near shore reefs, around bouys, oil platforms and jetties. In fact the state record @ 33 pounds 8 ounces was caught in West Matagorda Bay in 1984. My friend landed one on light tackle after an hour and twenty minute fight last summer from around a rig in West Matagorda Bay. I think most of the time they are caught by accident while fishing for other species. My buddy certainly wasn't fishing for one, he was tossing a tout tail for specks.
they like to hang around in the shade of floating debris, buoys, etc. My partner caugh one from under a well near POC that went 18 3/4 lbs. The fish hit a live shrimp. It is not too uncommon to see large tripletails laying sideways on the surface of the water looking as if dead. Weird fish, excellant eating too!
I seldom have a problem getting them to hit. I seldom use bait for them. A 5" curly tail worm in rootbeer or clear/pepper will catch nearly everyone you come across. I've been fishing for them since the 1950's and have caught thousands. I've seen several hundred at a time at Middle Bay Light in Mobile Bay. The biggest that I've ever weighed was 27# but I caught a 19# on a fly last fall.
Shrimp, small crabs and lures that approximate them work great.
Capt. Ken Roy WHOPPERSTOPPER Sportfishing Crystal River, FL