Top 10 Saltwater Fly Rod Fish—and Where to Catch Them


After you've gotten your feet wet saltwater fishing, you may find yourself itching to catch a specific species. Perhaps you’re angling for a sportfish. If that’s the case, you’ll need to find the right destination to locate your target. There’s no point in going to Baja, Mexico for white marlin, or visiting Venezuela so you can get some roosterfish just a few meters from the beach. These species don't live in these places. So get your gear from a reputable company like Eat My Tackle, and plan your trip. Here are our favorite saltwater fly rod fish species, along with some helpful information on where to find them.

Tarpon - Tarpon is one of the greatest saltwater rod game fish, so it's not surprising if you're looking for some tarpon. For the big ones, you can try Homosassa, Florida, but you’ll find a lot of excitement in the Florida Keys too. You should also try Costa Rica, Belize, Venezuela, and the Yucatan Peninsula in Mexico.

Permit - This species thrives in warm, tropical seas such as the Atlantic. Many American permit fishers go to the Florida Keys, where they can find huge specimens. Outside the country, the best places include the Bahamas, Belize, and the Yucatan Peninsula in Mexico.

Bonefish - This fish species has adapted to a wide range of temperatures and habitats, making it an ideal candidate for tropical flats. However, for US enthusiasts, the Florida Keys have provided the most record-size captures. For more exotic locales, you can try Los Roques in Venezuela, the Yucatan Peninsula in Mexico, Christmas Island, Seychelles, and the Bahamas.

Barracuda - Tropical waters are excellent for this species, but your best options are the Yucatan Peninsula in Mexico as well as Belize.

Snook - Snook is found in a few spots along the Pacific Coast from Baja in Mexico to Panama, as well as all along the Atlantic coast from Florida to Brazil. Costa Rica is considered by many as the top spot for snook, but you can also try Venezuela, Honduras, Belize, and the Yucatan Peninsula in Mexico. If you don’t want to go abroad, try the Florida Everglades.

Pacific Sailfish - Central America is a great place for this species, and this region is conveniently near the US. Try Panama, Costa Rica, and Guatemala too if you want a trip abroad.

Dorado - You’ll need warm salt waters for this species. Some consider the best spot as Baja in Mexico, but you can also visit the Bahamas, Panamá, Costa Rica, and Guatemala. If you want to remain in the US, just go to Florida.

Roosterfish - According to some experts, Cabo San Lucas is the optimal location for roosterfish. It's in the southern part of Baja, but you can also try other Baja locations, as well as Panama and Costa Rica.

Striped Bass - You can find this saltwater game fish along the US East Coast. One great choice is off the New England coast, from May to October.

Redfish - You don’t need to go overseas for this species if you’re in the US. Just try Padre Island in Texas and the Florida Everglades.

Now that you know the top 10 saltwater fly rod fish and where to find them, it’s time to get down to business. But how do you actually catch these fish?

For all of these species, using live bait is often the key to success. This means you'll need to invest in a good quality baitcasting reel so you can cast your line accurately and with enough power. You should also use a heavy-duty braided fishing line, as it can handle the weight of the fish and won't snap easily.

As for lures, we recommend using flies or jigs since they're less likely to get tangled in seaweed or coral. To find all this saltwater fishing equipment, visit the Eat My Tackle shop today. Once you have the right gear, it's time to start fishing. Check out our blog for more tips on saltwater fishing tackle and fishing in general.

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