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Trolling for Mahi: ballyhoo or artificials?

I like artificials because they troll better at higher speed but my wife thinks the delicious flavor of ballyhoo is the ticket. Opinions anyone?

Replies

  • Yankee ClipperYankee Clipper Posts: 9 Deckhand
    Over the last few years, I add a strip of dolphin/tuna/bonita belly to the lure and it works very well. The lure also runs truer while trolling. 
  • bonebone Posts: 1,163 Officer
    its been nearly impossible to troll with all the scattered weed last few summers
  • plasteredplastered Posts: 558 Officer
    Riggers and center rigger ballyhoo 4 other lines
    lures.Nice thing while slowed down fighting a Mahi
     if more around they will hit the ballyhoo.
  • MissedMissed O-townPosts: 503 Officer
    Troll artificials to find the fish, then slow down and drag ballyhoo.  Everyone is happy.
  • DaHookDaHook MarylandPosts: 49 Deckhand
    bone said:
    its been nearly impossible to troll with all the scattered weed last few summers
    Hows it been this year so far? 
    "Many men go fishing all of their lives without knowing that it is not fish they are after." - Henry David Thoreau
  • bonebone Posts: 1,163 Officer
    DaHook said:
    bone said:
    its been nearly impossible to troll with all the scattered weed last few summers
    Hows it been this year so far? 
    From reef to 1200 feet bad as ever for trolling. even had to sit and not fish for an hour one night on reef because of it
  • keylargo359keylargo359 PSN / KEYLARGOPosts: 1,298 Officer
    We like to run the two center lines with skirted or naked Ballyhoo and the outrigger lines small feathers with belly strips they can all get eaten when you stop in a school on a hook up. 
    The worst day of fishing is still better than the best day of work:\
  • dvnelson72dvnelson72 Posts: 15 Deckhand
    DaHook said:
    bone said:
    its been nearly impossible to troll with all the scattered weed last few summers
    Hows it been this year so far? 
    I’ve been in Stock Island since June 1.  The weeds have been scattered constantly.

    I have been pulling mostly artificial lures because they are easier to clear of weeds. 

    Saturday we were one of 8 boats circling a huge piece of driftwood.  I had artificial and ballyhoo back.  The mahi and rainbow runners hit both equally.

    as a side note: after boating a bunch of them, a boat pulls right up to the driftwood and throws up a dive flag.  4 people jump in with spearguns.  The bite stopped for everyone.  They totally spooked the fish.  On my passes, I could see 50 mahi in a school, but they wouldn’t eat after those people hopped in the water.  They didn’t spear a single fish.  It was infuriating.
  • Tony RomaTony Roma Posts: 1,046 Officer
    Should of kept trolling , you hook a diver , so be it. Zero pity for an ****
  • CaptjamesCaptjames Pompano BeachPosts: 95 Deckhand
    I prefer Ballyhoo and small squid rigs/heads with a bonito strip. No artificial lures unless I'm Marlin or Wahoo fishing. 
  • AnchorbaitAnchorbait FloridaPosts: 134 Deckhand
    Any update on the scattered weed. Prolly going to make a trip to the house to finish the bathroom remodel and figured we pull some lines between breaks. It was scattered pretty bad a few weeks back and was looking for an update. 
  • DaHookDaHook MarylandPosts: 49 Deckhand
    Trolled offshore of marathon past 2 days. Decent defined weed line in 450 didn’t have many mahi on it. Caught one of it but was the biggest bull of the trip. Scattered weeds all the way out to 750. Did really well trolling small naked feathers in 650. Lots of schoolies around working under birds in the scattered weeds, just gotta keep clearing lines. We worked for them but they were there. 4 rod spread. Was constantly clearing weeds from at least 1 line. Hope that helps. If you find the schoolies like we did yesterday you could chum them to the boat I’m sure. 
    "Many men go fishing all of their lives without knowing that it is not fish they are after." - Henry David Thoreau
  • dvnelson72dvnelson72 Posts: 15 Deckhand
    edited July 22 #14
    Today, Thurs July 22 out of key west / stock island:

    the wind, blessedly, laid down for the first time since the “hurricane”.

    There were actual weed lines out there!

    At 8:00am we ran to 800 ft and found a nice weed line.  On the way everything was scattered, but forming up.

    it was really nice compared to the past month, in terms of fighting weeds.

    we caught 7 decent schoolies, while losing a couple along the way.  I had a larger one hook up - looked to be 30 lbs when it jumped.  But it shook the hook on the second jump.  I’ll cry myself to sleep about that one later.

    on the way back around 1:00pm, there were more lines formed.  Who knows if they held fish, but it was good to see the scattering dissipate.

    anyway, if the weather holds, I bet the weeds look good for the next week.  Fingers crossed.
  • dvnelson72dvnelson72 Posts: 15 Deckhand
    On topic of the original post:

    today we were 50/50 on artificials and ballyhoo.  No hookups on naked hoo.  However, they all hit the same color whether artificial or hoo skirts.  Every single darn hit.
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