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Orlando Blackfin

Blackfin Tuna Just Minutes Away From Orlando and It's Themeparks

Sunday June 24, 2018

Orlando's coastal tuna fishing is not on the agenda as in years gone past, but you can still manage to catch a few if you're knowledgeable and lucky. Blackfin tuna used to be specifically targeted out of Canaveral as they were relatively easy for Charter Captains to find and target when the abundant rock shrimp and scallop boats formally trawled and chummed up tuna and other marinelife, offering an abundant and seasonal catch of these tasty and hard fighting fish, typically blackfin are pursued in the fall months of September and October near Orlando.

Today's blackfin tuna are an incidental catch rather than a targeted species off Florida's east coast except for Yellow Fin Tuna which are still pursued by elite enthusiast starting at almost 100 miles off the coast. Tuna trips typically start at over $3,000 dollars per day with a few less experienced and equipped Captains charging less. If you're looking for over-night tuna trips on a comfortable boat with a salon, head and air-conditioning, we can help you find a great Captain for those "Other Side Fishing Trips" which refers to the other side of the Gulf Stream in search of Marlin, Yelowfin Tuna and other far ranging species including Mahi Mahi and Wahoo. Captain Russell Sinclair being one of the best long range charters capable of producing a safe trip in excess of one hundred miles from the coastline. Lagooner fishing guides are not capable of safely and legally doing long range tuna trips. A boat that can keep you out of the fickle east coast weather and thunderstorms is a must. Don't arrange a long range tuna trip on a boat without shelter in our area. Our fishing guides specialize inshore and coastal offshore fishing trips that are seldom out of sight of land and not where the yellowfin tuna roam.

Blackfin Tuna off Florida's East Coast

For years we had a consistent fishery for the less sought after but quality blackfin Tuna off Orlando's eastern coastline of Brevard County our of Port Canaveral. We simply chummed up tuna and other species off the anchored rock shrimp boats where their crew typically worked and slept during the day before and after pulling nets during the evenings and nights. But those days are gone as the rock shrimp fishery has dried up and the boats have turned to other parts of the world. We catch blackfins when we are livebaiting now and it's a hit-or-miss proposition unlike fishing into the 1980's and early 90's.

Professional Fishing GuideWelcome Orlando Anglers,
We're hoping that one day the consistent tuna fishing off Florida's East Coast will come back and give us a go as it did just a few short years ago. Little did we know back then how quickly a fishery could fold when the value of rock shrimp drove shrimp boats to more productive and inexpensive areas. While there's still plenty of blackfin tuna, the shrimp boats concentrated blackfin, making it a viable target in a day of fishing.

Don't get me wrong, there's still good tuna fishery out beyond eighty miles on the other side of the Gulf Stream for yellowfin tuna, but not on the continental shelf off Florida's east coast. The blackfin tuna are still abundant but are not as easily found in concentrations when the commercial shrimp & scallop boats were abundant. Orlando still has a great offshore fishery and there's always a chance of catching tuna, but to target that specific species is not as valid as it used to be for an under $2,000 trip due to rising fuel cost and the time spent to get to the 120 mile range must go to catch those critters. Never the less, look us up for a great fishing trip offshore of Florida's east coast and we'll do everything to put you on some great rod pulling action off Orlando's eastern seaboard in the beautiful Atlantic ocean.

Happy Tuna Fishing,

Captain Richard Bradley
Lagooner Fishing Guide

Blackfin tuna (Thunnus atlanticus) is the smallest tuna species in the Thunnus genus, generally growing to a maximum of 100 cm (39 in) in length and weighing 21 kg (46 lbs).

Blackfin tuna have oval-shaped bodies, black backs with a slight yellow on the finlets, and yellow on the sides of their bodies. They are only found in the western Atlantic from Cape Cod to Brazil.

Blackfin tuna hunt both epipelagic (surface) and mesopelagic (deeper water) fish and squid. They also eat crustaceans such as shrimp, crabs, amphipods, stomatopods, and the larvae of decapods.[2] They are a short-lived, fast-growing species; a 5-yr-old fish would be considered old. They reach sexual maturity at the age of two years, and spawn in the open sea during the summer. Blackfin tuna are a warmer-water fish, preferring water temperatures over 20° C (68° F).

Occurs in tropical and warm temperate waters of the western Atlantic Ocean. There are scattered records of blackfin tuna occurring as far north as Martha's Vineyard, Massachusetts, but the usual range is from North Carolina to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, including the Caribbean Sea and the Gulf of Mexico.


This is a pelagic, schooling fish that generally feeds near the surface. Its diet consists of small fishes, squid, crustaceans, and plankton. An excellent light tackle species, it can be taken by trolling or casting small baits or lures, including ballyhoo, mullet and other small fishes as well as strip baits, spoons, feathers, jigs, or plugs; or by live bait fishing from boats at the surface of deep waters one to two miles offshore. It has some local commercial importance, but is predominantly an angler's fish. It is a spunky game species and the flesh is of good quality and flavor


Of the thousands of fish species found in Florida waters, the vast majority have no specific regulations at all. These ?unregulated? species include some very popular sport fish that are commonly caught by recreational anglers such as white grunt, gulf kingfish (whiting), gafftopsail catfish, ladyfish, cero mackerel, blackfin tuna, bonito, great barracuda, gulf kingfish, pinfish and jack crevalle. The list also includes thousands of other species that are less frequently targeted but sometimes caught incidentally including spadefish, American eels, silver perch, croakers, hardhead catfish and many others. The term ?unregulated? can be misleading because standard recreational gear requirements still apply, and there is a default bag limit established by Florida Statute for any species harvested by a recreational angler. Harvesting amounts that exceed the default recreational bag limit (which are defined as commercial quantities) and commercial sale of all unregulated species would require a saltwater products license.

Two fish or 100 pounds per person, per day -whichever is more. For smaller fish like white grunt, the limit is 100 pounds regardless Lionfishof the number of fish it takes to reach that total weight. For larger fish such as the southern stingray, if you harvest two fish that have a combined weight of 150 pounds, that is your limit for that species.

State Record

45 lbs. 8 oz.

Thrilling Tuna Fishing near Orlando Florida

Reviewed by Captain Richard Bradley on Last modified: February 08 2017 10:46:10.

Published by: Captain of Lagooner Fishing Guides©

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Fishing Reports

June - 2018 Fishing Report

Fishing Forecast

June - 2018 Fishing Forecast

June of 2018 is looking to be a hot summer with hot fishing off of East Central Florida near Cocoa Beach. Orlando visitors should anticipate the warm weather and great fishing that coastal and offshore fishing provides in the warm Atlantic Ocean this time of year. Last year in 2017 we saw many tarpon exceeding 100 pounds caught off the Brevard County beaches along with a good amount of sharks, king mackerel and really big Jack Crevelle that kept things interesting. Looking forward to this year's forecast on the Space Coast remember that the coastal waters along the Atlantic seaboard and Ocean will probably be the most productive fishing during the month of June and as we look in to August the ocean will look to be the most inviting destination for anglers in the heat of the Central Florida Summer.

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Lagooner Fishing Guides
Cocoa Beach's premier saltwater fishing guide with over 25 years of charter fishing experience in his native waters.
Telephone: 321-868-4953

204 Garfield Avenue
Cocoa Beach, FL

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TripAdvisor Review

Review / Trip Advisor

Inshore and Offshore Charter Fishing near Orlando and Cocoa Beach, Florida. Catch redfish, sea trout, tarpon, snook and many other saltwater gamefish aboard the world famous Lagooner flats fishing boat with renowned Captain Richard Bradley.

Great Insight Into Local Waters - Captain Richard and Captain Gina took care of us from the moment we booked our trip. Captain Richard was nice enough to move our trip to another launch point with better chances of catching fish. My 13 year old son and I were on to fish within 30 minutes of the launch. Captain Richard's knowledge of the local waters is unparalleled, as is his professionalism and love for the sport. He took great care to keep us on fish for the entire trip and even cut the full day trip short once the weather shifted. Captain Richard was also very helpful with my son and teaching him the finer points of topwater and bait fishing techniques for the local waters. A great value for our money and looking forward to doing it again!
about Lagooner Fishing Charters on April 10, 2016

5 / 5 stars 5 star rating

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