Panama Sailfish

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Pacific Sailfish

(Istiophorus platypterus)

Sails are considered the fastest fish in the world and can swim up to 70 miles per hour. The species is a moderate fighter however its spectacular aerial acrobatics endear the sailfish to the saltwater angler. The fish is considered a light tackle species as it tires quickly.

In Panama Sailfish run considerably larger in size than its Costa Rican counterpart, with 90-plus-pound fish being run of the mill.

Fishing methods in Panama include trolling with strip baits, plures, spoons, and live bait fishing. Peak fishing in the Gulf of Chiriqui is from Dec thru May. Generally released fish average between 80 and 110 pounds. The action is found around Hannibal Banks and towards the Point of Costa Rica where sailfish can be seen feeding near the surface.

The world record has held since 1947 is a 221-pounder taken off Ecuador.

Panama Nautical Club practices Catch and release.