Published On: March 11th, 2021Last Updated: March 24th, 20225.2 min read

Blackfin Tuna – Spring 2021 Fishing Report

Springtime fishing in the Florida Keys is one of the best times to catch a variety of species without having to travel far offshore. When baitfish push in closer, so do predators, and our travel time is reduced.

The Blackfin Tuna bite has been incredible this past week. The seas have been kind to us lately (although this looks to be changing soon) and we have been able to catch lots of great eating Tuna.

We have fished two different techniques this past week, each being very successful, Trolling and Live baiting.


Captain Steve took the Cardiff family fishing on the Reel Attraction recently. They were looking for some variety, so Captain Steve made a wise decision to stay closer to land. First, Captain Steve anchored up on the reef where they caught reef fish, primarily Yellowtail Snapper.

Once their dinner was secured Captain Steve took them trolling for Blackfin just off the edge of the reef.

Captain Steve pulled black and red lures at a speed of around 6 or 7 knots as we typically do when targeting Blackfin Tuna under 10lbs.

The Cardiff family managed to catch a healthy limit of Blackfin Tuna allowing them to put together a great Reef/Offshore combo catch!

Ken Cardiff and his son show off some of the Blackfin Tuna they caught trolling the edge of the reef with Captain Steve.

Live Bait

Another technique we used this week is live baiting for Tuna at the Marathon Hump. Live bait is the most important key ingredient in making this trip successful.

Have your live wells as full as possible, without harming the baits. For those unfamiliar with our charter operation, during bait season, 9 times out of 10, our crews meet in the early morning hours and catch live bait to ensure your charter is as successful as possible.

Each day the bait runs are different, so if bait is scarce that morning, they may catch ballyhoo on their way out, or stop by the pinfish traps.

The offshore run to the Marathon hump depends on the vessel and weather which determines what speed we are able to travel. In good conditions it is about a 45-minute trip, assuming you are not stopping to check out debris or birds along the way. For this reason, Hump trips require a minimum booking of a ¾ day to allow for travel time.  Once out there, the mate will wait for direction from the Captain and when it’s time, he will start firing out freebies into the water, live bait gets pitched into the water without any hooks attached to them. 

Throwing out scoops of freebies gets the Tuna fired up and in a frenzy. You will see them popping up on the surface and getting closer to the boat. Once they are up on the surface, we will cast out a bait with a hook and usually get hooked up to a nice Tuna instantly. Now the fun begins, Blackfin tuna are extremely tough to catch as they are very strong and fast swimmers. And another element to consider, those dang sharks! 

The Hump holds tons of sharks that are always looking for a free meal, so once you have the Blackfin on, you want to get it to the boat as fast as possible. It is very normal to lose a few fish to the sharks, so don’t get discouraged if this happens to you. 

Edward Mascharka poses with some Big Blackfin Tuna caught last week while live baiting on the hump.

Recent Trips

We have had several longtime repeat clients who have had a ball catching Blackfin with us this past week.

Ricky Vincent who comes to the Keys every year, caught a nice Blackfin Tuna while out deep dropping.

Ricky Vincent with his most recent Blackfin catch.

Mark Busch caught his limit this past week and Hunter Jones brought along a bunch of good buddies and also caught their limit. Everyone got a good workout, that’s for sure!

Mark Busch with a beaut of a Blackfin.

Craig and Lydia

One story that stands out for us this week is Craig and Lydia. Craig is a repeat client from years ago and is currently down in the Florida Keys for about 3 months. He had contacted Katie, who books all the reservations for the fleet, and said how he wanted to catch Blackfin Tuna or Sailfish, but only wanted to go when the fishing was red hot. He, unlike most visitors, could be selective on his fishing day over a few months.

So, this past week, while the Tuna fishing has been good, Katie called Craig to let him know it was time. Craig and Lydia were ready and booked a trip immediately.

They fished on Main Attraction 2 with Captain Aaron and first mate Cole and came back with six jumbo Blackfin Tunas and had an absolute BLAST!

While we do indeed run multiple boats at Main Attraction, it does not make us some large impersonal company. If you communicate your wants and needs to us, we will do everything possible to ensure you have the best trip possible!

Craig and Lydia with their Blackfin Tuna catch this week.

2021 Spring Season

We are excited for Spring 2021 and look forward to more Tuna fishing action, some awesome Sailfish opportunities, and Tarpon/Mahi season just a few months away. We will keep you all updated every step of the way right here on the website and on our various social media accounts. If you are planning a trip to the Florida Keys and would like to share a fishing experience with us during your stay, call us at (305)-289-0071 or visit our contact page to make it happen!

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