If you are someone who fishes often, then one fish you have probably caught is the bluefish. This distinctly-colored bluefish comes in abundance, and if you catch one, you are likely to catch a whole lot more at the same time. But what are you supposed to do with this bluish wonder?
Can you eat bluefish? Yes, you can eat bluefish. It is an oily fish that must be kept on ice immediately after capture. Otherwise, the bluefish will have an unpleasant fishy flavor. Also, bluefish should never sit in a blood-soaked cooler, and they need to be cooked (grilled or fried) within 2 days after capture.
If you are interested in tasting bluefish, you’re not alone. There are many people who enjoy capturing these colorful fish and find that the texture and flavor are rather succulent if prepared correctly. We are going to discuss some of the different unique facts about the bluefish and how you can catch and eat these wonders of the water.
Facts About Bluefish
Bluefish may not be the most exciting fish to look at, but they are easy to catch and come in bulk. Prepared correctly, these lovely fish can also be used for tasty meals from fried fish and chips to fish dips and more. Some of the most interesting facts about the bluefish include:
- Bluefish are typically between 20 and 25 inches long. They are a decent sized fish and can weigh up to 45 pounds. That’s definitely enough meat for a meal. Although blue is the primary color of this fish, you can also find shades of green along the back of this fish, although it is typically faded. Silver and white hues can also be present along the sides and belly of the fish.
- You can find bluefish all over the world. This means that there is a wide range of areas where you can catch these fish, from the Atlantic Ocean to the Indian Ocean and more.
- The bluefish is known as a pelagic fish. This means that the bluefish doesn’t travel on the surface nor on the bottom. They also tend to travel in groups, which is a major convenience for anglers as they are easily able to capture more than one bluefish at a time using a net.
Bluefish is one of the more common and basic fish you might be able to capture as an angler. Just because they are common doesn’t mean they can’t be great. Aside from their bluish coloring, they can be a tasty treat if prepared correctly. Of course, you will have to catch them first. Luckily, it’s as easy as you might think.
How to Catch Bluefish
Catching bluefish is probably one of the more fun activities for an angler. Why? Because bluefish is a seriously ferocious fish that will go crazy on just about any bait. Not only are they fairly easy to catch, but frenzies of bluefish can occur rather quickly once they start to notice there’s tasty bait nearby, which means you can catch tons of bluefish with ease.
But what are some of the best ways to catch a bluefish? Here are a few great tips and tricks for bluefish-catching success:
- Always use a wire lead. This is because bluefish have extremely sharp teeth and can quickly and easily cut through just about any other type of lead. If you’re planning to catch some bluefish, your first move should be to switch to a good wire lead.
- Shiny lures are the best lures. Always keep in mind that bluefish will go after just about any type of lure. They are hungry, ferocious fish that love to get their hands on all types of lures. However, the best success seems to come from the shinier lures as they draw more attention than other styles.
- Consider a spoon. A spoon lure is beneficial for the simple fact that it can acquire 20 bluefish in as little as 5 minutes, and bluefish seem to adore them.
Note: Lures, such as the shiny lure and the spoon, are best used during a frenzy. This is because lures can grab a lot more fish in a shorter amount of time than other methods of fishing.
- Use the live bait. If there is one thing the feisty bluefish loves, it’s live bait. Two of the more favorite live bait options include menhaden and eel. It’s a lot easier to use menhaden than an eel, as their body types make it challenging to hook. Keep in mind that almost any live bait is attractive to the bluefish, so don’t be excessively picky or worried.
- Cut up baitfish. When you’re using a bait fish, they should be chopped into small chunks. However, it is important to keep in mind that cut up bait should only be used when there is no frenzy present.
- Whole baitfish. Did you know that sometimes you don’t even need to worry about cutting the baitfish? Sometimes you can get away with using an entire dead finger mullet or minnow for attracting bluefish.
There are a lot of different fishing techniques that can be used to catch a bluefish. From using a line and hook to trolling, fly fishing, and even using a net are all common ways to catch bluefish. Nets get the most fish at once, while hooks allow for more customization and fun.
How to Eat Bluefish
If you are planning to eat bluefish, you need to act quickly right from the get-go. The first step is to make sure you place the captured bluefish on ice, so have an cooler full of ice ready to go before heading out to fish.
Secondly, make sure the fish are never soaked in blood. For this reason, you may either want to slice the tail of the fish so it can bleed out immediately or drain and refill the water often. If a bluefish sits in bloody water, it will ruin the look, texture, and flavor.
Third, you will need to completely scale the fish and remove the bones found on the belly prior to cooking. At this point, you can either choose to skin the fish, or not. Either way, you might want to remove the darker meat along the spine, also known as the bloodline, since there’s a risk it has harmful toxins.
When your bluefish is ready to be cooked, you have options. The most common way to cook a bluefish is to fry it. However, for a healthier option, you can also broil or grill. Just remember to season the bluefish before cooking to add more flavor and get rid of the fishiness.
At the end of the day, bluefish is a very flavorful option that is rich and coarse. When cooking, the meat becomes moist, and the skin is safe to consume, although some people may prefer to remove it beforehand. Keep in mind that the larger the fish, the more flavor will be packed in.
When it comes to bluefish, they are as fun to catch as they are to eat. You can catch a lot of bluefish in a short period of time, but they have to be placed on ice and kept away from blood in order to keep them fresh and free of excessive fishy flavors. When you are ready to cook, simply scale, remove the bones and dark meat, and you can easily fry, broil, or grill to perfection.