Biggest Marlin Ever Caught

In fishing, some fish are considered greater challenges than others. Catching a marlin is an accomplishment of great magnitude and esteem due to their immense size and formidable speed! In this article we look at the biggest marlin ever caught.

Among the ten species of marlin, some are naturally faster and larger than their counterparts. However, every one is known for its impressive speed and size overall.

Despite the difficulty, some have still managed to land these colossal fish. You must be wondering which is the biggest marlin ever caught? Look no further! Keep on reading and you’ll find out just what it is!

marlin in ocean
Marlin Breaching the Water

Features of the Marlin

Boasting an elongated physique, with a snout that closely resembles a spear and robust dorsal fins flaunting crests reaching forward. It’s safe to say the Marlin is truly one-of-a-kind oceanic species.

With the marlin’s spear-like upper jaw, they can expertly slash and stun their prey with ease. Marlins are found in abundance in the Pacific, Atlantic, and Indian Oceans. They share a similar appearance to a sailor’s marlinspike from which they get their name! In fact, these fish are closely related to swordfish, making them perfect for aspiring fishermen everywhere!

These aquatic critters are among the swiftest swimmers in their world. For short durations, they have been observed to swim at a rate of 65 miles per hour or 108 kilometers per hour! Additionally, as a migratory species of fish, these creatures migrate hundreds and even thousands of miles in warm currents with ease.

The black marlin and Atlantic blue marlin are the two largest species of the group. They are widely recognized as popular sport fish in tropical regions. Sadly, their population has been excessively depleted due to overfishing. Both white marlins and Atlantic blue Marlins have now been classified as endangered species.

The Biggest Marlin Ever Caught

Few aquatic creatures inspire avid fishermen more than the breathtaking billfish patrolling the vast, deep waters of our planet’s oceans. Marlin are both stunning and impressive as they traverse their territory.

Furthermore, iconic authors like Steve Campbell and Ernest Hemingway have sparked a legacy amongst anglers to pursue these majestic fish in stories that continue to be passed down generation after generation.

The International Game Fish Association (IGFA) record books proudly include five distinct species of marlin, and here is a look at the current world records! Additionally, you’ll find several angling feats that make it into the hall-of-fame. These magnificent fish were caught on astonishingly light lines.

The IGFA states that marlin larger than 300 pounds are usually female, while 500-pound males are rarely seen. Any fish bigger than 1,000 pounds is considered a “grander.”

Extraordinary catches of even more colossal proportions have been reported from commercial fishing operations or not-so-official angling endeavors. The IGFA records these as the biggest marlins ever reeled in.

Black Marlin: 1,560 Pounds

biggest marlin ever caught
Biggest Marlin Ever Caught

On August 4th, 1953, Alfred Glassell Jr. set the all-tackle record with an enormous 1,560 pound black marlin caught off of Cabo Blanco in Peru. This is the largest marling ever caught.

The colossal 174 inch long creature had a girth of 81 inches and was brought to shore using a Tycoon rod coupled with a 12/0 Fin-Nor reel while trolling for mackerel.

Enrico Capozzi achieved an incredible record in the men’s 6-pound line class, reeling in a colossal marlin weighing 735 pounds and 3 ounces. This beast measured 133 inches long and boasted a whopping 66 inch circumference! This still stands as the world record marlin.

On February 7th, 2000, he triumphantly snagged a marlin off the coast of Port Stephens in New South Wales, Australia. To achieve this big catch, he was armed with a Bill Boyd custom rod coupled with a Shimano TLD20 reel spooled with 6-pound Stren Hi Impact Gold line. Also trolling along side his boat was an enticing mackerel bait!

Features of The Black Marlin

The black marlin is an esteemed gamefish renowned for its strength and magnitude, preferring the tropical waters of India’s and Pacific Ocean. Although it may be spotted in open water anywhere, they tend to gather around coasts or islands. The breadth of their swimming range knows no limits.

Some travel as far as Africa’s Cape of Good Hope in the Atlantic. While others have even crossed the ocean up until Rio de Janeiro in Brazil or along the Lesser Antilles’ eastern shoreline!

Unlike other marlin species, the black marlin distinguishes itself with its stiff airfoil-shaped pectoral fins that cannot be flattened against its body. Additionally, these fish possess ventral fins no more than a foot in length.

The upper portion of their bodies are slate blue. The underside is silvery white and sometimes has a distinct silver haze. Hawaiians mistook as evidence of it being an entirely separate species referred to as “silver marlin”.

Trolling with substantial, live bait such as mackerel, bonito, flying fish, squid and the like is a great way to catch a black marlin. But if you prefer something more artificial or can’t source fresh bait then don’t worry, they’ll still take lures and frozen baits too!

World Record Blue Marlin: 1,402 Pounds

world record blue marlin
World Record Blue Marlin

Paulo Amorim is forever immortalized in the history books for catching a record-breaking 1,402-pound Atlantic blue marlin. He caught off the coast of Vitoria, Brazil on February 29th 1992.

Coming in at an impressive 161.81 inches long and with a 98-inch girth, Paulo was armed only with Capt. Harry’s rod paired to Penn International 80 STW reel filled with Ande line of 80 pounds breaking strength. He was trolling a Moldcraft lure as his bait of choice!

Angler Leo Cloostermans astounded the world with his record-breaking 573 lb. Atlantic blue marlin hauled in on 4-pound line off Horta, Faial, Azores Portugal! Measuring 116.14 inches long and boasting a girth of 60 inches, this magnificent catch was made possible with great equipment.

Namely, a Dru rod with Shimano reel spooled with Stren line as well as trolling squid for bait. Indeed it is an incredible feat worthy of celebration!

Blue marlin have earned a reputation as formidable opponents while fishing. They will relentlessly tug on the line, depleting drag power before suddenly resurfacing with magnificent acrobatic leaps.

Trolling is by far the most common method of catching blue marlin. It usually involves trolling large live baits or artificial lures and strip baits. However, like many other species, these fish can be tempted to attack bait close to the boat if it has been teased beforehand. This is an effective tactic for experienced anglers!

Features of the Blue Marlin

Atlantic blue marlin found are found in tropical and warm to temperate ocean waters. Despite their name, they can also be found in the Pacific and Indian Oceans (and the Gulf of Mexico). 

The blue marlin’s back is cobalt blue and its flanks and belly are silvery white. Light blue or lavender vertical stripes may be present on the sides when the fish is alive. The fins have no spots.

Unlike black marlin, a blue marlin’s pectoral fins are never completely rigid. Except in the largest fish, the pectoral fins can fold flat against the sides. Blues also have a tall, pointed dorsal fin and large, pointed anal fin.

Pacific Blue Marlin: 1,376 Pounds

largest marlin ever caught
Largest Marlin Ever Caught in Hawaii

Angler Jay de Beaubien stunned the fishing world in 1982 when he reeled in a record-breaking 1,376 pound Pacific blue marlin off Kaaiwi Point, Kona Hawaii.

The giant catch measured 193 inches in length with an impressive 82 inch girth. It was even more astonishing considering it was caught using only an Erskine rod, Fin-Nor 12/0 reel filled with 130 pound line and a Kita lure!

On the 8th of May, 1984, Linda Miller became the official record holder for women angling in a 16-pound line class with an astounding 632 pound and 12 ounce marlin caught off Piñas Bay in Panama.

She was equipped with a Sabre rod and Penn International 20 reel spooled up with Amalon T 16-pound test – trolling bonito no less! This monster measured 120 inches long from head to tail and boasted 66 inch girth as well.

Striped Marlin: 494 Pounds

On January 16th, 1986, Bill Boniface caught a gigantic striped marlin weighing 494 lbs off the coast of Tutukaka in New Zealand. This impressive fish was 115.67 inches long and had an astounding 57-inch girth!

To reel it in, he used a Wilkinson Sports rod with Penn International 50 reel spooled with 24 kg Ande line while trolling for kahawai (also known as Australian salmon). As of now, this catch is still considered to be the all-tackle record holder!

On April 30, 2010, Guy Jacobsen achieved a remarkable feat when he reeled in an enormous 385-pound striped marlin off the Poor Knights Islands of New Zealand with only 6 lbs. of line! His catch measured in at 118.11 inches long and 53.54 inch girth– seemingly impossible to bring it to shore with such light tackle!

After research proved this was true, we found that Jacobsen wasn’t new to setting records. He holds the 2-, 4-, 8- and 12-pound line class records as well! He used a Daiwa Saltiga rod paired with Shimano Tyrnos 2011 reel spooled up with Moimoi line for his big catch – all while live baiting with bonito!

Features of the Striped Marlin

Striped marlin, also referred to as stripers or red marlin in Japan, are some of the most athletic and aggressive species of their kind. They often launch themselves into the air multiple times with astonishing grace and glide across the water’s surface tail first.

Unlike blue marlin, these beauties can be caught closer to shorelines! Anglers have seen great success by trolling whole fish baits or lures as well as using live bait offerings.

The striped marlin, a seasonally migratory species that lives in the warm waters of the Indian and Pacific Oceans, prefers tropical temperatures. As colder seasons approach, it will migrate closer to more temperate latitudes at or near the equator for better conditions.

Striped marlin boast sharp and elongated first dorsal fins that extend beyond the depth of its body, from top to bottom.

Thye possess pointed and flat anal and pectoral fins which can be tucked in close to their sides. They are constructed for optimal efficiency while swimming through any waters.

Brilliantly hued in shades of steely blue, bluish silver and white below their lateral line, this marlin species appears to have an extra magical touch.

Iridescent blue spots that may adorn any of its fins. What’s more remarkable is the presence of vibrant pale blue or lavender vertical stripes on each side, lines which remain even after death!

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