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Costa Rica Fishing Report – The Unsuspecting Angler Who Ate His World Record

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As a longtime angler, Dennis Tilden knows: the quicker a fish is prepared after it’s caught, the fresher it will taste.

But Tilden, who reeled in a 32-pound Mexican barracuda recently while fishing in the Pacific off Costa Rica, did not know until dinner was being served that he’d be eating a potential world-record catch.

The International Game Fish Association lists as the all-tackle record a 28-pound, 6-ounce Mexican barracuda caught off Panama in 2010.

Tilden’s barracuda, caught during a tournament out of Crocodile Bay Resort on the Osa Peninsula, was weighed briefly before its head was removed for a soup. It’s flesh was quickly filleted and later prepared as a ceviche.

A proper certified weight had not been obtained, and measurements and other details for the paperwork were not collected, nullifying any chance for a record.

Tilden could only recall the captain telling him that the barracuda was the largest he had ever seen.

A description from Todd Staley, the resort’s director of fishing reads:

“As the chef was preparing a barracuda ceviche and getting the rest ready for dinner, Dennis mentioned the captain’s comment.

“A check with the IGFA record book showed the biggest recorded was 28 lbs. Tilden’s fish at just under 32 lbs made a delicious world-record meal.”

Tilden considered it a lesson learned, and could hardly complain about the fishing.

A day later he caught a 350-pound blue marlin to win Day 2 of the Boston Whaler group competition

from GrindTV

Costa Rica Fishing Report – September 2103 by Todd Staley, Fishing Director Crocodile Bay

Countdown

The Return of Todd StaleyFirst I would like to thank Will Briegel for filling in for me while I concentrated on some other things. I made three trips to the states in the last few weeks. The annual ICAST tackle show is a great chance to see what is new in the fishing game as well as catch up with some old friends. I followed that with a family reunion and to celebrate my mother’s 90th birthday. What started as a family of seven kids has grown to where there were over 140 in attendance. Later I went to the Florida Outdoor Writer’s Conference where I saw a lot of old friends and promoted some of the advances in marine conservation we have made here in Costa Rica. It was an honor to be there when fishing great Flip Pallot received a Lifetime Achievement Award.

I know Will had the Gorham family in the last report but they sent me a story from their trip and I would like to share it with you. Also Scott Young who I got to know by e-mail but missed here at the lodge sent me photos of his trip. Daryl, Matt, and Andrew Gorup from the Peterbilt family made another visit here. So many people have become such good friends over the years that I am really blessed to be starting my 14th season here in November.


The Gorham Family Invades Crocodile Bay for the Thrid Time!
Read about their family fishing and more adventures here!

Fishing went flat for 4 days when I returned last week as green water slowed things up. We sent the fleet a little further and found some cleaner water and Brain Thurston and Gary Arnold from Fishing Tackles Retailer magazine went 5 for 5 on sails. Fishing has improved daily.

Costa Rica Marine Conservation
We have had some great advances lately which will undoubtedly improve fishing in Costa Rica. No more shrimp boats. The Costa Rican courts have sided with conservationists and declared trawling for shrimp an unsustainable form of fishing and have ruled that shrimpers can continue to work until their current license expires and then they will be forced to stop. It is not an overnight fix but a substantial one and the last boat will be out of the water in four years.

Sorry Charlie
Charlie, the animated tuna that has promoted the consumption of tuna in the United States for decades will even be happier if Costa Rican fishermen get their way. The Pacific Fisherman’s Union a commercial lobby and FECOP, the recognized sport fishing lobby in Costa Rica on September 2, asked the Costa Rican government for a 6 year moratorium on tuna purse seine fishing.
After years of throwing stones at each other the commercial fleet and the sport fishing fleet have come together to promote a Blue Agenda to insure more responsible fishing methods in the country.

Costa Rica does not have a purse seine fleet and all licenses to fish this method are being given to foreign vessels. Armed with a study done by FECOP that concludes that Costa Rican fishermen are being robbed of the resource as well as possible financial gain, the groups have asked for this time frame to study the situation and develop sustainable fishing methods for the benefit of local fisherman.

Right now nearly 90% of all tuna caught in Costa Rica are landed in other countries and Costa Rica sees only a $37 dollar per ton benefit by letting foreign flagged seiners take the resource.  This coupled with other irregularities and illegal activities such as the use of Fish Aggregating Devices (FAD’s) are not only depleting the tuna resource, but increase the capture of juvenile by-catch with is thrown dead back into the ocean.

FECOP has found that by uniting the commercial and sport fishing sector, rather than constantly fight each other they can better influence the government to make changes to promote a Blue Agenda similar to Costa Rica’s Green Agenda which is world famous. The Costa Rican commercial sector has agreed to seek more sustainable fishing practices to target tuna that also reduces by-catch of species targeted by sport fishermen like marlin and sailfish.
For more information go to www.fecop.org and click on English

Marlin

Last November the Marlin bite was very good! Come find out

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See you in Costa Rica!

Todd Staley,
Fishing Director,
Crocodile Bay Resort

Join Todd Staley and the rest Crocodile Bay’s seasoned Captains for the fishing adventure of a lifetime, Click Here to Reserve!

Costa Rica Fishing Report – August 2013 “White Lightening – Blue Thunder”

Marlin Thunder Offshore and Roosterfish Light it Up Inshore at Crocodile Bay Resort!
Costa Rica Fishing Report, August 2013
By Will Briegel filling in for Todd Staley

from www.crocodilebay.com

Catching at least one blue marlin has been commonplace for those venturing offshore during their three day fishing packages, and if you’re not lucky enough to find that school of bonito that the marlin are chasing – there have been plenty of sailfish hanging around with folks releasing at least one or two each, there were a couple 4/4 -5/4 days which are great for July. Lets hope they stick around in August. Here’s some pics of this month’s marlin and sailfish releases aka”Blue Thunder” with some nice blue marlin being released.

 

Costa Rica Marlin

Marlin Fishing Costa Rica

 

Marlin Fishing Costa Rica

Marlin from the top

Sailfish Release Costa Rica

Inshore, the “White Lightning” has been striking in the form of ravaging roosterfish running ramped, with no signs of this year’s Rooster Rally letting up (Click here to sign-up for our Roosterfish Competetion in August). In the past we have had guests come from as far away as New Zealand and Russia just to tangle with these tough scrappers that would probably score a 9 out of 10 if there was an America’s Top Fish modeling reality show. With their sleek striped body and cool 7 point comb, roosters offer inshore anglers the whole package. Roosterfish use their flat body against the current causing them to shoot out of the water with a sliver “flash” and at times dance like a sailfish. They can also stun you with their strength even at smaller sizes (15 to 25 lbs range) Although in the past couple of weeks most anglers have been getting them in the 35 to 50 lb range (see photos..some of these roosters look bigger than the kids catching them!)

Update 7/31/13 – One boat inshore today raised 10 Roosters from 25 -45lbs! Congratulations Ron and Susan! We’ll see you at the SPA 😉

Big Roosterfish

What happens after a 7 Roosterfish Day? Hit the Spa!
I’m convinced the reason visionary and Crocodile Bay founder Robin Williams (not the comedian/actor) created a state-of-the-art luxury spa at the resort was for those anglers who target roosterfish, tuna or marlin. These fishermen/women bring big smiles and tall “Fish Tales” to the bar after the catch, but in the morning it’s all about the lumbar which is screaming for relief from one of our talented spa therapists – and trust me, an hour massage designed specially for anglers will have you rejuvenated and ready to get back out there to do some more battling.

For the significant other in your life, for instance, your wife, our spa offers over 20 amazing treatments with the majority of ingredients extracted from Costa Rica’s largest coastal rainforest, you’re gonna love it.

Roosterfish Costa Rica

Cubera Snapper

Costa Rica Roostefish Run

RETURN OF THE HUMPBACKS!
As predicted months ago by Fishing Director Todd Staley, the humpbacks are in our protected gulf teaching their calves how to hunt dive and communicate – a sort of kindergarten for humpbacks if you will. As we move into August, there were reports of seven; yes (7) pairs of humpbacks in our backyard (yesterday, July 29th) the Golfo Ducle which is defined as a “Tropical Fjord” system as it reaches depths of over 300 meters (900ft )and is surrounded by towering Jurassic Park-like rainforest mountains.

Humpback Photo from the Lemmings:

To see one of these blue and white giants covered in barnacles and breaching with a huge belly flop or side splash is a memory that you will take home and cherish forever (we cannot promise you will experience this, but if it’s going to happen, this is the time of year to witness it). To hear their magnificent songs vibrate through the hull of the boat is beyond words and all I can say is, don’t miss your chance to witness one of Mother Nature’s largest biological ocean vessels in person this August and September at Crocodile Bay Resort (don’t forget your camera…if you have an SLR with a zoom lens, even better!)

Some more Whale and Dolphin Watching at Crocodile Bay:

Whale Watching II

All the family’s who came down for our Sensational Summer of Tales and Whales got their share of both, and there were a couple of family’s in particular that stand out as really coming up big on the seeing side and the catching side as well. We are still running the Sunsational Summer of Kids Free (Kids Stay, Eat, Fish and **Watch Wales Free in August and September !) Space is Limited! Sign up HERE TODAY if You’re Interested!!

Family Fishing Tales

The Kneucker Family (Collin, Dillon and father Mike) family wanted marlin, but admitted “anything would be fine” as we are in what some refer to Costa Rica’s “non-peak” season, some anglers hold their expectations at bay, especially when it comes to billfish of any kind. Not this year. But they got their Pacific blue marlin (pictured above) as well as several sailfish (below) and rooosterfish.

Costa Rica Sailfish
Kneuker Family Members Collin and Dillon With a Sailfish

Aiden Scroggins wanted a trip to the world famous Crocodile Bay Resort for his birthday to target rossterfish, and he got his wish! He made it down to see us and caught to 40-50lbs roosterfish and a nice sailfish! Way to go, and Happy Birthday from Crocodile Bay Resort!

Aiden Fights Roosterfish


Aiden Scroggins is right on target with the rooster he wanted. Happy Birthday!

The Flemmings
These guys conquered the schools of Tuna completely and also did well with the sails. Take a look at some of these big tuna and even bigger smiles!

Spouse on the House IIBack by popular demand we are running our Spouse on the House II package all September long! We have added a twist this time with a FREE Whale Watching Tour as well as a Complimentary $1,595 Spa vacation for your wife or significant other when you book a three (3) day or longer fishing package – Click here for details. Single anglers and groups are entitled to 25% off your September Vacation if you book by Labor Day!

Crocodile Bay VideosCourtesy of the Gunnell Family!
Bringing in a 400 plus lbs Marlin as a family is an amazing experience. We would like to thank the Gunnell family for this great video that highlights the thrill of catching and releasing a Pacific Blue Marlin.

Around the Osa
We’ve heard reports from Capt. Donald McGuinness that a 750lb black marlin was caught near Carate when it took an anglers silky snapper he had on the line as bait! This may be a good sign that the big blacks are moving in. It’s up to nature how long the blues will stay around but a Black and Blue August may be a strong possibility.

Fishing Forecast
The Blues are not showing any sign of letting-up and the sailfish are not as thick as January through May – but are being had on a regular basis. Rooster fishing and fishing for other inshore species is historically very good this time of the year. We’re not sure how long the blue marlin will stick around but it could be worth coming down and taking a shot since the blacks appear to be steadily moving in as well.

Todd Staley Returns from his trip from the States to visit family August 15th with his Crocodile Bay Fishing Report! (and this time we mean it!)

Fishing is just the beginning!
Don’t forget, that amazing Costa Rica fishing is not the only thing on Crocodile Bay’s extensive activity list! We offer over 25 eco, adventure, and cultural private tours with local, bi-lingual Costa Ricans who will personally guide you through the areas they love and have grown up in.

Tight lines and crocodile smiles to everyone. Hope to see you all down soon doing some catching in Costa Rica!

Will Briegel

Filling in for Todd Staley,
Crocodile Bay Resort, Costa Rica
www.crocodilebay.com

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Costa Rica Fishing Report – July 2013 – Crocodile Bay Resort, Costa Rica

Costa Rica Fishing DirectorHappy Birthday USA! “Wishing you and your family the very best this Fourth of July! What’s on your birthday “Fish List”?

by Todd Staley Fishing Director Crocodile Bay Resort, Costa Rica www.crocodilebay.com

Offshore has been a hunting game of late. The big rush of marlin is late arriving in true Latino fashion. The big school of tuna that we enjoyed most of the month has moved north up towards Drake Bay but the next wave should be right behind it. Floating debris has been the ticket lately and when one is found that has been in the water long enough to create an eco-system below it, anything can happen.

 

julyfishlistJeff Gunnells had his family down earlier this month and they walked away with the biggest fish landed in June, a 500 lb blue marlin. They also added a huge dorado and and nice rooster inside. Stacy Lynch made his third visit here on a break from his duties in Afghanistan and took several sails and a monster dorado.

The Donavon family found someone to take care of their exotic animals long enough to seek down for a little vacation. They tore up the inshore waters catching nice roosters, and brought back enough snapper for all the guests to enjoy.

John Doerr, the head of Pure Fishing returned again with his wife Leslie. Last year at this time Penn Reels, (one of the many companies John is in charge of) introduced their ne “Spinfisher V” series during a big tuna run. The reels proved more than tough enough for a freight train tuna. Later Mark Davis, who’s television series “Big Water Adventures” was down an caught a 350 marlin on the Spinfisher 10500.

The last few days, folks got a real rainforest experience as the skies opened up and dropped buckets of water on us. Blake Johnson managed a 47 lb rooster in the rain and the Robert Waln family took 5 nice roosters at Matapalo. The sun has been shining ever since with some rain in the late afternoons.

I enjoy this time of year when we are not so busy to really get to know the guests and families are down together. I have to be a little patient and work a little harder for the fish, but there are plenty of rewards out there.

Todd Staley writes the costa rica fishing column for the English newspaper “The Tico Times” and is also the fishing director at Crocodile Bay Resort, Costa Rica.

Don’t miss Crocodile Bay Resort, Costa Rica  in this June’s Sport Fishing Magazine!

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April Spools! Costa Rica Fishing Report – April 1st 2013

This is no April Fools! – Offshore fishing heated up this past week for the Red Bone/Boomer Esiason tournament to “Catch the Cure” to Cystic Fibrosis. “The month of March has brought the best fishing for sailfish I have seen in 7 years.” – Todd Staley.

Costa Rica Fishing Report March 2013 by Todd Staley:

Todd Staley Costa Rica Fishing DirectorProbably one of the most memorable days in Mitch Krenk’s life was winning a Super Bowl ring with the Chicago Bears in 1985. Another shining moment he probably won’t soon forget is taken the celebrity division in the recent Boomer Esiason – Redbone Tournament fundraiser held here at Crocodile Bay  Resort, Costa Ruca. After a slow start on day one, Krenk’s boat landed 12 sailfish the second day of the 2 day event, and Krenk who had never caught a sailfish before finished with 6 releases.

 

 

 

 


Chicago Bear Mitch Krenk hams it up with a “mullet” hair piece.

Total points champion for the event which consisted of points for billfish and roosterfish went to Kelly Fiaman who scored with 7 roosterfish. Another NFL great Dave Rimington, fishing with Fiaman, finished with 5 roosters. Teammate Rob Hodel added the clincher and the team took first place in the inshore division with 13 roosterfish.

The tournament which was formally known as the Costa Rica Classic is over a decade old and has raised millions for Cystic Fibrosis and the children afflicted with the disease here in Costa Rica. Former Denver Bronco lineman Mark Cooper and tournament comedian also was on hand to keep everyone’s sides hurting.

The month of March has brought the best fishing for sailfish I have seen in 7 years. Boats have been raising double digits consistently, with days of seeing 15 to 20 sails per boat more common than a rarity. Several boats raised 30 or more sails a day. Every time it slowed for a day and I thought the run was over, the next day the numbers were right back up there again.

Roosterfish have been a different story. We have had to work hard for the prized inshore gamefish and most anglers gave up early and ran offshore for the sure bet on sailfish. Yellowfin tuna also haven’t showed lately but with so many sails making drags sing, no cares.


Dave Rimington who spent his career knocking people on their keesters in the NFL gently handles a baby rooster before letting it go

Costa Rica Roosterfish
Inshore champion Kelly Fiaman with one of his many roosters


Closing Awards Ceremony – Dave Rimington Right

Spring Specials at Crocodile Bay Resort!

“Spouse on the House” Fishing Package Get a free $1,595 Spa vacation for your wife FREE when you book any fishing package of three (3) days or more!

Don’t take our word for it – Here is a testimonial from Brian Tooms on his fishing trip with his wife Trish this past week at Crocodile Bay Resort, Costa Rica!

“We honeymooned in Crocodile Bay in 2007 after getting married in Los Vegas on the way down.
This year to celebrate my retirement from 37 years of being a Locomotive engineer with Canadian National Railways my wife said we could go pretty much anywhere in the world for a trip. She knew it would be a fishing trip and she was surprised and pleased that I picked Crocodile Bay.
My wife has a severe water phobia and she has been getting a lot better and this last trip you would never know. That is due in a large part to the professionalism of the guides, captains and mates that helped her and made her feel relaxed and comfortable on the water.
Trish surprised herself by going out in a kayak for the first time and having a fantastic time. The spa is a huge plus and she is always telling her friends about it, and the animal sanctuary where she returned to see her buddies Sweetie and Poppy.
The whole setting, wildlife, friendly staff, the other guests that you meet, all make it a fantastic experience for couples. On the water we saw the whale sharks, hundreds of dolphins surrounding the boat, pilot whales and scores of birds.
The fishing was amazing, some days were slower than others and Trish caught her first sailfish during a doubleheader that was incredible. She is so proud of being able to do it herself she bought a carved sailfish and a picture frame to put on her desk at work.
I am addicted to the take of a billfish on a fly rod, it’s the ultimate dry fly fishing and anything else doesn’t measure up so you have ruined me for any other fishing:)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I caught a 200lb blue marlin on the fly on our honeymoon that was my fish of a lifetime.

Costa Rica Fishing Report, November 2011

Crocodile Bay November, 2011 Costa Rica Fishing Report
From Costa Rica Fishing Reports at www.crocodilebay.com

Costa Rica Blue Marlin

The Lady in the Blue Dress Shows up to Welcome Guests in November!

Todd Staley Costa Rica Fishing DirectorI really like November. It is sometimes crazy to switch gears after being closed for the month of October and working shorter days, but I love the excitement of cranking up a new season. The October rains left us with lots of green water offshore the first part of the month so most anglers stayed inshore rather than put in the time to get the billfish to bite.

They were rewarded with lots of roosterfish action
and big cubera snapper. Mark Harwood who had a good ole rivalry between Oklahoma and Texas with his fishing buddy Brian took the big snapper of the week with a 44 lb monster.

Strike

Costa Rica Sailfish
Brian shows off the years first sailfish! Way to keep it in the water!

Cubera Snapper
Crocodile Bay’s Maria Soto sizes up one of the many cubera snappers taken this week!

Crocodile Bay Flights Costa Rica

nature air costa rica

Flyin

Roosterfish

David Plummer’s group from England and Scotland finally broke the ice on billfish and at one point had a triple header hooked up. Day by day the water is getting cleaner and Plummer’s group also took the first marlin of the season.

Sailfish

Collin

dorado

Roosterfish
Nothing quite like catching a free-range roosterfish inshore where Costa Rica’s largest coastal rainforest meets the Pacific coast!

Liam Collins arrived yesterday morning and promptly told me he was out to catch a marlin. Well he certainly packed his “luck of the Irish” in his bag for the long flight to Costa Rica. First day out he bagged a 200 lb blue marlin, a sail, and three tuna in the 25 to 30 lb range. He only missed a grand slam by not getting a dorado. Last season the dorado made a sparse showing but they have been showing up in better numbers already this season. Reports from my fishing friends all along the southern coast are also telling me they are back.

That’s super good news because that means the marlin will be around in good numbers also. The blue water is about 8 miles offshore and every day is a little better. I love November

Todd Staley
Fishing Director,
Crocodile Bay Resort
Puerto Jimenez, Costa Rica

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