RANDY WILSON, captain of the Talking Fish, is originally from Florida. He came to Costa Rica in 1974 and started exploring the rich waters of the Pacific ocean.

He spearheaded the effort to conserve the game fish in Costa Rica by developing his own techniques and lures in the 1980’s. He has continued to refine these over the years to ensure proper handling of the sailfish and marlin during hookup, fight and release.

Catch and release means bringing a fish to hand with hook and line using the best method possible to insure the fish’s survival after the hook is retrieved and the fish is released. Fish survival should be the number one priority.

Hook placement is the most important aspect to insure the fish’s survival after release. The fish must be hooked in the mouth, forward of the gills, preferably in the jaw. This is the most challenging target for hook up and of course increases the possibility of a thrown hook during a characteristically wild fight. It’s well worth it because of the ensuing acrobatic jumps.

This also tires the fish out, making for a quicker fight. Long fights lead to lactic acid build up in its system, a common cause for fish death after release.
A mouth hooked fish is easier controlled by the angler, again resulting in a shorter fight. Hook retrieval is greatly simplified and much less dangerous with a mouth hooked fish.

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Tackle should be light enough to allow the fish to sprint and jump wildly, yet strong enough to bring the fish to hand quickly without causing undue stress. Overpowering the fish will bring it to the boat full of dangerous fight, while tackle that’s too light can result in a prolonged battle causing the fish to die from exhaustion.

As the resource becomes more and more stressed, the conservation minded angler must realize that every fish hooked is a potential fatality.

Try to hook every fish in the mouth. Keep the fight time short and attempt to retrieve all hooks.