If you’re looking for a few giant trevally fishing tips, you’ve come to the right spot. In this post I’m going to point out a few bits of advice regarding the environment, techniques, bait and tackle for fishing GT.
Where To Catch Giant Trevally
First of all, giant trevally can be found in the subtropical and tropical waters of the Pacific and Indian Oceans (see Distribution of Giant Trevally Over the Globe). When it comes to the environment where GTs can be caught, you should know that they inhabit quite a wide range of inshore and offshore waters, being common in shallow coastal waters, with rocky reefs, lagoons, tidal flats, embayments, and since they are quite tolerant to low salinity, they can also be caught in estuaries and even rivers. In case the bottom is sandy or muddy, sprinkled with small reef patches, giant trevally usually patrol between them. Although the older GTs often move to deeper reefs, to depths often greater than 100 m, but they are continuously on patrol, often returning to the shallow waters.
GT Fishing Techniques
As a general idea, when a giant trevally strikes, it will charge out of the reef, grab your lure and then quickly return to the reef. If you let it do that, it will probably cut off the line on the rocks or on the coral. Trevally don’t usually nibble on their prey, they hoover it whole, so it’s best to always hold your rod, keep the line tight, and give the fish a bit of time to leave with the lure before hooking. A reel with free spool is indicated for this.
Once hooked, a giant trevally will fight all the way up to the boat, and it’s quite tricky to just mucle it up since they have a pretty soft mouth, the hook can easily loosen out or rip out of their mouth. Also, try to keep a GT away from any structure, away from the bottom and from the rocks, and don’t let it rush under the boat as you bring it up. It just might cut your line there. Happened to me a few times.
Among the techniques used for trevally are jigging, trolling and it can also be caught on live bait. The most entertaining way to catch GT is with top water lures, in shallow water.
For surface angling, a high speed jig and fast retrieving is indicated. Like most predators, giant trevally react to movement, so surface action and splash will surely draw their attention.
If trolling, you can catch giant trevally as a bycatch, while fishing for other fish. If you’re fishing for GT, it’s best to cast a popper on the side of the boat as you are trolling over a reef edge or a reef patch that looks like it might have a few trevally.
If you’re using live bait, you can use it without any weight, dragging it under the surface, or one with a weight for deep sea fishing, or both on the same line.
GT Bait and Lures
Giant trevally prey on various types of fish, crustaceans, molluscs and cephalopods. Basically, a trevally will hoover in whatever moves by and can fit into its mouth. Therefore, if you’re gonna use live bait, small mackerel and herring are not a bad choice. Or, depending on which side of the GT habitat you are, you can use, live poddy mullet, Also shellfish works (however, you might catch small ones), eels, octopus and squid, pippis, prawns, mussels, tuatua, pilchards etc.
As for lures, well, they have to mimic the GT’s food in that particular environment. In general, poppers and stickbaits work best. Here are a few lure names that are quite effective and which you might want to try out: Heru Cubera, Heru Skipjack, Yozuri Surface Bulls, Yozuri Crystal Minnows, Rapala Red Heads, Rapala CD Minnows, Atomic Shad – Grey Ghost. And since you’re fishing for giant trevally, when it comes to a lure, think “giant”.
Many anglers use custom-made angling equipment investing up to a few thousand bucks in them. Therefore, you might find expensive some of the recommendations I’m going to make here. So, here are a few elements you’ll need for a solid giant trevally tackle:
Rods: Smith Komodo Dragon (for poppers), Carpenter Coral Viper (for stickbaits), Calstar 700H (7ft, 1 piece) are some of the rods specially designed for GT. If you’re on a tight budget, an Ugly Stik Tiger 7,or, as a general idea, a 7-7.5 rod, with a solid backbone and a sensitive tip should do.
Reels: Daiwa Saltiga 6000GT, Shimano Stella 10000, 16000 and 20000, Ryobi Safari 5000 or, one on a budget, Penn 330GT. Trevally fishing is rugged and puts a lot of stress on the reel. If you want something long lasting, and smoothly operational, that works great with a heavy braided line, look for reels with Titanium gears and a lot of ball bearings.
Line: No less than 100lb braided line, a brand with decent abrasion resistance. A good choice – 100lb Berckley Whiplash.
Rigs: One of the most popular rigs for GT is the simple, 1 meter length leader, 100lb fuorocarbon or 200lb monofilament, connected to a swivel with a running sinker applied on the main line.
Hooks: These need to be very strong as well. Good choices would be Owner ST51 or Gamakatsu 4/0 or 5/0. Barbless hooks are also a good choice, to make the unhooking easier, so you can go with Barbless 4/0 or 5/0.