Top dog of our list of nearly a dozen different snapper. Since the Golfo Dulce became the largest Marine Area of Responsible Fishing several years ago – and shrimp boats and gill nets were banned from the gulf, snappers and other inshore species have made a great comeback. A big Pumpkin size Cubera will rush from the depths and smash a fast moving popper.
A number of Snapper species are found in Costa Rica including Cubera, Mullet, Pacific Red, Yellow, Rock, Spotted Rosy Snapper and more. The Snapper is highly sought after by recreational fisherman who are after a tasty meal. All of the above species of snapper boast a flakey, white, sweet meat.
Snapper typically prefer rocky structures or reefs that offer ledges and caves which provide them shelter from predators. There are a couple different ways to fish them. You can coerce them to emerge from the comfort of their protective cover with deep vertical Jigs (typically using live bait) or you may even entice them to the surface using poppers.
Snapper don’t particularly like being on the surface, so the noisier the popper the better, and you will need to be prepared for them to make a beeline back to the rocky protection of the reef where they are likely to break you off. You might want to consider a tighter drag and heavier test line to help prevent a deep run.
TYPES OF SNAPPER IN COSTA RICA
All species of Snapper are plentiful in Costa Rica. And, while your dinner will be fantastic with any variety of Snapper on your plate, the Red and Cubera Snapper are what we typically like to target since they tend to be the largest and most prolific of the bunch – providing you with a meal large enough for your entire party as well as a great photo op!
Red Snapper (called ‘Pargo Rojo’ in spanish)
As the name suggests, Red Snapper are pinkish to red in color. They can grow to nearly 3.5 feet long and can top 80 lbs in weight. They have a spiny dorsal fin and very sharp needle-like teeth, so be careful when handling them out of the water
Cubera (a.k.a. ‘Pacific Dog Snapper’)
The Cubera Snapper can have a reddish hue, similar to the coloring of the Red Snapper (although usually more of a reddish-brown, golden brown or bronze tone). However, what clearly distinguishes the Cubera Snapper is its large, pronounced canine teeth. While the Red Snapper has small needle-like teeth, the Cubera has very large, very menacing dagger like teeth protruding from both the upper and lower jaws.
Although it is not particularly active or aggressive – once you’ve successfully landed your Cubera you definitely want to exercise caution – getting you finger caught in their mouth could result in serious injury.
African pompano, bluefin trevally, a variety of jacks, grouper, mackerel, barracuda, bonitos, and an endless list of surprises including snook, wahoo and sharks make up the list of other fish caught while targeting roosters and snapper.
Our fleet is comprised of 33 and 35 foot Strike Tower boats as well as several 27 foot Rambo inboard diesels. We also have 24 and 25 foot Boston Whaler Outrages. All of boats have the ability to fish either offshore or inshore because of our generally calm sea conditions. In 17 years of operation we have only had two days when the ocean was too rough to go fishing. You will be pleasantly surprised to find an English speaking crew member on your boat as that is not always the case in other fishing operations. Do to an increased demand, we haven also added a fleet of fully outfitted Old Town fishing kayaks to increase the variety of fishing options offered at Crocodile Bay Resort.
Our boats are outfitted with Penn International 50’s and 30’s as well as both Penn spinning and conventional gear in 20 and 30 pound outfits. We always try to have live bait on-board before you leave the dock. We use Temple Fork Fly Fishing gear on-site but we welcome anglers to bring their own gear if they prefer.