About the Bonefish

The bonefish, is probably pound for pound the strongest and fastest running salt-water fish, and it is one of the coolest to have your photo taken with. The bonefish is of the species of the Albulidae, or bonefishes. Its scientific name can be translated as “white fox.”

Bonefish are amphidromous, living in inshore tropical waters, moving onto shallow tidal flats to feed with the incoming tide, and retreating to deeper water as the tide ebbs. Its weight may reach 5lbs, though a more representative size would be about a third of that. A big bonefish, a lifetime fish would be any fish in excess of ten pounds or more. Silvery in color with dusky fins—the bases of the pectoral fins are yellow. Heavily schooling fish, with some of the larger individuals traveling singly or in schools.

Bonefish are considered to be among the world’s premier game fish, but they are virtually inedible, and they are eaten only in some locations by native populations.

As prolific as bonefish are, relatively little is known about them. The Bonefish Tarpon Trust is doing a great deal of scientific research on bonefish currently, and if you desire further information, they are an excellent and angler friendly source. Visit www.tarbone.org.

Bonefishing is a shallow-water pursuit done in depths ranging from 8 inches to several feet. Flats sporting currents; dropoffs along the edge and clean, healthy seagrass beds produce abundant small crabs and shrimps that bonefish prey upon. Bonefish are known to follow stingrays, looking for small prey items disturbed by the rooting stingrays.

More on the bonefish…

The Bonefish prefers shallows, estuaries, bays, grass flats, and other brackish areas at a depth from 0 to 84 meters. It is found worldwide in subtropical warm seas. In the Eastern Pacific, its range includes waters off California to Peru; the Western Atlantic range stretches from North Carolina to Florida, the Bahamas, the Antilles and the rest of the Caribbean almost to Brazil.

A pelagic fish, the Bonefish feeds on benthic creatures such as worms, crustaceans, and mollusks, rooting them out from the sandy bottom. Granular teeth, forming specialized dental plates, cover the bonefish’s tongue and upper jaw, and similar grinders are also present in the throat, helping the fish to grind up its prey. Small to medium-size bones often feed in schools. Sharks and barracuda frequently prey on bonefish, which may explain why the fish evolved such a sleek body for a fast getaway over the ages.