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Old 07-09-2002, 10:14 AM
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Default Catching Bonita in Florida - And do you eat them?

Hi Guys -

I was just wondering about the fish called Bonita here in Florida. I grew up in California catching a fish called Bonita - it is definitely in the tuna family with the typical tuna shape and straight lines running at a diagonalfrom the head down toward the tail. As opposed to the Mackerel in CA that had squiggly lines running vertically.

Anyway, we used to eat our Bonita in CA, but I was talking to a couple of flats fisherman last night who said that you do not want to eat Bonita caught here in FL. Is this true? We used to just trim out the blood line before cooking and the fish was pretty close to a good tuna steak.

Not only was the eatin' good, but these fish were a heck of a lot of fun on light to medium tackle.

Can anyone give me the skinny on these fish??

Thanks!
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Old 07-09-2002, 11:01 AM
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Default Catching Bonita in Florida - And do you eat them?

Bonita, properly called Little Tunny are different from true Altantic Bonita, which are excellent fare. They are also known as False Albacore.

When I lived in Stuart, I used to bleed them in a bucket of saltwater and then ice them. If I didn't need the meat to bail dolphin, I would poach it (not the bloodline meat) and make tuna salad. Better than any from a can. Makes pretty good sashimi as well. But I never lived it grilled. Most folks think they are trash. Make sure you know the difference from Bonita and Blackfin Tuna, which are excellent grilled.
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Old 07-09-2002, 02:34 PM
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Default Catching Bonita in Florida - And do you eat them?

I think... Little Tunny and False Albacore (Dark blue/green back with wormy lines) are one in the same. Excellent lite tackle speedsters... not meant for the table.
Bonita (Greenish back with straight lines) are also a great lite tackle fish... some people do eat. I personally have not tryed them. I have heard if you prep them well.. they are good.
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Old 07-10-2002, 06:27 AM
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Default Catching Bonita in Florida - And do you eat them?

Work2fish,

This might help you.
http://www.saltwatersportsman.com/sa...13326,,00.html

Bonito(Atlantic Bonito-Sarda sarda) is good to eat, needs to be bled. False Albacore(little Tunny-Euthynnus alletteratus) isn't fit for cat food, I'm told.

False albacore is the better fighting of the two.
imho
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Old 07-10-2002, 09:44 AM
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Default Catching Bonita in Florida - And do you eat them?

Little tunny are what the folks in South Florida mistakenly call Bonita, which is the same as what the folks in NC call Flase albacore.

And really, if you bleed them in saltwater as soon as you catch them, and cut out the dark center line, it makes very tasty sashimi.

I still like to trade them in for dolphin. I was once bailing dolphin with bonita (little tunny) chunks when I ran out. Tried cut ballyhoo and they turned their nose up and swam away. [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif[/img]
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Old 07-11-2002, 10:09 AM
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Default Catching Bonita in Florida - And do you eat them?

Good advice from swampdogg. They make better fish bait than human bait. [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif[/img]
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Old 07-13-2002, 05:17 AM
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Default Catching Bonita in Florida - And do you eat them?

Some people soak the filets in milk or butter milk over night, they say you cant tell the difference from Black Fin when this is done, at any rate I would bleed and cut out the blood line.

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Old 07-14-2002, 09:42 AM
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Default Catching Bonita in Florida - And do you eat them?

Ive eaten lil tunnys or false albies a few times and they were good.
Bleed them, let them soak overnight steaked in a marinade or milk.
BBQ the steaks, then chill them.
Break the meat off the steaks { crumble it} & add Italian salad dressing the oil & spices type not creamy. Chill again
Its to die for taste JUST like any quality tuna fish.

Shiver me timbers, Capt. Alan
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