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Panama Monthly Fishing Reports

INSHORE DINOSAURS Best Fishing Trip Ever By Far

The inshore dinosaurs were too much for any light tackle under 60lb. I caught 5 different species of fish in 4 hours and all of them were world class fish. But that was to be out done by the a 160 lbs. Yellow Fin Tuna that hit while trolling skipjack, it hit around 11:30 am with a long battle making me excited to see it in the boat. About 15 minutes later a 400 lb. Blue Marlin struck with a quick battle to the boat and a nice healthy fish release!

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4 - 5 - 4 FISHING PACKAGE & Much More!

Get here for August's MARLIN MADNESS if you want to CATCH THE BIG ONE!

August is the month for Black Marlin, book now for the big hogs! Black Marlin Special ---- 4-5-4 FISHING PACKAGE ---- 4 Anglers 5 Nights 4 Days of Fishing ... only $2,961 angler! Panama Big Game Fishing Club is happy to offer All Inclusive 2012 - 2013 Fishing Packages. That means, NO BAR TABS, NO in country plane tickets, and NO transfer fees or other hidden costs. The all inclusive fishing trip of a lifetime is only a few clicks away!

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Come Fish Panama's JURASSIC PARK!

Bait was easy to catch today and everything was biting. Cubera, Roosters, Amberjack, Grouper, Jacks, Barracuda. My brother Brad caught a 100lb+ Tuna and we were in a big bait ball. Water was allot cleaner today. Roosterfish and Cubera tomorrow.

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May & June 2011

We are in the middle of a major renovation here - this finds me overseeing 4 different construction crews - all cabanas are gutted and being re-done - along with the clubhouse remodel - new infinity pool going in - new captains quarters - new engines in the Bertram and Albermarle and a new 28ft Carolina open Sport Fish on the way down – Wow - we are also working on purchasing another Sport Fish and have permits for a new dock, retaining wall, combo Garage (for off road utility transport) and generator room. My new living quarters are going in above - which will be started as we finish the current work. In May we did get the new owner (Mark Charman) out for a day - since he is spending $1,000,000 on Panama Big Game I figured the least we could do is fish him for a day and he had a bang up day with many tuna - 20 to 150lb range - first time for him taking them on surface poppers (along with live bait) so he really enjoyed that. It is an exciting time here at PBG - but trust me - I will be glad when all the dust settles and I am back into my regular rhythm. July, August and Sept are some of the best months to fish here - very good for marlin - especially larger Blacks and the best time for all around fishing here. It is the rainy season but it rains late in the afternoon or at night – so it is not a problem for fishing and can fish all day and not see another boat - that is my kind of fishing. We just finished fishing the first group here after the new ownership. Bryce, Ty and Conner had a great trip with a lot of action - big tuna - one well over 200lb - which is the latest I have seen the 200 +lb tuna here - usually they are gone by the first of June – a lot of nice Mullet Snapper, Cubera Snapper and Bryce caught his first Black Marlin.

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April 2011

John Donovan, owner of the number one rated charter company in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico, Red Rum Cabo http://www.redrumcabo.com/ returned to Panama Big Game lodge with his brother Jim, cousin Bill Brady and myself-his “Pitch” instructor, Mason Tenaglia. We had a very good week with four days of the yellow fin bite at its best. Live sardines, caught on the way out by mate Narcisso and good intelligence provided by Captain “Jamba’s network got them in the fish the whole time. “We got tired of catching 70 lb. tuna and went looking for marlin and the “giants” had a shot at a Blue Marlin, but lost it. A great time was had by all. Thanks, Mason (130lb tuna-top in the group).

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March 2011

March was tuna tuna everywhere - which is normal here. Marlin was not as good as usual - March being one of the best months but 8 groups caught 11 Marlin - with 3 of the groups not getting any. The afternoon tuna bite was good to strong just about everyday. Catching a lot of fish on spinning tackle with surface poppers and a lot of tuna over 150lb getting out in front and dropping back live Bonito.

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February 2011

February was all over the board here, fishing water conditions changing daily - not used to that here. Fishing was 50-50 between very good and slow. 4 groups caught 0 marlin and the other 4 groups caught a total of 18 - 12 Blacks and 6 Blues - with one group catching 12 of them. Sails where around in okay numbers - Dorado where not here as they usually are but the ones that where caught where large fish - also some large Cubera Snapper where caught (we release these) and had some good action with surface poppers on Mullet snapper. 4 tuna caught over 200lb and some smaller ones on poppers - but not the numbers we are used too. We had two groups fishing here from new countries - First was Per-Gunnar (great fisherman) and Marianne from Sweden- a great couple and allot of fun - and first group from Zambia-Safari Hunters - really great people - anyone looking to go on a real African hunt - I would contact them – had amazing stories to listen to - first day ever blue water fishing got a Black Marlin, Blue Marlin and a large sailfish - next day a double - 400lb Black and 500lb Blue – both released - so now they have some fishing stories to tell as well - Mike and Val - Wild Cat Safaris wildcat@zamtel.zm and John and Laura - Muchinga Adventures - www.muchingaadventures.com email johndp@zamnet.zm

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January 2011

January we had cold green water for about half of the month - which hurt the action. Water was from 78-80 and green. The rest of the month had 80-82 degree blue water and did quite well. It Really has turned here the last few days - 12 Marlin were caught - 7 Blacks and 5 Blues - with 4 over 500lbs in the last 4 days of January.

Also have some excellent video of a pod of Killer Whales swimming and playing around one of our boats - swimming underneath and planing off of the bow wake - hope to have that ready for next months report. They are very seldom here in this area - Captain last saw them in 2006 (cold water current also) and it has been 15 years since the Mate last saw them. Doing good on tuna - lots of 100lb + Yellowfin around and sails are here in greater numbers than they have been for some time. Dorado (dolphin) - which usually are here in great numbers are not but the ones we are catching are big fish - most over 30lb.

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September 2010

We had two groups fishing here this September. Many large snapper caught - chucking up with sardines then free lining, surface poppers, live Bonito off of the bottom and vertical jigging - all proved successful. Many snapper over 20lb with four Cubera snapper around or over 60lb and a 42lb Mullet snapper (within a few pounds of the all tackle record) being the best ones caught. Also all the Cuberas where released. We also got 3 Black Marlin (all Anglers first timers) with two 500 pounders - on live Bonito (this with mainly fishing the snapper bite) - and had a few more up in the air - 10 to 50lb yellow fin - trolling and surface poppers, wahoo, dorado, blue jacks, Rooster fish, amber jacks rounding out the catch. Humpback whales spotted almost every day off shore - September proved again a great month to fish here - and with out hardly another boat in sight. Capt. Lee

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August 2010

We had 5 groups (Anglers from all over the world – Canada, Uruguay, Brazil, Costa Rica, Lebanon and USA). They caught/released 11 Marlin - this is with just fishing 30% of the time for Marlin - most come here for the inshore action this time of year. Wahoo, Amberjack, Mullet snapper, Cubera snapper, smaller Yellowfin tuna on surface poppers rounded out the action. Also seeing Humpback whales almost every day - seeing a Mother Humpback breaching along side her calf is worth the price of admission. July, August and September are some of the best months to fish Panama - very good for Marlin - best for inshore - fish many days and not see another boat - that is a big plus for me. This also is the rainy season - but 90% of the time it rains late in the evening or at night and the seas are calm. We did have 3 bad weather days this month with slow fishing but the rest of the month was good with lots of action every day. Capt. Lee

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April 2010

We had 12 groups and caught 14 marlin - 11 blacks and 3 blues with one blue around 800lb - this is about half the average Marlin catch for this time of year and had some slow fishing with hot water around the middle of March - but was less than a week - and cleared right out. The good news was the bait balls moving through. March and April are the months for them but this year was by far the most we have seen. When they are close to structure the snapper come up and are really a lot of fun. Tuna are chasing them so strong the tuna run half way up the boat. We use a dip net to boat the bait. There is a YouTube clip sent in by Jean in the report and also we filmed here last week with Trevor Gowdy and have excellent underwater action - with a large Blue Marlin chasing a 100lb Tuna up right under a Kayak - Trev had the tuna hooked up at the time - plus a lot more action so am looking forward to that show.

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February 2010

We had 16 groups this Jan-Feb with 14 black Marlin and 3 blue marlin caught-about half what the average should be for this time period. Had good catches on 100lb plus yellow fin tuna (9 over 200lb), Cubera snapper, mullet snapper, rooster fish, sailfish and still good on Dorado (dolphin). Second week in Feb we had 88 degree water around for a week with two really slow days then it cleared right out. Usually when we get bad water here is stays for awhile so was glad to see that clear out so soon. Also did not see any effect from the Chilean Tsunami - either with waves or any change in the fishing so feel very lucky for that. It is the first week in March as I write this - we have excellent fishing with large schools of sardines moving through now - March and April is the time they move through. Snappers are up in the boil and can be caught by ripping jigs through the school and on top water - really fun to catch snapper like that. Also had Sally doing some bird watching on the Island - she photographed 89 different species of birds and she has spent some time bird watching here in Central America so when she stated that 18 of the 89 species where the first time she has photographed them I was impressed with that.

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December 2009

We had 8 groups this month with 10 Black and 1 Blue marlin released. The big story was the almost daily double digit number of large Dorado (dolphin). This is the time of the year for them but have never seen so many 20lb plus fish here for such a long time. Also Mullet snapper has been very good - with a lot of them caught on surface poppers. Cubera snapper and Rooster fish has been good - yellow fin tuna have been spotty but have caught some nice fish and they are starting to show up now. Sailfish has been good also with many fish caught over 100lb. Wahoo has been very disappointing - usually double digit per day this time of year but have only caught a few.

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November 2009

November is always the start of the best Dorado (Dolphin) and Sailfish. Black Marlin are here all year and Blues run December through April. We had 4 groups this November and caught 6 Black Marlin. Dorado was as much as you could catch - double digit almost every day, wahoo good but not the double digit numbers we are used too, very good Snapper with a lot of large Cubera, spotty with Yellow fin tuna but we did get 3 fish around 100lb. The 200+ lb. tuna will be around soon. Did OK on Sails . Water is blue - has been no higher than 85 degrees and all looks good heading into December.

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April 2009

We had four groups fishing this month. Most days where spent fishing inshore but still we caught 6 Black Marlin. So still very good action with Marlin. Good action with Rooster fish, Cubera Snapper, Mullet Snapper, Sailfish - was not as good with Yellowfin tuna. Usually this time of year is the best for Yellowfin tuna - including the 200lb. fish. They where around but where spotty - not like they should be. Water quality is very good - so are the temps, so all looks good heading into May.

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February - March 2009

We had 15 groups fishing this Feb and March with 31 Marlin caught - 28 Blacks and 3 Blues. Only 3 groups did not catch at least 1 marlin and two had shots. So in both months only 1 group did not have at least a shot at a marlin. Tuna was also good - not what it usually is but still okay with 4 yellow fin caught over 200 lb but most fish between 20 and 100lb. Middle of February was a little slow with over all action but all groups caught at least 1 marlin. Snapper, rooster fish, amber jacks and sails finished out the catch. There is cold water south of us in Panama Bay and hot water just this side of the Costa Rica border so for the last 3 weeks the Marlin fishing around La Drones has been excellent. All conditions look very good here heading into April.

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January 2009

We had 8 groups fishing this month with a total of 20 marlin. Highlight was having the two brothers - Chuck and Mike - hooking and landing a double - blacks around 300lb each - Anglers and crew did a good job with that - then having Len (father) landing a 500lb+ black later that day. Sails where also here in good numbers with most fish over 100lb. Tuna where here in good numbers also - with fish up to 240lb. caught along with Snapper - both Mullet and Cubera (we release all Cubera). Rooster fish and Dorado where also in good numbers with allot of the action with poppers on spinning tackle.

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December 2008

We had 4 groups fishing this December and got 8 marlin - 3 Blues and 5 Blacks - 1 of the blacks at 600lb+. The last group fishing - April and Kenny got 6 Marlin - fishing 3 days for them. We also had excellent Dorado (Dolphin) - most fish over 20 lb., mullet snapper, rooster fish - with both being caught on surface poppers, cubera snapper, wahoo - but still not the double digit per day catches we are used to this time of year, sails - with most over 100lb., spotty yellow fin but they will start any day now, amber jacks, blue jacks, sierra mackerel rounding things out. Water conditions along the 3000ft. drop off and the 600ft platform have been excellent - clean blue water and good surface temp. - 82 to 85 degrees.

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October 2008

We had 4 groups fishing and got 3 black Marlin and 1 blue Marlin. Inshore fishing was very good with good numbers of Cubera snapper, Mullet snapper, rooster fish, sierra mackerel, jacks - with allot of the action on surface poppers. Wahoo was good - not like it should be this time of year - but a couple of them almost every day and we had large numbers of Dorado (dolphin) with most fish over 20lb. Spotty on Yellow fin tuna but caught 1 over 200lb - for this time of year having one that size is not common - but last two weeks have not had any yellowfin around

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September 2008

Fishing started off the first of August on the slow side - some tuna action offshore but picked up after that = both inshore and offshore. A little slow on wahoo - not the double digit per day numbers we are used to for this time of year and spotty with rooster but some real quality fish caught. Very good snapper - cubera, mullet, yellow, dorado, and with 3 - 200lbs. plus yellowfin tuna. Caught, blue jacks, 2 Black Marlin,1 Blue Marlin (with 80% of the fishing inshore), sailfish, seirra mackerel, amberjack rounding things out. We release all billfish, Cubera snapper, Rooster fish and have just started releasing all female dorado.

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July 2008

The end of April and May we had terrible water here - never have seen that in the 7 years we have been fishing in Panama. Usually the tuna fishing is all you want with good Marlin and great inshore action but had no action off shore and some action inshore. It cleared out the middle of June and July was good. We had large numbers of Dorado (dolphin), most over 20 lbs. or better that we usually do not have this time of year along with yellow fin tuna up to 200 lbs. The inshore with Rooster fish, Mullet snapper (allot of them on top water), cubera snapper, and blue Jacks was very good. With 4 groups fishing we only got 2 marlin - both Blacks-which is low. Normally in July, August and Sept. we average at least two marlin per group. Also we caught a few Wahoo but this time of year we should be catching double digit wahoo every day, if spending time to catch them. We are also seeing Humpback Whales almost every day out.

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March - April 2008

Fishing this month was very good - added 24 marlin to the total for the year-bringing the total to 76: 61 blacks, 14 blues, and 1 stripped marlin. Would have had more but 5 groups where just fishing tuna and inshore. Large dorado, yellow fin tuna where is good numbers along with inshore action - cubera snapper, rooster fish, blue travale, wahoo, etc. and some sailfish off shore also. The only slow period was a few days in the second week in April - but got 2 black marlin. Starting April 24 we had an algae bloom - have never seen one like this before - that shut down all off shore action - but still had OK inshore action. It should clear out in a few more days and everything should get back to normal.

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February 2008

Marlin fishing stayed good with eight groups catching 19 marlin - 16 blacks, two blues and one striped marlin - not many stripes here. Yellow fin here in good numbers but fish up to 100lb – a lot of fun on surface poppers. We should be seeing the 200lb plus tuna here any day - this is the time of year for them. We also had large dolphin in good numbers and decent catches of wahoo - both better than normal -also mullet snapper, cubera snapper, amber jack, rooster fish, sailfish and blue jacks rounded things out. Water has been blue, in the low 80s so all looks good heading into March. Also the sharks that we where catching last month that are not normally here I think are salmon sharks - included a picture of one on this report.

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January 2008

Marlin fishing this month has been the best anyone has seen. Through Jan. 27th, with still 4 fishing days left -we fished 8 groups and have caught 30 marlin so far. Also a lot of large dolphin, mullet snapper, cubera snapper, sailfish and have caught 17 tuna over 100 lb. with the biggest at 240lb. We also had a lot of sharks here for two weeks. I am waiting to get a photo back from Trevor Gowdy - he was filming here and caught a 12 footer around 600lb. Most were around 150lb - captains called them Needle sharks - look a lot like a Mako but are brown - not blue. So am interested to get them identified. Never have caught them here before and last 5 days have not caught another one. Also had a big blow the first week - could not fish for two days but it laid right down after that.

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November - December 2007

Fishing last two weeks in November had good inshore action - large cubera snapper - rooster fish and except for two slow days good off shore. Lots of yellow fin tuna, wahoo, larger dolphin and three black marlin. Weather was more rainy than usual but no problem for fishing. I Do not book trips in October - worst month here for weather. December was the same-only better and with sailfish starting to turn up - multiple strikes common - two blue marlin and four black marlin. Also large yellow fin -over 100 lb. are here already. We have schools of smaller yellow fin all year but the big ones start showing up in January with March and April the best months for large yellow fin and May the best month for the shear numbers of yellow fin. Last time they showed up early - first week in January - it was a big year here for large tuna so off to a good start for them.

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September 2007

I was lucky enough to spend four days on the water at Panama Big Game this September taking pictures for New Jersey boys Ron Torkas and Joe Ozalas. Wahoo to 50 lbs. were everywhere. I lost count early on. Small yellow fin tuna were hitting on top water—exciting action! Lots of small dorado, yellow snapper, blue jack, bonito, and rainbow runners kept the boys busy with too many jack and houndfish to keep track of. Oh yeah, we ran into a couple of Marlin too.

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July 2007

Again July and August are two of the best months to fish here. We only had 2 groups this year though. Always a pleasure to have Howard Chong with us - fished 3 days in July - his fifth time here. Had a very good day inshore with wahoo, jacks, sierra mackerel, cubera snapper and rooster fish - action all day. Next two days fishing offshore the highlight was a black marlin each day with nice catches of wahoo, yellow fin tuna caught on spinning with surface poppers, and dolphin.

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June 2007

One of the translations for the word Panama is variety. Whoever originated this translation must certainly have been a fisherman. After broad experiences in Central and South America, it must be said that for variety, Panama ranks among the best that the hemisphere has to offer.

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May - June 2007

Tuna fishing with surface poppers was all you wanted but smaller fish running from 10 to 80 lb. The first week in May we got some tuna over 100 lbs. and a few over 200 lbs. Black Marlin still good with 4 out of 5 groups catching a black. Fair wahoo action but they will pick up with August being the first real strong month for them. Had a few sails and some smaller dorado (dolphin) also. Inshore action was very good with snapper, rooster fish, sierra mackerel, blue jack and amber jack in good numbers.

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April 2007

We had very good inshore fishing all month, rooster fish, cubera snapper, mullet snapper, amber jack, broom tail grouper, blue jack and wahoo. The off shore was a little slow the first of the month but yellow fin tuna and marlin came on strong. Allot of yellow fin tuna over 200 lb. with 5 yellow fin between 125lb. and 250lb. caught on surface poppers with spinning tackle. Black Marlin -1 at 800lb. and Blue Marlin - with 4 in one day - came on strong the last half of the month. We have blue marlin, black marlin and yellow fin tuna over 200lb. - caught on spinning tackle including the strike-on film. Trevor Gowdy was filming here the last week - targeting large yellow fin on spinning tackle and marlin - and also had a pretty good day fishing the river just a short distance from our Resort with the highlight a 45 lb. Corvina. As usual April was one of the best fishing months - start of wahoo, strong Black and Blue Marlin with yellow fin tuna being the highlight - always the best month for yellow fin over 200lb.

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