Fishing For Amberjack: Handy and Successful Techniques

Firstly, all fishermen will agree that catching an amberjack is the greatest and most unforgettable experience of your life. It goes without saying that it will change your thinking about fishing and your life. This bloodthirsty giant exists only for us, who are looking for adventure, action and suspense.

The feeling when the fish pulls cannot be described with words. If you want to get a taste of amberjack fishing, please continue reading the article and you will not regret it. This fishing method has many details that you should take into consideration and some secrets that we decided to reveal.

These secrets are nothing more than techniques that came from abroad and we analyzed, understood and used them successfully. Thus, we decided to share our secrets with you.

A few words about Amberjack


The amberjack is fish that can be heavier than 70lbs. Young amberjack live in shoals with other fish and later they start to hunt alone. It basically lives in warm waters. During the winter it lives close to the sea bottom, but in summer it tends to move upwards.

Amberjack are also known as reef donkeys. True to their name, they can be found close to seamounts or reefs. Actually there are not specific locations but most people find them close to shipwrecks, oil platforms or in the middle of nowhere.

If you are fishing during summer, you can try fishing close to desert rocky islands because there are millions of small fish. Amberjack feed on small fish, like Atlantic chub Mackerel or other species of mackerel and mollusk of course. The fish is really aggressive and strong and it examines the bait carefully.

Consequently, you should choose the appropriate fishing tackle. The main fishing techniques for these fish are trolling and jigging. Professional fishermen use the long line technique. Equally important is the fact that amberjack fishing can be done during dusk and dawn.

Fishing Tackle

For the trolling technique you will need a trolling rod 30-50lbs. Pay close attention at the guides which should be definitely be roller guides. Roller guides are ideal for big fish and they do not destroy our braided line.

Thus, you should load your multiplier reel size 5000-7000 with 60lbs. braided fishing line. Well, do you think that the color of the line does not play an important role? Of course, it does!

It is scientifically proven that red is the ideal color for saltwater fishing. After reaching the depth of 20m (almost 70 feet), the water absorbs completely the color of the line and it becomes invisible.

As far as jigging is concerned, a 20-40lbs. jigging rod is the ideal option. At this point you can use a spinning reel size 4000-6000 with 40lbs. braided line. Both reels must have powerful drag systems which is also the most important part of your reel.

Moreover, a technique for amberjack used abroad is handline trolling. You will need a big tub with less than 400m Dacron braided line 50lbs and some weights. This technique has two advantages.

First of all, amberjack fishing requires fast reactions and this method makes it easier to react when you get a strong strike. Secondly, these fish do not live in a specific location. They move constantly.

Thus, you can adjust the weights and fish in different depths. Generally speaking, all your fishing tackle must be strong.

Fishing Lures or Baits

Undoubtedly, live baits are the best bait for amberjack fishing. The color, the smell and the incredible realistic floatation makes these fish to go mad. However, if you cannot find live bait, you can use fishing lures.

For jigging you will need jigs. The best live baits are squids and cuttlefish due to their realistic and natural floatation and action. Frozen-damp cuttlefish or squids can be found easily everywhere.

Furthermore, live Atlantic chub mackerel or Atlantic horse mackerel are the best bait and we can ensure you that it will work excellent. Since they are moving upwards, you can use poppers or lipless lures. For bottom fishing you can use diving lures with a long lip.

It would be a good idea to choose neutral colored fishing lures. They should look like real fish. There are many fancy-colorful lures on the market, but they do not work well.

Broken-back lures are the best because they have a better action in the water.

Live Bait Rig

Many of you may wonder how to rig our live bait. It is not easy because you must manage to rig it properly in order to give the bait a good and realistic floatation. On the first place, you will need fluorocarbon line 40lbs.

Moreover, two big game hooks N.3/0 and N. 6/0.

The rig step by step:

  1. Pull the small hook through the line and afterwards tie on the big hook.
  2. The small hook should be sliding along the length of the line so you must tie it in such way. The small hook must have adjustable length because we are not using the same bait each time. Secondly, the small hook drags the bait through the water.
  3. If you will use mollusk you should insert the big hook in the tentacles and the small in the rear part. Additionally, if you will use dead mollusk, it would be a good idea to attack a 30g weight on the belly.
live bait rig

“Sink the Rig” Technique

This is a unique technique and we can ensure you that it works excellent. Actually you will learn how you can sink the rig and go for bottom trolling. This method came from abroad (Japan) and it is really simple.

So, you have the leader line attached on the main line with a swivel. Take a 9ft.mono line 30mm and attach it on the swivel. At the end of this line, you should tie on a wing ring sinker which will “sink the rig”.

Cast the bait and wait until it goes down. Afterwards, retrieve 6 feet and just drag it through the water. There is no doubt that it is a great technique for amberjack and people used it hundreds of years ago.

Optimal Boat Speed to Catch Amberjack

If you are pursuing amberjack with live bait, you should not move faster than 1 mile per hour. This is the ideal speed. If you move faster, the speed could kill the bait.

With fishing lures you can move faster, 3.5-5 miles per hour.


We hope that the article was helpful. The key to success is patience and luck! Amberjack are great fish and everyone should have the opportunity to catch one. This experience will definitely change your fishing philosophy and broaden your fishing horizons.

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