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OTHER NAMES
Dolphin, mahi mahi.

DESCRIPTION
The dorado is perhaps the most beautifully colored of all saltwater fishes. Unfortunately, the bright turquoise, green and yellow patterns fade almost immediately upon death. The male's profile will have a very tall, blunt head. Females will be much mure streamlined.

TYPICAL HABITAT
Dorados seem to be attracted to floating objects in offshore waters. Boards, rope and other debris will likely hold dolphin. Off the southeastern United States they frequently congregate around sargassum, a brown alga, which serves as a hiding place and a source of food.

FEEDING HABITS
Many of the foods eaten by dolphin such as small fishes, crabs, and shrimps are found in floating mats of sargassum. Feeding characteristics of dolphin vary greatly. At times the dolphin is a voracious predator that pursues and captures fast swimming fish such as flyingfish, mackerels and juvenile dolphin. On other occasions it seems content merely to nibble on small crustaceans and insects that float on the surface in the weedlines. In addition to foods, a variety of items discarded at sea by man are consumed by dolphin. Small light bulbs, pieces of plastic wrappers, rope, and string have been removed from dolphin stomachs.

AGE AND GROWTH
Like most other pelagic fish, dolphin grow fast and do not live very long (only 5 years). Average fork lengths for mature males and females is 55.5 inches. Males grow faster and live longer than females.
FOOD QUALITY

Both flesh and roe are excellent to eat. A suggested method of preparation is to place the fillets and roe over charcoal and baste them with melted butter containing garlic and onion salts.

Dorados are also delicious in a fish salad. To prepare, 3 cups of broiled or baked fish are flaked. Add ½ cup of chopped green pepper, ½ cup of chopped sweet pickles, 1/4 cup of mayonnaise, 2 tablespoons of lemon juice, 2 tablespoons of seafood seasoning, 12 chopped green olives, and 1 teaspoon of prepared mustard. Add salt, pepper, and red pepper to taste. Mix all of the ingredients lightly, but thoroughly. Chill and serve on a bed of lettuce with tomato wedges.
Serves 6 to 8.


SPORTING QUALITIES
Sport fishermen trolling lures from large boats are most effective at catching dolphin. Anglers prefer vividly colored man-o-wars, feathers, skirts, and other lead-headed lures rigged with 6/0 to 9/0 hooks baited with squid or mullet strips. Favorite lures are green and yellow feathers, red artificial squid, and purple jelly bellies. Standard boat rods and reels with 30- to 80-pound test line are used. For best results, baits are trolled at about 4 to 6 knots adjacent to weed lines. Adventuresome anglers may fish for dolphin with saltwater fly rods and large poppers or baitfish patterns.
Dolphin are known to thrash violently when brought aboard, risking damage to the boat and injury to anglers. If this happens, place a towel or t-shirt over the fish's eyes. The abesnce of sight has been known to calm the fish considerably.

WORLD RECORD
88 lbs. Exuma, Bahamas.

PREFERRED TEMPS
72F to 78F

More Species:
Dorado | Marlin | Rooster Fish | Sailfish | Snapper
Snook
| Tarpon | Tuna | Wahoo


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