A 722-pound blue marlin was caught Saturday off Cabo San Lucas, the latest in a series of huge game fish pulled from the waters off Baja California's tip.
Last week it was a 427-pound yellowfin tuna, which is expected to become an all-tackle world record. On Thursday a 75-pound roosterfish was caught just beyond the surf zone.
The marlin, believed to be the largest of the summer-fall season, was caught by Dave Smith of Atlanta, Ga., aboard Attitude Adjustment. The 46-foot yacht books through Pisces Sportfishing.
The catch is sure to pique the interest of big-money anglers entered in the Bisbee's Black & Blue Marlin Tournament, scheduled Oct. 23-27. A marlin of this size could be worth $1 million or more if caught during the competition.
Smith, 58, hooked the marlin on a Zuker lure about 11 miles straight out from Land's End, and his reel was almost spooled by the fleeing billfish.
He's quoted in a Pisces blog post as saying, "This fish came out of nowhere. It almost spooled us but we recovered line; it was a brute--every time we would get it as close as 20 feet, it would take off at full speed and rip off line."
Asked whether he considered releasing the marlin, Smith said the billfish turned sideways and died close to the end of the battle. "I think its heart exploded," the angler said.
Pisces also reports that a 600-pound marlin was caught off the Punta Lobos area a day earlier, by commercial fishermen aboard a panga.
Most billfish are released off Cabo, whenever possible, except during the tournaments, which require the release only of smaller marlin. The Bisbee's event penalizes anglers for bringing in fish weighing less than 300 pounds.
--Image showing Smith with his catch is courtesy of Pisces Sportfishing