Albacore General Information

Schools of albacore inhabit the west coast seasonally between the middle of June through the end of October. Their normal range during this time is from Cedros Island, Baja California, to Oregon. Albacore have been spotted as far north as the central Alaskan coast and as far south as tropical Mexico. The remainder of the year they spend migrating to Japan and returning to California. Albacore prefer deep blue oceanic water and sea temperatures above 58 degrees F.

Albacore spawn in the central Pacific between January and June prior to their migration to the west coast. Female albacore first spawn when they are between 34-36" long. They release over a million eggs which are less than 1/25th of an inch in diameter. The eggs hatch within a few days. Albacore grow approximately 6-8 pounds per year. A six year old fish will be about 40" long and weigh about 45 pounds. A 70 pound albacore will be from 10-12 years old.

Albacore feed primarily on small fish such as anchovies and sardines but squid and small shrimp also make up important parts of their diet. Albacore will usually feed on what is the easiest food to obtain at the time.

During a good year albacore can be found within five to ten miles offshore. During a bad year they can be over 100 miles offshore making for long boat rides. Albacore follow the warm currents along the California coast. Study the sea surface temperature maps for warm/colder water gradients and troll the warm side with feather jigs and plugs. When one of the trolling rigs gets hit, circle around the school and cast live sardines or anchovies. If you are fishing on a party boat it is quite common that by chumming with live bait the school can be induced to surface. Try getting a bait or jig down about 60'. The bigger fish will be on the bottom of the school and you may wind up with an opah or bigeye tuna taking the bait.

Recent Albacore Articles & Reports

Take Your Pick Of Salmon Or Bottomfish

Written By: Dan Bacher,
August 15, 2014

(San Francisco) Chinook salmon fishing off the Marin County Coast has improved while live bait anglers continue to haul in big catches of rockfish and lingcod.

A half-day trip aboard the Bass Tub on Saturday, August 9 produced 9 salmon to...

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Lingcod And Albacore Are Both Hot

Written By: Dan Bacher,
October 26, 2013

Passengers going on both rockfish/lingcod adventures and offshore albacore tuna trips are experiencing hot action when the weather allows.

The 16 anglers aboard the Kahuna landed 70 rockfish, 25 copper rockfish, 65 vermilion rockfish and...

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Coastal Rockfishing Remains Solid

Written By: Dave Hurley,
October 26, 2013

Rockfish continue to be the top game in town with party and private boats working the coastline south of the harbor for limits of rockfish and the occasional lingcod.

Captain Dennis Baxter of the New Captain Pete has been featuring...

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Tips & Tactics for Albacore
How Hard Are You Pulling

How Hard Are You Pulling

Written By: Steve ‘Hippo’ Lau

ALBACORE! Just the very name of these longfins of the seas is enough to start a fever in any red blooded angler of the briny deep. These...

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Going Low And Slow For Albacore

Going Low And Slow For Albacore

Written By: Steve ‘Hippo’ Lau

ALBACORE!! The very sound of that name brings on a fever into the hearts of blue water anglers. Fast, powerful, and agile, these pelagic...

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For Sale Fish Sniffer 2013 Willie Raptor

For Sale Fish Sniffer 2013 Willie Raptor

Written By: FishSniffer Staff

Once again, the Fish Sniffer is prowling the waters of Northern California in a beautiful 21’ Willie Raptor.  The Raptor is an...

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