Situated 950 miles south of the Canaries and 300 miles west of Senegal on the African mainland, Cape Verde is rightly regarded as one of the top destinations to catch Atlantic blue marlin, and among the best marlin destinations worldwide. The Billfish Club operates from the town of Mindelo on the island of Sao Vincente in the northwest archipelago.
The biggest marlin landed (and first Grander) in Cape Verde was caught aboard one of the boats and weighed a staggering 1,093 lbs. This fish was also the biggest marlin worldwide of 1998 (IGFA, 1999). The average weight of marlin you can expect to catch is between 200-350 lbs, though fish in excess of 500 lbs is regularly caught. There are large numbers of marlin here too: The Billfish Club regularly exceeds 100 marlin per boat for the season and on occasion have achieved double figure catches in a single day’s fishing. They have won the prestigious AFTCO Captain of the Year Award for Atlantic Blue Marlin a total of five times. This award is presented annually for the most number of fish tagged and released. In 2006 the Happy Hooker 1 took first prize in the annual worldwide Fourth of July Blue Marlin Tournament. The main season for marlin is from March through to October although marlin are regularly caught during the winter and increasingly we are fishing during these months, weather permitting.