Yellowfins can show anytime off the mid-Atlantic coast, but late spring through summer, the tuna turn to chasing flying fish, and anglers opt for poppers and kite baits to match the hatch. The tuna routinely catch flying fish midair, so a trolled ballyhoo swimming below the surface doesn’t get their attention. Instead, they want their meal delivered by air.
The tuna congregate on hills, cliffs, valleys and plateaus at the edge of the continental shelf. As long as the water temperature stays in the upper 70s, the skipper looks for bait and tuna marks on the fish finder. Usually, the fish give themselves away by leaping into the air after flying fish.