Named for its large, pulsing eyeballs, the Bigeye is common throughout the world but relatively rare in the seas near Oahu. Catching this animal near the island thus requires a stroke of luck in addition to savvy fishing skills, giving you a story to tell for the rest of your life.
The Bigeye is rare enough in Oahu that it does not follow a clear seasonal pattern. Off of Maui and Kauai, however, it is most common between October and May; since many of the Bigeye that make it to Oahu come from those islands, this may be the best time to seek it. You are most likely to catch one at dusk or during the very early morning, and can identify it by following flocks of birds or schools of porpoises. You can use a wide variety of different lures, but the most successful ones tend to be those with dark colors.
In terms of size, the Bigeye falls somewhere between the Yellowfin and the Skipjack, with an average weight of 40 pounds. The largest in Hawaiian history, caught in 1996, was 228 pounds. This makes it a great target for intermediate fishers who want a challenge but aren’t quite prepared for a dangerous catch.