All About Japan

The Big Catch is Cutlassfish

Sports Fish Great Outdoors
The Big Catch is Cutlassfish

Cutlassfish can be found migrating between Honshu, the main island of Japan, and Okinawa. The largest can get up to two meters (6.6 ft) in length, so if you happen to hook one, it will put up a fight you won't soon forget! Cutlassfish fishing is enjoyed by people of all ages, from children to adults. Let's take a look at the finer points below!

The light reflecting off a silver-bodied cutlassfish, or tachi-uo, is simply gorgeous. Anyone can fish for these bad boys, even beginners, since they're actually quite easy to catch. Many anglers head out to the ocean just to reel one in.

Cutlassfish can be caught out in the open waters or even from a shoreside levee, using everything from live bait to artificial lures. The jerkbait fishing technique (called "wind" fishing in Japan) is particularly popular among young people, and involves repeatedly jerking the lure side to side to attract a fish's natural predatory instinct. You can see an image of a jerkbait lure above.

During cutlassfish season, you'll see anglers lined up all along the levees awaiting their catch. When the time is right, so many fish will swim by that nearly every angler will reel one in!

Be careful not to get bitten by a cutlassfish's sharp teeth when you take it off the hook.

Their white, soft bodies make for an excellent meal. They have no scales and few internal organs, making them easy prepare for cooking tempura, teriyaki or shio-yaki (grilling or broiling with salt).

Ready to get your rod and reel? Check the video above to see a cutlassfish reeled in firsthand!