2014 Billfisheries of the Year – #4 Exmouth

The Billfish Report is counting down its Top 10 Billfisheries of the Year, and our #4 Billfishery goes to Exmouth, Australia. Criteria for our Top 10 include fish numbers, variety of billfish species, average size of fish, length of season and number of boats fishing. With over 11,000 Billfish Reports submitted to us in 2014 from around the World, to even be considered for our Top 10 makes a fishery one of the best!

Photo from Capt. Eddy Lawler

We didn’t discover it, but boy we wished we did. Exmouth, Australia is without a doubt one of the hidden gems in the Billfishing world. Located in the far Northwest corner of Western Australia, this fishery has almost everything. Great Species Variety, with Blue Marlin, Black Marlin, Striped Marlin and Sailfish all readily available. Numbers? When we named Exmouth to our Top 10 of 2013, we really didn’t consider it a numbers fishery, but 2014 sure proved us wrong. How about shots at 5+ Black & Blue Marlin a day and 10+ shots at Sailfish. Season? It keeps getting longer as boats start earlier and end later. Maybe the one thing it does not have is reliable size, but we are not even sure about that with two (2) Black Marlin over 500 lbs and four (4) Blue Marlin over 500 lbs including an 809 lbs. on the Reel Teaser and a 900+ on Peak Sportfishing.

What is impressive is the day to day consistency in the number of fish raised, but what blows us away is the change in species. Rather than have a months worth of Blue Marlin fishing, the crews here will mix it up with 2 Blue Marlin one day and then 5 Black Marlin the next. Given the great variety, it should be no shock that there were at least ten (10) Grand Slams caught, three of which were back to back to back (that would be 3) Slams from Capt. Eddy Lawler of Peak Sportfishing. Maybe ten (10) Grand Slams is not that impressive to some, but when there are really only 2-3 boats working this fishery at a time, it sure makes the averages look better.

The best Black Marlin day came off On Strike, releasing eight (8). The top Blue Marlin report came from Peak Sportfishing who went 6-7 on Blue Marlin. Sailfishing was especially good in 2014, with Peak releasing a season high seventeen (17) in a day. Striped Marlin may be the only billfish found here, whose numbers are not off the charts with a handful of boats releasing two (2) in a day. We still feel certain this is an emerging fishery and as more boats target the area, we are bound to see some even more impressive catches.

Congratulations to Exmouth, Australia our #4 Billfishery of 2014!


Buck Hunter went 5-7 on Black Marlin, 1-1 Blue Marlin & 1-2 on Sailfish over 2-Days, getting a Grand Slam

Peak Sportfishing released a Grand Slam with a 550 lbs. Black Marlin, Blue Marlin & Striped Marlin

 Peak Sportfishing released 17 Sailfish

Diversity went 7-13 on Black Marlin

On Strike released 8 Black Marlin

Peak Sportfishing went 6-7 on Blue Marlin and 0-2 on Striped Marlin.


  • Jeni Gates
    Posted January 3, 2015 10:48 pm 0Likes

    And this is not all of the reports for the year, only some, but certainly some great reports.
    During the major tournament in March, GAMEX, there were over 100 billfish (mainly black marlin) tagged daily by the fleet. In fact, over 9 tournament days in March between two competitions for around 50 boats that were targeting billfish there were 2399 billfish raised, 1708 hooked and 904 tagged…
    Exmouth Game Fishing Club tagged more fish than any club on the country for the year.(3rd year in a row)
    Plus there was a blue marlin caught that was the biggest for the country for the year.
    Yes, it’s been an awesome year…..
    Looking forward to 2015.

  • Jeni Gates
    Posted January 4, 2015 7:35 am 0Likes

    oh, and I forgot to mention earlier that Paul Worstelling aboard IN DEEP with Captain Matt Gates on first attempt at daytime dropping for swordfish off Exmouth back in July, go one! They aslo got big striped marlin day dropping.
    The swordfishery off Exmouth is yet to be fully discovered and exciting times are ahead.

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