The Greater Amberjack, Seriola dumerili, are an offshore fish found in waters from Nova Scotia to Brazil. They are frequently found near reefs, wrecks and rocky structures. Anglers have given this fish the moniker “reef donkey” due to its fierce pulling ability.
Greater amberjacks can grow to 6 feet and weigh over 200 pounds. They have a dark stripe on the head that runs from the nose, through the eye, to the front of the first dorsal fin. Their backs are blue or olive colored with the sides and belly being silver-white. Sometimes they have an amber or pinkish color to the body.
Amberjacks are opportunistic predators that feed over reefs and wrecks, usually in small schools. Their diet consists of other fish, crabs and squids.
Being powerful fighters, they will test an anglers tackle. Drifting with live or cut bait or by trolling with spoons or other deep running lures are popular ways to target this fish. Recently many anglers have begun to target them with vertical jigging methods developed in Japan which are sometimes referred to as “freestyle" jigging.