English: Also called Bullet Mackerel
Spanish: Bolito, Barrilete Melvera
The Bullet Tuna is characterized by its “tuna-like” body, dark blue metallic back with 15 or more broad vertical dark bars above the lateral line that commence aft of the first dorsal fin, and a white belly.
The Bullet Tuna has two well separated dorsal fins with a very small second dorsal fin that is followed by 8 finlets. The anal fin is also very small and followed by 7 finlets. It has 15 or more broad vertical dark bars above the lateral line that comment aft of the first dorsal fin. The Bullet Tuna is one of the most difficult species to identify, being almost identical to the Frigate Tuna or Frigate Mackerel, Auxis thazard brachydorax (which has 15 or more broad oblique wavy lines above the lateral line that commence under the first dorsal fin).
The Bullet Tuna is a small torpedo shaped fish that is a member of the Scombridae or Tuna, Bonito, and Mackerel Family found in Mexican waters. The Bullet Mackerel is a coastal and oceanic pelagic schooling species that is seasonal.
In Mexico it is found in all waters except the northern 80 percent of the Sea of Cortez.
The Bullet Tuna is normally found in the first 600 feet of the water column traveling in large schools (and when located it is indicative that the big game fish are close behind). They are reported to reach a length of 22 inches and 10 pounds however they are normally 12-inches and about 2 pounds.
This fish species is caught primarily on trolled feathers or hootchies. It is viewed by locals as an excellent live bait that is pinned with a 7/0 hook and either flylined or sent down deep with a bottom rig. The Bullet Tuna is also used as an effective cut bait.