Three Opah Caught at the Same Time in Southern California

California anglers hook and land three opah almost simultaneously on the same boat

Extraordinary Event: Three Opah at Once

Triple on Opah!

Anglers aboard the San Diego-based Excel passenger sport-fishing boat caught three opah at once. Five opah were hooked at the same time, but two were lost. While catching an opah ranks a once in a lifetime event, scientists are learning that this delicious tasting, deep-sea fish is far from rare in the Pacific.Photo courtesy Excel Sportfishing

Anglers aboard the San Diego-based Excel have spent the past several days loading up on tuna and California yellowtail, during what many are describing as the most phenomenal bite in regional waters in decades, according to a report on GrindTV.

But standing out among the yellowfin tuna, bluefin tuna, and yellowtail are three enormous fish shaped like the moon and nearly as radiant, the report states.

These fish are the rarely seen opah, each weighing in at 151, 180 and 124 pounds, caught respectively by (from left in photo) Armando Castillo, Joe Ludlow and Travis Savala. To catch just one opah in a lifetime is rare. To catch three on the same boat at the same time is unheard of.

This is because the brightly colored fish do not typically swim in large schools, the report says. They’re more commonly found in tropical and sub-tropical seas, and their appearance in local waters is often associated with warm-water events such as El Niño. (El Niño-like conditions are what lured the tuna and yellowtail into Southern California waters.)