Tehotu Wong

What initially drew you to spearfishing/freediving?

I grew up on a beach house in Tahiti, I was in the water snorkeling and fishing since I can’t remember. My great-grandpa and my older cousins were spearfishermen and they would take me with them at an early age.

Can you share a memorable experience or defining moment in your journey?

My best memorable moment spearfishing was landing my first dogtooth tuna in Tahiti when I was 15.

How do you stay motivated and inspired in your pursuits?

Spearfishing is part of my life and my culture. And being able to feed my family and friends in the most sustainable way. Also it’s an addiction for me to be one with the ocean this is what makes me want go back again and again.

Are there mentors who've impacted your journey significantly?

Definitely my big cousins and my great grandpa taking me as a little kid are the reason why I do it.

Describe your favorite marine species and what makes them special. 

My favorite fish is the dogtooth tuna, I’ve been obsessed with that fish since I was a little kid. It’s the ultimate trophy for us Tahitians.

Do you have favorite dive spots where you feel most connected?

I feel the most connected diving my home spot in Teahupoo, Tahiti. My ancestors and family fished that spot to feed themselves and others. This place is special to me that’s where my great-grandpa used to go spear fishing.

How has spearfishing/freediving influenced your relationship with the ocean/nature?

Spearfishing is my way to connect with the ocean and be one with it. Also connects me with my ancestors.Which came from the last fishing village of Tahiti called Tautira.

How do you approach sustainability and conservation in your spearfishing/freediving practices?

I always take what I need to feed me and my family and do it in the most sustainable way which is spear fishing.

Can you describe the mental and physical preparation required for successful spearfishing/freediving outings? Are there rituals or traditions you observe before or after excursions? 

I do prepare myself year long, I train free diving 3 times a week to be ready at all times and be safe diving.

What advice would you give to someone considering taking up spearfishing/freediving as a hobby or lifestyle?

Spearfishing is a way of living and providing food on the table. But also do it in a way to protect it by being selective and knowing when it’s enough. Take what you need.

What is your go-to RIFFE set up and why?

I use the marauder 55 with reel for dogtooth tuna on deep reef with lots of currents where I have to hang down the bottom.
The raider 67 is my go to set up for big game, big dogtooth! Yellow fin, blue fin.. i rig it with coated cable and cable slip tip with 2 3atm floats. Spectra fusion for dogtooth tuna and pelagics bungee line.