16 Nov Australian Salmon
Common Name: Eastern Australian Salmon
Scientific Name: Arripis trutta
Maximum Size: 75cm
NSW Record: 7.860kg
Range: QLD, NSW, VIC, TAS.
Eastern Australian Salmon schools can be found along headlands and in bays, ranging in depth from 2-20m. The size of the schools can range from a few dozen fish to many thousands.
This species has a distinct green coloured back and dark tail, with individuals in good condition having yellow pectoral fins. Confusing species are Tailor, which are generally smaller (in NSW) and have a rounder head. Western Australian Salmon occasionally swim up the east coast but a difficult to tell apart from their local cousin unless the gillrakers are counted.
The fish mature at around 40cm in length and 4 years of age, spawning in coastal water during summer. The eggs and larvae drift south to Victoria and Tasmania before migrating north to complete the cycle. The sexes are separate.
To approach this species the best method is a slow dive, parallel to the school and waiting for the school to approach or cut across the diver. Commercial catches of this species range from 500 to 1000 tonnes per annum. The annual recreational catch is estimated at 150-200 tonnes.