The Spanish Mackerel is a Mackerel of the Scombridae family found over a wide range centred around Southeast Asia. The fish can be found off the east coast of Africa, across the Middle East and along the northern coastal areas of the Indian Ocean as well as in the Southwest Pacific Ocean.
Spanish Mackerel are also called Blue Mackerel, Tanguigue, Spaniard, Seer, Narrow-barred Spanish Mackerel, and Seerfish.
HOW TO IDENTIFY MACKEREL, SPANISH
Spanish Mackerel is commonly taken ranging 5-15kg. Spanish Mackerel are very similar to the Wahoo but have a fewer number of dorsal spines at 15-18, whereas the Wahoo has 23-27.
Spanish Mackerel are a very obvious looking fish with a fast-looking body that's crested in dark purple blue across the back to the proportionately large tailfin. From the side, the colour fades to a belly that is silvery blue.
As one of the largest Australian Mackerels, they grow to around 2m and weigh a massive 70kg.
The external bone which often extends beyond middle of the eye on the upper jaw of the Spanish Mackerel is the final distinguishing feature. It gives this fish a dart like head-shape.
WHERE TO CATCH MACKEREL, SPANISH
Spanish Mackerel are one of the most reliable sport fish in the oceans around Australia. Spanish Mackerel prefer warmer waters and are commonly found in the waters off the Northern Territory right around the east coast of Australia to the waters off the coast of southern New South Wales and Western Australia.
HOW TO CATCH MACKEREL, SPANISH
Spanish Mackerel spawn on the edge of reefs. They are known to travel in large schools.
Spanish Mackerel are voracious, opportunistic carnivore predators. As with other members of the genus, their food consists mainly of small fishes with lesser quantities of shrimp and squid.
Spanish Mackerel commonly move about in large schools chasing after baitfish and smaller tuna. This means double and triple hook-ups are common. Lures trolled at 5-7 knots work best while slightly slower trolling is recommended with baits.
Spanish Mackerel respond to most fishing techniques. Wire leader is required. As Spanish Mackerel can feed at different depths, a range of lures and baits to target a wide range of depth is good. Herring is a favourite.
Following surface bait school activity is the old-school method. Fishfinders are great for working with sub-surface bait or working a larger dropoff. Fishfinders make it is easier to catch Spanish Mackerel when there are no bait schools around.