Species: Trachurus symmetricus. Other names: Spanish mackerel, jackmackerel, jackfish, California jack mackerel.

 

Identifying Characteristics and Biology

  • Jack mackerels are metallic blue to green to olive-green on their backs, and silvery-colored below and bellies.
  • Their bodies are streamlined and compact, and the upper part of the gill cover has a dark spot.
  • This fish grows to 32 inches and is a long-living species living to about 35 years.

Range and Habitat

  • Typical range: from the Gulf of Alaska to the tip of Baja California, Mexico, from 600 to 1,200 miles offshore.
  • Young jack mackerel like to congregate in densely formed schools near kelp beds and shallow reefs.
  • Older jack mackerels enjoy more solitary environments and typically venture much deeper than younger fish.

Market Forms

  • Jack mackerels are an important food fish, and can be found canned and occasionally fresh and fresh-frozen in some markets.
  • Fillets and canned fish can be used interchangeably with tuna.

 

Notes

Scombroid poisoning danger with the jack mackerels.

Resources:

Love, Milton. Probably More Than You Want to Know About the Fishes of the Pacific Coast. Santa Barbara: Really Big Press, 1996. Print.

Pacific jack mackerel. (2013, October 25).  In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 22:22, February 19, 2014. Web.

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