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Scomberomorus queenslandicus

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
ANIMALIA CHORDATA ACTINOPTERYGII PERCIFORMES SCOMBRIDAE

Scientific Name: Scomberomorus queenslandicus
Species Authority: Munro, 1943
Common Name(s):
English School Mackerel
French Thazard du Queensland
Spanish Carite de Queensland
Taxonomic Notes: Early records (before 1943) were recorded under Scomberomorus guttatus.

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2011
Date Assessed: 2009-01-30
Assessor(s): Collette, B., Di Natale, A., Dooley, J., Fox, W., Fritzsche, R., Juan Jorda, M., Matsuura, K., Nelson, J. & Nelson, R.
Reviewer(s): Collen, B., Richman, N., Beresford, A., Chenery, A., Ram, M., Russell, B. & Polidoro, B.
Contributor(s): De Silva, R., Milligan, HT, Batchelor, A., Jopling, B., Kemp, K., Lewis, S., Lintott, P., Sears, J., Wilson, P., Smith, J., Livingston, F. & Ram, M.
Justification:
Scomberomorus queenslandicus has been assessed as Least Concern. Despite being commercially harvested as a food source, there are no data suggesting that this species is undergoing a significant population decline at present. There are also strict regulations in place regarding the harvesting of this species in Queensland, Australia, and commercial fishers must have a license to fish for Scomberomorus queenslandicus.
For further information about this species, see TUNAS_SkiJumpEffect.pdf.
A PDF viewer such as Adobe Reader is required.
History:
2010 Least Concern
2009 Least Concern (IUCN 2010.4)

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: Scomberomorus queenslandicus is distributed from southern Papua New Guinea and northern Australia, south from Shark Bay to Onslow on the west coast and south to Sydney on the east coast (Collette and Nauen 1983).
Countries:
Native:
Australia; Papua New Guinea
FAO Marine Fishing Areas:
Native:
Indian Ocean – eastern; Pacific – southwest; Pacific – western central
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: Scomberomorus queenslandicus is taken with others of its genus in a fishery in Queensland with a reported annual take of 129–144 t in 2006-2010 (ASR 2011).

The catch per unit effort (CPUE) for this species was stable from 1998–2003 (CRC 2005). Commercial catches from 1999–2000 increased significantly, while recreational catches decreased. This led to a change in management in 2002, where commercial net fishers are now prohibited from targeting this species. A formal stock assessment has been conducted (CRC 2005). Total landings in 2006–2010 ranged from 19–144 tons per year; in 2009–2010, 136 tons of which 114 tons were taken with nets and 21 tons by line (ASR 2011).
Population Trend: Unknown

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:

Scomberomorus queenslandicus is an epipelagic, neritic schooling species, which often inhabits turbid coastal waters in embayments and estuaries (Begg and Hopper 1997, Begg and Sellin 1998). It forms mixed schools with S. commerson over shallow reefs offshore of Queensland. Scomberomorus queenslandicus is seasonally migratory and moves into inshore waters, bays and estuaries of Queensland during the southern midwinter and early spring. The depth profile of S. queenslandicus has a lower limit of around 100 m. However, it often inhabits very turbid coastal waters shallower than 30 m. Common length is 50–80 cm fork length (FL).

School Mackerel spawn between October and January along the east coast of Queensland (Begg 1998). Age of maturity is 1.5 years, length of females at 50% maturity is 40–45 cm FL, and length of males at 50% maturity is 35–40 cm FL (Begg 1998). Maximum age is 10 years based on a growth study using otoliths (Begg 1998). Maximum length is 100 cm FL (Collette 1983).

Systems: Marine

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: Scomberomorus queenslandicus is caught by both commercial and recreational fisheries throughout Queensland, the Northern Territory, Western Australia, and to a lesser extent northern New South Wales (Begg and Sellin 1998).

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): Scomberomorus queenslandicus is of commercial importance to fisheries and is marketed fresh. Scomberomorus queenslandicus together with S. munroi, S. semifasciatus and S. commerson forms important commercial and recreational fisheries throughout Queensland, the Northern Territory, Western Australia, and to a lesser extent northern New South Wales (Begg and Sellin 1998). In 1999 the Torres Strait Fishery was expanded to include S. queenslandicus (Torres Strait PZJA 2006). Scomberomorus queenslandicus were caught by commercial fishers with set mesh nets, drift nets or ring nets,  up to 2002, and by recreational fishermen using hook and line. Surveys conducted across Queensland's recreational fisheries, revealed that 40–65% of S. queenslandicus landed are caught by recreational fishers (CRC 2005).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: The Queensland Fishery is regulated under Queensland's Fisheries Regulations 1995. Regulations include a bag limit of five individuals and minimal size limit of 50 cm, that applies to both commercial and recreational fishers on the East Coast of Queensland. Recreational fishers are also limited to 30 school mackerel per fishing trip. Commercial fishers must also have a licence with a fishery symbol from Queensland Department of Primary Industries and Fisheries allowing them to fish for school mackerel (CRC 2005). These licenses also regulate fishing practices and gear. While it is likely that the school mackerel harvest is sustainable, its status will remain 'uncertain' until there is greater confidence in the commercial rate date and better quantification of the recreational harvest (SS 2011).

Citation: Collette, B., Di Natale, A., Dooley, J., Fox, W., Fritzsche, R., Juan Jorda, M., Matsuura, K., Nelson, J. & Nelson, R. 2011. Scomberomorus queenslandicus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2014.3. <www.iucnredlist.org>. Downloaded on 27 November 2014.
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