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Common Species

Sea Mullet

sea mullet

Distribution - Particularly abundant in estuaries and coastal waters of NSW, the latter two species are more prevalent in southern NSW.

Size – Sea (bully) mullet reach a maximum length of approximately 75 centimetres and 8kg in weight, while flat-tail mullet and sand mullet are a smaller species, reaching a maximum length of approximately 45cm.

Characteristics - The head of the sea (bully) mullet is very broad when viewed from above, but narrowed when viewed from the side. The back of these mullet may vary in colour from steely blue, olive green to brown, while the belly is a bright silvery white colour and the body is fat and cylindrical. The sand mullet is a much more streamlined fish with a more pointed, narrower head and smaller eyes. A small, dark blotch is evident at the base of its pectoral fins and the fish is much more silver overall.

Confusing species - None

 

Tailor

tailor

Distribution - Tailor are found from Fraser Island in Queensland around the coast to Point Quobba in Western Australia (including Tasmania). Lower numbers are generally found around southern Australia.

Size - Maximum of 16kg and 1.2m in length.

Characteristics - Protruding lower jaw, dorsal fin spines small & weak (not very rigid). Upper body has a green to bluish tinge, lower body silvery. Seasonally abundant, often found in large schools in estuaries and inshore waters. Small tailor are often called "choppers".

Confusing species - None.

Snapper

snapper

Distribution - Common in coastal and offshore waters from the Capricorn Group in north Queensland around the coast of southern Australia to Coral Bay in Western Australia (including Tasmania).

Size - Maximum of 20kg and a length of over 1m.

Characteristics - Bright blue spots on body that become less distinct with age, and a background colour of pinkish silver to red. Large fish may have a large bony hump on the head and a fleshy bulge on the snout. Snapper are a popular angling species and are regarded as an excellent table fish. Common names include: cockney bream, reddies and squire, which are the names of juvenile snapper during different stages of their lifecycle.

Confusing species - None.

Tarwhine

tarwhine

Distribution - Tarwhine are found from Townsville in Queensland, south through to Albany in Western Australia (excluding Tasmania).

Size - 3kg and a length of over 40cm (tarwhine up to 70cm have been caught in South Africa).

Characteristics - Prominent golden lines on head and body, with a silver background colour. The head is more rounded and snout not as pointed as bream.

Confusing species - Tarwhine are often confused with yellowfin and black bream, but tarwhine have more scale rows above the lateral line (6-7 v 4).

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