King Mackerel

(Scomberomorus commerson)

Spanish mackerel, Couta

1. What is it?

King mackerel (Scomberomorus commerson) are fast growing, large, schooling fish reaching sexual maturity after 1-2 years. Recent stock assessments in southern Mozambique and KwaZulu-Natal waters suggest that current stocks are in relatively good condition. Stock levels are therefore rated as fully exploited.

2. How was it caught or farmed?

King mackerels are caught using linefishing methods. The traditional linefishery uses traditional rod and reel or handlines. Linefishing is a relatively selective fishing method with few impacts on the marine environment little accidental bycatch.

3. Where is it from?

King mackerels are caught mainly from KwaZulu-Natal to southern Mozambique. Management for the sector is considered partly effective. In South Africa this sector is principally managed through a total allowable effort (TAE) limitation and there are additional restrictions to protect overfished species such as bag limits (10 pp/pd) for recreational fishers. There is some concern over the impact of the small-scale fishery rights allocation beyond the recommended TAE and the continuously growing recreational sector.