King Mackerel

King Mackerel

Scomberomorous cavalla

Life History

Description and Diagnostic Characteristics: Iron gray to bluish green along the back and fading to silver on the sides. Long, streamlined body with a tapered head. Mouth is large with razor-sharp teeth. First dorsal is gray and the lateral line drops sharply below the second dorsal.

Size: Common to 20 pounds

Age at Maturity: Males between their second and third year, Females between their third and fourth year.

Range: South Florida to North Carolina, but as far north as New England

Habitat: Found all along the coast, out to the continental shelf. Some of the largest found close to beaches.

Angling Information

Bait and Tackle: Ocean gear with 20-40 pound test works well but spinning, baitcasting, and fly tackle also work. Artificial baits such as spoons or feather-minnow combinations work well as do chumming with Pilchards and using them for live bait. Shrimp work well as live bait along with strips.

Fishing Method: Still fishing, trolling, drifting

Food Value: Meat is rich and oily, good broiled or smoked

State Regulation

Daily Limit: 3

Minimum size: 24″ FL

Federal Regulation

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Marine Fishes of Georgia Posters

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