Frigate Mackerel, Auxis thazard (Lacépède 1800)


Other Names: Bullet Mackerel, Frigate Tuna, Frigate-tuna, Leadenall

A Frigate Mackerel, Auxis thazard, from off Gerroa, New South Wales, . Source: matt-rees / iNaturalist.org. License: CC by Attribution-NonCommercial

Summary:

A small dark blue tuna with silvery sides and belly, and 15 or more narrow, oblique to nearly horizontal dark wavy lines in a scaleless area above the lateral line. 


Cite this page as:
Bray, D.J & Schultz, S., Auxis thazard in Fishes of Australia, accessed 20 Aug 2019, http://fishesofaustralia.net.au/home/species/718

Frigate Mackerel, Auxis thazard (Lacépède 1800)

More Info


Distribution

Circumaustralian in oceanic and coastal waters. Elsewhere the species is circumglobal in tropical and temperate seas, although rare around oceanic islands.

Adults occur in coastal or near-coastal waters, while juveniles are widespread throughout the world's oceans. An oceanic species, epipelagic and neritic. A schooling species, the frigate mackerel forms an important food source for larger tuna species, billfishes, barracudas, sharks and other predators.

Features

Dorsal fin X–XII + 10–12 + 6–9 finlets; Anal fin 12–15 + 6–8 finlets; Caudal fin  17; Pectoral fin  22–23; Pelvic fin I, 5; Gill rakers 36–42.

Body depth 17–23% FL; body naked except for corslet of scales on anterior body and along mid-sides; corselet no more than 5 scales wide under 2nd dorsal-fin origin, anterior margin of scaleless area above corselet anterior to pectoral-fin tip. Anal-fin origin below middle of 2nd dorsal. Caudal peduncle with well developed keel, flanked on each side by a smaller keel.

Size

Reaches at least 58 cm, but more commonly between 25 and 40 cm. The species grows larger than Auxis rochei.

Feeding

Known to feed on smaller members of their own species. Prey items include fishes, crustaceans and cephalopods.

Biology

Size at maturity ranges between 29 cm and 35 cm (FL), depending on location. The spawning seasons also varies with location. Spawning occurs in batches. Number of eggs range from 200 thousand to 1.06 million depending on the size of the female. The total number of eggs spawned in a season can reach over 1.37 million.

The eggs and larvae are pelagic, able to tolerate water temperatures of between 21.6 and 30.5 degrees.

Fisheries

Commercially important in many parts of the world, and sometimes caught in large numbers. Frigate mackerel are taken with beach seines, shore seines, drift nets, pursue seines, hook-and-line, gill nets and by trolling. 

Conservation

IUCN: Least Concern

Remarks

In Australia,the flesh is considered poor eating. Although of a high quality, it deteriorates rapidly and has a high oil content. 

Similar Species

The Frigate Mackeral is smilar to and difficult to separate from the Bullet Tuna, Auxis rochei. The Bullet Tuna has a wide posterior extension of the scaly corselet (usually 10–15 scales wide below the origin of the 2nd dorsal fin), and the naked area dorsally not extending anterior to the pectoral-fin tip. The Frigate Mackerel has a narrow posterior extension of the scaly corselet (only 1–5 scales wide below the origin of the 2nd dorsal fin), and the naked area dorsally extending anterior to the pectoral-fin tip.

Species Citation

Scomber thazard Lacepède, 1800, Historie naturelle des poissons. 2: 599. Type locality: Kampung Loleba, Wasile District, Halmahera Island, Moluccas, Indonesia, 0°58'N, 127°56'E.

Author

Bray, D.J & Schultz, S.

Resources

Australian Faunal Directory

Frigate Mackerel, Auxis thazard (Lacépède 1800)

References


Allen, G.R. 1997. Marine Fishes of Tropical Australia and South-east Asia. Perth : Western Australian Museum 292 pp. 106 pls.

Collette, B.B. 2001. Scombridae. pp. 3721-3756 in Carpenter, K.E. & Niem, T.H. (eds). The Living Marine Resources of the Western Central Pacific. FAO Species Identification Guide for Fisheries Purposes. Rome : FAO Vol. 6 pp. 3381-4218. 

Collette, B.B. 2010. Reproduction and Development in Epipelagic Fishes, pp. 21-63. In Cole, K.S. (ed.) Reproduction and sexuality in marine fishes: patterns and processes. University of California Press, Berkeley.

Collette, B.B. & Aadland, C.R. 1996. Revision of the frigate tunas (Scombridae, Auxis), with descriptions of two new subspecies from the eastern Pacific. Fishery Bulletin (U.S.) 94(3): 423-441 figs 1-13 

Collette, B., Acero, A., Amorim, A.F., Boustany, A., Canales Ramirez, C., Cardenas, G., Carpenter, K.E., de Oliveira Leite Jr., N., Di Natale, A., Fox, W., Fredou, F.L., Graves, J., Guzman-Mora, A., Viera Hazin, F.H., Juan Jorda, M., Kada, O., Minte Vera, C., Miyabe, N., Montano Cruz, R., Nelson, R., Oxenford, H., Salas, E., Schaefer, K., Serra, R., Sun, C., Teixeira Lessa, R.P., Pires Ferreira Travassos, P.E., Uozumi, Y. & Yanez, E. 2011. Auxis thazard. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2011: e.T170344A6757270. http://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2011-2.RLTS.T170344A6757270.en. Downloaded on 31 October 2017.

Collette, B.B. & Nauen, C.E. 1983. FAO species catalogue. Scombrids of the world. An annotated and illustrated catalogue of tunas, mackerels, bonitos and related species known to date. Fisheries Synopsis No. 125, Vol. 2. Rome : FAO. 137 pp. 81 figs

Fraser-Brunner, A. 1950. The fishes of the family Scombridae. Annals and Magazine of Natural History 12 3(7): 131-163 figs 1-35 

Gomon, M.F. 2008. Families Sphyraenidae to Centrolophidae. pp. 774-800 in Gomon, M.F., Bray, D.J. & Kuiter, R.H. (eds). Fishes of Australia's Southern Coast. Sydney : Reed New Holland 928 pp. 

Gomon, M.F. & Robertson, E.M. 1994. Family Scombridae. pp. 819-828, figs 724-732 in Gomon, M.F., Glover, C.J.M. & Kuiter, R.H. (eds). The Fishes of Australia's South Coast. Adelaide : State Printer 992 pp. 810 figs. 

Hutchins, J.B. & Swainston, R. 1986. Sea Fishes of Southern Australia. Complete field guide for anglers and divers. Perth : Swainston Publishing 180 pp.

Johnson, J.W. 2010. Fishes of the Moreton Bay Marine Park and adjacent continental shelf waters, Queensland, Australia. pp. 299-353 in Davie, P.J.F. & Phillips, J.A. Proceedings of the Thirteenth International Marine Biological Workshop, The Marine Fauna and Flora of Moreton Bay. Memoirs of the Queensland Museum 54(3) 

Jordan, D.S. & Gilbert, C.H. 1883. A synopsis of the fishes of North America. Bulletin of the United States National Museum 16: 1-1018 

Lacépède, B.G. 1800. Histoire Naturelle des Poissons. Paris : chez Plassan Vol. 2 632 pp. 20 pls. 

Last, P.R., Scott, E.O.G. & Talbot, F.H. 1983. Fishes of Tasmania. Hobart : Tasmanian Fisheries Development Authority 563 pp. figs. 

Pepperell, J. 2010. Fishes of the Open Ocean a Natural History & Illustrated Guide. Sydney : University of New South Wales Press Ltd 266 pp.

 Randall, J.E., Allen, G.R. & Steene, R. 1990. Fishes of the Great Barrier Reef and Coral Sea. Bathurst : Crawford House Press 507 pp. figs. 

Randall, J.E., Allen, G.R. & Steene, R. 1997. Fishes of the Great Barrier Reef and Coral Sea. Bathurst : Crawford House Press 557 pp. figs.

Roberts, C.D. 2015. 232 Family Scombridae (pp. 1623-1638), in Roberts, C.D., Stewart, A.L. & Struthers, C.D. (eds)  The Fishes of New Zealand. Wellington : Te Papa Press Vol. 4 pp. 1153-1748. 

Russell, B.C. & Houston, W. 1989. Offshore fishes of the Arafura Sea. The Beagle, Records of the Museums and Art Galleries of the Northern Territory 6(1): 69-84

Yearsley, G.K., Last, P.R. & Ward, R.D. (eds) 1999. Australian Seafood Handbook. Hobart : CSIRO Marine Research 460 pp.

Yesaki, M. & Arce, F. 1994. A review of the Auxis fisheries of the Philippines and some aspects of the biology of Frigate (A. thazard) and Bullet (A. rochei) Tunas in the Indo-Pacific region. FAO Fisheries Technical Paper 336(2): 409-439. 

Yoshida, H.O. & Nakamura, E.L. 1965. Notes on schooling behavior, spawning, and morphology of Hawaiian frigate mackerels, Auxis thazard and Auxis rochei. Copeia 1965: 111-114.


Quick Facts


CAAB Code:37441009

Conservation:IUCN Least Concern

Depth:0-200 m

Habitat:Pelagic, oceanodromous

Max Size: 62 cm FL

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CAAB distribution map