Dave Thomson with a nice little Rotto king. This one would have been great sport on fly.
Dave Thomson with a pleasant little Rotto king. This one would have been nice sport on fly.

by Mike Roennfeldt

Yellowtail kingfish are amongst my favorite species to catch. They’re lengthy, glossy and funky trying creatures with these beauty hiding a brutal, highly effective and sometimes underhand nature when hooked. Like few different species, a yellowtail king will actively hunt down a approach to do you in round reef or construction, typically even mendacity doggo in a cave or gap when you patiently anticipate it to swim out, or just bust off and rig up once more. 

Getting one, say something over 8kg, is a major feat on sort out rated at 8kg or much less.

The excellent news is that kings look like thriving in metro waters in recent times. Solely 30 years in the past we didn’t hear a lot about these nice fish, though I believe a lot of those who have been caught have been recognized as Samson fish and left at that. The king is a sleeker fish than the Samson, its head is much less blunt and its color typically extra silver with, because the identify suggests, a yellowish tail and sometimes a yellow stripe working halfway alongside the perimeters from eyeball to tail. Most kings we see regionally are within the 2–4kg vary, with a number of up round 10kg, however there are a lot better ones round, often reaching sizes approaching 35–40kg at locations just like the Abrolhos and Shark Bay’s South Passage.

Jigging for kings was a part of the game fishing revolution on the east coast again within the Nineteen Seventies, however again then we by no means actually had the concentrations of kings for that model of angling to take off right here. Samson jigging – effectively that turned out to be a complete completely different story 30 or so years later and with a resurgence of curiosity in jigging for all kinds of species, we are able to count on kings to turn out to be a chief sportfishing goal species in coming years.

Among the most prolific native yellowtail king spots are round Rottnest, significantly at West Finish, the place colleges of small ones can often be discovered by both trolling or berleying up (exterior the trolling-only zone). They may fortunately snap up a sizeable minnow model lure alongside the strains of a Laser Professional 160, or will take a complete mulie or dice with relish.

Shallow water berleying at different spots round Rotto, typically in depths of 8m or much less, will typically pay welcome dividends. It’s typically the case that skippy are available in to the berley path first, adopted by kings a couple of minutes later. For those who hook one in 8m of water, cling on and cross your fingers, if that’s biologically doable. Good high quality 8–10kg spinning sort out is about proper for tackling kings of modest measurement, however even then you definately in all probability gained’t land as many as you lose. 

With regards to cooking yellowtail kingfish, I like to chop the flesh into comparatively skinny fillets of lower than 1cm thick, roll them in egg and breadcrumbs and shallow fry in oil. Don’t overcook although as they will dry out. Serve with salt and pepper and a squeeze of lemon and prepare for the compliments.

Alternatively, thinly sliced kingfish fillets, round 5mm thick, make for very good sashimi. Recipes for an acceptable dipping sauce are available on-line.

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