Redthroat Emperor are a popular food species and are the most commonly targeted offshore species. Most of the offshore activity for reef species around Cairns is conducted by recreational fishers.

  • Overview


    Crystal Bowl GBR is aiming to examine 3 core measures across a wide range of species in the region:

    • Fishing experience (how many fish per trip)
    • Quality of the fish (size of fish)
    • Community attitudes (number of legal size fish kept or released)


    Fishing Experience

    • 2017 Sportfishers data pending
    • Qld Fisheries Boat Ramp Surveys reports catch rate of 1.1 fish/fisher/day
    • Cairns ranked 7th in the state for Redthroat Emperor Catch Rates
    • Similar Commercial Catch Rates between 2016 and 2017 with 3.21kg/day and 3.46 kg/day reported, respectively


    Quality of the Fish

    • 2017 Qld Fisheries Boat Ramp Surveys reported an average length of 392mm
    • Cairns ranked 12th in the State for size of Redthroat Emperor (based on Qld Fisheries Boat Ramp Surveys - based on min 100 fish reported)


    Community Attitudes

    • 88% of fish reported in 2017 were released
    • 69% of fish reported in 2017 were caught by locals
    • Cairns ranked 1st in the state for the number of fish released in 2017


  • Assessment

    Limited Take For Consumption Advised

    Redthroat Emperor is not commonly reported being the 18th most reported species. Historically there have been significant commercial catches, but not in more than a decade. The periodic nature of Commercial Catch suggests that optimal recruitment conditions do not occur all years but more likely once in a decade.

    Heavy harvesting of Redthroat Emporer is not recommended, but a limited take for immediate consumption is unlikely to adversely affect stocks based on available data.   Regular harvest is not recommended but the occasional take home is fine.

  • Forecast


    • Catch rates should be similar in 2018 (-20%-+20%)
    • Most fish will be in the range 300mm-400mm
    • Recruitment is unknown


  • Qld FIsheries Boat Ramp Surveys 

    Monitoring of Recreational Catch by Qld Fisheries

    Queensland Fisheries monitors boat ramps up and down the coast as a part of the Sustainable Fisheries Strategy. Fishers in Cairns regularly report catching Redthroat Emperor with most being returned to the water. Monitoring began in 2017 and continues in 2018.

    • Redthroat Emperor was the 18th most commonly reported species in Cairns in 2017
    • An average length of 392mm was reported in 2017
    • Fishers reported an overall catch rate of 1.1 fish/fisher/day
    • 88% of fish reported in 2017 were released
    • 69% of fish reported in 2107 were caught by locals
    • Peak periods of Redthroat Emperor catches in 2017 were during July and September


    Qld Fisheries Boat Ramp Surveys monitoring dashboard


  • Commercial Fishing

    Commercial Fishing Catch

    Queensland Fisheries monitors commercial catches up and down the coast. Commercial fishers are required to maintain logbooks of catch and report quarterly. The commercial catch of Redthroat Emperor in Cairns (see Area Fished section) represented 0.3% share of the total statewide catch. Monitoring is ongoing in 2018.

    • Commercial Catch rate is similar between 2016 and 2017 with 3.21kg/fisher/day and 3.46kg/fisher/day reported, respectively
    • Number of active licenses has ranged between 21 and 36 over the last decade with 21 licences active in 2017.
    • Commercial catch in 2017 was 0.44T, compared to 0.42T in 2016.


    Cairns Redthroat Emperor Commercial Catch Dashboard


  • Sportfishers

    Redthroat Emperor

    Redthroat Emperor are targeted by sportfishers for much the same reason as other groups - take home for a feed. As sportfishers practice catch and release for their key estuary targets, offshore represents the opportunity to bring back a feed of fish for the family.

    • data pending


    A detailed snapshot of local Sportfishers / Suntaggers catch data is available:

    Local Sportfishers


  • Recruitment

    Monitoring of Redthroat Emperor Recruitment

    No data is available currently on Redthroat Recruitment.


  • Monitoring

    Monitoring of Redthroat Emperor

    Data for this assessment has been sourced from:

    • Bureau of Meterology
    • Queensland Fisheries
    • Local Sportfishers / Suntag


    Here are links to all the monitoring pages for Redthroat Emperor:

    Local Sportfishers / Suntag
    Cairns Queensland Fisheries Boat Ramp Surveys
    Cairns Queensland Fisheries Commercial Data

  • Fishing Area

    Area Assessed

    Offshore assessments of Qld Fisheries Boat Ramp data are based on ramp of origin, destination is recorded in broad general regions. Some offshore traffic likely extends offshore of Port Douglas.  Commercial catches have been assessed directly out of Cairns H16/17-P16/17.