Mangrove Jack are an iconic sportfishing species, prized for their aggressive fighting ability.

  • 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

    • Qld Fisheries Boat Ramp Surveys reported a catch rate of 0.09 fish/fisher/day in 2017
    • Weipa ranked 13th in the state for Mangrove Jack Catch Rates in 2017
    • Not a target species for commercial catch


    Quality of the Fish

    • Most of the Mangrove Jack in Estuaries are Juvenile
    • The average length reported in Qld Fisheries Boat Ramp Surveys was 455mm
    • Weipa ranked 5th in the State for average length but given the small sample size this may not  be a reliable measure


    Community Attitudes

    • Qld Fisheries Boat Ramp Surveys reported that 65% of legal size fish were kept in 2017
    • 58% of fish reported in 2017 were caught by locals
    • Weipa ranked 12th in 2017 for the number of fish released


  • Forecast

    Limited Take For Consumption Advised

    • Catch rates will likely be down slightly for T20 fishers - 0.2 fish/fisher/day - 0.4 fish/fisher/day
    • Mangrove Jack average size will be similar to 2017.


    As this species is primarily a Sports Species, and given the high release rate amongst sport fishers, recommend maximum 1 fish taken in any one session.

  • Sportfishers

    Mangrove Jack as a Sports Species

    Mangrove Jack are commonly targetted by Sportfishers in Weipa. They are a difficult species to target and represent a signficant challenge. Mangrove Jack are often found in similar habitat to Barramundi.

    • Local Sportfishers reported a catch rate of 0.8 fish/fisher/day in 2017 and have reported a rate of 2 fish/fisher/day in 2018, so far
    • 100% of the catch in 2018 have been legal size fish

    A snapshot of local Sportfishers catch data is available:

    Local Sportfishers


  • Qld FIsheries Boat Ramp Surveys - General Fishers

    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 Weipa regularly report catching Mangrove Jack each year. Monitoring began in 2017 and is ongoing in 2018.

    • 20 Mangrove Jack were reported in the 2017 Qld Fisheries Boat Ramp Surveys
    • A Catch Rate of 0.09 fish/fisher/day was reported in 2017
    • The average size reported in 2017 was 455mm
    • 65% of legal size fish reported in 2017 were kept
    • 58% of fish reported in 2017 were caught by locals
    • The peak period for catches in 2017 was during September


    Qld Fisheries Boat Ramp Surveys monitoring dashboard


  • Recruitment

    Monitoring of Mangrove Jack Recruitment

    While the lifecycle of the Mangrove Jack is understood, limited research has been conducted on environmental drivers for recruitment success.  Mangrove Jack recruits are detected during Bream Recruitment Surveys indicating they use similar habitat during their growth phase.


  • Monitoring

    Monitoring of Mangrove Jack

    Data for this assessment has been sourced from:

    • Bureau of Meterology
    • Local Sportfishers
    • Queensland Fisheries


    Here are links to all the monitoring pages for Mangrove Jack:



  • Fishing Area

    Area Assessed

    Mangrove Jack are caught throughout the Townsville region and fish are stocked in the Russell. Commercial catches are assessed on Grids I21,J21,K21,L21,L22.