Mangrove Jack (2020)
Date Published: June 2021
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The long-lived Mangrove Jack is classified as sustainable in WA, recovering in the Gulf of Carpentaria and undefined in the NT and East Coast QLD. Stock status is negligible in NSW.
Stock Status Overview
|New South Wales||New South Wales||Negligible|
Mangrove Jack are a long lived (> 50 years), late maturing species that can reach a length of over 1 m [Russell et al. 2003]. They are broadly distributed throughout the tropical and sub-tropical Indo-West Pacific [Allen 1985] and exhibit a biphasic life history pattern, where juveniles spend several years in freshwater and estuarine habitats before migrating offshore as they near sexual maturity, and have been reported to a depth of at least 175 m [Pradella et al. 2013].
The distribution of this species within Australian waters extends from approximately Perth, Western Australia, around the north of the continent to Sydney, New South Wales [Pember et al. 2005, Russell et al. 2003]. Genetic analyses indicate that Mangrove Jack consist of a single biological stock across its Australian range [Russell et al. 2003]. This level of mixing is consistent with a life history that involves offshore spawning by adults. However, Mangrove Jack experience moderate to high harvest rates in some Australian fisheries (particularly those targeting adults of this long-lived species), which may cause localised depletion. While juvenile fish have been shown to migrate from freshwater and estuarine habitats to offshore reef environments, often with a movement component of up to 335 km [Russell et al. 2003], once these ontogenetic movements have occurred there have been no reports of adult fish undertaking extensive movements, although studies are limited. As such, limited evidence of adult movement in combination with evidence of varying stock status in different regions indicates that Mangrove Jack likely comprise separate management units.
Here, assessment of stock status is presented at the management unit level―East Coast Queensland and the Gulf of Carpentaria; and at the jurisdictional level―Western Australia, Northern Territory and New South Wales.
New South Wales
Stock status for the New South Wales stock is reported as negligible due to historically low catches in this jurisdiction, and because the stock has generally not been subject to targeted fishing. The New South Wales commercial catch in 2012–17 averaged less than 0.1 t per annum, and Mangrove Jack is not a major component of recreational landings. Fishing is unlikely to be having a negative impact on the stock.
Mangrove Jack biology [Pember et al. 2005, Piddocke et al. 2015, Russell et al. 2003]
|Species||Longevity / Maximum Size||Maturity (50 per cent)|
|Mangrove Jack||57 years, 1 019 mm FL||Male: ≥ 7 years, 450 mm F L Female: ≥ 8 years, 510 mm FL|
Distribution of reported commercial catch of Mangrove Jack
|New South Wales|
|New South Wales|
Western Australia Active Vessels data is unreportable as there were fewer than three vessels operating in Pilbara Fish Trawl Interim Managed Fishery and Pilbara Trap Managed Fishery.
Western Australia – Recreational (Catch) Boat-based recreational catch is from 1 September 2017–31 August 2018. These data are derived from those reported in Ryan et al. . Shore based catches of Mangrove Jack are not known.
Western Australia – Recreational (management methods) A Recreational Fishing from Boat License is required for the use of a powered boat to fish or to transport catch or fishing gear to or from a land-based fishing location.
Western Australia – Indigenous (management methods) Subject to application of Section 211 of the Native Title Act 1993 (Cth), and the exemption from a requirement to hold a recreational fishing licence, the non-commercial take by Indigenous fishers is covered by the same arrangements as that for recreational fishing.
Northern Territory Recreational Catch from West et al. .
Queensland – Indigenous (management methods) for more information see https://www.daf.qld.gov.au/business-priorities/fisheries/traditional-fishing
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- FAO species catalogue, volume 6, snappers of the world. FAO Fisheries Synopsis 125.
- Gulf of Carpentaria Mangrove Jack Stock Status Summary - 2020. Unpublished Fishery Report
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- Northern Territory Mangrove Jack Stock Status Summary - 2020. Unpublished Fishery Report
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- West, LD, Lyle, JM, Matthews, SR and Stark, KE 2012, A survey of recreational fishing in the Northern Territory, 2009–10, Fishery report 109, Northern Territory Government Department of Resources, Darwin.