Sydney shortbill spearfish recaptured near PNG

Only 552 spearfish have been tagged and released since the Game Fish Tagging Program began in 1973.

A SHORTBILL spearfish released by keen junior angler, Rhys Cokun, fishing on his Dad’s boat, Mr Magoo, has been recaptured near Papua New Guinea. The fish was tagged on April 3, 2016, while Rhys was fishing off Sydney, and was estimated at 180 cm and 16 kg on release. Fast forward 584 days to November 8, 2017, and the spearfish was caught by a Japanese longline vessel fishing deep in the Coral Sea, 175 nautical miles south of PNG.

An email to from the National Research Institute of Far Seas Fisheries this month detailed the recapture. The fish was over 1271 nautical miles (2353 km) from its original release location off Sydney.

The shortbill spearfish is one of the smallest and least understood species of billfishes. Only 552 spearfish have been tagged and released since the program’s beginnings in 1973. Only two have been recaptured to date, with the first recapture reported in 2009 when a fish tagged off Port Stephens was recaptured off Fraser Island 45 days later.

Gor more info on the NSW DPI Game Fish Tagging Program, click HERE

What's your reaction?

Related Posts

Load More Posts Loading...No More Posts.