Fisheries Infosite

Fishery - Jack mackerel

Key statistics
Recreational significance Low
Customary significance Low
Environmental importance High
Reported commercial catch1 (tonnes)
Quota value estimate2 (NZ$m)
Exports estimate2 (NZ$m)
1 Reported commercial catch is calculated for the 12 month period to 30/09/2025
2 Quota value and exports are calculated pro-rata to reported commercial catch for the 12 month period to 30/09/2025
Related links
Associated bycatch species
  • Redbait

 Three species of jack mackerel are managed under the QMS with the collective reporting code of JMA. Jack mackerel fisheries consist of two New Zealand species: Trachurus declivis and T. novaezelandia. The third species, T. murphyi, is a pan-Pacific species that arrived in NZ in the 1980s. All three species are thought to be live close to the bottom at night and near surface during the day. Jack mackerel species are relatively long-lived (25-30 years) and reach maturity at about 6-7 years.

Jack mackerels are relatively low value fish; however, their high harvest volume makes them an important and valuable component of New Zealand's deepwater fisheries. The export value of Jack mackerel was about $33 million in 2007 with most product exported to Europe and Asia.

Trawl deck on setting of trawl nets The majority of jack mackerel are taken by foreign charted vessels trawling in JMA 7. The other main fishery occurs further north in JMA 1.