Fisheries Infosite

Gemfish Kermadec (SKI10)
Maori name
Scientific name
Rexea spp.

Physical characteristics

Gemfish have blue backs and silvery flanks and undersides. They can grow to a maximum length of 135 cm, but average from 60-90 cm.

Life cycle

Gemfish have a maximum age of 17 years. There is little information about age at maturity. Spawning is thought to occur in July around North Cape and August-September in the north of the South Island.


Gemfish are found throughout New Zealand on the continental shelf and slope. They are usually found at depths of 50-600 m. Gemfish feed on squid, lanternfish, dories, and rattails.

Key statistics
Recreational significance Medium
Customary significance Medium
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