An elongated, streamlined, predatory fish of the Indian and west Pacific Oceans, the Talang queenfish (Scomberoides commersonnianus) may be recognised by its vivid, silvery body and relatively small fins. This powerful fish has rather short anal and dorsal fins, with the rear of the fins being reduced to just small spines, and a blunt snout and large mouth, armed with several rows of fine teeth. The attractive, bright, silver body contrasts with golden yellow streaks on the sides and dark yellow fins, while five to eight distinct dark blotches also run above the lateral line. The upperside of the Talang queenfish is sometimes tinged with dark green, and white on the underside (2)(3).
The diurnal Talang queenfish is a voracious predator that feeds on small fish, crabs and squid living near the bottom of the sea (2)(3)(4). Breeding occurs between September and March when the male and female simultaneously release thousands of sperm and eggs into the water for external fertilisation. The developing larval fish drift passively within the ocean currents, with adult Talang queenfish reaching sexual maturity at four to five years of age (3)(5). Although it is not a true shoaling fish, the Talang queenfish does form small groups (2)(3)(4).
The Talang queenfish is found only in tropical waters of the Indian and west Pacific Oceans. Although it is found as far west as eastern Africa and as far east as Japan (3), the greatest abundance of the Talang queenfish occurs from south-east Asia to northern Australia (3).
Van der Elst, R. (1993) A Guide to the Common Sea Fishes of Southern Africa. Struik Publishers, Cape Town, South Africa.
Griffiths, S., Fry, G. and van der Velde, T. (2005) Age, Growth and Reproductive Dynamics of the Talang Queenfish (Scomberoides commersonnianus) in Northern Australia. Final Report to the National Oceans Office. National Oceans Office and CSIRO Marine and Atmospheric Research, Australia.
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