What Is A Average Weight For A 15 Year Old Fishing for Kings in South Mississippi

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Fishing for Kings in South Mississippi

Every year a group of large, voracious and opportunistic carnivores swarm in the waters off the Mississippi Gulf Coast. Known as Kingfish, Kings, Scomberomorus cavalla or King Mackerel, these elegant torpedoes are one of the best game fish found in the 228 area code.

What is a King?

King mackerel is a large inshore pelagic fish found throughout the Gulf and Atlantic coasts. They swim in large groups, keeping the warmer waters in a continuous migration cycle that brings them to the waters of the Mississippi, usually from April to October. Once the seawater drops below 70 degrees, they head for warmer areas, so don’t expect Mr. King to be fooling around when it’s cold. The King has an iron gray back, silver sides with a greenish back, lateral line that falls rapidly after the second dorsal fin.

Average weights range between 5-60kg with fish around 15kg being the most common, bigger fish are definitely strong. The state contract record maintained by DMR is for 64 lb. 8 oz. fish caught in 1999 by Dan Abshire Jr. The currently recognized IGFA record is 93 lbs.

While not as tasty as snapper, tuna and wahoo, they are still edible and a few nice sized ones can fill a freezer with good tasting fillets to enjoy all summer long. It is low in fat, rich in omega-3 fatty acids and is white and flaky when cooked.

Even

These large mackerel are abundant in the Gulf due to strict legislation and conservation, which has steadily increased the once-threatened stocks since 1983. Kings are subject to state and federal regulation. The current state (and federal) limits are 2 per possession, and owners must be at least 24 inches in length as a straight line from the tip of the muzzle to the fork of the tail. Be very careful when you catch large Spanish mackerel and you don’t actually have juvenile kings– that can get you into a lot of trouble. The best way to tell them apart is that a juvenile king will have a gray-blue anterior dorsal fin that spaniels will have a black one. Generally, kingfish season is year-round, but be sure to check and make sure there haven’t been any changes to it before you head out.

Tips and tricks

While their smaller cousin, the Spanish mackerel, can be caught off the seawall and along the many coastal piers, the King prefers deeper water. They can be found best along oil rigs, deep reefs, offshore wrecks and marine waters adjacent to deep passages. Generally, you want to look for deep water 50-150 feet below the hull.

They eat almost anything that fits in their mouths, including all smaller fish, squid and shrimp, which makes catching them an equal opportunity. They can be well caught while trolling a minnow, cigar minnow or sardine or fishing with artificial or real mullet. Other lures such as spoons, feathers, jigs and large plugs also work best when paired with a trail of chub. This can bring in a large shoal of these migratory faces which can mean a burst of fishing excitement. The Southern Kingfish Association runs one of the most popular tournaments for this species, specializing in the good old kingfish. Membership in this black mackerel group can lead to an excellent education on how to target these bruisers.

While not impossible, fly guys struggle with Kings due to the size of the beasts. Many Mississippi saltwater fly anglers have caught these silver monsters and the current fly record is 27 pounds 6.4 ounces. for a 2009 catch by Doug Borries.

With a little luck and deep enough water, you can bet that your own supply of Kings is right out there waiting for you.

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