Latin name: Pomatomus saltatrix

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Wild Caught


Key Facts

  • Tailor are caught in commercial beach haul, gillnet and tunnel net fisheries in coastal waters, estuaries and river mouths in QLD, NSW, VIC and WA waters.
  • Scientific assessment of the eastern Australian tailor population is done collaboratively, and show healthy abundance in both QLD and NSW.
  • The line fishing methods used to catch most Tailor in NSW are unlikely to pose a high risk to other species, but Government managers have been non-compliant with their obligations to improve management of bycatch issues in regulation of the fishery.
  • Marine parks and closures throughout the fishery also provide a degree of protection in some areas of the fishery. At the time of writing, the NSW Government was considering opening highly protected marine parks to fishing.

Cooking & Recipes


Tailor is a cheap and hugely underrated fish that ticks all the boxes – affordable, sustainable, and delicious! Tailor can be served either as fillets or as whole fish. Try it baked or grilled with lots of fresh herbs and lemon. Alternatively, smoking yields some incredible results. Don’t freeze tailor, as the flesh will become mushy once defrosted.

More information

  • NSW Ocean Trap and Line Fishery (60t in 2019)

Tailor are found in temperate and sub-tropical waters throughout most global ocean basins. They inhabit shallow coastal and estuarine waters, over sandy substrates, where they predate on benthic invertebrates. They are caught in commercial fisheries in QLD, NSW and WA.

Most Tailor are caught in NSW using line fishing methods (shore based rod and line, and boat-based handline) which are likely to be highly targeted. These fishing methods are likely to pose a low risk to other species, and are do not impact seafloor habitats.

A scientific assessment of the tailor population and modernised management arrangements for the fishery has recently been introduced, which is welcome. The collaborative nature of the assessment between QLD and NSW managers, which catch the same tailor population is a welcome innovation. The NSW tailor population is in healthy condition.

Requirements for bycatch and discard reporting are poor in the fishery, but the line methods used to catch the fish are targeted and therefore low risk for other marine wildlife.

The fishery is subject to a range of legislation, including Wildlife Trade Operation (WTO) accreditation. At the time of this assessment AMCS had found the NSW Department of Primary Industries was non compliant with its WTO conditions in relation to bycatch management in this fishery, impacting the ranking of this assessment overall. However, tailor is not caught using methods that result in a lot of bycatch.

Marine parks in NSW provide the most effective science based protection from the ecological risks posed by fishing, but alarmingly, at the time of writing, the NSW Government was considering opening highly protected marine parks to fishing.