Image: Fish Dissection - Blue Mackerel

Fish Dissection - Blue Mackerel

Twelve Blue Mackerel specimens were purchased from the Sydney Fish Markets. The fish were given to the students with instructions on the techniques necessary for a successful dissection.

Stuart Humphreys
© Australian Museum


The species was chosen because of the cost and because it has a large swim bladder which is easy to find.

The Blue Mackerel is a schooling fish found right around the Australian coastline. Adults live in deep offshore waters, whereas young fish occur in coastal bays and estuaries.

It is a plankton feeder, which filters small crustaceans from the water. Adults also eat small fishes and squids.

The Blue Mackerel can be recognised by the pattern of narrow dark bars dorsally and spots ventrally. It grows to 65 cm in length and is often referred to as the Slimy Mackerel.

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Tags fish, blue mackeral, students, Scomber australasicus, dissection, Scombridae, ichthyology,